Posted by psgels on 1 January 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews



I’m not exactly sure what’s up with Kyoani and Toei’s key rivalry (when one of them adapts a key work, the other one does at well and vice versa), but the Clannad movie premiered about a month before the start of the TV-series. It took me this long to watch it due to the spoilers, but I’m glad that I did in the end, because Osamu Dezaki did the story a surprising amount of justice, considering how he managed to stuff such a huge story that took Kyoani 50 episodes, into just 90 minutes.

When you look at the big picture, this movie is obviously inferior to the TV-series, because it has far less time to flesh out its characters. Nevertheless, when you look at the individual details, there’s quite a lot to like about it. In fact, even though the movie and the TV-series have the same story, the execution, focuses, themes and characters are so completely different that they’re both worth watching in their own ways.

First of all, the graphics. The TV-series actually has better animation, but the screenplay of the movie, with typical Osamu Dezaki effects, camera-angles and filters is far more interesting to watch. The visual direction may be less consistent, the budget of the movie is actually smaller than Kyoani’s version, but it’s much more interesting to look at.

As for the characters, the movie dumps most of the side-stories and instead gives its full focus on the main characters (while not forgetting to spend about a minute of background on the major side-characters, in order to make them more than just one-dimensional paper bags). I was especially surprised by Nagisa and Sunohara, who are actually more interesting to watch than their versions of the TV-series. Nagisa is a much stronger character here in this movie, so much actually that she reverses the entire role of her Tomoya: where it was Tomoya who looked after Nagisa in the TV-series, here Nagisa looks after Tomoya. Sunohara is actually much more of an extreme character here, but the visual comedy around him makes him actually quite charming.

The after story also has quite a different approach to it. While not as impressive as in the TV-series, I liked it, as well as the role that the side-characters played in it. Overall, these people were really enjoyable to watch, even though the movie had very little time to really explore them individually. They do a great job in supporting the main storyline without overtaking it.

Where this movie drops points, however, is with Tomoya himself, especially his angst. He’s just too gloomy throughout nearly the entire part of the movie, and doesn’t really feel like the dynamic character he should be, for the role that was given to him. And that’s a bloody shame, because he’s the main character!

The thing with Osamu Dezaki is that his works are either brilliant and imaginative, or they flop gigantically. The Clannad movie belongs to his better side, and he showed that the Clannad Story even works in movie format with the right amount of cutting. This is really what recap movies should realize: you can’t tell a story just by cutting things randomly, you have to create a good standalone story as well.

Storytelling: 9/10 – Well paced, creative and actually puts 50 episodes into 90 minutes while standing on its own as a solid story.
Characters: 8/10 – Tomoya is too angsty, but all the other characters have their charms.
Production-Values: 9/10 – The animation quality itself isn’t special, but the visual direction makes more than up for it.
Setting: 8/10 – Simplified, but it works.

One Response

  1. AstroNerdBoy says:

    Well, something else I need to watch. ^_^; I too avoided it prior to the TV series to avoid spoilers but then after the TV series aired, I wasn’t sure I wanted another helping, no matter how small. There’s been enough time now that maybe I should go back and pick the movie up.

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  • K-Off
    (Tuesday, May 31. 2016 04:47 AM)
    @Aidan That would certainly help, thanks. I certainly feel like I would’ve gotten more value out of my WiiU had more of my friends owned one, I hardly ever touched SSB, Mario Kart and the like. The only noteworthy game in the entirety of 2015 for me was Xenoblade CX.
  • AidanAK47
    (Tuesday, May 31. 2016 02:52 AM)
    @K-Off, If you want I can up you to an Admin if you like. Though you still won’t be able to install plugins. I ran into the problem where it requires a FTP password to update wordpress and install. Currently sending a message to psgels to see if he updates it or gives us the password.
  • AidanAK47
    (Tuesday, May 31. 2016 02:36 AM)
    I feel like I got a decent amount of use out of my Wii U. Seeing as I bought it secondhand it didn’t exactly cost me a whole lot. I got what I paid for mostly out of the Nintendo exclusives.
  • K-Off
    (Monday, May 30. 2016 09:27 PM)
    @Swa For sure, I expect my low expectations to sink even lower now that Nintendo’s already announcing a new game system.
  • K-Off
    (Monday, May 30. 2016 09:21 PM)
    @swa Just my gamepad that’s busted to hell, decided to just get a new one.
    @Vonter Nope, didn’t pick Star Fox up after seeing some reviews. I’ve forgotten about the franchise entirely since that Star Fox 64 remake.
  • Vonter
    (Monday, May 30. 2016 08:50 PM)
    Not getting Mother 3 with GBA emulator will be disappointing to me considering the trend they have had over the passed two years of re-releasing games of that series by E3.
  • swa
    (Monday, May 30. 2016 08:24 PM)
    Meh… Can you really be disappointed with anything Wii U related anymore?
    I am waiting for my Fortisimo Edition to arrive, and I will enjoy it no matter what, even if I have to hypnotise myself to do it.
    PS: I’m quite positive you could even get a whole new Wii U for 150, after all I got mine new for 200 more than 3 years ago.
  • Vonter
    (Monday, May 30. 2016 08:20 PM)
    Have you tried Star Fox Zero. That one demands the gamepad. Although IMO more because of the gyroscope than the dual screen. I mainly swap screens according to my needs.
  • K-Off
    (Monday, May 30. 2016 08:46 AM)
    How pissed off will I be when I purchase Mirage Sessions and it turns out to relegate the gamepad screen to some map like so many other WiiU titles. It already seems like it’s incompatible with offscreen play, so that’s not a good sign.
  • K-Off
    (Monday, May 30. 2016 08:35 AM)
    Looking at my bill to fix my WiiU gamepad, total comes out to $150 at a local game shop…This is why having an overly high-tech glorified remote controller with a thousand things that can break is such a shit idea.

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