Naruto Shippuden: The Lost Tower Review

(Current music: the movie’s ending song, “If” by Kana Nishino)

劇場版 NARUTO-ナルト-疾風伝 ザ・ロストタワー

Gekijōban Naruto Shippūden: Za Rosuto Tawā

Directed by Masahiko Murata

Written by Junki Takegami

Music by Yasuharu Takanashi

Watch trailer

Three words…the movie sucked. But don’t get me wrong, I’m not a hater–I like Naruto. Ever since I started watching the series, I have grown fond of its characters and its world. It’s just…this movie honestly did not live up to my expectations, and also what the trailer had promised to bring.

First of all, let me clarify my position–I’m not a fervent Naruto-fan, nor am I a total anime geek. I occasionally indulge myself in anime series or anime films–with careful selection and screening. I tend to avoid the mainstream animes that have repetitive plot lines, stock characters and stupid cliches. Having that said…I haven’t been watching animes lately. My brother got me into watching the movie with him, and…it wasn’t a pleasant experience because throughout the movie, I just wanted to laugh out loud at the plot and the complete lack of logic as well as the utter stupidity of how much a film can just fail like this–but my brother kept shushing me in annoyance and refused to stop bugging me unless I be quiet. So I kept my sarcastic, judgmental comments to myself…trust me, it was painful not commenting on how much it sucked.

Anyway. I guess you don’t have to know all that. Here’s the review.

(I would like to apologize to all Naruto fans…because it’s going to get ugly. And also…spoilers alert.)

What caught my interest to watch this movie was the fact that the production team is bringing Yondaime, the fourth hokage into the story by allowing Naruto to travel back in time. The geographical setting of the “Lost City” is a place with brilliant architecture and breathtaking scape in the middle of a desert–a really cool place to fight ninjas and shoot shurikens. I assume that Yondaime remains to be a very popular character, since he’s Naruto’s father, but he doesn’t get much screen time. And finally, a movie that’s dedicated to him and his relationship with his yet-to-be-born son, Naruto? That’s bad ass…

And another reason that got me into watching was…I’m in love with Kakashi, and he’s going to appear in the movie as a child. Well…unfortunately that does not happen. I mean, he does appear in the movie, but for absolutely NO PURPOSE whatsoever. He’s just baggage or randomly inserted to please the fans. Which is stupid. I’d like my favourite character to have a ROLE in the film, please? Or why does he appear at all if he has no significance?

Anyway. The story is crappy as hell, which is something I cannot stand. (I’m a sucker for good plots :D)The events are completely random and annoyingly one-dimensional as Naruto is the centre of the universe. He’s the protagonist, I get it, but nothing makes sense. The Konoha Team (who is supposed to be in the middle of a VERY important secret mission) just includes Naruto into their plan for no reason. Not only do they contradict themselves by doing so (since Yondaime mentions that he can’t just let an extra member interfere with whatever they’re already doing…oh, their mission was to protect the Queen–and also something else–and then RIGHT AFTER THAT, he asks Naruto to protect the Queen and that he’s counting on him) they, as adults, have no reason to trust a mysterious young man who’s randomly appeared out of nowhere. They are quick to figure out that they’re from the future, too. But yeath. Basically everything becomes justified so Naruto can play a part in it and he gets to protect the Queen, face the villain, discover the bad guy’s evil plan, comfort the young Queen when she finds out that the villain’s killed her mother because she refused to cooperate with him…etc etc. The plot is so stupid. Why is there always a princess/prince figure, and then a father/mentor figure, and then they discover that their teacher/trusted elder is actually the one who’s been using them and has betrayed them?

“Yes, I killed your mother.” Evil laugh. Yeah yeah yeah. Is a little originality or at least, structured, organized plot too much to ask? This movie fails all Naruto fans. Seriously.

(I think my review is turning into a rant…)

Anyway. The characters as a whole lack a sense of unity. I already mentioned Kakashi. In the movie, he’s just randomly included into the mission by Yondame, who says that he has a special ability which, I expect, will contribute to the mission. What mission? It’s never been clarified or stated in the movie. Whatever Yondaime’s team is working on and ask Naruto (and the audience) to wait for never comes into fruition. Yamato, who is also transported back in time with Naruto, disappears for the whole movie and returns in the end with his Wood Manipulation and saves everyone from falling into the energy lava, along with Kakashi (?) who apparently saved him…and…what the hell? What was that all about?

Okay. And the big move? From the beginning I knew it was going to be rasengan. What else can it be? And…of course, since rasengan is developed by Yondaime, it is only natural that he can use it too–and not only this, use it WITH his future son. So they conjure up their rasengans, which are slightly different in colour, and then the two rasengans react and grow larger, and then they both raise their hands, looking, “kewl”, and then the rasengans combine, become one “super duper legendary” rasengan in Naruto’s hand, who by now has a determined Imma-defeat-you look on his face. Yondame, at the same time, attacks the villian’s (who is a puppet master) giant mechanic puppet and opens up its vulnerable spot, and then, having full capability to take that monstrous thing out, Yondaime just jumps away, waves at Naruto and says, “It’s up to you now!”

Yeah. I get it. Naruto is the main character so he gets to finish the villain off. But can’t you condition it a little better? Like…Yondaime gets hurt because he tries to protect Naruto therefore he isn’t strong enough to move…or something. Something!! Why can’t the production theme come up with SOMETHING!?

Okay. I’m getting all heated up. This is just STUPID. I miss the old Naruto movies. I think my favourite one is the one on the Moon Island and the Prince…and the animals. I remember crying like crazy at that cheesy, “we’ll be friends forever” moment.

Anyway…some good parts of the movie, I guess, are the music (well done!) and the whole landscape of the Lost City. And…what else…anything else?

Nope. That’s it. This is rather sad…I was so excited when I saw the trailer! Some of the footages shown in the trailer were nonexistent in the movie. I wished the movie addressed the father/son relationship better, like towards the end…it should have led to a “enlightenment” or a discovery of some sort…

Well…Naruto does discover that Yondamie is his father, but their memories are wiped in order to protect history.

What. The. HELL!? To protect history? But they’re returning to the future! And whatever happened to “My son will be raised to become someone like you?” (Yondaime’s last words to Naruto…before their memories are WIPED.) Obviously they won’t remember a thing.

And…considering that the Queen’s memories are wiped as well, how the heck does she remember Naruto as her hero and has passed on the story to her daughter, who meets Naruto in the future, but the Queen (who’ll only be 20 years older) does not appear….

And the movie ends finally with Sakura making fun (bullying!?) Naruto. The end.

UGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGH. I AM SO MAD.

Yeah…sorry. This is a totally unbiased review, eh? I apologize once again if I offended the Naruto fans…or people think I’m being overly incessant about details. But anyway…that’s just my opinion. My brother liked it, probably for the battle scenes…but the battle scenes…*sigh* Don’t get me started again. I think I’ve made my point quite clearly already.

And that’s it for now! :)

Wait. Sorry. I’m not done yet. One final rant:

This is the scene where..the Queen remembers Naruto’s words: “Just do what you’ve got to do.” And becomes all determined with the kunai (a small ninja blade) Naruto has given her. She must protect her people and lead them to safety! And to do so, she stabs herself in the stomach–which shocks everyone–oh wait, she didn’t–she just tears her clothes apart, revealing her arms and her cleavage, and her legs. So NOW she can save everyone, dressed in rags? What is this supposed to symbolize?

Sigh…yeah…and there’s this scene when she can’t get the door to open, and then everyone comes help her…and then hopeful musics sounds…and then, yeah, with a last push, she slices her hand with the blade because she’s been holding to hard. Yeah, yeah. I get it…sacrifice…

Oh, and there’s this scene, when the whole city shows up…which is about like, 25 people? A flourishing metropolis. Wow. 25 people. That’s pathetic. And when this group of people are hesitant towards trusting the Queen because they all thought the Queen was taking their sons and husbands away to do hard labour and produce a puppet army for the bad guy, this woman just raises her hand and says, “LET’S TRUST THE QUEEN.” And the whole “city” cheers and says “YEAH! YEAH!” raising their hands above their heads…

Yeah…I don’t want to write this post anymore lol. This is beginning to depress me.

That’s it for now…for real. :)

.

—-okay, just looked up the screenplay writer, Junki Takegami. Seriously, SERIOUSLY—-

****the following rant has been purposely censored****

Naruto Shippuden: The Lost Tower

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