A hybrid anime/live-action movie for the series to be released Fall 2014.
After the events of Link Joker-hen, Aichi and Kai team up to a confront an enemy that threatens the peace they've just regained. The movie also covers the events leading up to Aichi's disappearance in Legion Mate-hen.
Warning: This review contains spoilers of season 1-4 of CardFight Vanguard. So please watch those seasons, before reading this review.
Short review: Yay! The world is once again on the break of destruction and the heroes once again have to save the world. This movie is a movie about a phenomenon like Link Joker, but now it is called the Deletor. Deletor deletes and Link Joker possesses card fighters. The Deletor only needs one person, while Link Joker needs an army. So they aren't that really that similar, I guess, but close enough. Anyways, the point is that if you loved the Link Joker arc, then
you should give this movie a try.
Long Review: The problem about this movie is that there isn't anywhere you can watch it in super good quality and accurate sub titles, but you can watch the movie on YouTube (Just search up CardFight!Vanguard: Neon Messiah english sub or CFV Neon Messiah english sub). If you are bothered about spelling mistakes like me, try to ignore it because you get the point and the movie is really good.
Since the synopsis is really inaccurate in MyAnimeList at this time, I will summarize the movie better. The just of it is that the world is once again threatened by a new enemy, which is called the Deletor, I mention that name 4 times already in this review. Basically, units started disappearing all over the world and Takuto Tatsunagi needed Aichi, Kai, Misaki, Kamui, etc's help once again to absolutely destroy the enemy and eliminate it from the face of Earth and Cray. I'm going to pause the review for a second.
Didn't Takuto get sucked into the Link Joker Ring in the end of the Link Joker arc? I was confused on why Takuto was back. Could this movie be a prequel?
Continuing on the review... Takuto invited them to a tournament called the Messiah Scramble for a reason I'm not going to tell you. The story is actually really good, they did a great job at finishing up the first part of the series because after this movie, you will never see Aichi or Kai ever again, probably.
The art was amazing. I think it is at the level of the Fate series. Maybe not, but you can see all the time and effort it took to make the art flow so smoothly. If you were waiting for fights to be an actual card fight holograms, then you will love this movie's art. The problem for the art now is there are no card effects being presented and it is hard to know when they are taking damage. For all we know, Ibuki can be cheating his way through the tournament.
Like all the seasons, the sound is really good. I don't think I have any other comments for sound.
The new character Ibuki is the antagonist of this movie. He follows the popular cliche for most antagonists, the cliche is the bad past cliche. According to the developer Ibuki had a bad experience relating to Vanguard, but I'm still not sure what that is.
There is this moment when you see Kai have some kind of light in his eyes. I think Kai secretly has Psyqualia.
Final Comments: It's a really good movie. It is probably between Legion Mate and G, Takuto somehow used his magical powers to resurrect himself. But that is just a Theory right now.
tl;dr: If you liked the four seasons of cardfight vanguard and liked it, it's very likely you will dislike this movie. + oversaturated confusing camera shots and tricks
So, after four seasons of a great anime about a card game called Cardfight Vanguard, comes this movie. After watching all 4 seasons of CFV, I watched this movie and honestly, this was one of the biggest let-downs I had with any series so far.
But, let's start with the good stuff:
1. Characters - Most of the characters from this movie were taken directly from the series and have complex designs and unique personalities. While very little of
it can be fleshed out with a time restriction like in this case, the characters are represented well. There is ofcourse a new character, Ibuki Kouji. His character is well designed (not so much his cards), his backstory well explained and he, as a villain, represents a real threat, which makes him relevant.
2. The ending - If any of the CFV season had at least one thing in common, that would be a satisfying ending. This movie is no exception. While I won't spoil it for now, I'd say that it does redeem the movie a bit.
3. Voice acting - While this is hadrly its own topic since it mostly belongs under characters it might be worth noting that it is on point and well acted.
And that's pretty much all I can come up with for the good stuff. Next comes the stuff that makes me feel that 3 is a very generous score for this movie.
1. The cardfights - Oh wait,... this is wrong,... there are no cardfights! Oh, yeah, that's what I actually meant. "The lack of cardfights" would be more appropriate. This is why people who liked the series might not like the movie. And one of the main reasons I didn't like it. So, what basically happens, CARDFIGHTS GET REPLACED by weak Half-CGI BATTLES, that will make your head spin an make you wonder wtf just happened. Also lots of gore-like stuff, ripping through people's stomacks with one's hand etc. (tons of unneccessary violence, in my oppinion)
So, no points of power, no trigger checks, no clever skills, basically nothing that make vanguard special as a card game. Instead, we get our character's avatars flying around cray clashing weapons and smashing into their enviroment at nausiating speeds with weird camera angles, even weirder camera angle transition and just in general cluster**** action. If you like that kind of stuff, then great, but in my oppinion, slapping the name "Vanguard" on it is an insult to the original. Especially since the villain is apparently so overpowered that noone can defeat him without an actual miracle (minor spoiler), yet there is no explanation how he does it or what makes his cards so strong. Sure, the word "delete" gets thrown around, but unless you'll go read the game rulebook it won't help you at all.
2. General cinematography - It seems to me that the director of this movie just went a bit crazy and tried to squeeze every camera and perspective tric he could possibly imagine. Some of them look really cool, but when the cool shot lasts for two seconds only to immediatly and awkwardly transition into a new camera gimmick, the good shot loses most of its appeal. Most certainly not one of Shin Itagi's finest works.
Personally, this ruined my viewing experience the most if I ignore the lack of cardfights. Lots of potential wasted.
3. Nagisa - That annoying little girl that won't stop obsessing over Kamui. Well, at least they can't make it worse, right? Wrong. Now she also showers the screen with imaginary hearts everytime she appears.
I'm gonna stop here. I could go on, but I'm too lazy and many things might not apply to everyone watching this. And in the end, it's just my oppinion. I hope you don't waste time on this bad excuse for a vanguard show, but if you do, I hope you'll at least enjoy some of it.