Dragon Ball Super: Broly review

Intro

After seventeen years, the Dragon Ball franchise returned to theaters with Battle of Gods (2013). This movie became a massive succes, which led to a sequel Resurrection F (2015), followed by a completely new anime series: Dragon Ball Super. In this Dragon Ball Super Broly review you will find out if the newest chapter to the franchise does justice to this iconic Dragon Ball villain.

Positive

Both Dragon Ball Super (the anime series) and the most recent movies (Battle of Gods & Resurrection F) feature a new, more slick type of animation style. It certainly looks good, but it never had that old school feel of the original Dragon Ball Z show. This time around, in Dragon Ball Super: Broly, the animation is a throwback to this old school style and very much recaptures the look and feel of DBZ. This is hand drawn animation at it’s finest, with great new designs for Broly and his father Paragus. Both who actually get some personality and backstory added to make them more interesting, and finally, canon in the official Dragon Ball timeline. 

Broly has always been an iconic Dragon Ball character, even though he only appeared in three movies with almost no personality. He was a big brute who could only say one word: Kakarot. Dragon Ball creator Akira Toriyama said enough of this. Let’s have a reinterpretation of Broly and make him an actual character this time around. This movies’ version of Broly is a soft young man who doesn’t necessarily wants to fight, but has to because of his abusive father who manipulates him. A tragic character who you actually feel sorry for. By the time the fighting starts, you care enough about Broly that you don’t want him to get hurt. 

The trailers promised big and amazing fights. Vegeta, Goku, and even Frieza all get a shot against the Legendary Super Saiyan and it’s glorious to behold. The fighting has never looked this sharp. It’s faced paced, action packed, features an amazing showcase of special moves, and even has some beautiful moments of fan service. Every fan of the franchise, old or new, will be astounded by the amount of insanity that is on screen. In terms of story, character and epic fights, this Dragon Ball movie delivers tremendously. 

Negative

Long term fans of the franchise will notice that Dragon Ball Super: Broly retcons some of the major events of the franchise past. Particularly the story about Bardock and the way Goku got send to Earth, along with the following destruction of Planet Vegeta. This time around we see a more lighthearted Bardock, and his wife Gine makes her first appearance in the franchise. The different approach and retcon to the story isn’t that big of a deal, but it might bother some hardcore fans of the lore.

Also, it is very noticeable when the animation switches from hand drawn to CGI. The massive battles against Broly are great for the most part, but some shots do take you out of the experience because of the noticeable difference between the two animation styles.

Conclusion

The Dragon Ball franchise returns strong, maybe just as strong as the Legendary Super Saiyan Broly himself. The signature humor is present, the animation top notch (expect the CGI shots), the battles insane and most of all, Broly gets turned into a tragic character with an actual personality. Dragon Ball Super: Broly might be the best feature film the franchise has turned out yet, and leaves the door open for a bright future with, hopefully, even more adventures.

Dragon Ball Super: Broly – 8/10

MOVIE DETAILS

  • Directed by: Tatsuya Nagamine.

    Starring: Sean Schemmel, Christopher Sabat, Vic Mignogna, Christopher Ayres, Jason Douglas, Ian Sinclair, Sonny Strait, Dameon Clarke.

    Release Date: January 16,  2019 (USA)

    Running time: 100 minutes. 

    Genre: Anime, Fantasy

    Music by: Norihito Sumitomo.

    Production Company: Toei Animation.

    Distributed by: Toei Company, 20th Century Fox (Japan)