The movie is basically an AU movie (in contrast to what people first thought was a sequel to the first season), giving an alternate ending to the first arc of the anime (which, in my opinion, how they SHOULD’VE ended it) — though it was really tedious going through the same scenes we’ve already seen in almost more than half of the beginning of the movie. Nevertheless, the movie’s good for those who want to start with the second series and don’t want to bother going through the first one to get the premise of the show.
Keep your eyes peeled for random Carmel cameos!
While I really enjoyed the later half of the movie, the beginning of the movie consisted of recycled scenes from the first two episodes of the anime with slight changes here and there. That really made me tempted to skip over, but I didn’t. May I mention that Kazumi never really plays that big of a part in the movie (just as she does in the corresponding arc in the anime), rather I found her to be a bigger part of:
Well, you know…
On a lighter note on characters, I’m reminded how Hirai’s cuteness rivals Shana’s…
She seemed to take some part in the disgust that Yuji had towards wiping out the Torches too early. Looks like she’s not completely forgotten and a somewhat symbolic figure rather than just a plot tool used for Shana to fit into school life and such like she is in the anime!
The pervert with a doll fetish a.k.a Friagne gets a much more exciting, menacing, and interesting battle compared to the one in the anime, it also resembles the battle from the novels much more closely than the one interpreted in the anime. The fight in the anime was a tad weak in the series, in my opinion — this is exactly what they should’ve done with it.
I like it how Yuji summoned a Fuzetsu during the battle to cancel out the City Devouring, definitely shows that he’s no ordinary Torch and is very strong at heart, especially when he’s determined to protect the city like that.
Now, onto the REAL meat of the movie: The summoning of the Flame of Heaven, Alastor! This has to be one of the coolest things in the movie — his summoning in the anime didn’t do him any justice (we didn’t even get to see him, we just saw fiery explosions!), and now we get see him OWN Friagne (as he did in the novels and the manga). This seemed to have a lot more “impact” than his summoning in the anime, in my opinion. The look on Friagne’s face was priceless.
We get a warmhearted ending scene as we see Yuji thinking that his time is up. Even though we ALL KNOW that’s not really the case and that he learns about the power of the Hougu inside of him, the scene brought A LITTLE tear in my eye. This is truely how the anime should’ve handled it, seemed to have alot more emotional impact than what happened in the series.
“Will you continue to use the name Shana?”
We’re almost done with the movie now (!), so let me point out some of the things that seperate the movie from the anime.
Differences between the movie and the anime:
— Hirai and Kazumi are shown to have a close relationship while in the anime we’re only left to assume.
— Yuji is cut when the Rinne comes up from behind to steal his Hougu and the body that the Rinne was using was destroyed soon after, rather than Yuji trying to protect the Rinne and getting cut up along with the Rinne.
— Different scenes with Kazumi, along with showing a group picture with Hirai’s face getting replaced by Shana’s.
— There is a cute little insert song when Hirai disappears (;;).
— More students were in the classroom at the time the Fuzetsu was summoned rather than only three people being there. Kazumi was offered up as a sacrifice instead of Ike.
— Most of the drama from the anime is missing from the movie (example: Alastor saying “I would eliminate Yuji if I were in your position” to Shana and stuff)
— Carmel cameos on television.
— Margery Daw is much more cooperative after her little introduction . Eita and Keisaku don’t have a role in the movie, or appear at all for that matter, aside from their brief appearance during the classroom destruction.
— The last battle with Friagne is very different from the anime, with the summoning of Alastor; fatally owning him.
(The ending song, “Tenjou wo Kakeru Monotachi”, was smexy.)