I don't see any reviews here so I'll make one. This is my first, so please excuse any mistakes. This is a long review, so please bear with me.
First of all, the animation is so outstanding. It's really high quality and during certain scenes in the movie you may think that it's real life scenery instead of 2D/CG. I couldn't believe my eyes watching it, 'cause usually Yu-Gi-Oh! didn't have that high quality animation (except for Zexal). Even Arc-V has meh animation. The animation is so constantly beautiful you can't take your eyes off the screen. This, I think, is one of the gems in this movie. Oh, and the characters' faces look beautiful all the time you may turn homo (jk). Kaiba looks like Light Yagami but with a gravity defying jacket.
Let's talk about sound next. There's not much to say here. The movie uses a few of the soundtracks in the original Duel Monsters series like Passionate Duelist and Wrath of God but with different arrangements of course. The nostalgia is so real when you hear them playing. Most of the soundtracks sound orchestral and it's awesome but I give an 8/10.
The original Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters didn't do a good job with characters. Everyone but Yugi, Jounouchi (Joey) and Kaiba were cheerleaders. Anzu and Honda remain useless even in the movie, and Jounouchi is too. Jounouchi has no real purpose in the movie but they give him more screentime than Yugi. He and Honda only serve as comic relief characters.
The original characters aren't developed well in the movie, except for Yugi, Kaiba and Bakura. Yup, Bakura. Bakura has an importance in the movie that connects to Aigami's backstory and that is a job well done. I really like what they retconned to the story, it gives more depth to both Bakura and Aigami.
Kaiba had always been an asshole with a surprisingly good side. At first you'd think Kaiba is the protagonist for this movie, but then you'd think he's actually the villain. Kaiba's character is complex yet simple, for he only wants to defeat Atem but he'd do anything for it. I can't say much about him, but he's my second favorite character in the movie even though I hated him in the original series. His character in the movie is very well written.
Yugi is supposed to be the protagonist? I think he has less screen time than Aigami or even Jounouchi. Yugi has grown, sure. But his character is still shallow. It'd be great if the movie goes deep into his character of a loser who gained strength or focusing on his growth, but even in this movie, he doesn't feel like the protagonist to me. I still can't like his character.
The mysterious beutiful kid Aigami is the best character ever made in the entire Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise imo. His character is so well written and lovable, he should be considered as the real protagonist for this movie. His motivation and backstory is deep, not what you'd expect from a yugioh (especially the original yugioh). The depth of his character really surprised me.
As for the story, it's really unlike what you'd expect from a yugioh. 5D's had a great plot, Zexal II's and Arc-V's were good too. But the original? Not really. DM had a shallow plot. But they expanded it in the movie. The movie answers a few questions people may have for DM, regarding Shadi. Aigami has a bitter backstory, and the plot revolves pretty much around him. The plot for me, is the best thing in the movie. It really surprised me for being deep.
In terms of enjoyment, I give it 9/10. At first I was like "the hell is going on? I don't get it" and there are scenes that feel kinda out of place, but that still didn't stop me from enjoying it. It's not yugioh without children's card games, so of course there are duels in the movie. The movie is 2 hrs 10 mins long and it has a lot of story to tell but they still included a few duels in it. So the duels feel kinda rushed, and I couldn't really pay attention to them 'cause they were so fast-paced. It's not like Bonds Beyond Time where they explain every card effect and stuff or whatever move they make. In my personal opinion, they should have made only one duel towards the end of the movie so that more time can be used for the story. The movie has a few pacing issues, but that still won't kill the awesomeness.
The best anime movie I've watched thus far was Gintama but this just surpassed it. I don't judge based on bias just because yugioh is my favorite anime. Heck, Gintama is my least favorite anime but the movie was so great I rated it as the best. The Dark Side of Dimensions however, is a real masterpiece, especially for a yugioh anime. I think it's appropriate to give the movie 9/10.read more