Advent Children: Roses or rubbish?

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CitizenGeek

Guild Member
Paul said:
Both are high profile flops, though from reading this review, I suspect Earthsea's suffered from a critical backlash due to the reputation of Ghibli/the Miyazaki name.

You're really kidding yourself saying that Advent Children is a flop. It got a 'B' rating from the most popular source of anime reviews, ANN. And a 9/10 from IGN, one of the biggest entertainment websites in the world.

It was the best selling anime DVD of 2006, selling more than double what Howl's Moving Castle (yes, Oscar-nominated, Studio Ghibli animted Howl's Moving Castle) sold. And I even saw television adverts for it on TV, something I never see for any other anime releases.

Stating Advent Children to be a flop as though it were a fact? Perhaps you ought to check the actual facts, and not the imaginary, suit-my-own-opinion, ones next time. Advent Children gets such an unfair rap among among anime fans, it really is quite perplexing.
 

Sy

Time-Traveller
The fact that Advent Children is so popular is quite sickening. It's obviously nothing more than a commercial tie in that fails blindly as a movie in it's own right. It's fan service for the people that worship the franshise and people are wowed and impressed too easily by some pretty visuals and fast moving action. They seem to not realise that there's a total lack of coherent plot, continuity and mindless/aimless cameos of characters just for the sake of people being able to say "Hell yeah that's my favourite character right there". It's all a big mess of nice looking CGI with over the top camerawork that spins and flails to stupid extents. The whole thing could have been worked out during the time it takes to eat a happy meal.

It's annoying but I've got to admit that the minds that brought Advent Children to life are financial geniuses. I can just picture them around a huge table coming up with a great way to sucker some more money out of their loyal fans. They don't give the fans what they want but what they think they want. It turns out they thought they wanted mindless, souless, shallow action tripe. Well, they got it. WOW! WHOOSH! SWISH!

I watched Earthsea a couple of weeks a go. It was average but at least it can be concidered a movie and not a movie long promo that takes itself more seriously than it probably should.
 

Hybridchild

School Idol
CitizenGeek said:
Stating Advent Children to be a flop as though it were a fact? Perhaps you ought to check the actual facts, and not the imaginary, suit-my-own-opinion, ones next time. Advent Children gets such an unfair rap among among anime fans, it really is quite perplexing.

While everything you said is true it was still a flop, not in that it done badly but in that it didnt do as well as its producers had hoped.

Yes it was the biggest selling anime dvd of the year but if you compare the sales figures for it to the big hollywood blockbusters that it was intended to compete with its sales figures where dismal, no anime would ever make those figures (even Spirited Away) basically it was a big fish in a small pond that was intended to swim in the ocean.

Look at it compared to the game, which has sold nearly 10 million copies world wide with most of them in japan and compare that to sales of just under 3 million in 2006 for AC (most movies makes the majority of their sales in the first year) and you begin to see the disparity, the movie sold nowhere near as well as the games and it was expected that most people who bought the game would buy the movie but they didn't and thats why it was a flop.

Anyway back to Earthsea, it is a mediore movie, its not bad by any means but it was too big a project for a rookie director and it does show. Its main failing being that the pacing is all over the place, it moves too fast in the early stages then the middle section drags out much longer than it should have.
 

CitizenGeek

Guild Member
Sy said:
They seem to not realise that there's a total lack of coherent plot, continuity and mindless/aimless cameos of characters just for the sake of people being able to say "Hell yeah that's my favourite character right there". It's all a big mess of nice looking CGI with over the top camerawork that spins and flails to stupid extents. The whole thing could have been worked out during the time it takes to eat a happy meal.

If you want to look at Advent Children as a stand-alone piece, then that's your mistake. Not Advent Children. Square Enix never marketed Advent Children as anything other than a sequel to FFVII. And being as I've played and enjoyed FFVII, I was able to appreciate it. I could appreciate Cloud's journed, I could appreciate the story involving Jenova, I could appreciate the story of "what happened after FFVII", Of course, the story takes a backseat to the action - but FFVII was a videogame, and in videogames, action takes precedence over story (yes, even in Final Fantasy games!). And so it was only logical that Advent Children (being, as it is, based on a videogame) would follow suit.

I loved Advent Children, and I loved the way Cloud's story was concluded. I liked the way the other characters from the game were introduced - they most certainly were not shoe-horned in, as you seem to be making out. You seem to think that action scenes and gorgeous visuals are a sin or something - but you do realise that you're on an anime forum, right? Visuals and fight scenes are a big part of anime, y'know.

Hybridchild said:
While everything you said is true it was still a flop, not in that it done badly but in that it didnt do as well as its producers had hoped.

No idea where you came up with all that stuff, Hybridchild, but much like when everyone on AUKN starts to talk about Advent Children, you're wrong ;] Advent Children sold through 93% of all published copies in it's first week on sale. AC was never intended to compete with Hollywood blockbusters - if it was, wouldn't there have been more marketing? Wouldn't there have been big-name actors doing the voice work instead of anime regulars?

Advent Children was a big success, don't kid yourself. I saw it on top of Play.com and Amazon.co.uk's overall DVD charts in the days running up to it's release, and the days following it's release.
 

Sy

Time-Traveller
CitizenGeek said:
I loved Advent Children, and I loved the way Cloud's story was concluded. I liked the way the other characters from the game were introduced - they most certainly were not shoe-horned in, as you seem to be making out. You seem to think that action scenes and gorgeous visuals are a sin or something - but you do realise that you're on an anime forum, right? Visuals and fight scenes are a big part of anime, y'know.
All that glitters is Final Fantasy, right CG? Don't make me laugh. It was a clever way of milking an already popular cash cow. Sure games are mainly action but FF is an RPG and has a substantial amount of storytelling to involve the player to back up the action like all RPG's should. Advent Children is just a few flashy action scenes which a weak thrown together story to back them up. A lot of the characters that turned up had no purpose being there and only said about one line each. It was funny and cringeworthy at the same time.

And yeah visuals and fight scenes are a big part of anime and no sin at all but only when they are backed by good characters, story and settings. If you want to go the fact it was a video game route then well so was Gungrave and look at that. The game was little more than a shoot em up with a vague storyline and they turned out a fantastic anime series.

However I from what I can see it looks like it was a huge sucess. It seems to have completed the task which it was meant to do and cleaned some money out of the pockets of the fanbase by knowing where to strike. I gotta applaude them for that at least.

Looking at it as a stand alone movie it can't be seen as anthing more than a cash in and looking at it as a sequel to the game it's even kind of insulting to the fans of the story in the original game.
But yeah that's my piece and I'll leave it like that and save us both from writing a novel (though I suspect you'll continue anyway). There's really nothing more to say about it.
 

CitizenGeek

Guild Member
Sy said:
All that glitters is Final Fantasy, right CG? Don't make me laugh.

Oh noes! I like Final Fantasy more than you! I must be wrong, then! Don't make me laugh, Sy.


It was a clever way of milking an already popular cash cow. Sure games are mainly action but FF is an RPG and has a substantial amount of storytelling to involve the player to back up the action like all RPG's should.

Hah, you're pointing out that FFVII was milked as though milking popular stuff never happens. I'm pretty sure most of the stuff you like is 'milked', too (Lupin III - 300+ episodes, 10+ movies, anyone?). Yes, Advent Children was a cash-in, but so is every sequel and every spin-off either in games or anime.


A lot of the characters that turned up had no purpose being there and only said about one line each.

They showed to fight Bahamut-SIN .... or have you actually watched the movie? I don't know what you were expecting with Advent Children - you did know it was based on Final Fantasy VII, right? You did know that there were a good few characters in FFVII, yes?

Honestly, Sy, you're criticising AC for not achieving something it never intended to achieve. It's like bashing Gankutsuou for not being realistic, or bashing Detective Conan for failing as a sci-fi.

And yeah visuals and fight scenes are a big part of anime and no sin at all but only when they are backed by good characters, story and settings.

Yeah, Advent Children had all that - the characters and setting were developed in Final Fantasy VII. There was no need to re-hash all of that character development, was there?

Let me explain this in simpler terms: Advent Children = Videogame sequel. Please consult a dictionary or something and familiarise yourself with the word 'sequel'.

If you want to go the fact it was a video game route then well so was Gungrave and look at that. The game was little more than a shoot em up with a vague storyline and they turned out a fantastic anime series.

Ah, now it's really obvious that you just don't understand what Advent Children is. The Gungrave anime was an adaptation, AC is a sequel. C'mon, Sy, the concept of a sequel isn't that difficult to work out.

Looking at it as a stand alone movie it can't be seen as anthing more than a cash in and looking at it as a sequel to the game it's even kind of insulting to the fans of the story in the original game.

But it's not a stand-alone movie! If you want to watch it as such, fine - but don't complain that it didn't conform to stand-alone movie norms. What would you say to someone who watched End of Eva without watching the original series and complained that it didn't make any sense? Again I'm in awe of this stubborn confusion - it was a sequel, sequels are common, surely it can't be that hard to accept the fact that AC was a sequel.

Please don't talk for the fans of FFVII, either. As an FF fan, and somone who spends a lot of time talking with other FF fans, I know that the overwhelming majority adored FFVII :]
 

Sy

Time-Traveller
Oh look, didn't expect that at all.
Honestly, Sy, you're criticising AC for not achieving something it never intended to achieve.
I guess so. It never intended to be a good pice of storytelling. Just a good piece of money making.

You are obviously blind to any of the problems that make it a bad sequel. But nevermind eh. It's like arguing with a scientologist.
 

Paul

Ghost of Animes
Administrator
AC is purely pandering to the fans, so I agree with Sy in that it's filled with poor story-telling and exists simply to milk the FF franchise. Just saying it's a "sequel" isn't enough to defer the fact that it's a poor film; the "Empires Strikes Back", "Terminator II" and "Godfather 2" were all sequels, but they're also great films in their own right. Advent Children isn't; if you have to play the video game to understand the characterization, it fundamentally fails as a work of cinema. Ultimately, it's destined to be forgotten, and for a production with such potential, that's a real shame.

Obligatory reference to the fact that this is actually a thread about Tales from Earthsea, lets try to keep it relevant :)
 

subedii

Great Teacher
Paul said:
AC is purely pandering to the fans, so I agree with Sy in that it's filled with poor story-telling and exists simply to milk the FF franchise. Just saying it's a "sequel" isn't enough to defer the fact that it's a poor film; the "Empires Strikes Back", "Terminator II" and "Godfather 2" were all sequels, but they're also great films in their own right. Advent Children isn't; if you have to play the video game to understand the characterization, it fundamentally fails as a work of cinema.

I'd have to disagree with that. It was always the creator's stated aim that this film would be for the fans, and they never even tried to hide that you would need the backstory from the game in order to really get the film.

I can appreciate the fact that they made something for the fans if nothing else, who cares if people who hadn't played the game didn't 'get it' as much as those who did, it was pretty nakedly targetted towards the fanbase market. The film was meant to be fan-service. There's nothing inherently wrong with that in and of itself.

Now as for the film being poor in its own right, that's a separate issue, and one I might be able to get behind.

Except I haven't seen the film yet. Perhaps when I do I can form an opinion on that.
 

CitizenGeek

Guild Member
It fails according to your, narrow, view of cinema, Paul - not to a generally accepted definition of cinema, which is what you seem to be trying to say.

Sy said:
But yeah that's my piece

Sy said:
You are obviously blind to any of the problems that make it a bad sequel. But nevermind eh. It's like arguing with a scientologist.

Oh gosh, I am surprised that you'd say you're finished and then reply again!

:lol:

subedii said:
I'd have to disagree with that. It was always the creator's stated aim that this film would be for the fans, and they never even tried to hide that you would need the backstory from the game in order to really get the film.

As much as that is strikingly obvious to most people, Sy and Paul just can't seem to get their heads around it. Bless 'em ;]
 

Sy

Time-Traveller
Paul said:
Obligatory reference to the fact that this is actually a thread about Tales from Earthsea, lets try to keep it relevant :)
Well if there's one thing I can say about the movie is that I did enjoy the english dub. Great cast.
Oh gosh, I am surprised that you'd say you're finished and then reply again!
What can I say. You force it out of me.
 

kupocake

Stand User
Regardless of the intentions of its creators, its critical/commercial success or the sore udders of the Final Fantasy cash cow Advent Children is:

a) Not very good.
b) Not above criticism because it's "Not For the Likes of You"
c) Not anything to do with how a Paedophile celebrates Christmas.
d) Not Tales of Earthsea.

/argument.
 

Paul

Ghost of Animes
Administrator
CitizenGeek said:
subedii said:
I'd have to disagree with that. It was always the creator's stated aim that this film would be for the fans, and they never even tried to hide that you would need the backstory from the game in order to really get the film.

As much as that is strikingly obvious to most people, Sy and Paul just can't seem to get their heads around it. Bless 'em ;]

Eh? If it was intended "for the fans", Sony shouldn't have sent me the DVD to review. Keep in mind this is an anime website, not a Final Fantasy fansite and our opinions of the film represent a broader perspective. I'm not arguing that the FF fans might enjoy it more (though I know many who hated it just as much as you obviously loved it), but for the rest of us, it's a flat, lifeless action film that's simply, utterly mediocre.

Also, CitizenGeek, if you want to know why people tend to get annoyed with you, attempting to assert your assumed superiority by ending your sentences with subtle jabs like "Bless 'em" does nothing to endear you to anyone. Seriously, kid.
 

subedii

Great Teacher
Paul said:
CitizenGeek said:
subedii said:
I'd have to disagree with that. It was always the creator's stated aim that this film would be for the fans, and they never even tried to hide that you would need the backstory from the game in order to really get the film.

As much as that is strikingly obvious to most people, Sy and Paul just can't seem to get their heads around it. Bless 'em ;]

Eh? If it was intended "for the fans", Sony shouldn't have sent me the DVD to review. Keep in mind this is an anime website, not a Final Fantasy fansite and our opinions of the film represent a broader perspective. I'm not arguing that the FF fans might enjoy it more (though I know many who hated it just as much as you obviously loved it), but for the rest of us, it's a flat, lifeless action film that's simply, utterly mediocre.

And I feel that's fine, I don't want to argue against that. You can't judge a film on anything more than whether you felt it was good or bad, same for everyone. But I don't think you can really judge it's "success" (for want of a better word) at being what it is by its reception by non-fans.

I mean, I liked Evil Dead 3: Army of Darkness. But if I didn't like the first two then a piece of GIGANTIC Bruce Campbell fanservice like that would have been just as annoying. In the end, most fans liked it (some felt it was crap after the first two), and it made enough money to turn a profit. That's all I would consider necessary for it to be considered a "success".

I'm not saying films like Advent Children are beyond reproach because they're made for the fans (and certainly not saying it in the case of Army of Darkness :mrgreen: ), but ultimately it's the fans who it's made for, and it's them who'll decide how much they like the fanservice. In a lot of ways it's pretty much an "insider joke" that the fans are the only people likely to really appreciate. And again, it's not something I can really fault a film for being.

As for Sony sending it to an anime review site, I can see your point. Really though all they were trying to do was spread the word as much as possible amongst fanbases that were likely to be receptive to the product. It's not exactly something I can fault them for.

So crap film? Very possibly. Legitimate to call it so? Fine by me. Doesn't make the fans any less "right" for liking it, as long as it hits the marks they wanted it to.
 

CitizenGeek

Guild Member
Paul said:
Eh? If it was intended "for the fans", Sony shouldn't have sent me the DVD to review. Keep in mind this is an anime website, not a Final Fantasy fansite and our opinions of the film represent a broader perspective.

Sony were obviously trying to spread the word of the movie. Anime and Final Fantasy go hand in hand; any convention will have more FF cosplayers than cosplayers from any other franchise, and one would not be surprised to hear that an anime fan is also a Final Fantasy fan. I guess that was Sony's reasoning. Maybe they thought you'd be a fan. Of course, they should know that AUKN is a bizarre anomaly in relation to other anime sites; seeing as most people not only don't play Final Fantasy games, but find it in their nature to bash the series whenever possible (like, for example, in a thread centred on a review of Tales from Earthsea).

I'm not arguing that the FF fans might enjoy it more (though I know many who hated it just as much as you obviously loved it), but for the rest of us, it's a flat, lifeless action film that's simply, utterly mediocre.

"the rest of us"? It's really just you and Sy. You are asserting these opinions as facts. I've posted reviews from popular websites, and they liked the movie a lot. You called Advent Children a flop, even though it was a huge commercial success for Square Enix. Why are you out to get Advent Children, exactly? And, furthermore, can you please explain why you said Advent Children was a 'flop'?

Also, CitizenGeek, if you want to know why people tend to get annoyed with you

I know why people get annoyed with me, and I'll try to stop doing that, actually.

kupoartist said:
b) Not above criticism because it's "Not For the Likes of You"

I understand that. But the people who criticise AC need to grasp the concept that AC isn't a stand-alone work, they need to understand that it's a very, very direct sequel.

Honestly, the tirade against Advent Children really irks me - especially because it's so obvious that those hurling ill-founded hyperbolic (for example: AC's popularity is "sickening"!) really don't actually understand what AC is intended as being.
 

Sy

Time-Traveller
I don't know where you're looking at these completely positive reviews actually. The critique on extremely popular movie review sites such as IMDB and Rotten Tomatoes pretty much mirrors mine an Paul's thoughts. A lot of these people also state they were avid fans of the game. I mean lets just take a quick look at a couple of excerpts...

Final Fantasy 7 was an absolutely amazing game. When it came out in 1997 I had never experienced anything quite like it...
And goes on to say...
...I was left utterly confused and disappointed by this awful excuse for a film. It finished in exactly the same place it started - Sephiroth's dead and Cloud ain't. Nothing had progressed at all. The movie didn't even carry the story forward.

Now before I get started I would like to say I love the game FF7. I loved the story and everything about it and no matter how much I tried, I just could not like this "movie." And I use the term "movie" very loosely. First of all he movie plays like a game instead of a movie. If I wanted to play a game, I would play a game, not a movie. Also, you can tell that square put no time in the actual story

Besides seeing your favorite character act 'cool' doing extreme stunts (even if it is for only a few seconds in some instances), don't expect much more here. In fact, you will get progressively more and more annoyed as you see that characters get no plot development and nothing is explained ever.

They continue, praising the graphics but many stating that the story and characterization of the new characters was poor and so on. Not just me and Paul.
 

CitizenGeek

Guild Member
I recommend this movie to everyone, even if you've never played the game because what we have here is a special movie. Watch it and enjoy the the beautiful show.

Exactly what I hoped for.

Overall- 9/10 (FF Fan View 10/10)

I personally think this is what was needed, a fight to end it all.. the plot was already in place. The action was necessary as much as people complained. I loved every second of this movie. It was a pleasure to visit the world of FFVII just one last time.

Just remember this.. most movies that have been made form a game have been directed by movie directors i think this is pretty great for a team of game directors.. Don't think I've seen a better game to movie..

Enjoyment - 10/10 Whatever the flaws of the movie, they simply weren't big enough to hinder my enjoyment of it, and I honestly think that will be the same case for most people. I enjoyed Advent Children tremendously, and encourage fellow FF7 fans to go see it.

I shall begin with a disclaimer: This movie is NOT recommended for anyone who lack interest or have never played FF7 the game before watching. The movie relies on the audience's knowledge of each character in the game to convey story plot elements. And it does so very subtly. Do your homework before watching this wonderful piece of CG film and I promise it'll be that much better.

Square Enix and the great Tetsuya Nomura has set a new bar for quality animation and storytelling. Advent Children has ushered in a new era for CG animations, allowing the subtleties that lie in each character to speak volumes in and of themselves.

Thanks Square Enix. The wait was well worth it.

Haven't played the game? Don't bother. This is for the Final Fantasy VII fans out there that beat the game, and no other will appreciate this rare gem of a movie. Want to watch it and love it? Buy the game, beat it and then watch it. When's the last time you've seen an excellent movie based on a video game? Well, this is it.

... And I could on. There are lots of very, very positive reviews on IMDB, too, you know.

So, what's your point?
 

Sy

Time-Traveller
My point is that me and Paul are far from alone in our criticisms and that even many fans of the game can realise the problems with the movie even when regarding it as a sequel. You seem to think that because it's a sequel that's a ticket to dismiss critique. It's not. If anything a sequel should try and retain the quality or even try and surpass the first installment. Advent Children doesn't try to do anything except look good. It does that but in the process fails to create a coherent narrative and establish strong enough motivations for the characters. I think I read one comment that said that it was more of a side story than an actual sequel. I have to agree, by the end nothing might as well have happened.
 

Lupus

Baka Ranger
Oh lawdy, I missed quite possibly the best arguement in a long time. This topic is hilarious, someone, please, archive it, right now.

Great discussion, would read again.

Now, should I kick it all off again...? It's all too tempting. :O

I'm a Final Fantasy fan, I enjoyed the movie back when it was first released [when I was a dumb Final Fantasy fan, blinded by ignorance and fanboyism who didn't see the bigger picture], I clearly remember arguing with Kupoartist over Advent Children being good or not. I was obviously saying how "brilliant" the movie was, while Kupo was just telling me the complete opposite, which for a while I failed to believe, until one day, I pretty much realized the film had a shallow plotline which was nigh non-existant.

I used to love the Final Fantasy series, infact, ANY game with "Final Fantasy" slapped on it, I would instantly buy, only to find out to my dismay that the game was utter tripe [Final Fantasy X-2] Now, I won't deny I bash VII, but only because my fellow fans are all "OMFG, BEST IN THE SERIES, SEPHIROTH PWNS" While Sephiroth was only in Advent Children as fanservice, and the other characters BARELY got screen time, besides Cloud, Tifa and Aerith, who were all included quite a bit. While bringing in three completely new and awesome! characters who will all eventually... well, if you've seen the movie you should know.

The point of the matter is, I used to heart VII and Advent Children, then I realized that the movie is really ****** [besides the music and visuals, obviously] but the plotline as I've said just isn't there.

My two cents, feel free to rate or hate.
 
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