Hey guys and welcome to Part 2 of the Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III: Rebellion review (wow that’s a mouthful). If you randomly stumbled upon part 2 and you’re looking for an overview and review of the plot, click here. Part 2 will look at Characters, Music and my final thoughts on the film series. Now without further ado, let’s get started…
Like all magical series, the story intensely revolves around the lives of a certain group of girls whose lives and destinies are intertwined by magic, and in this case, that magic involves a contract. In many magical girl series and, there are more or less two routes the character development can take. The first is intense development with one or two of magic girl characters and she’s usually the leader of the group. The second is shallow character stories due to the short amount of time and focus divided to giving each magic girl her back story and air time. Somehow, Madoka Magic has both, but leans more to the first route of character development. Even though the story (and fandom) is greatly devoted to Madoka and Homura’s close friendships, their trials and tribulations, we obviously don’t see as much of the other magic girls. They’re either dead in some timelines or they’re just not significant to the main conflict in the story’s main timeline. Still, you can’t help but love Mami’s stern but loving leaderly qualities or Kyoko’s hardass personality; even Sayaka’s character is wonderfully reconciled in this movie. Overall, the characters are properly constructed and mature accordingly to how the story progresses. No cop outs.
Madoka Kaname (3.5/5)- From start to finish, I’ve always felt that even though the series is named after Madoka and despite her main role in the creation of the Law of the Cycle, she serves as more of a symbol of hope and figurehead of goodness. You can easily like her, but perhaps not grow to love her as much as one of the tortured characters that you come to love after a ride on their emotional journey.
Homura Akemi (5/5)- Part 3 really focuses on how Homura copes with the world after her closest and dearest friend leaves her. She even wonders if she had hallucinated this girl named Madoka because no one else remembers anyone named Madoka Kaname; she neither exist in the past, the present nor the future. I’ve grown to really love the character that Homura’s become in Part 3. She’s no longer a crybaby and like how Sayaka said she felt the tough and strong Homura was truer to Homura’s personality, I agree with that as well. Homura’s risen into the list of my favourite anime characters because of the realistic three-dimensionality of her personality that brings out the best of humans – self-sacrifice, unconditional love, perseverance and in this movie, the worst – selfishness, hopelessness and despair. She embodies all of these things and more making her truly one of the most enjoyable characters on screen.
Sayaka Miki (4/5)- We see a lot more of Sayaka, a side of her much more mature and level-headed versus the depressing and somewhat annoying little girl we see in the first parts of the story. She becomes a key character in the show and her role is a defining feature of Madoka’s ways of the world. In contrast to the original story timeline where she’s the weakest of the group, she becomes one of the strongest characters of the show and in the most unique way possible thanks to God-doka. She even shocks Kyubey.
Mami Tomoe (4/5)- Though her death was a pivotal moment in the initial release of the show, she comes back in other timelines so she’s not at all sidelined in the story, especially not in Part 3. We’re shown just how powerful an experienced magic girl senpai can fight – and she’s pretty badass. Her role in the conclusion of the movie kept her pretty much in the same position in terms of being a side character of the main cast. She’s important in her own way and moves the plot deeper but her role finishes quick.
Kyoko Sakura (3.5/5)- I guess it’s because we saw so much of Kyoko in the original series that there’s not much else to talk about in Part 3. She’s actually the first one Homura approaches when they tackle the opening conflict of the movie’s plot. I don’t want to give too much away so you’ll just have to watch but she does contribute quite a bit to character development. For Sayaka X Kyoko fans, you’ll absolutely love the camaraderie that we see between the pair.
Nagisa Momoe (3/5)- Ah, our new character~ the wish she made was apparently formerly announced and we’re given subtle hinted at the details of her wish throughout the movie. She was originally the sweets witch that killed Mami in the original storyline and in this timeline she’s really a new cute girl to keep things fresh, really. If a giant fanbase explodes over Nagisa, I could see a mini side magic girl series being focused on her; how she became a magic girl, the specific details of her wish and how she descended into despair, maybe even her perspective as a witch when she’s fighting Mami.
Score and Soundtrack
… It’s Yuki Kajiura. Nuff said. The name itself already warrants a listen to the soundtrack. She adds a nice collection of sounds in the continuation of the series. It’s hard for me to draw out a full review of the music because you don’t usually pick up the instrumentals as you’re absorbed in the action, but that’s just how amazing the music is. The best score and soundtrack is one that elevates the storytelling to a mesmerizing state for the audience. The one key score piece that I did pick up on was the uniquely abstract and refreshing soundtrack that went with each girl’s full magical transformation scene. It just fits immensely well with the art style and atmosphere that the story evokes. This is not your regular magic girl anime, so it requires not so regular magic girl music.
Still the music is one of the most memorable part of your movie-going experience because some would argue that it’s the music that sticks with you the longest, after the action explosions have faded and the credits have run out. Though I can’t point out the melody, I can still remember the way I felt when I heard the soundtracks. Another key moment of orchestral brilliance are the moments when Homura prepares to die as a witch. Delicate and tragic yet so chaotic and destructive, reflecting turmoil of emotions that Homura feels when her soul descends into the abyss. I love Yuki Kajiura’s work and I can’t wait to have a listen of the full OST when it gets released.
…And now on a slightly more positive note. Since ClariS has been singing the opening songs in the Madoka series so far, I did expect a new ClariS song from them and I wasn’t disappointed. The new opening was aesthetically pleasing in the most artistic way possible which really compliments the hopeful and magical sounds of the opening song, “Colorful.” If you listen carefully, you can hear violin sounds in the track. I have it on repeat and it’s just so addicting.
Click below for a listen or the link to download the song!
The fact that Part 3 of the film series is called “Rebellion,” tells you a lot about what’s happening in the story. Of course in the magic girl series you generally expect pretty dresses, flashy powers and cute girls. This has all of that – and So. Much. More. The story never lets us forget that its written by Urobutcher. Madoka Magica gives us a reality slap check when it comes to critiquing and reviewing magic girl series – it totally destroys our presumptions that twelve and older magic girls can go to school by day and fight evil by night and still function cheerily with less than three hours of sleep every night. AND NO DARK CIRCLES! Must be great to be a magic girl right? Not in this world. This series takes everything you ever thought you knew or wanted in a magic girl series, reconstructs and reinvents part of the genre for more mature audiences who have enough of their share of cutesy pointless magic girl clichés and want substance in the plot, all the while keeping the traditional elements of the magic girl genre true to its core.
Whether you love fantasy or action, drama or just a hell of a good anime no matter what the genre, you should watch Madoka Magica. It’s one of those anime defining series that proves to anime-haters or non-anime watchers just. how. good. anime can get.
Final Thoughts? (in no particular order)
– I need the God-doka Magica Nendoroid like now
– Gonna go and read Magical Girl Kazumi and Oriko
– Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III: Rebellion places the series on my list of absolute favourite animes that everyone should watch
– Don’t show Puella Magi Madoka Magica to your magic girl loving cousins or you might ruin their magic girl dreams and they’ll start telling you that there’s a Kyubey under the bed instead of a Bogeyman. Of course, because even the Bogeyman’s afraid of that creepy thing.
Anyway, we’ve now reached the end of our review and now that we have reached the end, I wanted to show you guys some cool freebie character cards that were up for grabs in the theatre. I could only find the three most common character cards so if you have a Sayaka X Kyoko or Mami card, I’m super jealous of you!! There were some really great bonuses that scores up some big points on the score for overall movie-going experience.
I hope you guys liked this thorough two-part review on the finale of the Madoka Magica film series. If you liked this don’t forget to share it with friends or follow me for new stuff coming almost every day. Thank you guys very very much for dropping by and reading. Let me know what you guys thought of the series? Whether or not you liked Homura’s ending and if you think there will be a magic girl anime that could EVER TOP Madoka Magica.
I will talk to you guys soon!
What are you pondering today?
- Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie III: Rebellion Part 1 Review (littlecloudcuriosity.com)