Saturday, March 04, 2017

In 'Sōshitsu', 'Digimon Adventure tri.' Starts to Feel Rewarding

The second-half of Digimon Adventure tri. starts strong with Sōshitsu (“Loss” in English), the fourth installment.  With Kohuhaku setting this movie up by shifting the setting to the Digital World and the DigiDestined getting to “re-meet” their Digimon partners (who have reverted back to their baby form and lost their memories after the world’s reboot), some expectations were raised because of the “back to basic” feel it brought – expectations that Sōshitsu fortunately met.  (Warning: this review is going be a little bit spoiler-y than usual.)

The movie kicks off with a “silent film”-style flashback, which is a lot of fun.  The whole thing is engagingly stylish, and offers crucial information.  I actually wished that the entire movie could go on being like that.

After that intro, the movie returns back to the DigiDestined trying to win over their Digimon partners once again.  It goes smoothly for everyone, except for Sora and Yokomon/Biyomon.  This adds additional drama to the plot, but it didn’t do anything for me.  It doesn’t make sense that the others quickly bonded except for these two, and the writing didn’t do a good job of justifying it.  It was pretentious BS.
Tanemon fearfully asking Mimi not to eat her is adorable and hilarious.
Aside from the forced tension between Sora and Yokomon/Biyomon, I never had another significant problem with this movie (except, maybe, the fact that the 02 kids are still nowhere to be found).  The pace still has a bit of dragging issues early on, but after already experiencing the same thing in the previous three movies, I kind of had braced for it, that it didn’t bother me anymore.

Things finally get exciting when Machinedramon attacks them, and it’s a solid, interesting movie from then on.  The team gets separated.  Familiar sceneries and Digimon are shown.  Thoughtful dialogues are said.  Mei joins the party.  Sora gets creepily licked by the bad guy (!!!).  The best “Marching Fishes” attack from Gomamon happens.  Some more kickass “Ultimate” forms are revealed.  And the movie ends with another effective cliffhanger.

So four down, two to go.   I’m still not yet blown away.  But Sōshitsu is the first time that I really felt Digimon Adventure tri. is showing signs of being rewarding.

Now if only those 02 DigiDestined can appear in the last two movies…

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