Boruto Uzumaki has inherited the mischievous spirit and endless energy from his famous father, the 7th Hokage, Naruto. As he enters his Chunin exams, a harsh decision made by Naruto angers Boruto, causing their personalities to clash, awakening a fierce ambition within the young shinobi to surpass his father with his own skills and techniques. But in order to do so, he will need the help of none other than Uchiha Sasuke, Naruto's lifelong rival and childhood friend. Although Boruto has convinced himself that he has what it takes to surpass the 7th Hokage, he soon discovers that the road ahead is not nearly as simple as the young shinobi has envisioned.
Boruto: Naruto the Movie opens the doors for a new generation of shinobi to put their abilities to the test, as they face a mysterious enemy and hope to restore peace to Konoha, and the hardships within their own families. The 7th Hokage certainly has an impressive battle history behind him, but on this occasion, he will need the strong teamwork of old friends and new talents in order to win.
Boruto: Naruto the Movie is officially the highest grossing feature film in the entire Naruto franchise, and was number 11 on Japan's Top Grossing Domestic Movies of 2015. This is the first time that original creator Masashi Kishimoto has written the entire screenplay for a Naruto movie.
Like many anime fans of my generation, I began my life as an anime fan through Cartoon Network's Toonami block, featuring shounen classics such as Dragon Ball Z, Yu Yu Hakusho, and Rurouni Kenshin. However, for me personally, I was on the tail end of those shows' airtime, only catching the Majin Buu saga and reruns of the first few episodes of other shows. I didn't come in at the beginning, so it wasn't like starting a brand new adventure, and it wasn't until around 2005 that I first got to experience the start of a brand new story, and that story, of course, was
Naruto, an epic reinterpretation of ninjas combined with the superpower action/adventure style of DBZ and other shounen tropes, though of course I had no idea what shounen was at the time. Now, after over a decade of popularity in the US, and half a decade more in Japan, the last story in the Naruto-verse has finally been told.
Several years after the Fourth Shinobi World War, Naruto has finally become the Seventh Hokage, and a time of peace and prosperity has descended upon the Leaf Village. However, this time our focus is not on Naruto, but on his son, Boruto, a young ninja desperately seeking the attention of his father, who has become overwhelmed with his duties as Hokage and barely has time to spend with his family anymore. Through his trials in the lead-up to the Chunin Exams, as well as a mysterious new villain making an appearance, Boruto attempts to garner his father's attention and force him to recognize his exceptional talent as a shinobi and give him the attention he so desperately craves.
Much like Naruto: The Last, we've moved past simply adding a new villain for our favorite characters to fight against, and instead the main focus of this movie is on the emotional turmoil that Boruto and Naruto have to work through in their strained father-son relationship. This part of the story is pretty straightforward and basic, though that's really all that it needs to be. Naruto doesn't have time to spend with his son, so Boruto gets angry and hates his dad's guts, yet still tries his best to get his dad to notice him. In terms of the franchise's history, Boruto is actually a fairly weak-willed main character at times and gives up a lot more easily than his father ever did, though this still seems to work because, rather than not having anyone in the first place like Naruto, or having his family taken from him like Sasuke, he instead feels abandoned by a father who is still technically there but doesn't pay enough attention, causing him to essentially lose hope that his situation will ever get better, and when he does finally start seeing reassurance from his father after Boruto starts making more headway in the ninja world, he subconsciously rebounds and does everything he can to keep his dad's attention, even if his methods start to deviate from the shinobi way. In a way, this sort of echoes Sasuke's history, which kind of makes sense since Sasuke is Boruto's mentor for a good portion of the film, and at times it almost feels like Boruto sees Sasuke as someone to fill the void left by his barely-there father, though this idea isn't explored too much in the film. The overall arc of Boruto's character is probably the best part of this film, as it reaches a satisfying conclusion in the final act.
As for Naruto, this is probably the most difficult part of the story to convey to the audience, since they have to make Naruto look extremely busy without making him act like a douche to his family, and with the exception of a few lines, they manage to do that fairly well. You can definitely see that he's become overloaded and exhausted from his work as Hokage, and also that he's still trying to find time to spend with his family, although failing miserably. There are a few moments in the beginning though where the strictness he's adopted as the Hokage seems to be a bit too forced for his character and ends up making him look a bit uncaring, which is hardly the kind of trait you would expect from Naruto.
As for the rest of the cast, most of them are fairly solid. I ended up liking Sarada a lot more than I thought I would since she ends up being an interesting support character for Boruto in sharing similar elements of their parental situations. I do wish they had explored her more in this movie, but I suppose that's what Seventh Hokage and the Scarlet Spring is for. The rest of the characters fill out their own fan service and nostalgia roles pretty nicely, and I didn't really expect any more than that since it would end up clogging up the main story line. The main villain, unfortunately, is pretty much as generic as they come. Again, anything super-complex would have bogged down the character drama between Boruto and Naruto, but this guy's about as plain and standard as they come. They try to work him into the already existing shinobi history, which worked out fine in Naruto: The Last, but it feels like too much of a stretch in this case and a lot of the details feel a bit jumbled and rushed.
The new technology they introduce in this film was also a bit odd at times. I've always felt that Kishimoto has struggled with balancing how much advanced technology is used in the Naruto universe, and this movie almost fixes that problem by basically showing this giant leap forward in technology, and it even seems to address the debate of whether hard work and willpower or technology and cutting edge tools with spearhead the future of the shinobi world, but it's still just a tad too jagged and uneven at times.
As for animation, this is definitely one of the best-looking Naruto films thus far, though I'm not quite sure I would call it the best. The character designs are about as refined and polished as they've ever been, though I did notice quite a few draw distance issues. Perhaps this was more a problem with the theater I saw it in...amongst many other problems I had with my particular theater viewing, that will eventually be fixed by the time the Blu-rays come out, but it's still something worth noting. To my delight, this film does not rely nearly as much on CG environments as previous movies have done, though there are still a few whiffs of that pungent CG stench hanging around. As for the action scenes, once again, it does a lot of things right, and a lot of things not so right. When it gets into the huger scale of things, the choreography and particle physics are outstanding, with tons of vivid colors and unique attack designs, and watching these massive explosions and earth-shattering jutsu go off in everyone's faces is spectacular to watch. On the other end though, a lot of the smaller, hand-to-hand choreography is a bit disappointing, especially compared to the previous film. There are a few moments where the hand-to-hand gets pretty awesome and some of the more complex strategies and jutsu are fun to watch, but these moments largely fall by the wayside in exchange for a “whoever has the biggest jutsu wins” competition like the latter half of the main Naruto storyline fell into. The very end of the battle did have at least some smartness to it though, so I wasn't dissatisfied by the ending to a significant degree. Despite its flaws though, this is some of the better work that Studio Pierrot has put out so far, and it's a great way to view the shinobi world for one last time.
On the soundtrack end of things, it's pretty much the same as it's always been: an epic combination of orchestral and rock compositions with that extra Eastern flavor of shamisen, taiko drums, and bamboo flute that has shaped the Naruto soundtrack's identity for the past thirteen years. The ending song played during the credits was provided by Kana-Boon and gives us that last burst of excitement as what is most likely the final chapter in the Naruto world comes to a close. Oh by the way, make sure you watch the after-credits scene because it is absolutely something that you do not want to miss.
Overall, if you go into this movie thinking it'll be the big final hoorah of the Naruto franchise and that it's the best story yet, you'll probably be disappointed. To me, the final climax of Naruto was in Naruto: The Last, if you couldn't tell from how often I brought it up during this review, and Boruto is more of a fan service/second generation side story that serves as more of a dessert dish rather than the last bite of a spectacular main course. Despite that, though, I still highly recommend that you see this movie if you are a Naruto fan because, despite all its flaws, it's still probably the last major project that Kishimoto will make for the Naruto franchise, and that's...kinda sad for me. Even though there are so many other, much better anime out there, Naruto is the one that, for me and thousands, possibly millions of other anime fans, shaped how we viewed anime as we were growing up, and to know that the story is now completely finished is kind of depressing. Sure the TV anime is still going...for some reason, but the manga's story is completely finished and now there's this void left behind from a series that's been a massive part of my life for so long that I can't even remember what life was like without Naruto. From the first volume to the last, from Ninja Clash in the Land of Snow to Boruto, and the dozens of side stories in-between, this has been one hell of a ride. Knowing that there's a future without more Naruto is really weird for me, and, in time, perhaps a new franchise will take its place...but, that's a story for another day.
For now, I say "Sayonara" to a franchise that, despite its flaws, means more to me than others can possibly imagine.
I really wanted to review this movie, because it's officially Kishimoto's final involvement with the Naruto franchise (if nothing changes, that is) and I wanted to make somewhat of a tribute to this series, that has been part of my life for quite some time.
The story is nothing special. It's basically an encore to the series' epilogue and centers around the new generation, that got introduced in the final chapter of the main series. The focus is Naruto's son Boruto, who is torn between admiring his father as the hokage and rebelling against him for not having any time for
his kids. It amounts to a really good first half, but a somewhat cookie cutter second half, that is not without it's flaws. What threw me off the hype train in the second half, was how much they bothered introducing new characters to rival the likes of Madara and Kaguya. The end product was Momoshiki, who had flashy abilities, but lacked to grab my attention and had too little screen time. I would have preferred it, if they went with a villain of a smaller scale. They could problemlessly pull through Boruto's conflict, even if they used a weaker antagonist. I mean the antagonists in "Rurouni Kenshin: Trust and Betrayal", were no way near the threat level of Shishio and some other antagonists of the main series, and yet the film managed to have a good and consistent plot. So why didn't they do something like that in Boruto? Also [minor spoiler] the lead up to the final battle was too rushed and Boruto fellt out of place in that company. So yeah... if it weren't for the well animated battles, the second half would have kinda sucked.
The art was pretty good. The battles were fluent and well choreographed. The Sasuke and Naruto VS Momoshiki battle definetly deserves to be mentioned.
Another pretty good field. In my opinion Naruto always had a great soundtrack. They recycled some songs from the series though.
I guess the main focus is on Boruto, who has daddy issues. A common internal conflict in the Naruto universe and may likely be off putting to some viewers. Personally I didn't mind it, because I thought it was handled pretty well here (definetly better than in the Sarada manga). Especially interesting were the changes done to Naruto Uzumaki. His characterization in this movie was surprisingly good, considering the fact, that he was a pretty irritating character in the last 200 or so chapters. Here we see him as an actual adult, who no longer shouts around bullsh*t spontaneously and who reflects upon his status as the hokage and a father, hoping he'll figure out a way to balance the two out. I found this humanization of this "Jesus-esque" character to be one of the more pleasant surprises in this movie. There was also Sasuke, who smiled more in this movie. Also he apparently developed some social skills. So I guess Sasuke was okay. I would have wished to see more mentor/ student chemistry between Sasuke and Boruto though. A minor complaint was how little the other new genin were shown. I really wanted to know more about them.
Critical score: 6,7/10
+considering enjoyment to round it up to a whole number
This is my review on the recent Naruto movie. This movie is by far my favorite. It did have it's ups and downs, which I will eventually deal with. By the way, expect to be spoiled.
So this is literally what the Naruto Gaiden manga as led to. We finally get to see the new generation in all it's glory. We see Naruto fulfilling his dreams, as well as juggling his children, we see the Chunin Exams, as well as Sasuke going in. To be honest everyone gets to shine to an extent....Except TenTen. What I found odd about this story was the villains(Momoshiki and
Kinshiki) defeat and Mitsuki's father. Wish I had received more closure around that fact. The story gets a 10/10.
-The art and animation are top notch, seriously superb. Why can't we get this for Shippuden. Either way, I am giving this a 10/10.
-Characters like Naruto, Sasuke, Sakura, Sarada and Boruto got some pretty good development. Boruto being one of them, getting to see the new "Naruto", however this at first made me think he was a spoiled brat. Going into this movie, I had a massive hatred for this kid. He could have learnt to respect his amazing father. But hey, he eventually learns to respect his father. I mean hell, the job that you dream of doing will always be hard. The main goal for Naruto was to be Hokage. Boruto not understanding that is what got to me. Sakura was impressive. To be honest, I have gained a new respect for her. Sarada has also become one of my favorite heroines in the Naruto series. Sasuke, I have seen amazing things with this guy. He has taken badassery to a whole new level. Training Boruto and even admitting his wrongs. The guy as really grown on me. 9/10
-Other characters, like the new 4 kage(Darui, Gaara,Kurotsuchi and Chojuro) where rather impressive, they held their own against villains as strong, if not stronger than Kaguya. Shikamaru, Shikadai, Inojin and Mitsuki where characters I held a genuine interest in as well.
-The villains. The skinny one is known as Momoshiki and the massive one is known as Kinshiki. To be honest, I really loved these villains. They had a strange air to them, which made them feel fitting. Hell they where even better then Kaguya. What I disliked about these villains is the fact that they where defeated with a rasengan. Having Boruto do the job, felt like the torch was being passed though. In the end, it does make sense. Since the villains had lost their ability to adsorb power. I do wish that this was actually manga chapters because of how well these villains where fleshed out. 9/10
-Enjoyment: I really enjoyed this movie. Seeing Naruto become Hokage and look after his children rather well. Seeing the original team 7, as well as Boruto deciding to become someone like Sasuke, while Sarada becomes Hokage. To be honest, this is what I admire. Not having Boruto follow his father's footsteps and having Sarada become hokage.
Here is a summary:
Story: 10/10, loved it. I did hate Boruto at the beginning. Pacing was also a problem. I wish the characters where fleshed out a bit more.
Art: 10/10 the art is always amazing.
Character development: 10/10. Sarada and Boruto. As well as Naruto and Sasuke. Almost every character gets some development.
Enjoyment: 10/10. Seeing everyone.
This was a brilliant send of to the Naruto franchise. The best movie yet.
Starting with a clever dialogue and moving into an emotional and tension filled story, Boruto delivers some of the best that Naruto has had to offer throughout its original run.
Boruto picks up marginally after the time skip between the end of the manga and the Naruto movie "The Last." If you have not seen those two yet, I recommend watching them before Boruto as many references and assumptions are taken from knowing those stories.
In terms of art and music, Boruto delivered high quality work. The entire film was enjoyable as known melodies from Naruto intertwined with original soundtracks to give the viewer just enough
nostalgia to both enjoy and appreciate the progression of Naruto as a franchise. The art was outstanding as very minimal details were countless and even after watching the film with attention to detail, it is certain that in a second viewing one could get much more out of the subtleties. The fighting sequences were also very craftily created as they were fast paced, dynamic, and heart pumping for a large majority.
In terms of story, Boruto delivered something different and much needed from Naruto movies; emotional tension over another big "bad guy." It isn't to say that Boruto had an absence of a good villain; that was fine, but more so that Boruto focuses much more on the events outside the villain. Instead of using plot as a means to defeat a tough villain, Boruto uses the villain as a tool to further develop the plot which to that point was filled with tension emotionally, mentally and even physically. Boruto manages to center itself around the bods between the people of this time and the dynamics of these brand new characters meshing with the old. Without spoiling too much, it is safe to say that Boruto takes on all the better part of Naruto's quest for overcoming hardship by means of companionship and extends the theme to family, the future and the difficulty of love.
The only reason character gets an 8/10 is because Boruto could have done more to explore the development of characters outside of the Boruto-Naruto dynamic. We know nothing of Narutos relationship with Hinata, Sakura or even any old members from his class. We also know very little about the younger generation and their dynamics. There are a lot of cameo appearances but they could have been explored even a little bit more forward.
Overall, Boruto was a massively entertaining experience from the themes of family, love and hardship to the epic action packed combat. Boruto definitely does not fall short of any expectations and though not a good conclusion for the franchise (leaves many loose ends) it leaves one with the feeling of content and nostalgia all leaving lasting memories in the minds of the fans from those who have waited years watching Naruto grow, to those who picked it up recently and enjoyed the world of the shinobi.
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