Momo is the center of this story. No save the school this time.
First off from the start of a new opening sequence it's quite clear that this 6 part movie is meant to be the new 12 episode second season. With a new season comes with new characters and new tanks and new tounament, but let's save that for later. That being said the movie indeed felt like a two parter episode. The production values are not as grand as "Der Film" but it's still very good. Besides the somewhat noticeable 3D Miho in the opening prologue
the CGI used in the film is still quite impressive, especially showing the vast pastoral landscape of quasi-French rural area.
The movie is truly enjoyable. Every minute is so fun to watch that time passes very quickly. The movie is much better than the battle with Anzio. We can see that Marie is a more crafty person than what the previews would led us to believe and BC team are a much more formidable team.
It's a sheer enjoyment to watch. Everything clicks with the pacing, the funny rapporteur with the characters, the ever expansive world building and the great setup of things to come. But, then it became a big disappointment. I'll state why on the spoilers in the Forum, but I was disappointed at the end and it's got nothing to do with the quality of the film. No, the film is stellar. The makers haven't lost their touch in delivering a great story nor did they lost their creative juices in this. The characters are quite refreshing to see again, along with their usual antics.The film is pack with gimmicks, tricks and homages to other films but one doesn't get to feeling that it's forced or contrived. Yukari's clandestine filming of the rival BC team is hilarious. The new characters are a good addition to the cast, as well as a good foil to the bubbly cuties of the Rabbit team. The ED sequence "Enter enter mission!" is even sung with a naval tune to go with the new characters personas.
Yes, I was disappointed with the movie for different reasons but I also enjoyed it so much that I watched it thrice. Maybe it's my GuP fan partiality, but I really really really... can't wait for movie 2.
Since, the BD/Dvd is out for while now I can finally say why I'm disappointed in the film, it's because of the Cliffhanger at the end.
When I came out of the theater I can see in everyone's silent faces what they're thinking when the sad reality dawn on them "That is such a good and enjoyable movie!!! but damn, it'll be probably be months or even a year we get to see how they beat BC Freedom in part 2."
This is quite obviously a 6 part OVA series. Think, Garden of Sinners movie 1 or Gundam Unicorn OVA 1. Much like those two, das finale OVA1 has plenty of hype scenes and a small conflict that is resolved. However much of the runtime is used to setup the tournament that is to unfold in the coming episodes as well as introduce some cool new characters both for Ooatari Joshi and the opponent of the day: UC Academy. UC Academy is a French school and their entire gimmick is a split down the middle modeling the French Revolution.
Now plenty of people are probably
excited for the visuals and audio quality, as GaruPan has pushed those barriers strongly with der Film. And what can I say, it isn't even close: das Finale has raised the bar again and it is so much better than both the TV ver and der Film. The audio is actually modeled in surround as well so it may be awkward for headphone users. I highly recommend a good home theater setup to get the greatest enjoyment.
And well, that's all that there is to say since talking about the plot of a sub hour OVA really isn't useful. Just go watch it! Issa good.
Girls & Panzer: Saishuushou a new chapter in the series. My expectations continue very high. However, there is a part of the story that feels forced; they aren't going to compete for the school, they are going to do it for Momo. Maybe it is a bit weird seeing her as the center of the story, but the main idea of the series remains.
The first episode is more like an introduction in combination with an update of the series. Maybe the pacing is a bit slow. However, there are very remarkable parts that some spectators will like. I don't know if the other episodes will
be short, but I am awaiting them to be a bit longer.
Technically the series continues giving us an excellent quality with great art and a right combination of sound mix and music.
[This is a re-write of a previous review I did not like. If you read it before, note that everything I said still stands. This time, I have made it more concise]
I am always wary of sequels, and further additions to a series. Especially after that series had a feature film. But this time, not only was I surprised, but I was impressed, struck with awe, and had a blast watching.
Das Finale was made by GuP fans for GuP fans. It is a love letter to the fans, and improves on pretty much everything.
Das Finale is actually the second season of GuP, except the
creators decided that instead of the usual 13 episode weekly format, there will be 6 episodes made during a few months, thus giving them exceptional, movie-like quality.
This time, Ooarai school is safe, and the spotlight is taken over by Momo Kawashima, the student council vice president. They try to help her out of her unfortunate circumstances by participating in a new senshado tournament. And, we have a new cast of characters: A new team made out of sailors, and a new school, themed of course after a country. In this case, France.
The cinematography used is is something rather bold, and unique. Scenes are short and to the point, and don't waste any time switching to another one. Gone are the quiet scenes of waiting for an ambush, or simple beauty shots, from Der Film. Everything is quick and to the point, which makes for some great comedic timing (such as Yukari's infiltration mission, with a bootleg Lucasfilms logo).
As always, it is full of references and homages to other real life films, as well as historical figures/battles/events.
The tank battles and animations are just as ridiculous, and also just as realistic as we've come to expect. The tanks have animated suspension, correct turret movements, and seem just a believable, but they also drift, turn their turrets within seconds, and reload like they are M1 Abrams tanks. The one difference being higher quality animations.
The sound department wasted no time either, as every tank has their own sound effects for shooting, turret rotation, movement, and there are several variations for repeating sound effects - such as shells bouncing, wood splintering, etc.
Much of the music is reused from Der Film, with the new French school having their own French military marches as an addition.
The other new addition is the opening song, "Grand Symphony". To put it simply, it kicks season 1's opening, "Dream Riser", out of the water. It is a song worthy of being the last opening for this incredible series.
To conclude, this series has a lot of potential, and it seems to be hitting all the right spots. In terms of animation, sound, and pure enjoyment, it has already surpassed Der Film, and is well on its way to surpass it in the other categories.
If you are military anime fan, I highly recommend watching.