Posted by psgels on 8 April 2006 with categories: Anime Reviews



The Adolescense of Utena is the movie of the show Revolutionary Girl Utena, which I recently finished. It features a remake of the original series, stuffed into about ninety minutes. The characters were a bit remodeled as well. Most of the side-characters were also removed, including Nanami, for some reason. Shiori, however, plays a big role. Utena didn’t have any past with Himemiya or the Prince. She did, however, share childhood memories with Touga. The story Juri told in the last episode of the series also seems to have been integrated somehow. Miki and Jury are also much closer than they were in the series. And I’ll remain silent about Akio, as that might be too big of a spoiler. I also found it fantastic that the Kashira-girls got to play an active role in this movie once more. Not just for comic relief or symbolism, but they played an active part in the story.

The visuals remain stunning and full of elegance. The art of each of the characters has change a bit. Utena got a haircut and a different outfit, Himemiya’s hair has become more flat and less curly. And each of the other characters with long hair suddenly had her or his hair’s length increased by about twenty centimetres. The fun part is, that in half of these cases, it works. Utena looks amazing, especially with her hair. The same goes for Juri, Miki and Akio. For the other half of the characters, however, this new style seems to have taken a step back on the scale of awesomeness. For example, I liked Himemiya’s art more in the series. Touga and Sayonji also don’t look too well.

The first part of the story introduces Utena to the academy once more. She meets the Roze Bride, wins her from Sayonji, and gets to meet Himemiya. Basically, the first couple of episodes from the series. The relationship between Utena and Himemiya is different, though. Himemiya is way more inteded to “obey” her master, and Utena just doesn’t like this. Anyway, after two interesting duels, the move takes a huge leap away from the series, and starts with its own storyline. That was the part that I really liked about this movie, even though it may be bit far-fetched. But still, Himemiya totally steels the show in these scenes. If you combine this with the incredible music that was bombarded during these scenes, if makes for some awesome moments.

Overall, this was an awesome movie. Still, I have to say that I liked the series better. 90 minutes is just not enough to include the incredibly deep characters the series contained. Still, if you have seen the series, I totally recommend the movie. Especially the last part is incredibly unique.

Final Rating: 87/100

2 Responses

  1. Avatar thangpham says:

    this is totally supremely over the top. I recommend this to anyone who likes symbolism and surrealism, its just wild and devil may care that I don’t even mind if I make sense of the symbols or not. take for example passing on to adulthood is like going through a car wash machine, or maturity is likened to a high way with auto drive car and castle on wheels

    • SuperMario SuperMario says:

      Have you watched the series yet? Because you might appreciate this movie even more if you know about the series. Utena the film is more like a re-interpretion of the series, which means it has its own continuity. All I saying is for me this approach is the best adapted TV film ever, both keeping the theme and symbolism that the series was famous for, at the same time still feel very original and stands out from the series.

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