DRAGONBALL Z: BATTLE OF GODS:
A SPIRIT BOMB BLAST OF GOOD OLD SUPER SAIYAN FUN AND EXCITEMENT!
By Nico Beland
Movie Review: A (3 ½ stars)
FUNIMATION ENTERTAINMENT, TOEI ANIMATION, AND 20TH CENTURY FOX
STAND BY FOR DRAGONBALL Z!
The enormously popular anime franchise, Dragonball Z makes a theatrical return in the new limited released full-length anime feature film, Dragonball Z: Battle of Gods, and no, it’s nothing like that awful 2009 live-action film, Dragonball: Evolution, this new film features the same animation from the original anime series, the same English voice cast we all know and love, and more of the characters from the Dragonball universe, no live-action, no CG animation, although there is some computer animation during some of the battles, but it works and feels like a movie rather than an episode of the series stretched out to movie length.
Everyone’s favorite characters from the series return such as Super Saiyan, Goku, Vegeta, Goku’s wife, Chi-Chi, Goku and Chi-Chi’s first son, Gohan, Gohan’s wife, Videl, Krillin, Piccolo, Android 18, Vegeta’s wife, Bulma, Goku and Chi-Chi’s youngest son, Goten, Vegeta and Bulma’s son, Trunks, Mr. Satan (Hercule), Master Roshi, everyone’s favorite pink puffball, Majin Buu, and many other familiar faces.
Some time after the events of the Dragonball Z series and the defeat of Majin Buu, we find Goku, Vegeta, and the rest of the Saiyans celebrating Bulma’s 38th birthday. Little do they know, a villainous feline from another planet, who goes by the name of Lord Beerus (voiced by Jason Douglas) has discovered a prophecy about the legendary “Super Saiyan God” and travels to Earth, with his aide, Whis (voiced by Ian Sinclair) to find the Super Saiyans (Goku, Vegeta, Gohan, Goten, and Trunks). He tells them about the Super Saiyan God legend and informs them that if they fail to unleash the Super Saiyan God’s power, he will destroy the world.
Of course, Goku and the rest of the Saiyans aren’t going to let that happen, and with the support of their loyal friends and family members, they will do whatever it takes to put an end to Beerus and unlock the power of the Super Saiyan God.
Overall, Dragonball Z: Battle of Gods is a very welcoming return of the popular Dragonball Z phenomenon and a necessary theatrical film release, especially after the widely panned, Dragonball: Evolution. It’s pretty much everything that Dragonball: Evolution should have been, but wasn’t.
One of the major problems I had with Dragonball: Evolution, besides the lack of understanding its source material, was that it was too family-friendly and not as edgy as the original anime. Battle of Gods however was a rollercoaster ride of Super Saiyan action, had some adult language, and it had the same animation, characters, and voice talent from the anime, it’s Dragonball Z on the big screen.
It’s a shame the movie only has a limited release in theaters because this is sure to please long-time fans of the Dragonball franchise and make them forget about the awfulness that came out five years ago. Hopefully this will lead to more theatrical Dragonball Z movies in the future, I wouldn’t mind if this became a film series, just as long as it stays true to its source material and doesn’t make any changes with its animation and overall presentation.
It’s very refreshing to see a film release of a cartoon and an anime on the big screen again with the same animation and characters as the original show, especially after all those half-ass live-action and CG adaptations we’re all familiar with. So, if you’re a Dragonball fan and have access to a theater that’s showing the film, this is something you don’t want to miss, Super Saiyan action on the big screen, what more can you ask for?