It’s hard to believe that the Naruto series is only 15 years old. It feels longer, but one of the most popular Manga exports from Japan has been in popular culture for a decade and a half. Naruto’s popularity has only risen in this time, which is why it is shocking it is only this old. So what a better way of celebrating this milestone than with a feature film, The Last: Naruto the Movie.
As the name suggests, the film attempts to tie up Naruto’s story. The Last: Naruto the Movie makes no secret of tying up the story of our main character, however it is a change of pace from the series. What we have with The Last is a personal story between two characters.
Every other character is relegated to a support role so if you have a favourite that isn’t our lead protagonist, I’m afraid you’ll be disappointed that your character will only have a few lines.
The Main Plot
As you’d expect, the world is in danger and your typical megalomaniacal bad guy is trying to conquer the world but what would normally be the main course is a mere entrée to the bubbling love story throughout the film.
Don’t get me wrong; it’s not a bad thing to have a love story be prominent in such a world. After all, if the moon was going to crash into the planet, who would you chose to spend your last days with?
That question resonates throughout the film and to such a point anyone can pick up where the film is going, even if you haven’t read any Manga or watched any of the Anime.
It is simplistic in its approach, and the theme is obvious. Which is why everything else in the film feels inconsequential. As mentioned, the world is in peril (when is it not?) and the villain of the piece, Toneri, is the one behind all the madness.
However, Toneri must have known he’s an average bad guy. He quite literally can’t be bothered to show up for most of the film and just doesn’t develop as a character. Toneri is one of those classic bad guys that loves to boast about his evil plans and explains everything to everyone, so when the predictable climatic and over the top battle commences, you already know what is going to happen.
The Last: Naruto the Movie Conclusion
That doesn’t matter. The world maybe on the verge of destruction but it doesn’t mean a thing. I think that’s a deliberate attempt by director Tsuneo Kobayashi, to keep the movie about Naruto. The Last Movie is more a love letter to the fans – a thank you for support over the last 15 years rather than a continuation of the series. This will undoubtedly irk some fans that watch The Last: Naruto the Movie.
The different tone of the movie could upset how they thought this chapter would end. I personally enjoyed the change of pace. The main antagonist maybe dull, underused and a let down but when all is said and done, it is a personal journey for Naruto. We’re all just watching him have some much-needed me-time and after 15 years, why the hell not?
You can buy The Last: Naruto the Movie on Blu-Ray and DVD from Amazon