Posted by psgels on 17 April 2011 with categories: Anime Reviews




Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door is a movie of the category “glorified episode”, and it’s an excellent example of how to do such a movie right. It’s got a strong villain, interesting story, a varied scenario, gorgeous animation, makes good use of its airtime and pretty much delivers on all that it attempts. It doesn’t really add anything to the Cowboy Bebop Universe, but it’s still an excellent watch.

The movie has great action, not to mention that all of the action scenes are completely different from each other. The creators had more than enough experience for this movie, and this this leads to a number of amazing action scenes that actually are animated even better than the TV-series was. Like the TV-series, this movie is fun one moment, and incredibly tense the next.

The main villain is completely new, but the movie does a good job of making him into a threat. Careful attention has been put into his background and motivation, and yet these are delivered with as little words as possible. The subtlety of the TV-series also returns with some really good results in this movie, and the acting is wonderful again as well.

Now, I would not label this movie amongst the best episodes of the TV-series, though. Those episodes were masterful in telling a short story in a very short amount of time (just one or two episodes), while this movie does feel a bit too long compared to them. Obviously this is comparing it against a very high standards. Again: it may not add anything to the main characters, it’s still a very fun movie to watch.

Storytelling: 9/10 – Subtle, yet very well told.
Characters: 8/10 – Good villain, great acting.
Production-Values: 9/10 – Gorgeous action scenes and life-like animation.
Setting: 8/10 – Not the most interesting backstory of the TV-series, but still quite interesting and detailed.

Suggestions:
Trigun – Badlands Rumble
Mobile Police Patlabor Movie 1
xxxHolic Movie (Warning: the review I wrote about this one is terrible)

6 Responses

  1. gandalf8 says:

    Glad you liked this one. I share your sentiment that it really is just a glorified episode with a boost in animation and budget. Nevertheless, I still cherish this movie, as it gave me more of the antics of the Bebop crew to savour after I finished the tv series, and that is more than enough for me. I’m not bothered at all that it didn’t add anything new to the Bebop universe. I thought that the tv series had wrapped up the major plot points really well already, that I certainly wouldn’t like the movie as much if it ruined that perfect ending just because it wanted to continue the story.

  2. fool says:

    The janitor scene gets me every time…

  3. justam says:

    You forgot to mention how delectable the music was in Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door.

  4. some loser says:

    wait when it says warning, does it mean that the movie was terrible or your written review?

  5. psgels psgels says:

    some loser: the written review. The movie was actually very good.

  6. Kilocron says:

    Thing that bugs me about this movie is when the bad guy cut Fayes shirt open, yet it magically stays in place the whole time. Talk about a tease… they might as well have not even bothered with it at all!

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  • Emma
    (Sunday, Feb 1. 2015 10:48 AM)
    This is a fairly minor complaint but in some older anime I always noticed “flashing light syndrome” and “Epilepsy visuals” , “Animes equivalent to flash photography”, it can sometimes bother me alot/hurt my eyes watching old shows, then again I am susceptible to epilepsy…
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Feb 1. 2015 09:14 AM)
    @Bam: Emotional involvement and rewatch value are very important to me in a film, which is my preference for synecdoche over birdman.
  • AidanAK47
    (Sunday, Feb 1. 2015 04:05 AM)
    “Firechick, answer: Hell no. And don’t impersonate Bam. You suck at it.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Feb 1. 2015 03:05 AM)
    Yeah guys! Why aren’t you reviewing Go! Princess Precure?
  • Firechick
    (Sunday, Feb 1. 2015 02:51 AM)
    Is anyone gonna review Go! Princess Precure? I hear it just aired.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 11:14 PM)
    Synecdoche is incredibly rich in detail, and keen return viewers can find a lot of things they missed the first time thru. Kaufman didn’t have a single teacup in a shot that didn’t mean something. Pacing is a bit of an issue, but if you notice the passage of time you can see that was deliberate as well. The movie could’ve been livelier, but for a movie about death and decay that would’ve been a bit of a sell-out.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 11:01 PM)
    @Emma: Birdman and Synecdoche have a lot of thematic elements in common, and given that Synecdoche was released in 08 makes me realize that Alejandro González borrowed quite a bit from it; although in the end they are different enough to justify Birdman’s existence. Where Synecdiche was a better written movie, I feel that Birdman was the better directed one.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 04:15 PM)
    And I’d go as far to say this beats out birdman for me by miles.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 04:14 PM)
    The film is a solid mood piece thanks to the in tone cinematography, a great performance from Hoffman that along with his characters drama makes for an emotionally investing film. And before it gets TOO sad theres all those bits of dark humour fitted in there that work out pretty well. This is probably my favourite work by Kaufman currently.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 04:14 PM)
    Well Bam, I had a go of synecdoche there. A bit of a slow burner, near the end slightly drawn out, however that last stretch was forgiven by that bonkers ending.

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