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Overall Rating
3.75

Awesome46.03%
Worth A Look: 15.87%
Just Average: 12.7%
Pretty Crappy: 17.46%
Sucks: 7.94%

2 reviews, 114 user ratings



Final Fantasy 7: Advent Children
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by Jay Seaver

"I kind of enjoyed it, though I have no idea what was going on."
3 stars

There's something almost admirable about a movie as focused and single-minded as "Advent Children". It is unabashedly constructed with a niche audience in mind. A lot of folks will look at it on the shelf and wonder what the heck happened to "Final Fantasy" II, III, IV, V, and VI, or why it doesn't seem to share anything with "Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within". It's focused on looking good above all else, and if you catch it at the right time, that may be reason enough to forgive its confusing, barely-accessible plot.

That plot is... uh... there was some kind of disaster two years ago where a group of heroes barely saved the world from a corporation that nearly caused a genocide by trying to tap the life forces that circle the planet like a halo for energy. The heroes have gone their separate ways, but now "the planet has struck back" with a plague, a terrorist type is kidnapping orphans to brainwash them, and the new president of the evil corporation is trying something shady. Cloud Strife, the hero of the game, is trying to forgive himself for the people who didn't make it, operating a delivery service out of friend Tifa Lockhart's bar while they keep an eye on several orphaned kids.

Or something like that. If you've played the game, it probably makes a lot more sense. There's enough for us newbs to follow, but only just. That's almost irrelevant as a criticism, though - if you're not familiar with this information, or aren't willing to try and piece it together, then this movie isn't for you. Sit back, enjoy the pretty pictures, and if you get anything out of the story, great. The story really isn't that bad, although it's told in a way that is pretty similar to the medium which spawned this movie - information delivered blandly expository dialogue, segue to action scene, segue to obligatory character moments, and repeat.

But at times that's okay. There's an action sequence in the center of the movie that runs about forty minutes, and by the time it ended, I had no idea how it started, which is like a game - one thing leads to another, which leads to another, which leads to another, and it ends with a motorcycle chase featuring folks I'm not even sure were around at the start of the whole donnybrook. The final set piece features guys who must be part of the game but had been blink-and-miss-them (if that) presences through the rest of the movie. It's a pretty spectacular scene, though, with virtual camera work in a long, continuous shot that just may not be possible with live action. It doesn't have a whole ton of emotional heft, but it's not completely empty, either - I may not have been totally invested, but I wasn't disconnected, either.

I think the film might actually benefit from having a smaller budget as befits a direct-to-video release. Directors Tetsuya Nomura and Takeshi Nozue are able to draw upon anime conventions and styles for their film's look - translated to 3-D, of course, and rendered with astonishing detail, but still with the bold character design and physics-defying action. Unlike The Spirits Within, it's not trying to ape live action, so where the artifice appears, it doesn't feel like the film is falling short of its goals. The characters' faces aren't terribly expressive, but the exaggerated body language looks less unnatural. It's not in the same category of what Pixar did with Cars, but it's not the completely soulless experience that a lot of CGI films with mostly-human casts can be.

It is very mechanical at times - the kids, in particular, seem terribly artificial. I saw it in a theater as part of an anime marathon, surrounded by people who knew the background and were digging it. That's not how most folks are seeing this flick, and if I instead borrow a DVD from a friend and watch it on my own in my living room... Well, I maybe lose patience and turn it off five minutes in, during the first exposition dump. Unfair, perhaps, but undeniable.

This is an remarkably well-produced niche film. If you aren't in that niche, there's a a good chance you're not terribly impressed. But if you are, I can see it being something special.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=14321&reviewer=371
originally posted: 06/27/06 22:08:57
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User Comments

8/25/16 N O M U R A T E T S U Y A FINAL FANTASY VII ADVENT CHILDREN Is masterpiece you cannot understand!! 5 stars
4/17/16 ztagjusjk USA 3 stars
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3/08/15 Mark c Horrible 1 stars
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7/04/10 try to check Learn the art of patience. Apply discipline to your thoughts when they become anxious over 2 stars
7/02/10 greenpoint mortgage california O, it is excellent to have a giant's strength; but it is tyrannous to use it like a giant. 2 stars
6/30/10 anorexia America believes in education: the average professor earns more money in a year than a prof 5 stars
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5/29/10 Saj FF7 was the greatest thing of my life! AC just enhanced it. 5 stars
5/20/10 Nzm Seriosly, game was good and had awesome storyline. The film is poor fanservice 2 stars
5/05/10 Elmo Visually good, otherwise an okay try... 3 stars
2/15/10 Mick David Cornelius=Asshole. 4 stars
11/01/09 hehehe AC was awesome. i never heard of ff until that movie. there is such a thing as research.duh 5 stars
9/20/09 huhwhat I've played the game and you know what? This movie is tripe- horrible fanservice only 1 stars
8/22/09 Cloud You should watch my new movie: Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Complete 5 stars
8/15/09 Jo You are not a part of its target audience. You may not enjoy it but don't trash talk. 5 stars
8/07/09 #message_main_keyword# If one morning I walked on top of the water across the Potomac River, the headline that aft 2 stars
8/01/09 Just Me I love Final Fantasy, but this is a bad movie. It's only for the mindless hardcore fanboys. 2 stars
7/31/09 Rue Don't review unless you've played the game. Poor review. F- 5 stars
5/30/09 Patrick Campbell I loved the game, but this film was like a 90 minute kick in the nuts. Poor show. 1 stars
3/25/09 Alex If you have no idea what the franchise is about; don't review it. Simple as. 5 stars
3/19/09 AN Most beautiful movie ever 5 stars
2/19/09 Jonathan Before you attack this movie, get a playstation and play the fucking game, you asshole! 5 stars
2/19/09 Total Crap For Final Fantasy VII fans only. We don't expect you to understand. 5 stars
11/20/08 Shaun Wallner Friiggin Awesome!! 5 stars
7/01/08 CopperHIkari To the normal man, it's tripe; to the fans, it's an orgasm in a box with Cloud on it. 5 stars
6/30/08 Callighan Not top notch, not epic. But a very entertaining film for a fan. 4 stars
6/22/08 archont If your ordinary Joe Everyman can run up walls, why don't they have vertical catwalks? 1 stars
4/25/08 Sze How is it possible to properly review something inwhich you do not understand? 4 stars
4/19/08 Gestahl Technically impressive, substanially dull, even coming from a player of the game. 2 stars
4/15/08 Ty Good for a movie, but lacked some background and too many cameos. Awesome action sequences! 5 stars
4/13/08 Ariki Aboe all i love the soundtrack. But loved the movie and the game 5 stars
4/13/08 xhead sephiroth is awesome, he made this movie worth the while 5 stars
4/09/08 Stan This movie was made for people who have played FFVII. If you have, this movie is amazing! 5 stars
3/20/08 John Gaskin Agreed on the dubs issue. Putting myself in the reviewer's shoes, I can see his point. 4 stars
3/12/08 Max Great film, terrible review, shame about the crappy US dub. Japanese + subtitles = win. 5 stars
2/10/08 mike I agree with this review. the movie is a mess. 2 stars
1/10/08 The Vicker the defying physics has to do with the fantasy. americans are used to realistic, so yeah. 4 stars
12/28/07 Chris Only the fans will fully understand this, which is what this movie was FOR. 4 stars
12/10/07 Tip this critic is a douche. its SUPPOSED to resemble the game...moron 5 stars
12/05/07 Kyle If you TRULY understand the storyline of the game, this movie is amazing!!! 5 stars
11/20/07 Bon The guy who reviewed this is a wanker... 5 stars
11/13/07 Jones It may not explain to newcomers well, but sit back and pay attention and you will enjoy. 5 stars
11/07/07 Joanna/Edo A wonderful movie all the way around! 5 stars
10/30/07 Timothy I'm a huge fan of the game, but this movie was a turd. Maybe work on the plot first? 2 stars
9/02/07 Ian I agree totally with Ferenc Kovacs. You are not qualify to be a professional critic 5 stars
7/21/07 Jay Awful flim that didnt make any sense at all. 2 stars
7/16/07 Total Crap Awesome though i think IGN should review game movies, not EFilmCritic. 5 stars
6/30/07 Alice I've played the game and am a huge fan and the movie is still crap. 1 stars
5/06/07 Ferenc Kovacs Next time, do some research, before write a critic about something, that you don't know. 4 stars
4/26/07 Char Its a seuquel.. you are expected to know what happens in the original to enjoy this. 5 stars
4/18/07 Stevo UK Chances are, the Japenese will love this. but not everyones Japenese. 1 stars
4/12/07 GG This movie was a cheap nostalgic cash-in. It fails as a sequel and a standalone. Shallow. 2 stars
3/08/07 Giancarlos Calderon A very good movie and enjoyable but it has more action than story 4 stars
2/16/07 DJA The guy has a point, if you havn't played the game the movie dosn't have the same appeal 3 stars
12/17/06 Alvin If you dont understand it play the game first!!! especially the critics... 5 stars
11/20/06 Rock it isnt so much of the movie but the storyline of the 1st VG and how it grew from that. 4 stars
11/15/06 Rho The thing with FF is that the games/movies make the viewer actually use their brain.OhNoez! 5 stars
11/01/06 3man Best I've seen in 2006 5 stars
10/26/06 DTP it's great. i wonder how long did it take for the computers to render this movie... 5 stars
10/18/06 DJA I love this movie but if you don't know much about the plot, watch the reminecence first. 5 stars
10/14/06 Adam If you think of it as an epilogue to the game, it works. Otherwise.... 3 stars
10/14/06 Joe WHO EVER SAYS THE MOVIE IS CRAP DESERVES TO BE SHOT :P I loved the movie 5 stars
10/01/06 wktx Yes, AC has ist 4 stars
9/30/06 mec_doe i finished the game yesterday, it was amazing, but the movie could be better. 4 stars
9/28/06 phiuk yiu I don't give a fuck what anyone says. This film kicks ass. Especially Cloud vs Sephiroth 5 stars
9/24/06 10 I have not played the game, and yet I found the movie quite entertaining. Great effort 4 stars
8/29/06 Joe The plot's weak, but it's a real treat for your eyes. You'd better play FF7 first, though. 3 stars
7/03/06 Kerry Good point...next time try to understand it yourself before you call it incomprehensible. 5 stars
7/03/06 Derek um, one word for the reviewer.....NEVER PLAYED THE GAME BEFORE GIVING A REVIEW! Thank you. 5 stars
6/23/06 William Goss "If nothing else, it's flashy." Bingo. 3 stars
6/11/06 Jim FF7 is the best of the series but I found this movie baffling at times. Still worthwhile. 4 stars
6/05/06 DJM Keep watching it over and over 5 stars
6/02/06 Cameron If you didn't like this film, quite simply, your opinion is wrong. 5 stars
5/30/06 Tony Great visuals and creative way to continue the FF7 legacy. 5 stars
5/14/06 Jordyn Even though I never played the game, I understood it very well and it didn't bore me onebit 4 stars
5/12/06 mr.seraph the movie tries to cram the aspects of the game into it to please the games but fails 4 stars
5/10/06 Rick S. This reviewer must not have played the game ... I love this movie, and so do others. 5 stars
5/08/06 Darren Serwinek This film raped my senses. 1 stars
5/07/06 Niki stewart this movie was great 5 stars
5/06/06 Charlene Javier Loved the game, bored with the movie... 2 stars
5/06/06 Adam Great movie lots of action 5 stars
5/05/06 Johnny Deaton It was a gret movie, i really liked it 5 stars
5/04/06 Manuel flat out i expected more. meaning more story and not just terrible action scenes 3 stars
5/03/06 Lina Koltun This movie is an outstanding piece of work, the storyline is very clear. 5 stars
5/03/06 Goldwing GREAT!!!! I love the movie 5 stars
5/01/06 KC THis movie is GREAT! I thought you weren't very fair in judging the movie watch it again 5 stars
5/01/06 Paul I liked it. Unlike some, I liked the over-the-top action. 5 stars
4/30/06 Gael I'm a fan of FFVII but this was a terrible piece of filmmaking 2 stars
4/30/06 Gustav Margueriff A great sequel to one of the greatest RPG's of all time. Plot was sorta choppy, but fun 5 stars
4/30/06 Loka i've never platiyed FF games. awesome movie. no animation this great ever comes from US. 5 stars
4/29/06 Ronin This is VERY CLEARLY a movie for the fans of the game ffs! If you aren't one don't judge! 4 stars
4/29/06 joey the movie is only good if you know the story.. if you dont, then dont bother watching 5 stars
4/29/06 Ishin ookami The reviewer was dead on in everything, you have to be a hard core FFVII fan to enjoy this. 1 stars
4/29/06 Jared Wulterkens Loved the game, loved the movie....couldn't have asked for anything more. 5 stars
4/28/06 Mike Great movie, and even better if you've played the game 5 stars
4/28/06 Vincent The movie did go low on story but being a final fantasy fan i dont really care I enjoyed it 4 stars
4/26/06 ff7_ate_my_balls as if the first one wasn't bad enough... *myech* 2 stars
4/26/06 Sheldon In one word....crap 1 stars
4/26/06 Adrian This was awesome and I never played the game before. 5 stars
4/26/06 Jon A film for the fans, first and foremost. Just eyecandy without a plot for the uninitiated. 5 stars
4/25/06 Roxanne To viewers new to the series, some context may be lost, but fans of sci-fi will not find th 5 stars
4/25/06 Johnathon Brown If you know the source material its worth a look, otherwise you'll be at a loss. 4 stars
4/25/06 kfarschman Someone who bashes Final Fantasy, Rpg's, and CGi obviously won't like it (David Cornelius). 5 stars
4/17/06 Adrian To anime for people expecting a standalone affair, but Final Fantasy fans will feast on it. 4 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  25-Apr-2006 (PG-13)
  DVD: 20-Feb-2007

UK
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