Movies based on TV series aren’t the best, especially when it comes to animation. The likes of Naruto and One Piece get yearly movies, both which allows step into the land of mediocrity and poorly designed new characters. What makes the series so exciting seems to be sucked out and placed with a princess saving storyline. Eureka Seven is the next in line to get the movie treatment, but coming a few years after the show ending, surely this is more than a quick cash in?
The film is pretty much a re-imagining of the hit series. Main character Renton and the beautiful but mysterious Eureka are now friends since childhood, her lack of personality has also been blown away, replaced with atypical girly girl. During their childhood, Eureka is snatched away for tests and Renton hasn’t the power to get her back. Yet. Eight years past and now Renton is part of a combat unit fighting the evil alien race, EZIO. The crew he flies with is the same crew he ventured with in the original series, but we only really get significant insight on the leader, Holland. The rest of the crew just make up the background most the time and fail to highlight any significant character individuality. The first mistake the film makes. Putting in all our favourites only works well if they can form attachment, but some barely have a thing to do or say. It doesn’t help that the film has little room to breathe when providing character moments, the plot is so complicated they have to throw info dump after info dump on the viewer. It feels the story is rarely moving, and by the time the action picks up, little makes sense. The EZIO life forms have a good reasoning behind their existence, but we never see much of them to see them as much of a threat. The conflict between Renton not bowing down to Holland’s goal is the main threat, but everything is just far too back and forth it feels like both parties are just being jerks.
The interesting twist of the film is that this is another dimension to the one we saw in the series. Holland and his crew are seventeen year old kids trapped in ageing bodies, but we don’t actually see any ageing and some characters look for older than others, what with them using the old anime designs. We just accept what they tell us and don’t really see the threat. Some sudden ageing or a character kicking the bucket from the disease would have helped, but it feels like we have old footage and new dialogue slapped on top. Renton and Eureka have some power thanks to the giant robot Nirvash they pilot, but everything is so cryptic, the whole plot falls apart. I’d say the talk of making dreams come true is a cool one, but one that only has words to show this. The story is a confusing mess which should have been simplified or carefully pieced together before the script was approved. It seems this was rushed out to ride a wave before Eureka Seven became a distant memory.
It isn’t all bad though. The music is stunning with bombastic orchestra making the still scenes have a little heart. The action scenes towards the end are exhilarating too, just a shame the reasons behind the characters are hard to touch upon. Good Night, Sleep Tight, Young Lovers at least tries to be a more daring production than the standard anime series film, but it still has those lazy traits with info dumps and reused footage. Stick to the incredible series and let this be but a dream.