Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV

Final Fantasy XV (that’s 15!) is shaping up as one of 2016’s best video games, if not the best one. However, we have been told that if we seek to understand its plot setup, we should watch Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV, the computer animated movie that acts as some sort of a prequel to the game.
If Kingsglaive is your first foray into the Final Fantasy movie world, then be prepared for something unique. Although the movie is all computer graphics, it is designed to look real, human faces and all. Given that technology is still not there, the result is somewhat disturbing; humans look and feel weird (kind of like what the Jeff Bridges character of Clu felt like in Tron: Legacy, only that here it applies to the movie entire). That said, the CGI does provide for fancy camera work (consider the fact there are no limits on camera placement or lighting) and elaborate sets that make Phantom Menace feel like, well, child play.
Story wise, Kingsglaive’s plot is convoluted from the lengthy oral exposition and throughout. Frankly, I lost the plot about two minutes along the way; I can also report things don’t get better later on. That said, if all you care about is watching Japanese fantasy in action, does it really matter?
The plot involves an evil plot by an advanced technology dictatorship to take over a magic dominated kingdom. There is much political plotting here, with royal weddings and rings of power, but all that narrows down into a select few from the Kingsglaive - the magic kingdom’s elite troops - taking matters into their own hands as they defend their kingdom from outside invaders and traitors on the inside. And yes, the action is your classic Japanese fantasy stuff, featuring huge swords and much hopping around.
Further support is rendered through the use of famous voiceovers. Sean Bean does his usual in yet another dying role, Lena Headey does an atypically submissive princess (atypical for Headey, not for the traditionally chauvinistic Japanese), and Aaron Paul (of Breaking Bad fame) does the movie’s main hero.
Overall: Together they shall join forces to provide for a thoroughly uninvolving yet flashy looking affair. At 2 out of 5 stars, Kingsglaive provides a rather worrying exposition to the video game that follows it.

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