Cardcaptor Sakura 【HD Rewatch】 THE MOVIE

Diabetes on the big screen... remastered!

Saku­ra goes to Hong Kong!

When we last left off on my rewatch-blog of Card­cap­tor Saku­ra, the first sea­son of the series had con­clud­ed with Saku­ra enjoy­ing her final moments of Christ­mas day.

In the orig­i­nal tele­vi­sion broad­cast of Card­cap­tor Saku­ra, the ani­me was put on-hold until April 6, 1999 for its sec­ond sea­son. Gek­i­jouban: Card­cap­tor Saku­ra did­n’t pre­miere in the­aters until after the sec­ond sea­son had end­ed and Saku­ra cap­tured all the Clow Cards (the movie pre­miered in the­aters on August 21, 1999). How­ev­er, the plot of the film clear­ly takes place around/between episodes 35 and 36 (it’s win­ter vaca­tion in Tomoe­da and Meil­ing is still around), so for the pur­pos­es of the re-blog, I’m plac­ing it before the sec­ond season.

It's as if I don't exist to her ;___;

The film opens up with Saku­ra cap­tur­ing the Arrow card, anoth­er ani­me-exclu­sive Clow Card. It has a pret­ty cute design, but unfor­tu­nate­ly it ends up being unused for the dura­tion of Card­cap­tor Saku­ra as a whole. Aside from this movie, Saku­ra nev­er uses it.

This movie is canon to the ani­me adap­ta­tion and The Arrow is offi­cial­ly part of the 52 Clow Card deck, yet they avoid using it at any point after the film’s sto­ry. How­ev­er, they do have The Arrow make cameo appear­ances as a card when­ev­er the whole deck is shown in the ani­me (it even appar­ent­ly got turned into a Saku­ra Card off-screen). I’m assum­ing this is because, unlike the sec­ond movie (which was the con­clu­sion of the series), view­ers are not explic­it­ly required to watch this movie to enjoy/understand post-sea­son one sto­ry­lines (again, it was released after sea­son two) and this was done in order to show fans who saw the movie “hey, this real­ly hap­pened” while not con­fus­ing fans who weren’t for­tu­nate enough to catch the film in theaters.

At least, that’s what I think hap­pened. It’s a shame, because The Arrow basi­cal­ly takes the best out of The Sword and The Shot cards. You’d think Saku­ra would use it a lot more con­sid­er­ing how use­ful it was here. I guess some friends are just less notice­able than others.

;_;

This is too spooky for me

Water is some­thing that flows.”

When watch­ing this in chrono­log­i­cal order to the series, Saku­ra’s prophet­ic dreams of the Final Judg­ment sud­den­ly switch­ing over to this rather eerie dream of her being trapped in a room sur­round­ed by water and the pres­ence of a woman try­ing to stran­gle her is… well, jar­ring. Espe­cial­ly when watch­ing this with a Japan­ese cul­tur­al mind­set turned on (well, if you have one!) — some of the most notable hor­ror sto­ries take place in damp set­tings because water/humidity is often asso­ci­at­ed with spirits.

Any­ways, there are parts of the ani­ma­tion, scenery, and atmos­phere that give me vibes of par­tic­u­lar­ly fan­tas­ti­cal Stu­dio Ghi­b­li films. At the very least, trip­py scenes like this that revolve around the film’s main antag­o­nist’s omi­nous presence/magic are Spir­it­ed Away-tier trip­py.

I know that feel

Char­ac­ter estab­lish­ment of the day (THE MOVIE): Meil­in’s Japan­ese writ­ing still sucks despite her being a flu­id speaker.

Syaoran has one of those Asian parents

And anoth­er: Syao­ran’s appar­ent­ly so ter­ri­fied of his moth­er that he freaks out at the thought of receiv­ing a bad grade.

In gen­er­al, we get a bet­ter glimpse into Syao­ran’s back­ground in this movie. More on that later.

Special prize is... this gold ball of course!

It’s nev­er just coin­ci­dence with Sakura

On the way home from school, Saku­ra and Tomoyo decide to stop and browse through Mak­i’s Twin Bells shop, where they found out there’s a end-of-the-year prize draw being held (if you’ve ever played Shen­mue before, you know what I’m talk­ing about).

Expect­ing to draw a fair­ly puny prize, Saku­ra actu­al­ly draws the best prize from the lotto…

(C’mon Saku­ra, the ball is gold, of course it’s not a basic prize!)

Ta-da!

…a trip to Hong Kong! (I kind of want to go to Hong Kong some­day with­out the trav­el expens­es… if only it were that easy for me.)

Kero notes that he’s been to Hong Kong before, since Clow Reed had lived there some time in the past. He’s excit­ed to tag along with Saku­ra for her vaca­tion, but then they remem­ber that her dad has a busi­ness trip.

We need a movie about Fujitaka srsly

For­tu­nate­ly, Fuji­ta­ka is a bro dad as always. Not want­i­ng Saku­ra’s grand prize to go to waste, he allows Saku­ra to go to Hong Kong under the super­vi­sion of Touya (who quits his cur­rent part-time jobs for Saku­ra, under the con­di­tion of five chores… not much of an equal trade there, just admit you’d do any­thing for Saku­ra, Touya).

Obvi­ous invites that will tag along dur­ing the trip is Saku­ra for­ev­er-bestie Tomoyo and Snow Rab­bit Yuk­i­to, who sticks to Touya like glue.

Simply marvelous!

Tomoyo will have an aneurysm if she’s can’t film Saku­ra for more than a day

I mean… I can’t blame her. I per­son­al­ly would­n’t want to miss a chance to film A+ Saku­ra moments such as this:

It begins

You’re sup­posed to take off your shoes before board­ing an airplane.”

Huh, real­ly?”

trollya

*nods*

spaghetti

Miss, please step in as you are

NO BULLYING SAKURA

NO BULLY

BAD ONIICHAN

Oh Saku­ra, you’re just too adorable for words. Thank you Touya for the awe­some plane ride (and for that awe­some Seki Tomokazu).

MUHRICA

Kero’s reac­tion to Hong Kong’s indus­tri­al­iza­tion was pret­ty hilar­i­ous. Wel­come to the 21st cen­tu­ry, Keroberos!

NOT AS COOL AS PENGUINS THOUGH

Saku­ra’s cute ener­getic reac­tion to the seag­ulls melts my heart.

Repeat after me: はにゃーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーーん.

Pretty accurate. Nicely done, Madhouse!

Hong Kong is pret­ty much one of those set­tings that I nev­er get tired of being used (espe­cial­ly in video games). It’s an aes­thet­i­cal­ly pleas­ing city to look at, and because it’s crowd­ed, it’s inter­est­ing to see how well the live­li­ness could be repli­cat­ed in media.

I per­son­al­ly think Mad­house did a pret­ty good job accu­rate­ly cap­tur­ing the city in the CCS movie. Not that I expect­ed any­thing less from one of the best ani­ma­tion stu­dios out there.

Hitsuzen

There’s no such thing as coin­ci­dences in this world.

Oh ho, here’s CLAMP set­ting up Arc Words for ×××HOLiC/Tsub­asa ‑RESER­Voir CHRoN­i­CLE-! Well, it gets brought up in the main Card­cap­tor Saku­ra sto­ry­line, but for the ani­me series, this is where it first gets chrono­log­i­cal­ly brought up.

There’s no such thing as coin­ci­dences in this world, only inevitabil­i­ty.” I remem­ber back then, when all of us super-weeb CLAMP fans left “inevitability/fate/whatever” untrans­lat­ed as hit­suzen.

THERE IS ONLY HITSUZEN

Oh god, I’ll nev­er go back and look at old inter­net posts

lolexpression

Clas­sic Saku­ra expres­sions on the big screen must have been pret­ty good

=O

Pret­ty. Good.

Nope, it's not a Clow Card!

While vis­it­ing Bird Street (which is beau­ti­ful­ly detailed, by the way), Saku­ra sens­es the omi­nous (and out­right evil) pres­ence of… well, these real­ly creepy-look­ing birds:

Creepy birds

KILL EMWITH FIRE

(Speak­ing of birds, the first time I watched this film with my lit­tle sis­ter, we had a para­keet named Drag­on. The same type of bird appeared in one of the shots and my sis­ter adorably yelled out “hey, Drag­on’s in this movie!”)

RELEASE!

…release…

Our Card­cap­tor Saku­ra releas­es the Clow Wand and gives chase. Begone demon birds!

Jump... THE MOVIE

I’m afraid of heights, but I would­n’t mind being a Card­cap­tor

One of my actu­al gripes about this movie is that Jump and Fly are about the only Clow Cards used by Saku­ra. By this point in time, she already has a good amount of the Clow Cards sealed up and ready to use, and could have used them in a whole myr­i­ad of dif­fer­ent ways lat­er on in the film, espe­cial­ly con­sid­er­ing the ene­my and her rela­tion to Clow Reed. It’s some­what of a waste.

Good thing this isn't the Ring

Good thing this isn’t the Ring.”

JIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII

Right?

Yeah... this isn't good

“…Right?”

Oh GOD

Oh DEAR GOD

Yeah… spooky ghost lady com­ing out of a well and putting our cute lit­tle Saku­ra in a mag­i­cal trance… That cer­tain­ly bodes well.

Good thing Syao­ran arrived to snap her out of it. Appar­ent­ly he goes back to Hong Kong dur­ing break, Clow Cards on-the-loose or not! (It’s not like he can seal any him­self, any­way)

Oh WHOOPS

Time for an A+ clas­sic Saku­ra moment

=.=

Face Trans­la­tion: “Yup, that’s her alright.”

AAAAUUU

AUUUU~”

why is there moonspeak in hong kong

Mean­while, Meilin (lit­er­al­ly) bumps into Tomoyo back in Bird Street.

Man, I just real­ly love the lit­tle exchange between the two here.

ともよちゃん 「すみません、 大丈夫ですかーーはあ?」 (I’m sor­ry, are you alright?)
苺鈴ちゃん 「大丈夫だけど…… 日本語?!」 (I’m fine, but… Wait, *Japan­ese*?)
ともよちゃん 「今日は!」 (Good after­noon.)
苺鈴ちゃん 「大道寺さん!!」 (Daidou­ji-san!)

Glad they did­n’t pull the “Every­one speaks the same lan­guage!” hand­wave that’s com­mon­ly used when fic­tion­al char­ac­ters trav­el to for­eign coun­tries. Not every­one knows how to speak Japan­ese in Hong Kong and Meil­ing is imme­di­ate­ly sur­prised when she’s sud­den­ly forced to reply in Japan­ese. I know it’s a pret­ty weird thing to go on about, but I just love that kind of detail. I mean, as much as I loved Shen­mue II, it was pret­ty strange when Ryo went to inves­ti­gate in Hong Kong and he nev­er ran into any lan­guage bar­ri­ers besides just reading…

MARTIANS SPEAKING MOON

I WILL GROUND YOU

WHERE THE FUCK DID YOU GO

dat face

*pup­py dog face*

well shit

I‑it was­n’t that big of a deal any­way.”

Your sis­con is show­ing, Touya.

I couldn't help it..

I SWEAR TO GOD I’M NOT STRAIGHT

And it's pretty much going to be Sakura's vacation house after the end of the series

Onto one of the big­ger high­lights of the film: Syao­ran’s house! Saku­ra needs to change out of her wet clothes, so Syao­ran offers to do so at his place.

(Well okay, he nev­er actu­al­ly says so onscreen, but at this point in the time­line Syao­ran should be adorably tsun­dere around Saku­ra, so I can imag­ine Syao­ran bring­ing up a “w-..well we can drop by my place or something…”)

China dresses are Grade A!

BAM

You can nev­er have too many Saku­ra out­fits in one sto­ry. Chi­nese cheongsam dress­es cer­tain­ly suit her.

Chun Li!

Tomoyo does­n’t look half-bad either!

Banned at cons

Real­is­tic reac­tion to being GLOMP’d

Syaoran's mother is crazier for having them all at once

Syao­ran’s four sis­ters are loco

If you’ve read the man­ga where Syao­ran brings up his moth­er and four sis­ters (specif­i­cal­ly the chap­ter about the Maze card, which had a cute Saku­ra x Syao­ran moment at the same time) or remem­ber Meil­ing’s com­ment about Syao­ran’s “many sis­ters” ear­li­er in the ani­me, this movie is the first and only time you’re ever going to meet them. Geez, if this kind of envi­ron­ment is what Syao­ran grew up in, then you’ve got to won­der how jar­ring it is to move to Tomoe­da where you have peace and qui­et at home (most­ly in the man­ga where Meil­ing does­n’t exist).

Appar­ent­ly they’re sup­posed to be self-inserts for CLAMP them­selves. Which is amus­ing when you real­ize they’re four women who go fan­girly over any­thing remote­ly 素敵 sute­ki and/or 可愛い kawaii. The names of Syao­ran’s sis­ters are Xiehua, Huen­li, Fuurie and Feimei, by the way.

HEY BOYS HEY GIRLS

HEY BOYS HEY GIRLS

Fun­ny sto­ry: Since the Blu-ray includ­ed the hor­rid Card­cap­tors dub, I was curi­ous and switched it on ran­dom­ly here. There was an inap­pro­pri­ate­ly-placed insert song here — some girl band or some­thing — but yeah, it weird-ed me out when the Li sis­ters locked their sights onto “Tori” (Touya) and “Julian” (Yuk­i­to). The insert song was a bunch of girls singing (in fact, they sound­ed exact­ly the same as the dubbed sis­ters to me), and when this hap­pened, I thought they were seduc­tive­ly chant­i­ng “…hey boys… (me: uh-huh…) HEY GIRLS (me: wait wut) hey boys… HEY girls.

I have no idea what the fuck was going on and my lit­tle sis­ter died laugh­ing. Good job, Card­cap­tors.

couldnt help it sorry

Yuki, I think I remem­ber why I turned gay.”

Great magical power = being able to foresee things = hint hint

We also get to meet Syao­ran’s moth­er (Li Yelan). It’s easy to tell she’s a stern and seri­ous woman, which is why Syao­ran is always ner­vous about show­ing her his report cards, but she seems to have eas­i­ly tak­en a lik­ing to Saku­ra, and lets her and every­one stay at the Li manor for the night.

The greatest magus in Hong Kong!

When Saku­ra has a par­tic­u­lar­ly (and I mean par­tic­u­lar­ly) omi­nous night­mare dur­ing the night, Yelan uses her pow­er­ful sor­cery to deter­mine what it is — warn­ing Saku­ra that a pow­er­ful mag­i­cal source, the woman in her dreams, is fol­low­ing her.

The mother approves!

The moth­er approves!

No family feuds gonna happen here

Syao­ran’s moth­er gave Saku­ra a part­ing kiss on the cheek before they left to go sight­see­ing in Hong Kong, pret­ty much voic­ing fond­ness of her son’s rival at cap­tur­ing the Clow Cards. It’s strange once you think about it. I mean, she could eas­i­ly just real­ly like Saku­ra (because who does­n’t?), but the fact that she’s a pow­er­ful sor­cer­ess makes me want to look deep­er into this.

In Card­cap­tor Saku­ra, we’ve seen that par­tic­u­lar­ly pow­er­ful magi­cians are able to per­cieve the future to some extent. Clow Reed was able to do this, and Ms. Mizu­ki was able to do this to some extent despite being leagues below the dead mage. Even Saku­ra is able to per­ceive the future to some extent through her dreams.

Yelan can prob­a­bly see a bit into the future as well. Because of this, I assume that…

It's like watching episode backwards...

(Although the movie seems to go a bit too far in reverse-char­ac­ter­iz­ing the char­ac­ters again as seen above — Syao­ran should­n’t get this jeal­ous over Yuk­i­to and bare­ly shows the same of amount of dere for Saku­ra that he had these past few episodes, for instance. This film came out by the time the sec­ond sea­son end­ed, so I tend to hand­wave it and let it slide.)

Another book!

The sor­cer­ess antag­o­nist comes across as an unused Clow Card design on this book

MUST OPEN

Reminds me of when Saku­ra opened the Clow Book. It would’ve sucked if Mad­house and CLAMP made this book a Dark Star coun­ter­part of the Clow Book…

Reminds me of a Studio Ghibli film

The scene where the mys­te­ri­ous book filled the antique shop with water and trapped every­one into the sor­cer­ess’s world was pret­ty sur­re­al and I quite enjoyed it aesthetically.

じゃりガール

Hayashibara Megu­mi!

I nev­er real­ly appre­ci­at­ed it until now, but I adore the fact that the sor­cer­ess’s voice actress was Hayashibara Megu­mi — she’s pret­ty much in every icon­ic series I’ve enjoyed while grow­ing up, like Slay­ers, Ran­ma 1/2, Detec­tive Conan, Pock­et Mon­sters, etc. and she nails her roles per­fect­ly. If I had to name every sin­gle female Japan­ese voice actress that I think deserves to be crowned leg­ends, Hayashibara Megu­mi would be one of them.

Even if Card­cap­tor Saku­ra: The Movie cer­tain­ly isn’t the great­est thing that came out of the Card­cap­tor Saku­ra fran­chise, they were still able to main­tain their superb cast­ing, even for a filler villain.

It's like Yuugi playing only RPGs and cards in the later half of Yuugiou

See? This is what I mean. The only cards Saku­ra ever uses aside from the (pret­ty much) movie-exclu­sive Arrow are Fly and Jump.

Battle Couple... THE MOVIE

I mean, Syao­ran uses Freeze too, but he has so lit­tle Clow Cards at his dis­pos­al any­way… and he gets ren­dered out-of-com­mis­sion for the rest of the movie.

Battle Couple!

It was nice see­ing them work togeth­er in wide-screen Blu-ray, though

Because we need a camera lady!

Okay, scratch what I said ear­li­er: she uses Fly, Jump, and Sword. Three out of the thir­ty-sev­en cards she has. Big whoop.

Heroic Sacrifice

Much to Saku­ra’s dev­as­ta­tion, Syao­ran gets cap­tured by the sor­cer­ess as he tries to make time for Saku­ra and Tomoyo to escape.

(Note: Poor Touya and Yuk­i­to. They’re only high school-aged boys with the huge respon­si­bil­i­ty of chap­er­on­ing a cou­ple of grade school kids on their trip to Hong Kong, and one of the said kids keeps run­ning off to god knows where. Then they get trapped in a spell cre­at­ed by some crazy ghost lady.)

;_; SAKURA

After escap­ing the mag­i­cal water world cre­at­ed by the mys­te­ri­ous ghost­ly sor­cer­ess, the book that allowed every­one to enter that world to begin with van­ish­es, and poor Saku­ra feels immense­ly guilty about it (to be hon­est, it was com­plete­ly the sor­cer­ess’s fault, so there’s no need for self-blame, Sakura!).

Kero pls

I just remem­bered who that woman was!”

Char­ac­ter estab­lish­ment of the day: Kero’s ter­ri­ble mem­o­ry is crippling.

Because the own­er of the antique shop heard Kero’s yelling and was com­ing down stairs, they decid­ed to fin­ish the con­ver­sa­tion back at their hotel.

This looks like a cameo but I'm not sure

(You know mag­ic is involved when this guy did­n’t hear all of that rack­et up until now.)

(Also, I love how he yelled, ask­ing if the cus­tomer was Japan­ese. The scriptwrit­ers still remem­ber we’re in Hong Kong!)

Clow Reed is a jerk, so yeah

At the hotel room, Kero explains to Saku­ra and Tomoyo that the woman they encoun­tered was a water-based for­tune teller that lived in Hong Kong long ago, around the time when Clow Reed was still alive. How­ev­er, while Clow Reed was in Hong Kong, his pre­dic­tions start­ed to ruin her busi­ness. Clow Reed was­n’t a for­tune teller by trade, but being the most pow­er­ful sor­cer­er in exis­tence, his pre­dic­tions were pret­ty damn accu­rate. So Clow Reed found him­self clash­ing with the sor­cer­ess numer­ous times.

After she died, her mag­ic arts allowed her to trans­fer her hatred into that book. Such mag­ic arts are incred­i­bly dif­fi­cult to main­tain, so the fact that she’s been lin­ger­ing this long into the future means that she had a very strong willpow­er (and because of that, she prob­a­bly does­n’t even real­ize she’s dead now). Saku­ra was drawn to the book because she was in pos­ses­sion of the Clow Cards. She most like­ly cast those mag­ic arts with the inten­tion of trap­ping Clow Reed with­in the book, but does she real­ly hate Clow Reed to that extent? We’ll find out in a bit.

Obvious answer is obvious

The objec­tive at hand is find a way to get back to that watery dimen­sion and free every­one else. Luck­i­ly, Saku­ra real­izes that an alter­nate por­tal exists with­in that well she found ear­li­er in the movie.

Tomoyo pls

Even in these dire sit­u­a­tions, Tomoyo remem­bers what’s most impor­tant in life: Cute bat­tle out­fits for Sakura!

MAMA BEAR

Syao­ran’s moth­er is a badass! Her pow­er­ful mag­ic is able to cre­ate a hole in the for­tune teller’s bar­ri­er, long enough for Saku­ra to pass through and enter the well.

It also helps that she’s pissed that the for­tune teller cap­tured her son, giv­ing her that extra hot blood. As scared as Syao­ran is of his moth­er, she real­ly does love him.

All hail Sakura's cuteness

These clothes are real­ly easy to move in!”

And I’m sure they’re not uncom­fort­ably warm.

It’s a shame “Leave it to Kero!” was can­celled before this movie, it would have been neat to see Kero give us a run-down of the cos­tume, the set­ting, Syao­ran’s fam­i­ly, etc.

In fact.… that could have been an extra fea­ture for the Blu-ray.

Pissed Kero is a fun Hisakawa Aya

Once Saku­ra man­ages to go through the dimen­sion­al gate and return to where the for­tune teller was, she tries her best to tell her that Clow Reed is no longer here.

Uh oh

Unfor­tu­nate­ly, it does­n’t get through to her, so she starts going crazy while suck­ing all of her cap­tives into her very being.

I’ve wait­ed for­ev­er to see him.” By this point, her desire to see Clow Reed again is obvi­ous­ly root­ed to some­thing a bit more deep­er than mere hatred.

(Mean­while on the out­side, Yelan shows more of her mater­nal instincts.)

dat cityscape

The sor­cer­ess makes her way out­side the dimen­sion of the book, and is con­fused by the mod­ern-day sur­round­ings.

Our beloved Card­cap­tor isn’t going to let her wreck hav­oc on Hong Kong, so…

RELEASE..... THE MOVIE EDITION

RELEASE! …the movie edition

aniactiongasm

The madoushi vs. Saku­ra chase scene was pret­ty cool to look at. But it does­n’t last long, and again, Saku­ra does­n’t use any of her 37 Clow Cards oth­er than Fly here. Most­ly because she does­n’t want to hurt any­one in a cross­fire or attract any atten­tion, but… the sor­cer­ess is shoot­ing water beams down­wards at her from the sky any­way. Some­one’s going to notice the two magi­cians fight­ing in the sky and/or get hurt by the bat­tle soon­er or lat­er. Well, I sup­pose that gen­tle­ness is one of the things I like about Saku­ra. It’s just that, it’s a Card­cap­tor Saku­ra movie, and it would be kind of neat to see a lot more card usage than you would in an actu­al episode.

Saku­ra ulti­mate­ly gets pinned down by madoushi (and sends Kero fly­ing).

Though Clow Reed has two really similar reincarnations running around...

Saku­ra final­ly says it to madoushi — no sug­ar­coat­ing — “Clow Reed is dead.”

And here’s where it’s 100% clear that the sor­cer­ess’s feel­ings towards Clow Reed isn’t just hatred, or a desire for revenge. She refus­es to believe that the man is dead. The anguish in Hayashibara Megu­mi’s per­for­mance — there’s a lot more to it than just a vil­lain out for revenge. She los­es her shit.

NO YOU DON'T DO THAT -PERIOD-

And then pro­ceeds to drown Saku­ra in water

AW HELL NAW MAN, YOU DID NOT JUST. NO, YOU. NOOOOOO. NO. I WILL FIGHT YOU

That's a long ass wait for a guy, yo

As she drowns Saku­ra in her end­less tor­rent of water, the sor­cer­ess soft­ly laments Clow Reed’s death, remind­ing her­self about how long she’s been wait­ing for Clow Reed and how how she was will­ing to wait.

Shiny..

The woman sheds a tear, which drops down and shines to where Saku­ra is, show­ing her a vision of a hap­py memory:

Clow Reed you playa

In the past, Clow Reed had giv­en madoushi a hair­piece for her birthday.

If you haven’t noticed until now, yes, she was in love with Clow Reed. By now, Saku­ra has con­firmed her sus­pi­cions, which she had for quite a while now.

Make your only usage count!

Water is a thing that flows.”

With the help of arc words that Saku­ra’s been hear­ing from Clow Reed’s voice for quite some time in the movie, Saku­ra uses The Arrow to escape her confines.

Ah, Arrow. This is the first and last time you’re ever used by Saku­ra. At least your suc­cess record has no stains.

That's the Sakura I love!

Hnnnnnnnnnnnnnnng best protag

Saku­ra takes the oppor­tu­ni­ty to approach the sor­cer­ess, and ten­der­ly relate her feel­ing of los­ing some­one you love with her own, which I always assumed to be in ref­er­ence to her deceased mother.

You're too adorable to kill

The sor­cer­ess calm­ly asks again if Clow Reed is real­ly dead, and for the final time, Saku­ra con­firms his death.

Saku­ra’s gen­tle talk is what allows he sor­cer­ess to accept Clow Reed’s death and pass on to the after­life, with her with her hair­piece dis­solv­ing as well. This scene was actu­al­ly pret­ty bit­ter­sweet and I enjoyed how gen­uine and heart­felt Saku­ra was.

Would have sucked for season 2 if all those characters died too

She releas­es Saku­ra’s friends, as well

HAPPY DESU

Saku­ra is relieved.

Pretty fun vacation if I do say so myself

I love how Touya and Yuk­i­to don’t give a shit about what hap­pened the day before and are only wor­ried about what to get as a sou­venir for Fuji­ta­ka. I mean, I sup­pose Touya would­n’t be that weird-ed out by super­nat­ur­al phe­nom­e­non, but Yuk­i­to on the oth­er hand…

I guess I can hand-wave it as them think­ing it was a weird dream or some­thing, even though I’d per­son­al­ly raise my eye­brow if the last half the yes­ter­day abrupt­ly dis­ap­peared from my head.

Pretty Sakura!

美少女ショット!

The movie ends with Saku­ra reflect­ing on the feel­ings that madoushi des­per­ate­ly want­ed to tell Clow Reed, and has a new resolve to con­fess her own feel­ings to the per­son she likes the most.

Final Thoughts
I’ve always liked the Card­cap­tor Saku­ra movie, but it ulti­mate­ly falls short com­pared to oth­er good­ies this series has to offer. For the sake of com­plete­ness, I do rec­om­mend you watch this movie where it’s sup­posed to be placed when watch­ing/re-watch­ing the ani­me, but skip­ping over it is incon­se­quen­tial. The sec­ond movie is supe­ri­or because it’s the con­clu­sion to the ani­me series, filled with almost every­thing that made Card­cap­tor Saku­ra great, where­as this movie is large­ly a glo­ri­fied filler adven­ture (which isn’t bad by any means).

The plot was alright for what it was. I did feel sor­ry for the sor­cer­ess, but her sto­ry was­n’t exact­ly some­thing I had­n’t seen before. Even so, the way Ohkawa Nanase approached the sto­ry (in a way only a CLAMP woman could) made the “I will wait for you + sealed evil in a can” plot work as a Card­cap­tor Saku­ra story.

Despite the flaws, such as the lit­tle use of Clow Cards or the fact that it’s prob­a­bly the most incon­se­quen­tial Card­cap­tor Saku­ra “chap­ter” to skip, there’s pos­i­tive points to this movie. First off, the 90’s ani­me film ani­ma­tion and OST were still kick­ing after all these years, espe­cial­ly with the back­drop being the beau­ti­ful city of Hong Kong. Plus, it intro­duces aspects from the man­ga that CLAMP orig­i­nal­ly left unex­plored, like intro­duc­ing Syao­ran’s four sis­ters and moth­er. That alone makes the film some­what worth it for a Card­cap­tor Saku­ra fan.

The end­ing song sounds real­ly pret­ty as well:

(And how! Kai­tani Naomi’s voice is scrumptious.)

Now that the first movie is done with, onto the next chap­ter of this Card­cap­tor Saku­ra rewatch-blog: the sec­ond season.

お楽しみに!

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