Remember when Digimon was first broadcasted on NTV7 and Astro Ceria? Roughly two decades have passed since then, and now the series is hitting the silver screen with the original eight DigiDestined returning to draw the curtains on their long adventure.
Originally slated to release in Malaysia on April 16, 2020, the movie faced worldwide delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, as Malaysia enters its recovery period, Digimon Adventure Last Evolution: Kizuna is now finally able to be screened in cinemas.
Want to know more about the movie before you venture outside to the cinema? Read on!
The plot of Kizuna, to put it bluntly, is predictable. By the midway mark of the film, the antagonist’s motives are clear, and you would have an inkling of how the climax would play out.
However, despite its simple plot, Kizuna is still an entertaining journey to watch. The film is a spectacle that is worth watching and experiencing. It is packed with emotions that will shake our inner child and leave us teary-eyed at the end.
Throughout the movie, there were also multiple callbacks to classic moments in the original Digimon Adventure anime. It gives us the right amount of fanservice, perfectly balanced without feeling overdone.
Kizuna mainly focuses on Taichi and Yamato, and their growth into adulthood. The film assumes that you already know their base personality, so they waste no time getting into the plot. However, if you’re a fan of the other characters, you may be in for a letdown as they mostly appear as cameos who have little involvement in the plot.
Despite this, their appearances are still endearing as we see them having grown into adults who are chasing their careers, finding out what they want to do for a living, or just doing adult stuff like talking about life while drinking in an izakaya. It sends that nostalgic pulse that they’ve grown since their isekai adventure, just as we have.
Meanwhile, the main antagonist is basically a typical Digimon villain, but their motivations are surprisingly more fleshed out and relatable than you might expect.
The major theme in this movie is acceptance; the acceptance that things change as we grow and the only thing we can do is move forward. The film tries to relay to the audience that clinging onto past memories, choices, or our childhood will only jeopardise what is there for us in the future as adults.
It’s a pretty generic theme, but the build-up Digimon has set as a childhood fantasy anime where the characters actually grow up in each adaptation, drives the meaning home to us viewers, as we have actually grown alongside these characters.
In addition to some new tunes, Kizuna offers many beautiful renditions of familiar soundtracks from the original Digimon Adventure 01 and 02 series that help set the mood of the scenes.
However, there was a fight scene that I felt just screamed “Brave Heart,” but instead, a new slower-paced song was played. At first, it bothered me a lot, which affected my opinions on the movie, but after a discussion with a friend, I realize it was an intentional choice to strengthen the theme of the film. It’s a pretty meta way to make viewers realise that they are blinded by nostalgia and not moving forward, something the movie is trying to teach us and correct.
Design & Animation
The animation is crisp and fluid, which makes the action scenes much more enjoyable and intense. There are times when their incorporation of CG animation doesn’t quite gel with some of the 2D animations, but it does not interfere much with the action experience.
The character designs are solid, paying homage to Digimon’s art style while feeling fresh, unlike the designs from the Digimon Tri Movie series.
The film’s marketing tagline, “For all DigiDestined who have walked with Digimon,” perfectly sums up this movie. The film is made for long-time Digimon fans and really lives up to its title on being the last time we’ll see Taichi and the other DigiDestined’s journey.
Overall, the film is a great send-off for us Digimon fans, as a kind of personal farewell letter from the characters we grew up with that is filled with nostalgia, hope, and best wishes. A farewell letter that I would rate a solid – 7.5 out of 10.