“Are you a magician?” “No. I’m a Wizard!”
I’ve always said, it’s great to visit with old friends. And Kamen Rider × Kamen Rider Gaim & Wizard: The Fateful Sengoku Movie Battle was another great catch-up, but even more, an excellent conclusion to my Kamen Rider Wizard experience.
At least, I assume that it is. Because it certainly wrapped up Haruto-tachi’s story pretty well.
Kamen Rider × Kamen Rider Wizard & Fourze: Movie War Ultimatum, my first Kamen Rider Movie War experience, was definitely a mixed bag. But this time, I felt a lot more emotionally connected and a lot more excited while and after watching the movie.
The Wizard half, especially, was very well done. The best thing they did was draw upon all the feelings and emotional connections that were forged during Wizard, the season. The climax and culmination of Wizard was Koyomi’s death. Being the final episode, we saw everyone coming to terms with it and Haruto setting off to find a place where the Koyomi ring could rest in peace. But of course, we didn’t really see them go through the emotions.
And I think the movie did a fine job touching on that. They know Koyomi is in a better place, but if they had a choice, they would sure as hell love to have her back with them again. But most of all, Haruto’s struggle of being unable to let go. The season had really built up that bond between Haruto and Koyomi, even in the two-part post-season special. They had a connection that was incredibly deep. Friendship, love; you don’t really need to even categorize it or put it into words.
That Haruto traveled the world, merely to prolong the inevitable separation with Koyomi, was a very emotional realization to come to that played out so well in this movie. Him discovering that the best place for Koyomi would be in his Underworld, this version comprised of all the best and happy memories at Omokagedo, was absolutely beautiful.
I know Haruto pops up in Kamen Rider Taisen, but I doubt Wizard‘s story will be a big focus, if at all. So for a final conclusion to Kamen Rider Wizard, I’d say this was perfect.
For the Gaim half of the movie, it was interesting to basically go back in time. In continuity with the series, the movie is set between Episodes 9 and 10. That was back when it was all about the youths of Zawame City dancing the night away.
Boy, how far we’ve come, yeah?
The warring states and the pseudo-Sengoku period with the past Riders actually ended up not being a huge part of the story really. It actually felt Super Hero Taisen-level fanwanky instead of being integral to the story.
Yes, there was that whole Tree of Life and praying for water and all that was still exciting to watch. But you still could have had the same story, I think, with just Wizard and Gaim fighting together, even in the typical three-part Movie War format.
So in that sense, it definitely felt more like two completely separate movies. The Gaim half was exciting and the battles and explosions were pretty to look at, but it wasn’t the most fulfilling story, especially when paired with the Wizard half.
I guess that’s the same with the Fourze-Wizard since the Wizard half of last year’s movie was just a fun little adventure for them while the Fourze half of the movie attempted to apparently cement Gentarou’s love for some alien ball of light. Which again, I absolutely cared nothing about.
That’s definitely different though from here where the movie is an extension, rather, conclusion to the actual season’s story. Unlike the Fourze portion of last year’s movies that merely jumped off of the OOO-Fourze Movie War and were completely separate from the actual series.
But enough of the movie I felt a strange, hollow connection to. Back to this movie which I absolutely felt a connection to and enjoyed greatly. Overall, it was fun and exciting. The Wizard half was excellent and the Gaim half was exciting as well as interesting considering where the series itself went to after the movie.