Escaflowne: The Movie Reviews

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½ February 28, 2015
Skip it. Watch the series instead.
June 1, 2014
This time, i have to say, i prefer the movie adaptation than the original series. Liked the art and character design (and the characters' personality). The only pitfall is that it is too condensed... Its plot is better off to be a trilogy.
½ May 20, 2014
I wish I could recommend this. There is some genuinely cool stuff in here: good action, some nice animation, and a damn good orchestral score with some well-used choir insertions throughout. I also enjoyed a lot of the dubbed voice acting, though a little bit of it was kind of lackluster. Unfortunately, the characters are fairly one-dimensional (especially the lead protagonist Hitomi) and the story, while promising at first, is extremely anticlimactic and convenient by the end. It's okay, but I probably will just go watch the series its based on as opposed to ever watching this again.
½ July 24, 2013
An anime fantasy thrill ride that is as brutal as it is elegant. From the truly impressive battles, to the beauty of the visual presentation, this one pleases the eye in the truest sense. Some western critics may not get it, but it's a great fantasy film for those who actually bother to see the film for it's true essence.
½ November 15, 2012
In a nut shell its the Japanese television show compress into a movie. a fine job they did.
August 22, 2012
Very good. Not the best. But very good.
½ May 29, 2012
This movie is definitely better if you've seen the anime series, as you'll "get" the characters a little more quickly, but it's still quite fun to watch on its own. It's very much eye candy.. Oh, and if you *have* watched the anime? The movie is kind of..a loose 'retelling' of the anime's storyline, just fyi. ;)
January 24, 2012
The best thing that made the plot of 'Escaflowne - The Movie' exciting is the action. It's like mecha (robots) in a magical fantasy world!
March 8, 2011
It has great action sequences, and wonderful a wonderful design, But Escaflowne is too long and in some places, stretched out and boring.
Super Reviewer
February 22, 2011
Loved the ending to the OVA but still enjoyed the film, although Folken killed in the way he was just didn't do it for me...
August 10, 2007
This movie is an acquired taste since it's a shorter, more cryptic version of the series, Vision of Escaflowne. The character designs have changed somewhat for the movie adaptation. Everyone takes on an older, and in some cases more sinister appearance. The icing on this cake is the music; all of it is full of so much excitement and deep-seeded passion. The main storyline remains the same and universal; a high school girl looking for more than the mundane, and that's what keeps this movie from completely alienating everyone.
February 15, 2009
the animation was superb, but the story wasn't as impressive as the series. Still a fan, though.
February 1, 2010
Escaflowne is the re-telling of the television series, "The Vision of Escaflowne". A depressed high school student named Hitomi wishes to just fade away and is magically sucked into a world called Gaea where they called her their Wing Goddess. Multiple forces are struggling against each other there for control of powerful dragon armor that the Wing Goddess is supposed to control so they have to try and win her favor as she has the power to save them or destroy their world entirely.
Some of the rag-tag band she befriends includes a kitty-cat girl with a somewhat annoying voice and Van, the last of his kind that can wield a special power that runs in his genes.

What I liked most about this movie were the action sequences, fighting over Hitomi and getting to see the dragon armor being used. When a person enters the armor, they have to give blood for it to work so they are pierced all over their body and blood drains from them. For me, I thought that was a pretty powerful way to make the inhabitants sacrifice something before they go running off with a suit that can bring about so much destruction. Having a high price to pay means not just anyone would jump in it.

Hitomi is clearly depressed throughout and I'm not sure if she ever really overcame that. She said enough nice things to keep Van motivated and alive when he was hurt but I have this feeling that if she goes home to her own world, her outlook will not have changed.

There was pretty music, the plot was occasionally confusing. I never felt emotionally involved or connected to any characters. Only when they were fighting did there seem to be something worth cheering for. It was ok for one watching, but not close to the best I've seen.
½ July 16, 2009
RATING (0 to ****): *

Years ago, when I first started seriously getting into film, I rented "Escaflowne", an adaptation of an anime series I never saw. However, due to my getting accustomed to late night viewings, like I usually did I fell asleep through half the movie. My memories of it weren't too great, but I decided to pick it up from Netflix for a full, fair trial.

The movie does not get to a good start. Opening with some babble on an airship, with unappealing character designs all the way through, deadly warrior Van breaks in and kills everyone in sight in an accurate representation of the film's battle sequences: incomprehensible, migraine-inducing, and erratic moving camera format. I'm not quite willing to call it "shakycam" even though that's exactly what it is.

Cut to the human world, Earth. Depressed schoolgirl Hitomi is on the balcony and her best friend is seeing what she claims to be a poorly-written suicide note. Last night I saw another notoriously bloody Japanese film, the live-action "Suicide Club", which should be indicator enough of how much I cared about Hitomi from the start of the film. She proclaims she's "too cowardly" to do it, and she walks around town until a very shady, evil figure declares she's some sort of goddess and raises water from the ground to submerge her completely.

Waking up on the other side, she is in Gaea, or more specifically, inside the "Dragon Armor", which is basically the giant robot archetype in organic denial. Don't get your hopes up; it takes a very long time before you see it in action, and it's just like the opening battle. Erratic and incomprehensible.

Basically in Gaea everyone is convinced Hitomi is some sort of goddess, which she, of course, does not believe. Although it does attempt to have some heart when Hitomi finally understands the value of her own life as she's taken with Van's own suffering (Van also being unhappy with being alive... getting the picture of how gloomy this flick would be if it wasn't so lifeless?).

You know your animated film is in trouble when your machines have to power from their pilots' blood and spray it from their valves, or some evil character has to employ magic to split someone's horse in half... complete with entrails. Enjoy these moments; the laughably excessive gore is of the few smile-inducing moments.

On the other end, with far too little screentime is the only bit of humor the deadly serious "Escaflowne" movie will allow, a sort of cat/human hybrid Merle. Watching her tail puff makes all her scenes enjoyable.

Oh yes, I did mention how the evil people and all the war in Gaea has made the bipedal forest creatures cautious and angry? Unlike "Princess Mononoke", the voice actors make no attempt to distinguish the animal voices from that of humans.

But that's just a production detail, something you'd linger over if the production in question actually made you give a shit.

MPAA: PG-13 (strong animated violence)
Runtime: 1 hour, 38 minutes (92 minutes of "real movie")
½ July 15, 2009
Van es mi novio jiji
May 16, 2009 favorite anime
½ February 24, 2009
Not quite as good as the animated tv series of the same name but good in it's own rights.
December 18, 2008
Very interesting and cool graphics.
December 12, 2008
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