P/s: Here is Impz hijacking Shokkeru’s post to apologize for the massive downtime today. =3 We also thank Maestro for his hard work to bring the blog up for goodness. Cheers!
I’ve finally got a chance to watch the much anticipated .hack//G.U. movie that was released on DVD and Blu-ray last month. If you didn’t know already, the movie wraps up all the main events from the three G.U. games all into one nice package with a little extra. If you don’t know what .hack//G.U. is, look here for an explanation.
This movie is probably more for the fans than anything else. There’s a lot of places in the movie that seemed rushed and might not make any sense for viewers who haven’t played the games or know of the story already. That being said, I still think the trilogy movie is pretty good if not for the visuals alone. I haven’t had the chance to watch the movie in full HD yet, but the average quality I got from watching it on my computer was still pretty good.
NOTE: Possible spoilers after the jump… this warning is probably not necessary… hell most of you who even read this probably already know the story anyways, but even so, you’ve been warned.
Pretty much the same as the games only with a few minor tweaks and changes. Haseo sports a new form in which he becomes much like a berserk beast. While not mentioned in the movie, I believe the new form is called “B-st” form, but I could be wrong. Certain events are placed at different times in the story. For example, it seems Haseo doesn’t activate his avatar until he faces Kite and not earlier during the arena matches. Also, Atoli does not attempt to befriend Haseo until after he’s through with the matches as well. Those changes in event order are a bit trivial, but still a little odd for someone who’s played the games.
Probably the main complaint is that the movie seems way too rushed (for me at least). The story just seemed to progress a bit too quickly. One minute he’s at the first fight against Kite and then ten minutes later he’s already through the arena matches. Even for someone who doesn’t already know the story, the pacing might seem too fast.
Another thing is that a lot of the supporting characters were left out of the movie. This again is something a fan would only notice. But the only characters to have a significant role in the movie are perhaps only Haseo, Ovan, Atoli and to some extent, Yata, Pi, Kuhn, and Shino.
But overall, I like the story of .hack//G.U.. The movie doesn’t bring much new elements for the fans, but I still think it’s worth watching.
The art style is very much like the CG cutscenes in the game, only a lot more hotter. The rendering seems much more smoother and definitely more hi-res. The animation seems a lot more fluid as well. Heck, even if you’re not a fan of .hack, you’d probably be impressed by how high quality it looks.
I also have to give props on how much “better” AIDA-infected Atoli looks from the game. They really took it to another level and I was really impressed. Haseo’s B-st form looks crazy, but I wasn’t really feeling it as much. I still think his Xth form looks the best, but B-st form is a nice addition to the movie.
AIDA-infected Atoli: Game version vs. Movie version
I have to say, seeing certain parts of the story animated properly makes a fanboy giddy. The avatar battles really were the best action scenes in the movie for me. Also, the scene where Haseo sticks his face all up in Atoli’s was pretty interesting to watch in terms of animation fluidity.
Although, there was a few parts I had a problem with. Aina just looks really weird to me. I know she’s supposed to look like that, but having very little to no eyebrows just looks really funky to me. Other than that, I guess there’s really not much for me to whine about.
I guess I’ll keep this one short. The music for the movie wasn’t anything memorable. There was very few times that I even noticed the background music at all. And even when I did notice the music, it wasn’t really that great for me. I do have the soundtrack for the movie and have yet to listen to it. Until then, I’ll have to say that the music was probably my least favorite part of the movie.
The voice acting was pretty good though (although there wasn’t too many different voices to be heard). I’m used to playing the games with crappy English voice acting and felt refreshed listening to them in Japanese. I don’t mean to sound like a fanboy, but some of the voice acting in the American version of .hack//G.U. was pretty terrible. I’ve had multiple people agree with me on this so I know I’m not alone. =P
Overall, I think this was a pretty good movie for the fans. I’m not sure how non-fans will react to it, but I can definitely say that fans and non-fans will not be watching the same movie. There’s so many things a fan who knows the story will pick up on that a non-fan will not and I think that makes a difference in this movie.
I’d like to hear from people who haven’t played the games but watched this movie about their experience with it. I’ve only heard from fans of the series so far and I’m curious to see how this movie looks to non .hack fans (of course, I’d like to hear from more fans as well).