Welcome to Neverland
- Movie : 94 Mins
- Genre : Action, Adventure, Comedy, Drama
- Airing Date : September 29, 2020
- Producers : Yumeta Company, Toei Animation
20 Years Have Passed, So It's Time to Evolve
Back in 1997, every kid was into virtual pets. Tamagotchi was by far the most popular brand, but Bandai also promoted the Digimon V-Pet, unknowingly forging the first generation of Digimon Tamers around the globe. However, it wasn't until a few years later that the Digimon franchise became a real powerhouse, mostly thanks to an anime series that's in everyone's hearts now: Digimon Adventure.
To celebrate its 20th anniversary, Toei Animation and the Akiyoshi Hongo collective presented a new movie earlier this year, and now it's finally available in English! Do you wanna know how good or bad this movie is? Keep reading our Digimon Adventure: Last Evolution Kizuna movie review!
1. A Trip Down Memory Lane
Remember that Parrotmon versus Greymon epic fight? Remember Tai blowing a whistle? Then you probably remember Maurice Ravel's Boléro, too. Well, those are just 3 things this movie reinterprets at different key moments, and there are definitely a lot more references throughout this film. That's because although this is a new movie that takes place in the future, where our heroes are soon-to-be adults, some things never change...
We know we recently had 6 movies (Digimon Adventure tri.), but how much is enough when it comes to our favorite childhood series? In our case, we had a blast pointing our fingers at the screen and smiling every time we recognized one of these—sometimes not-so-subtle—Easter eggs!
2. The Gangs is Back... and the Other Gang Too!
Tai, Matt, T.K., Izzy, Kari, and some other DigiDestined are back, including Yolei and Davis from Digimon Adventure 02, for example. Sadly, some characters don't get enough screen-time as we'd like them to, and that's without saying that several of them (e.g., Mimi, Sora, and Joe) are not even part of Last Evolution Kizuna's main cast—just a token, thanks to the plot.
We get it, they're older now, so they have bigger responsibilities that make it impossible to be fighting digital monsters whenever something pops up. Plus, Menoa took the time to kidnap them. That being said, though, isn't it kinda sad that only half the original gang gets to shine?
3. New Evolutions! (Duh!)
Since several thousand people have already seen the movie in Japan, it's hard to avoid spoilers, more so when we all knew this movie was going to feature two brand new evolutions. That's right, in Digimon Adventure: Last Evolution Kizuna we're introduced to the Bond Evolutions!
Although the name implies that all DigiDestined could potentially evolve their partners into Bond form, only Tai and Matt got to do so... which makes sense in a movie where only Omnimon (WarGreymon & MetalGarurumon's DNA Fusion) stands a chance against the antagonist. In case you're still wondering, Tai's partner evolved into Agumon - Bond of Courage, while Matt's evolved into Gabumon - Bond of Friendship. Maybe we need to wait until the 25th anniversary to see all these Bond evolutions, but how cool would it be for them to introduce the new digital monsters in the anime reboot, currently on air?!
1. It's Too Predictable
One of the reasons why we all love the Digimon series is that there's always something unexpectedly cool to look forward to. Remember the wait for the 8th DigiDestined reveal, and how surprised we all were to see Gatomon's companion was Kari. And how about that episode Agumon evolved into SkullGreymon? Well, there's nothing remotely close to that in this movie. The only plot-twist comes when we learn Menoa Belluci is the actual antagonist, and from there, everything is painfully predictable... which is not necessarily a synonym of boring.
2. Those Who Only Watched the Original Anime Will Have a Hard Time Accepting These Characters Now That They Have Grown Up
They obviously are the same, but now they're grown-ups. This impacts their personality and obligations but also the character design, so we can't blame you if you feel like something's off. In other words, if this is your first Digimon movie since the early days, you'll be experiencing the same struggles we all did a few years ago... and to make everything worse, Menoa's plan is to freeze all the DigiDestined in time, so the climax of the movie features all but Matt and Tai when they were kids. If you're a purist, you might not enjoy Digimon's new approach. Although, to be completely fair, haven't we all changed?
3. If You're a Fan, It's Hard Not to Cry
Last but not least, we have to talk about this movie's themes. In the past, Digimon was all about exploring the Digital World, saving the day alongside your friends, and strengthening the bond with your companion digital monster. Last Evolution Kizuna, however, is about defeating a seemingly evil artificial monster even if that means your partner digimon could disappear forever.
Once Tai and the others learn that growing up weakens each DigiDestined's bond with their digimon and that the energy needed to defeat Eosmon could faster consume their partner's lives, how can you not shed a tear watching the final fight? Digimon Adventure: Last Evolution Kizuna definitely ends on a sad note, even though deep in our hearts, we know this is not the end.
Dealing with all these emotions could be difficult for the faint of heart, but not all stories can have a happy ending!
As simple as it is, Digimon Evolution: Last Evolution Kizuna is a very good Drama movie that shows us not all adventures are particularly fun, and that some heroes need to sacrifice what they love the most for a much greater good.
If you want to watch it, you can find it digitally on iTunes, Microsoft Store, Amazon Prime Video, and Sony PlayStation Network starting on September 29, with a physical release a week later. You can join the cast members for a special livestreaming event on October 3, too!