Anime Review: Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection F

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Sometimes, I hate streaming sites for various reasons, including ones like Crunchyroll and FUNimation, because they are supposed to let me try watching something before buying it, though I am still technically paying for it, but due to the limited amount of content, as well as the fact that what you want to watch will not always be available to watch, things do not always live up to expectations.

Recently, I found out that a movie that I wanted to see finally got released where I lived, but because of how things are in the streaming scene, I decided to buy it from iTunes.

Today, I will be reviewing that movie, which is called Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection F.

Like the last DBZ movie I reviewed, I will be skipping the series synopsis because most people should know what the Dragon Ball series is about.

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Some time After fighting against Beerus, the god of Destruction, Goku and Vegeta go to train under the tutelage of Whis, who is said to outclass Beerus.

However, instead of being able to live peacefully with the fact that Earth has been spared, two beings come to Earth and ask Shenron to revive an enemy that was thought to have been gone for good.

Now that this old enemy had been revived, He demands a rematch with Goku or the planet will meet its end.

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I somewhat of liked this movie.

Unlike the last movie though, I can say that it was for more than nostalgia.

If things that I liked in the past, before I even understood what made a story good, were like this, I would probably be able to say that they improved quite a bit.

Unfortunately, I can only think of a few titles from the time I got introduced to anime, such as Yu Yu Hakusho, that actually do have some quality.

I liked how a few characters actually learned something during the course of this film.

While the characters never really seemed to learn anything and develop into better characters during the series, unlike how Yusuke Urameshi went from being a jerk to being likable by others or Edward Elric learning that alchemy has its limits, I am hoping that what the characters have learned sticks with them this time, seeing how they knew about Vegeta's brother in the last movie.

For example, as many of the people familiar with the dragon ball franchise knows, Goku tends to show his enemies mercy and give them a chance to redeem themselves, but because he showed Frieza mercy again, the Earth is destroyed like Namek was.

As much as my church and my elders would all like people to be as merciful to their enemies, especially when we are in situations similar to what happened in Cage of Eden Volume 5, where Akira had to have somebody who tried to kill one of his comrades help him get the victim out of a deadly situation, it is not always the right thing to do because the person may have already been consumed by the negative aspects of greed and are more of a demon than a human.

This fact is most apparent here, where Frieza is consumed with the desire to kill Goku because he was beaten by the pure hearted saiyan, and when he does not get his way, he pulls off the same stunt he did on Namek.

If Goku had not spared Frieza, the people he loved, like Chi Chi, who does not even appear in the movie, would not have died.

Fortunately, Goku realizes this mistake and immediately fixes thing, though the fix is not something that I particularly enjoyed.

Another character who actually learned a few things was Frieza himself.

After finding out that Goku had defeated Buu, Frieza decided to do some training for a few months before actually attempting to fight Goku again.

Even though this does not change the fact that he was still foolishly going after Goku for revenge, it showed that he actually knew limits and the fight between him and Goku would have been just as boring as people were thinking that it was going to be.

I also liked the new transformation. Unlike the form called Super Saiyan God from the previous film, which looked more like a form of Kaioken than a form of Super Saiyan, this one actually looked pretty interesting to me and made things more exciting.

The thing that made the transformation even better though was the fact that neither Goku nor Vegeta needed anyone else to achieve this new form.

In the last movie, I was underwhelmed by the fact that Goku was not able to achieve the Super Saiyan God form on his own, which even Goku voiced his own discontent about, making me like the movie a little less.

Here, however, I remember the good old days of when DBZ was actually a favorite of mine, instead of something I like mostly due to nostalgia.

If things keep up, there might actually be people who would willingly give the franchise another chance, though it still will not be able to match the greatness of the other titles that I have seen.

The thing that I really liked though was that this movie felt more like a standalone movie than the last movie.

Unlike the last movie, which made me feel like something was missing because things were mentioned from something that was never dubbed, or even released to my knowledge, which further ruined my enjoyment of that movie, in addition to how underwhelming Super Saiyan God was.

Fortunately, I did not really get that feeling too much, though it does have some signs that it would be best to view this only after seeing the last movie due to the fact that Beerus and Whis do not really get a good introduction, but this movie seems to be mostly made for fans of the series than newcomers anyway.

If the Battle of Gods movie was like this, I would have liked it a bit more, even if it does not change the fact that DBZ is not really that great overall.

Outside of those things, nothing really caught my eye as being that great.

The fact that the new transformation was actually impressive and characters like Goku learn about the negative aspects of what is natural for him, as well as the fact that this movie seemed like it could stand on its own much better than the last one, made it rather enjoyable.

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Although there were things that I liked, there are some issues.

However, aside from the usual things that people complain about whenever they talk about DBZ and one thing that is pretty much too minor to mention, there are only two things that I hated.

First, the fighting was mostly boring.

Yes, there were a few interesting times here and there where I actually enjoyed what I was seeing, but more often than not, it just seemed to be a bit too boring.

For example, the big fight of this movie, which is Goku vs Frieza, seemed to be too similar to what it was in the series.

True, Frieza did not really kill anybody off like he the first time that he fought frieza, nor did Goku transform through anger or use the Spirit Bomb, but every moment of this fight just felt like I was watching an inferior version of the original.

This must be what fans are feelings from seeing the Beerus vs Goku fight again in the new Dragon Ball Super, which even fans of the shows prior to GT seem to dislike.

Good thing I did not decide to follow the Dragon Ball Super anime, though I might have if either FUNimation or Crunchyroll picked it up, because I would have to deal with watching this fight for a third time, and possibly be an even worse experience.

Honestly though, Frieza is supposed to be the ultimate villian of the movie and I expect the fights to be as interesting as the fight between Yusuke Urameshi and Toguro was in the Dark Tournament from Yu Yu Hakusho or the fight between Kenshin and Shisho from Rurouni Kenshin.

However, I do not get that feeling here.

If I had to say why, I would have to agree with what Richard Eisenbei said in his review on Kotaku in that there was not really any tension to be noticed.

Akira Toriyama and Toei animation are behind the most well-known fighting series in world, and seeing that the fight here was absolutely horrible, they should be ashamed of what they delivered here.

If this movie was in development for a bit longer, I think that this fight would have been better than it was, but it just seems like the people behind it just want to cash in on the renewed interested in the Dragon Ball series.

The thing that I hated the most though was the way this movie ended.

Even though I did expect things to end like it did from what people were saying about the movie, it still felt like I was ripped off because it cheapened everything that had happened right up until Frieza destroyed the planet.

Back when Goku first fought Frieza, who had unleashed an attack to destroy Namek, I remember watching to see if Goku was going to be able to beat Frieza and get off the planet in time with excitement. This is because there was actually some tension, which is expected in fighting anime and other works that deal with a planet coming to an end.

Here, however, the fact that Whis could turn back time, allowing Goku to make up for his mistake of showing Frieza mercy, all of that is gone.

What happened to the possibility of losing? There is no way that the hero would lose with some thing like this.

If the people behind this movie wanted to keep the tension, there are definitely better ways to implement it and also include time travel, seeing as Steins;Gate did a pretty good job of doing that, but since this fighting anime, none of the solutions would really work for this title.

Still, it does not change the fact that no work of fiction can be decent without some form of tension and the people behind this movie did not deliver.

Outside of those things, nothing really bugged me.

Even though there were only two things that I hated about this movie, the fact that one of them removed a necessary element to any work of fiction made this a bit worse than it could have been.

Despite the fact that there were things that I liked, the fact that the Frieza vs. Goku fight seemed to be inferior to the original one and that the way things were resolved took away some tension made this a bit of a waste of time. I only recommend this to fans of DBZ, but only because the way things are going right now seems to suggest that the previous title in the franchise might be needed to not be confused by what comes out next.

What are your thoughts on Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection F? Did you like it or hate it? Was there something that you liked or hated that went unmentioned? Feel free to comment.

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Copyright © 2015 Bryce Campbell. All Rights Reserved.