Posted by psgels on 6 March 2011 with categories: Anime Reviews



Break Blade has what I like to call the “bad main character syndrome”. His story, back-story and development: they’re all completely uninteresting and generic, and he takes away a lot of screen-time from the more interesting parts of this movie. He has nothing to do with the politics, so that too gets pushed completely aside whenever he is on the screen, in favour of bland romance, a bland rival story and bland morals about killing. Four movies in and this still hasn’t gotten any better.

The fourth movie pretty much was the same as the previous ones: whenever the lead character was on the screen it was boring, whenever it focused on the other characters, it was quite interesting. The rivalry was completely absent from this movie, but instead we got a lot of boring romance build-up. On the other hand, the side characters are getting better, and this had the best battles of the movies so far. I’d say that the ratio of Rygart vs. the rest in this movie was about 35:65.

I’ve whined enough about Rygart for now, but let me at least comment a bit on the battles here. The battles here were again in a larger scale than before, up to the point that two small armies actually faced each other. The resulting battle was a great combination between large-scale tactics to small scale ones, from regular mechas to overpowered ones: it was a surprisingly well balanced one. That was exactly what this series needed: it already had the down to earth battles, and this movie took that formula, added some extra spice to it and made it even better.

Storytelling: 8/10 – Good action scenes. The warfare works here.
Characters: 7/10 – Bad main character syndrome. the side characters are interesting, though.
Production-Values: 8/10 – A step up from the previous movie.
Setting: 8/10 – This instalment was low on politics, but makes up for it with its military analysis.

Suggestions:
Sengoku Basara
Seirei no Moribito
Densetsu no Yuusha no Densetsu

8 Responses

  1. Avatar Tan-Tan says:

    I was enthusiastic when I first watched the first 3 ova so I went ahead the manga. Unfortunately, what you said about the characters simply became true. It disappointed me on one whole level because of Rygart. It just turned to a typical shounen fluff and all the backstory seemed wasted. As if they’re not adults, which was the change I was hoping for. Instead, they act like teenagers.

  2. Avatar K.K. says:

    Break Blade would actually have been better as typical shounen fluff, at least then we’d get faster action. This whole “I don’t like killing” thing that Rygart does is annoying – Zess had no business surviving past the third movie. And Sigyn keeping Cleo around seems stupid as well; if you MUST keep her alive, inviting her into the Queen’s room seems foolhardy.

    Girge and Narvi and maybe Baldr are the only likable characters.

  3. Avatar 4saken says:

    Lol, what the hell is the “I don’t like killing”you are talking about? Rygart killed tons of people and he didn’t hesitate a bit.
    Zess is a special case, “don’t like to kill a certain one” is different from “don’t like to kill anyone”.

  4. Avatar 4saken says:

    @Tan-Tan: what chapter did you read to?
    Break Blade is anything but a “typical shounen fluff”.

  5. Avatar jzar says:

    I think you’re a tad harsh on the these movies.

    It is a very good show for what it is. I don’t find the main character that bad, I see how much he IS involved in the politics, he has been a advocate for peace all along. He changes as the movie moves on.

    He is the oposite of might makes right, not a bad way to contrast against the motivations of those who push for conquest.

    So I find it quite enjoyable, when Rygart’s personal views go up against the real world we see him strugle AND he changes to protect what he deems important.

    I really think you should have given this show higer marks. I think it has done well and is really turning out to be a great show.

  6. Avatar Ncrdrg says:

    Well, Rygart was designed to be a peacenik country boy forced into war to protect his best friends. So yeah, I understand how he may look boring but I see it rather as being a normal down-to-earth main character. I personally like that vibe. However, it’s true the rest of the cast is a lot better (and flashier).

    I wonder where the OVAs will end. I know there’s 2 more OVAs and there’s a major shocker upcoming in the manga. They have 25 chapters (5 volumes) animated with OVA 4. Not sure if they have enough time to cover until chapter 40. (Which would be where I’d love seeing it end)

  7. Avatar hoiut says:

    The first and second movies were my favorites. Everything seemed in place to capture the magic of Gundam SEED without all the meaningless fluff, rushedness, and plot cohesion issues. It was proving to be quite the decent remake of sorts…until it, too, fell into the SEED pit. The creator just can’t bear to see his/her main leads die or change too much, likely for fear of losing the image that made them popular. Of course, this is at the obvious expense of risk-taking and character development. “Typical shounen fluff” might eventually come to sum it up, but all the same, this movie is a step above the last in quite a few ways. Animation of course being one of those ways.

    The “stupid character” syndrome does rear its ugly head a bit too often for my liking, though. Sure Rygart hates killing, and it’s okay to serve the viewers constant reminders to that end, but at least show it from different angles and perspectives rather than having him repeat the same words and actions. He’s only “growing” in terms of token suit upgrades and the minimal necessary realization that he has to kill in order to protect, a shounen staple. Beyond that, not much.

    He’s not an overly compelling lead. Maybe him being a tad thick and down-to-earth is intentional so as to allow viewers to project themselves onto his character in the guise of “neutrality.” If that’s what they were after, though, they seem to have failed to take into account the other necessary elements of such an approach, which hardly works well when left alone in the context of political maneuvering, military tactics, and so forth.

    And I don’t really like Sygyn much anymore. Really, she’s like Rygart taken to the next level of unbelievability. Everything else in the movies has SOME element of realism despite the “magic quartz” premise. She lacks even that. She has been steadily downgraded into a fanservice character used only to flash her body now and then, make incredibly naive and ridiculous “decisions”, and lust after some childhood (okay, “high school”) friend even after marrying a king who somehow supposedly has nothing to do with her. She’s the token gap character who simultaneously encompasses a range of cliches in order to fill the ‘gaps’ in the shounen structure. Cliched obligatory fanservice, cliched over-romanticized naivete, cliched extreme weakness, cliched far-fetched unreciprocated romance with the lead, cliched convenient plot pushing (lol hostage girl “overhearing” Rygart talking to a bird), and countless others, from her appearance to her script.

    Despite these flaws, though, the movies are doubtlessly entertaining, and I don’t quite know why. Maybe the attractive character designs and soundtrack, coupled with appropriate inserts and line delivery, all within an intriguing setting in pursuit of an initially interesting premise… it all somehow comes together, and for that reason perhaps it deserves something more like an 8. (I guess 7.75 is close enough.)

  8. Avatar narutofanboy44 says:

    yo man i swear i feel like i just waisted do much time on this fucking shyt im so pissed of he didnt girl and threw out the movie we got to put up with how ryner …. cant even say my fucking god could the fucking guy who made this hate his deam main character so much jezzzzzzzzzzz this movie ova could had been so epic but know ima just make sure i remember the name of the storys writer as a matter of a fact im going to wiki right know to make sure i avoid this guy work from here on out

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