~ The Sailor Moon Movie Review ~

Okay, I think it’s about time I actually made a decent review of this Sailor Moon Fan Film, because I had to really sit down and gather my thoughts together.

To give some insight into the movie, this is just the jist of their project.

“Sailor Moon the Movie (Independent Short) is a Non-Profit project that will enable fans to get a glimpse into a edgier, more realistic version of the cartoon they all know and love!

Bunny T., an ordinary girl, is chosen to become a superhero named Sailor Moon. She is tasked with saving the world from the evil Queen Beryl of the Dark Kingdom, who is plotting to destroy the planet Earth.

Drawing inspiration from the manga, the anime and PGSM, this film is a mix of what fans are familiar with, while still being unique, original, and tastefully Americanized.”

In addition to that:

“This film will encompass the first 15 minutes of what we believe a full-length feature will look like. We hope that it will attract enough appraisal and attention to gain us the rights for a full movie.”

CLICK HERE TO WATCH ON YOUTUBE

I think it’s really nice that they were inspired by the series to make a promotional film to try to gain rights to have a live action movie. If it teaches us anything, even fanmade films may have to make some adjustments for the movie to fit, as in most Hollywood films. SMA took over this project, inspired by Naoko Takeuchi’s loveable heroine, and decided to make it their own, and explored into a different direction than the regular cute and campy “magical girl” sequence that we were normally used to. However, in contrast..if Hollywood took over this in the same fashion, would American fans be as accepting of the same concept as this production has? I think it’s too early to say yes to that idea, considering that there have been complaints all around from Hollywood “touching” favorites, such as Dragon Ball and Akira. The list can go on and I think it will stay this way for a while.

However, in order for you to even have a better perspective of this modernization, You must be used to the word ADAPTATION. Forget comparing to Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon, because it’s not even close and shouldn’t be placed in the same category.

Character Roles:

The introduction of the movie features Serenity and Endymion parting as he prepares for battle. I’m really surprised that Serenity has such dark blue contacts. I think for a minute, it’s very unnatural and she looks almost alien. The flowing of this scene is important, in the first 3 minutes of the film, As she tells him she’s not strong enough and she can’t be without him, and he tries to reassure her. She runs but stops to stare back at him. He stops to stare back at her. I felt that scene was pretty weak. I didn’t really feel the connection of two lovers. Maybe it was I thought it was too cheesy, perhaps juvenile. Then comes the introduction of both characters (At happier times) as the opening music takes place. Still didn’t move me as well as I had hoped.

The introduction to the side characters Melvin and Molly were well to be expected. Melvin was more of a creeper than the average braininess nerd as he was in the manga, and Molly’s name was changed to her Japanese counterpart, Naru. I question the name change because that was also quite odd to me. Melvin was actually my favorite character out of all of them and he didn’t really have that many lines to say. :/

Andrew/Motoki appears but he himself doesn’t have too much of a role, and the conversation between all three are pretty stiff. Naru has plenty of energy as Bunny’s best friend and takes the role of Naru pretty well, though I thought maybe she seemed a little too excited in some spots. Or maybe I realize how much I couldn’t stand obnoxious teenagers like that (HAHAHA).

Bunny seems to emulate the role of Usagi from the beginning (waking up late, poor food choices, failing school) okay. As an American version of Usagi, I say that she pretty much passes the whiny character of the year award. However, with that in mind, her character still fell flat short. Her appearance with Luna was quite awkward, as when she attempts to flee from the monster that she discovers eating (?!?) a fellow student from her school, to reach energy. Luna reaches her by communicating with her telepathically. She transforms but does not know what to do. Perhaps this is me, but I really wished that her communication with Luna was more open. I wish she attempted to fight and was not helpless,and not win as a total fluke. However this is my old manga side kicking in.

Two new characters appear: Detectives who catch wind of an attack going on and takes the steps to stop the situation, but to be surprised, they find more than what they’ve bargained for. In either case, it was too soon to really say much about them to make an opinion.

Tuxedo Mask comes just in time to rescue her, asking her if she was okay, and attempts to fight off the impending threat. He gets hurt, but before the monster has another chance to get in, Sailor Moon accidently kills the monster with an attack she didn’t know she was capable of. Once the Detectives see what’s going on they try to stop the two from fleeing the scene, but TM throws a smoke bomb down, and the two escape (quite awkwardly, actually).

She stops fighting and walks away from battle, quite weak from her transformation. She returns to normal, only to see Luna appear in front of her. Trembling, she can only say these words: “You…”

And it leaves you with a TBC status. This was a lot to fill within 15 minutes, but still left me with a really odd taste in my mouth. It didn’t grab me, perhaps because I didn’t like an Americanized version of Usagi, or perhaps the actress didn’t peak my interest. Sailor Moon is known as your childhood show. All the little kids really liked it, so for it to even change into an older themed series is somewhat unsettling to me. PGSM did it quite easily, and very subtle to the romance factor (quite cheesy, but yet managed to capture the essence of the series. Of course, Naoko was part of the project, so it may be too much credit). According to their Webster Hall Event this Sunday, t’s “All Ages,” but I highly disagree with it, considering that Bunny swears at the sight of the monster of the day, guns, a girl’s neck being half eaten, and so on and so forth.

So it’s dark, and I don’t think I could really be used to it. I’m used to the balance in both light and dark factors of the manga and anime, so..that’s it for me.

Graphics/SFX:

The introduction of Luna was pretty perfect, though when you see her a little more close up, she didn’t quite look like a kitty, but like a miniature version of Scooby Doo.

Bunny’s transformation scene was actually quick and although not as flashy as the animation, I’m sure people were very disappointed in that.

The sound was slightly off in some scenes, specifically in the beginning, which sounded like a can in Serenity and Endymion’s conversation.

I wasn’t really convinced with Beryl’s appearance or them in the kingdom, perhaps there was too much graphics that made it look fake, but that’s green screens for ya.

Overall:

If this was something that they would try to use to have the rights for making a full blown movie….Well, I think it may take a while for a part two to pop up. I extremely disliked it the first time I’ve seen it. However, after a second time, it was not as terrible as I first thought, but it was probably because I’ve gotten the initial shock value out.

The reaction from the youtube has been quite positive, though along the same time, anyone who shows any distaste get quickly drowned out by the viewers who say that you should appreciate the attempt and understand that it’s fanmade (so of course it still will be crap, I’m guessing…and I should accept it because of the effort. PFFT.). This even more implies that if you “appreciate,” you will be known as a true Sailor Moon fan. The fanbase will initially have mixed reactions to the series, within good reason. Hopefully, with continued support, they will be able to improve on the franchise, perhaps surprise us with more to come.

If someone does pick it up, it would be a really strange surprise, that is for sure, but intriguing nonetheless.


In any case, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the movie. The good the bad, and the forever fandom that is Sailor Moon.

Mako-chan

Mako-chan

Mako-chan isn’t just a writer and co-host… She’s also the resident baker and chef of all things yummy. Mako-chan has been working behind the scenes helping out where she can for the Podcast. Officially joining the team in November of 2011, first as a writer and editor, and later as an on air personality for the show, and now Assistant Editor, Mako-chan embraces the five main sureties in life that make a person great; Beauty, Intelligence, Talent, Creativity, and Honesty. ^_~

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One Response to “~ The Sailor Moon Movie Review ~”

  1. ユキ says:

    Overall, I liked it. Not that I am holding it to the “same level” of a Hollywood production. The special effects were “better” than I expected. Overall it had that sort of “cheesy teen drama from the 90’s” feel, which was bizarrely appropriate.

    I thought the intro was a bit drawn out. Bunny doesn’t even run out the door until like 7:30 into the video… I know they are trying to show-off the music and set the mood, but I thought that part could have been shorter.

    The dialogue in the arcade was terrible… this was by far the weakest part. If they made this into a full movie, I would rewrite/shoot that entire scene.

    I agree that it was definitely better, the second watch through.

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