I know, I’m so miserably late for this, I finished it JUST NOW, and I was waiting for it for months and months. Yes, I am a strange person. As a terrible CG addict, you would expect me to, lets say, watch this rolled hot off the grill but I did no such a thing. Instead, I forgot about it for a couple of months and watched it, like, 20 minutes ago. Yeah, anyway. I still want to write this review a lot, so pointless or not, I’m doing it.
So, first of all, what makes this movie and original Code Geass affiliated? First of all, the pretty much self-explanatory factor – the Geass itself. So, we know for sure that 2 characters have that power, and also I have some doubts about Leila too. She will most definitely have some relation to Geass power
if not have it herself . Akito’s Geass is quite intriguing.
and that bloody flashback was also related to him(Akito) then I’m sure this guy and his Geass will be an interesting little surprise.
But what really unnerved me was Xin’s Geass. His and Lelouch’s powers look waaaaaay too similar at this point and that kinda leaves a bad taste in my mouth, because Lelouch is the one and only! ><” But to be more serious…. I still don’t like this. I hope his power will be something like “anyone, who he looks in the eyes will kill themselves”, or it will be SUCH a turn-off about this series. Not just for me, there are loads of Lulu’s fans out there and all of them would feel slightly offended if another character had basically the same power as him. What also makes this show Code Geass is that signature CLAMP-type, gorgeous art.
The quality of the animation in the shows was really good. For an episodic anime, considering all the drawn mechs, that was really, really good, but here… I don’t even know. They changed the structure of mechas from drawn to CG, 3D type of graphic and for the most part, I consider this a flaw in graphics. Because you can easily distinguish that this robot wasn’t drawn by a human hand but instead was computer-generated and you can clearly see the difference in textures, movements, colors, etcetera, that sometimes can destroy the visual harmony of the anime. If not managed right, those ‘little’ details can pretty much ruin your show and steal the biscuit from anything else that the watcher should have been looking on at a given moment. “What? The viceroy started a genocide spree? Sorry, I was watching that brown robot trying to pull it’s head out of the crushed building”. Something like that. Personally, I despise it when they use 3D elements in anime, but since that’s not an unusual practise nowadays I’m trying to get used to it. But not to be a complete bitch, I’ll say(willingly and honestly) that I don’t think this is much of a problem in Code Geass. Color and texture of the mechs is well-chosen, so they don’t stand out more than they should be. They still do, but at least I did not want to slam my face against the wall.
RIGHT, Sacred star of Milos??! Character design, as far as it goes, is pretty nice. Pretty Code Geass, let’s say. And I like it – quite distinct character designs, with detailed, elaborate clothes. But I can’t help but notice, that the art did become slightly softer. Yes, we still see pointy chins, but other features are more detailed, rounded and sleek than in Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion and R2. Needless to say that the animation and backgrounds are stunning.
Now, what makes it different from original Code Geass anime? First of all, music. I’m sure, if you watched at least several episodes of CG, you must have at least noticed the crazy BGM. Indeed, OST for Code Geass anime were all quite strong, used a lot of instruments and had a quite intense melody that blended into a wonderfully epic cocktail. They completed all the scenes and made them simply mind-blowing. Just remember the ending of R2. Have you ever seen such perfect and epic harmony between the actual graphics and music? I’m sure you have, but I don’t think you’ve come across such amazingess quite often. That aside, the music for Akito the Exiled is – from one point – much calmer and darker. Those tracks do resemble CG’s type of music, because they also use violins and a piano. As I like to distinguish different tracks from each other, I would say that calm tracks that we’ve heard in Akito so far were about a certain story. Not just sound monopoly, there’s actually some meaning behind it. That track will probably be Akito’s theme song, just you wait and see LOL. As I said, one side of AtE is much darker, calmer, a lot more grown up. On the other side of the OST album – there is a completely different type of music. It’s very… messy, if you get me? Another example: in R1(let’s call it that) and R2’s albums, all active tracks were like so: a lot of different instruments, mainly a combination of violins and winds, plus some drums and guitar, playing and strengthening a certain melody, twirling around it but never leaving, may I say. They were one, very epic, a little poseur with a lot of pathos, harmonic and well-balanced melody. Whereas in Akito, active music was totally different – a complete chaos of winds. First thing I thought when hearing this was “Makoto Yoshimori”. Seriously, if you seen this movie and Durarara, you would have the same feeling, I’d bet on it. Though that kind of music can be hard to manage because it’s a little overwhelming. Yes, they did have to make this series different, because it’s a completely different story but I would prefer the composer to stay on a more sophisticated and balanced side, rather than choosing that artistic mess. Sometimes that sounds like someone’s raping a trumpet. And in the first promotional video, it was just like that. Terrible. In the movie itself it wasn’t as in-your-face, I actually liked it, but still – that could’ve been much better.
And the last thing, that, I would say, makes this movie different from the original is the plot development. Original Code Geass got me in from the very first episode, the events and the main plot were unfolding at an amazingly fast pace that made you want more and more. Throughout the show everything was on the edge, a second from falling, a millimeter from crashing down. That tension was coming from fulminant plot development, from having extensive amounts of information but still being absolutely unable to predict what’s going to happen. In Akito, they chose a different strategy. For now, we don’t really have a lot of information about the characters. Just the occasional talk in the woods and some prick killing a guy who considered him his brother.
U traitor! I somehow get the feeling, that the plot development will work so that the end, the climax will be the most important moment of the story. No, not important, more like the highlight. While in the original, for example, almost all events, battles or whatnot made us watch it from the edge of our seat and eat our fingers along with the nails, In Akito, I think, everything will gradually build up to the climax. Let’s see, it’ll be so interesting! Can’t wait ’till April, to see the 2nd movie and find out what Suzaku wanted in France.
All in all, I liked this movie. It’s more of a political anime than the original, but I don’t mind in the least. I love it when stuff gets serious and requires some brainstorming(more or less) and thank god there’s no high school involved. Everyone here is a grown-up, who already tasted bitterness of this world. The director doesn’t even try to sugarcoat the nasty political position the EU is in. From this point of view, Boukoku no Akito, if not as wide-scale as R1 or R2, is a lot more grown-up and dark. Yes, there were a couple of cheezy, cliché phrases and such, but even so, I enjoyed it a lot. The question is, will it beat the original anime? I don’t think so. Because regardless of all it’s flaws, Code Geass is a great anime that even benefits from those flaws. I’m sure you heard the phrase – there’s no third opinion on a masterpiece. You either love it, or hate it. Let’s see how Akito will do. It may have the potential but judging it only alongside the original is a little unfair so I’ll try to look at it like on a separate show.
Of course, it’s still early to judge but I have high hopes for those movies and because it’s Code Geass, which I love so much, I’m expecting my high standards to be met.