It is no secret where my heart lies when it comes to anime genres. I am a magical girl anime person and always have been. Starting a journey with Sailor Moon and Cardcaptors only to arrive at the new aged magical girls. I have watched, loved and reviewed Madoka and can honestly say it was one of my all-time favourite anime slipping just under Sailor Moon. So of course when the long anticipated third instalment of the anime franchise appeared in the form of the third movie “Rebellion” I squeed like the fan girl I am. Not only is it another instalment of the series it is the first movie to show what officially happened following the series. No one could have foreseen what they would do and what they have done. There will be no spoilers in this review but for any fans of the anime all I can say is proceed with caution.
Title: Puella Magi Madoka Magica 叛逆の物語 Hangyaku no Monogatari
Release date: October 26, 2013
Director: Yukihiro Miyamoto
Writer: Gen Urobuchi
Rebellion starts off following the previous events of the series with Madoka and the other girls fighting new creatures referred to as “Nightmares” that are born from the negative feelings of humans. They appear to have no recollection of the events that took place from the series. It remains this way until Homura begins to question their existence there and looks into the world they are living in. Without spoiling the film all I can state from here is the film takes a dark twist in the world of witches and magical girls causing Homura to see the world and Madoka in a new light.
Madoka Magica took a new look and feel to the magical girl genre taking the usual girly colourful innocence of past series combining it with twisted imagery and a dark storyline filled with mental illness and the darkness that resides in peoples own souls. Where this show really showed its individuality was in the balance between the light and innocent and the dark twisted imagery. Rebellion for the most part does the exact same with one minor difference, it took the twisted and messed up imagery too far where it became more about what funky stuff was happening around them to what was actually happening in the story. They attempted to cater to their new audience rather than the audience that had been with them the entire time. It could even be said that this movie took a step away from the original genre and almost stepped in the psychedelic. There was point where it became painful to watch because they had gone too far with the imagery. There were so many good parts with imagery during fight scenes and in particular during touching scenes between Madoka and Homura or between Mami and Charlotte but these were looked over for the more dark and twisted stuff.
There is one thing this series has had and that is a clear cut story although muffled at times we always knew at the end of the day this was a story of good vs. evil and maybe not always in the usual sense. Of course there was the battle between the magical girls and witches but in the series there was often an inner conflict of good and evil making for much more interesting characters and dialogue. From Mami’s inner turmoil about her “wish” that she made with Kyubey and the obvious disturbance of Sayaka. Where Rebellion really stood out especially for me was in the story. It kept all the little quirks of the previous stories while also obviously adding in some new twists and turns along the way. The story in itself was more centred on Homura and her troubles rather than on all the girls as one. What made the story stand out to me was the fact it mainly centred around Homura but still the other girls were involved with their own little side stories, the one that stood out most to me was the one with Mami and Charlotte which was quiet touching to watch even when Homura blames Charlotte because she is a witch Mami defends her because although Homura is her friend so is Charlotte thus giving us an example of when there is a common bond between good and evil. As a whole if they had of toned down the graphics then this movie would not only have been nominated for awards it probably would have won on story alone.
The magical girl genre will be forever changed by the impact Madoka had on it but as far as this movie goes there is no coming up from this. They attempted too much in one movie. Madoka had so much going for it and what was key in my eyes was that balance between the dark and twisted and the innocent and light. This is something this movie did not have, it relied far too much on the crazy imagery rather than just letting the story tell itself with the accompaniment of some weird imagery. In my opinion it’s not a bad film it’s just too much at once to be considered a brilliant film. It took some good and bad aspects and ran with them. I still cannot physically sit through the whole film without getting emotional over the fact it does not feel like a Madoka film. All in all a mediocre film that could have been amazing. Still worth watching for any fan but I give the warning to proceed with caution.
[easyreview title=”The Arcade Verdict” cat1title=”Story” cat1detail=”Truly Moving and captivating although glanced over at times!” cat1rating=”8″ cat2title=”Animation” cat2detail=”Beautiful only way overdone with the dark and twisted imagery!” cat2rating=”6″ cat3title=”Characters” cat3detail=”Amazingly captivating characters who continue to engage and thrill you till the end!” cat3rating=”9.5″ overall=”true”]