Warning: this article contains spoilers for the previous Code Geass installments.
I was recently invited to the American premiere of the anime film Code Geass: Lelouch of the Re;surrection hosted by Funimation. Sunrise Inc. produced the film, with Gorō Taniguchi directing. We were able to view a dubbed version of the movie at the screening.
Code Geass: A Series Re;surrected
First of all, if you’re not a follower of the Code Geass franchise, this movie may not be for you. Code Geass: Lelouch of the Re;surrection is a new film set in the universe of the three Code Geass recap movies. Basically what that means is that the made an anime series that spanned two seasons, and then condensed that series into three recap movies. However, they also changed a couple things, resulting in a sort-of alternate series timeline. This movie is an original plot, so not a recap. Nevertheless, it takes the events of the recap movies as canon rather than the original series.
So here’s the good news. If you are interested in watching this movie and have never seen anything Code Geass related ever, all you need to do to prepare is watch two other movies. The bad news is, if you’ve only ever watched the TV series, you’re still going to have to watch three recap movies (or tbh you can just google the changes).
Peace never lasts
The peacetime brought on by the previous events in the series is cut short when Suzaku, now acting as the alter-ego “Zero,” and Lelouch’s sister, Nunnally, are kidnapped by mysterious enemy forces. Unfortunately Lelouch can’t do anything about it because he died at the end of season 2/the 3rd recap movie… or did he?
This film is basically a series of action scenes loosely strung together by a vague plot. (Of course there’s also some fan-service sprinkled in. As with the rest of the series, it’s fun to watch the main character (who may or may not be dead) take down enemies with his brains rather than brawn. And the battle scenes? Those are the highlight of the film. However, outside of the battlefield, the characters have little on-screen interaction with each other,. There just isn’t much character or relationship development.
The villain’s motives are confusing, as is the ending of the film. In fact, at the Q&A after the screening, the producer of the movie had to explain a portion of the ending to the audience. By everyone else in the theater’s reaction, I’m sure I’m not the only one who didn’t initially understand. However, the producer also announced that this film is the kickoff of the next 10 years of the Code Geass franchise, so the ending may be explained more in future additions to the series.
If you’re already a fan of the Code Geass franchise, go see this movie. Go see your favorite characters on screen again in a brand new adventure, and get ready for the new phase of Code Geass that this film is kicking off. But don’t go into this movie expecting a cinematic masterpiece, and if you can, you’re probably fine waiting until it inevitably becomes available online.
Code Geass: Lelouch of the Re;surrection will be in select theaters May 5 (subbed) and May 7-8 (dubbed.)