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Not one of the best movies out there for this franchise. From beginning to end, it was slightly confusing with the amount of characters I felt was dumped on the viewer at once (not to mention terms and groups). I also felt that it was too easy to identify the culprit. Story Nothing special. Someone we don't know who is playing karuta is murdered in his home by an unknown person while the television station broadcasting karuta receives a bomb threat while Kogoro is there to have a consultation with a client (which of course means that Ran and the kids are there, and since it's in Kyoto, Heiji and Kazuha are also present). When the president of the karuta club in Kazuha and Heiji's school is unable to participate, she has Kazuha attend instead. Meanwhile, there's a serial bomber on the loose who is trying to kill certain players. It's like a sports anime (though in this case, one based off of kurata instead of a sport like baseball) met up with Detective Conan. The biggest thing which sets this movie apart from the others is that it focuses on Heiji and Kazuha rather than Ran and Shinichi. However, other than that, there's nothing particularly gripping about the story. Some of the long arcs in the manga/anime were more exciting (even the Nue arc was better than this). Characters Same old. There are new characters introduced for the movie (including a rival for Kazuha named "Momiji"), but otherwise not worth covering a section for (and frankly, not many of them are worth mentioning aside from Momiji). Of course, with Heiji and Kazuha together, it's obvious that their relationship is going to have some sort of focus. With the exception of Heiji, Kazuha, and Conan, the other characters felt like they weren't even there or were bland. Animation I don't usually dedicate a section to this, but here is one spot which caused me to dock points. Towards the latter half of the movie, rather than animated characters in the background, your eyes will immediatley be drawn to the CG people walking around. It's so out of place that even though they're in the background (and it starts off with only two or three CG people), it stands out like a sore thumb. This goes beyond the CG soccer ball in Eleventh Striker; no, this is ten times worse. Those few weren't the only time, as there are a couple other scenes with CG people roaming the background to make up a crowd (instead of using animation). Again, it stands out in a horrible way, and makes the movie feel disjointed. The animators also are sticking with this new "let's move the frames around as if it's a shaking camera". This is quite possibly one of the most ANNOYING camera "techniques" which can be used; on a personal opinion level, I find it annoying even in movies. To see it extending to anime (such as DC) is an insult. There were gems in the past DC movies, and they didn't have to resort to the "camera" shaking during random scenes and action scenes to put us on the edge of our seat in anticipation. What made this one even worse was that the "shaking camera" was used at the start of the movie, which opens up with someone being murdered. There was absolutely no need to have the "camera" move around like there was an earthquake occurring during that, and rather than pull me in and instill a feel of impending disaster or anticipation, it just made me angry that they were messing up the start with this terrible technique. These two aren't the only issue with the animation. Some scenes, particularly when Momiji gets a close-up, the outer areas of the screen are blurred and "out of focus" to show just her face instead of her entire features. This is used very often, and though it is typical for flashback scenes or light-hearted scenes, it didn't work AT ALL with the scenes it was used in. To put it bluntly, the animation techniques is a spot where this movie fails spectacularly. Overall If anyone has seen movie five, then I'm sure you'll recognize some of the action parts. There are two major action scenes in the movie; one involving Conan being reckless, and one involving Heiji being reckless. Both scenes are ones which fans will recognize as being nearly identical to certain situations in movie 5...and that's something I can't forgive. The action scenes of the movies are parts which I look forward to even though I love the deductions. In this movie, however, it was far too easy to figure out the criminal of the movie (at least, to me it was obvious), which meant that the entire movie was pretty much waiting for Heiji and Conan to solve it as Kazuha competes in a textbook "if I win I marry this person" high stakes karuta match...and wait for the action scenes to kick in as well. To then see two very familiar scenes...well, one of them is slightly different, but only by the "who" and "what". Otherwise, they were far too similar to the fifth movie for my liking. Originality out the window, there. The movie is nearly two hours long, and isn't exciting, isn't engaging, and even the action scenes are disappointing and reused situations. Speaking of the action scenes, I find it hard to believe that those sort of things can happen and the characters come out without a scratch...or why nobody asked (after the first one) why Heiji and Conan were soaking wet. I suppose the movie is somewhat entertaining...I didn't stop watching it, after all, until the movie ended. On the other hand, this is a rather weak addition to the DC movies. The only thing it really has going for it is that it features Heiji and Kazuha (instead of Ran and Shinichi), and they're obviously the stars of the movie. Otherwise, it's the same old song and dance, only even more boring than usual somehow. Nothing about this movie made me cheer, cry, whoop in joy, or even sit on the edge of my seat or hold my breath. Even a revelation at the end was able to be reasoned out before it was revealed (though only by a little bit of time), and thus didn't come as too much of a shock when Conan and Heiji did reveal it. The motive was also possibly one of the dumbest motives ever. I guess people kill over things like that, but it was just...sub-standared. I wanted to use another term, but no matter how an anime is, I try to keep any sort of swear-words out of my reviews. If you're a major DC fan, and especially a fan of Heiji and Kazuha, then you might as well watch this movie. Otherwise...don't rush it.
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