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Digimon Adventure Tri The Movie Part 4 UK Anime DVD Review

8 min read

When you try too hard but just end up asking more questions…

What They Say:
Following Meicoomon’s rampage and the Reboot, Tai and the others leave behind a distressed Meiko and head to the Digital World. Once reunited with their Digimon partners after the loss of their memories they begin to forge new relationships, although Sora struggles to bond with Biyomon. Meanwhile in the real world, Nishijima receives word that Himekawa has disappeared. As he investigates, he learns that she had a hidden agenda all along…

The Review:
Audio:
The audio has a 5.1 release in English and a 2.0 in Japanese movies (surprised as movie releases tend to be 5.1 in both) –because of the nostalgia factor I did watch it in English with its 5.1 option (I also turned the subtitles on to see how it compares as the original Digimon series did quite a few changes translation wise – happy to say this doesn’t especially as it is a tad darker than the original series) but this is the first Digimon release I recall with a Japanese audio track so definitely welcomed. The track is perfect, with me having to adjust it to a lower standard as was too loud, and no problems in sync with the lip flaps either in English or Japanese (to test out) or transition with the video quality. Interesting as well there are more subtitles option so there is both a dubtitles option and the Japanese translation (which is interesting when you want to check out what the dub changed…)

Video:
Similar with the audio, the video is set in full-screen format via NTSC transfer to PAL format with the show combining animation and colour in a more traditional sense, with no real problems with the subtitles, the sound synching in either language, no pause lag or in general, it is a quality release, and with the new way how it has been updated (the Digivolving sequences are now vastly different and definitely look more ‘up to date’ if you will) – HOWEVER, unlike the previous movies not sure if it was just me but there did seem to be a noticeable dip in quality with the animation, the CGi sequences were a lot more noticeable and it feels it deliberately tried to use darker colours to hide things – up until now it hasn’t been an issue and whilst no slowdown or broken pausing makes it work as a good release even on DVD, it definitely feels a bit weaker with movie 4 out of 6…

Menu:
The menu has clips of the movie through whilst a grey menu with the Digimon Tri insignia is shown – the menu below (Play Feature, The Evolution So Far, Scenes Set Up) is easily accessible and whichever you select it fades out into a digivolution like sequence before the new menu comes up so a little slow but still efficient. You can return to the main menu easily via the movie as well but as a DVD release no pop-up menu.

Extras:
There isn’t an extras section but one of the selections is pretty much the extra – called The Evolution So Far, it is basically a recap of the first 3 movies hosted by Joshua Seth (English VA of Tai) which shows clips of the movies and cuts to Joshua occasionally making a jokey or insightful comment with some thoughts on Tai’s character as well. Useful if for some reason you haven’t watched the first 3 movies beforehand and Joshua can be quite snarky so it is still fun to watch, but might feel a little pointless if you have seen the previous movies.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Onto movie 4 of the Tri series with the last movie ending with a couple of big cliff-hangers – a) the Digimon’s memorized have been erased and now the Digidestined are going to try and reconnect with them and b) the Digimon Emperor wasn’t Ken but in fact an evil Gennai. With the 4th movie, you wonder how these two things will connect and how the plot will advance, especially as there are still a ton of other things needing to be answered (Kari being taken over, the missing 02 Digidestined) – so this movie has a few ways to go through it…

…and it really does it in possibly the least effective way. It isn’t bad per say, but considering the last movie was really good, this one both in animation and narrative, definitely falls a fair bit.

For a lot of the movie, the focus is on the Digidestined trying to reconnect with their rookie Digimon, and it basically does it too fast (everyone but Sora) or drags on to the point of ridiculously (Sora). I mention this because the subplot of Yokomon/Biyomon not connected with Sora leads to a really annoying part of the movie where Tai and Matt try to ask what is wrong, and Sora NEVER TELLS THEM and just keeps it in – which basically gives us an excuse for the conflict of the movie and the battle, which you know is going to happen but it just makes it come off as a bit of an idiot plot, and also makes Sora, one of the more intelligent characters of the group, come out as really stupid.

There are some fun quirky moments – Mimi, as usual, is the one who seems to make things fun, though Kari, Izzy and Joe get their moments as well, and a definitely moment of ‘awwww’ when TK reunites with Patamon considering their tearful moments in the last movie, but the fun stopped when Digimon do attack and what makes it more fearful is that we get one of the original Dark Masters Machinedramon attack. This could be a great bit of nostalgia considering the Dark Masters were probably the best thing about the last arc but again, a real issue as these ones are…well…dumb. No real personality aside from KILL KILL KILL and it really isn’t the type of reminder of what was quite a badass character back in the day.

Outside of the Digital world, the character of Nishijima who has always been a bit suspicious as she found Dark Gennai and located Kari when she was infected by Homoestatis, she finds Himekawa’s files and it turns out she wanted to reboot the Digital World to reboot her own partner back in the day and resurrect Megadramon as she wasn’t able to return to a Digi-Egg after death. She gets a warning from a Digimon named Hackmon, who warns that someone named King Deasil has corrupted Gennai and is targeting Libra…also known as Meicomon…who interestingly seems to have her memories intact….

Speaking of Meiko, she meets up with Sora who is still upset that Biyomon doesn’t want to befriend her which eventually leads to Meicomon arriving and Gennai attacking in his real form. He nearly gets Sora’s digivice and Meicomon but the other Digidestined come to her aid where Dark Gennai reveal that King Drasil’s plan is to create a new world where humans and Digimon no longer interact with each other.

And that’s it.

No seriously – no follow up WHY he wants to do this, just that is because. Which is pretty much similar to why Sora didn’t tell Tai and Matt about her problems because…well because. But it does lead to a fight with the Digidestined against Machinedramon and another Dark Master, MetalSeadromon (sadly no surfer dude English voice – neither of them speak…if this happens with Puppetmon and Piedmon if they return…).

The only really interesting plot twist is Himekawa finding her partner Digimon Tapirmon. Again, it doesn’t remember her which leads to Himekawa snapping a little – it does end there but you wonder where she will be going mindset wise – with the kids or to the dark side? Hmmm…

Long story short, the kids manage to digivolve their partners to Mega level, including Sora who nearly dies protecting Biyomon, which gives us the one cool image of Phoenixmon being the last Mega Digimon we’ve not seen and they defeat the Dark Masters, but the end finishes with Gennai about to kill Meiko…with Meicoomon rushing in as the credits roll…

Well, basically this didn’t really do much sadly. The idea of the kids having to reconnect with their Digimon was clearly the main focus but it really didn’t do it well – it was nearly instant with everyone bar Sora, and Sora basically dragged her problems with Biyomon throughout the movie just as a set up for the fight and evolution into Phoenixmon, making it both annoying and very predictable. There was no further development with the fact that Meicomon didn’t seem to be fully affected, and the idea and plot for why Dark Gennai is doing what he is doing is a) not really explained fully and b) just ends and possibly hoping for more explanation in the next film…

…but with just two movies left to go, there is a TON still not explained and this movie didn’t do any of it. It just dragged on the Sora emo spots and the little bit of story was not explained well at all. The only interesting thing that happened really was Himekawa’s role in it and her despair that Tapirmon didn’t remember her leading to a mini breakdown, makes her role more unpredictable for the future movies and will see how it takes.

The nostalgia for the dub still continues so I can’t say it was bad, but it was a definite downturn. From animation to plot, and whilst the battles were very good, the lack of advancement of the story for a very rushed reunion with the Digimon (bar Sora which was the opposite and dragged way too much), it really just asked more questions than answer them, and with just the 2 movies left, this isn’t the way I wanted it to go….

In Summary:
After a good cliffhanger in the 3rd movie, the 4th one sadly rushes into recovery with the Digimon with one exception in Sora, and that just really causes conflict and feelings that didn’t need to be other than set up the obvious payoff. With a notable drop in animation, the story is still very questioning and even more answers are hidden now and despite the nostalgia of the Dark Masters and Himekawa’s story becoming more obvious, it is definitely the weakest of the movies so far, and with 2 to go, I just hope they somehow get everything answered because to be honest, I’m not looking hopeful…

Features:
Joshua Seth: The Story So Far…

Content Grade: C
Audio Grade: A-
Video Grade: C+
Packaging Grade: N/A
Menu Grade: B
Extras Grade: C+

Released By: Manga Entertainment UK
Release Date: 30/04/2018
MSRP: £15.99
Running Time: 82 minutes

Review Equipment:
Playstation 4, Sony Bravia 32 Inc EX4 Television, Aiwa 2 Way Twin Duct Bass Reflex Speaker System.

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