Yes, I do realize that this score does NOT reflect or match the score on my anime list on the site: 4.5/5 stars, however, that's my fangirl score. This score is a better assesment of what I actually think of the movie deserves, along with(obviously) a review as an assesment.
I should add one more thing before going into this. PLAY/WATCH FINAL FANTASY VII BEFORE WATCHING THIS MOVIE! Trust me, it's really hard to understand without at least playing through Final Fantasy VII once beforehand. I watched it once without playing through the games and only knowing about the characters and circumstances from Kingdom Hearts and a cursory understanding of who was alive and dead. I was incredibly confused, as this movie is confusing to someone who doesn't understand it. At least read through a detailed description of what happens. Though, to have a full and fufilling experience watching this movie, you must know the franchise.
The first reason I'm giving the story only a six is because it's impossible to understand without playing Final Fantasy VII. Trust me.
Alright, anyway, the story otherwise is a new epic battle between Cloud and friends and their new epic battle against Kadaj, Loz, and Yazoo. (And of course *spoilers* Sepiroth has to be thrown in their somewhere with his giant long sword. *spoilers over*) There's also a crazy disease called 'Geo stigma' running rampant and affecting certain characters in the story like Denzel and Moogle girl. If this all sounds like the makings for an epic movie, it is. The story premise is interesting, especially with character motivation which we'll look at later in the character segment of the review.
The pacing of the movie is great, with some amazing action segments during the fights. However, it does get a little confusing and hard to follow at parts.
I haven't seen animation more gorgeous that this in my life. It would be incredible to see more animation this realistic in 2013, and this movie was made in 2005. It's incredible, and beautiful. Watch it in HD if possible.
For some examples:
All in all, take a bit of advice from the Doctor on this one "Don't blink. Blink and you're dead. Don't turn your back. And don't blink. Good luck." - the 10th Doctor, Doctor Who.(aka David Tennant)
(I do realize something similar was said in another review, but it really holds true to the animation.)
I love the soundtrack of this movie. It's amazing, epic, and pretty combined as one. All of the songs fit. I perticularly enjoy Sepiroth's battle theme.
Same goes for voice actors, fabulous, fitting, and great! :) There's even a great favorite of mine voicing Reno in English!
I'll admit the only reason I agreed to watch this movie in the first place was because of Cloud. Cloud is sexy, complicated, deep, and looks amazing in the movie. He's one of my favorite protagonists ever. All of the Final Fantasy VII characters, Cid, Yuffie, Vincent, Reno, etc. are great!
However, the problem comes in with Kadaj, Loz, and Yazoo, the villains of the story, who want to resurect their mother *cough* Jenova *cough cough* Yazoo is probably the most forgetable of the three, and other than Kadaj's and Loz's quirks, the three are pretty much around to show of flashy magic effects(which are still gorgeous)
This is a must see for Final Fantasy VII fans, seriously. It's a great movie. I would highly recomend it. Just know about the series beforehand. Trust me.