While trying to catch up from a post-Glitter Force realization that the gals of the two Glitter Force adaptations don't make up even 20% of all the cures in the Precure Universe, this is the most recent Precuria I've watched. After watching the complete episodes of Smile Precure (including the eight episodes not in the Glitter Force series), I made it a practice of watching a pre-Smile Pretty Cure series and a post-variety. While I can't say I've really seen the full DokiDoki (nor studied why the Saban adaptation only used 65% of the Toei DokiDoki Precure episodes), I've gotten to see Futari Wa, Max Heart, Splash Star, and Happiness Charge in sub (Futari Wa in both dub/sub). I'm now engaged in working through Fresh and Hug!tto Precure. Where I go from here is sheer destiny as whim gets its say.
I also began watching Star Twinkle in real time, waiting for a weekly episode to pop up on my anime source. So, I was interested when Pretty Cure Miracle Universe Movie came along. I've seen Precure movies before. And, I do love it when Puss in Boots struts his stuff in these movies and on episodes on Disney XD! There are two types: the one dedicated to the specific precure team, produced during its approximate fifty episode run. Then there are the All-Star versions where 'all' the precure show up one way or another. Note the quotes around 'all.' With 50+ pretty cures running around, it is getting hard to do this. In fact, I would say that Haru no Carnival was the last best effort in this genre. It possibly would have been better if this movie featured only Star Twinkle, Hug!tto, and Kirakira Precure ala Mode ... which is what it did.
Have you heard of the 'cameo' appearance. Heh, yeah!
The movie revolves around the themes of failure/fault and feelings. The first theme I do mean to jam the terms fault and failure closely together, since one tends to breed the other. The main non-precure character is a blue-eyed chick-like alien (weighing heavy on the cuteness factor, aren't we?) named Piton, who, surprise, surprise is a builder of Miracle Lights. In fact, his factory in deep space is the only producer of these theater staples. But Piton is a slacker who carelessly goes about his work, causing a malefunction. Miracle Lights go on the fritz (save for one special one made/designed by Piton himslef), and forces of ooey-gooey evil start seeping into the factory and the adjoining planets.
Meanwhile the girls of Star Twinkle have been doing some star-gazing. Piton's Miracle Light successfully summons them along with Hug!tto and Kirakira to battle the darkness. The three teams begin to turn away the bleak, but Piton believes he can summon more precures to help in the battle. At the same time, Star Twinkle try to show the other two teams that they are accomplished as the rest of precuria. Piton is on the verge of calling in all the rest of the Pretty Cures, but his unfinished Miracle Light falters. At the same time, Cure Star overextends her powers beyond control and causes all the precures to lapse back as normal girls. Now, both Piton and Cure Star have reasons to blame themselves and doubt their abilities. It will take a long time to realize that other forces were the cause of their failures, not they themselves.
The second theme is feelings, and the quest for the feeling of the one to find its support in the considerations of the others. This would be the impetus to first right the wrong which caused the malefunctioning Miracle Lights, then to combine the strength of one Miracle Light needing the support of the audience to whip up enough power to thwart the goo that wishes to extinguish the universe. Then, happy endings ensue.
I've three main criticisms. First, the paltry use of all Pretty Cure outside of cameo swinging of Miracle Lights and a magnificent animation effect of an ultra-transformation, a sweeping of facial profiles from Cure Magical back to Shiny Luminous. So splendid that I played the whole thing through on slo-mo. I have only seen this effect in brief in the closing of Glitter Force DokiDoki, all five members flashing the same heart-shaped face differentiated only by eye-color and hair design. But, all special effects aside, too little too late. Literally!
Then there is the overly optimistic jingoism over feelings. I see the need for feelings, but I also see the limitations. Feelings can be strong, but they can be just as deceptive. The touching of another's feelings and supporting one's feelings are strange notions once the movie is over and you start thinking about what was presented, and how some ideas started to sound really odd. Maybe I'm too much a pragmatist. Give me a man with a plan over a man with a whim or an urge any day of the week.
Then there was a touch of campiness to the plot line. Too many times Cure Star and/or Cure Yell bang heads or something. Pratfalls can be overdone. Maybe it is because Star Twinkle has not yet developed that dark essence as the battle with the Notraiders intensifies. It is the nature of Precure series to develop the personalities of the girls before the brutal episodes where despair and darkness are at their peak. Hey, I don't work for Toei, so I can't say how they shape their story lines. I'm still catching up after all.
But, at fifty precures and growing, I would suggest that future All Star Pretty Cure movies get out of the seventy minute range and work toward eighty, even ninety minutes. Especially by the 20th anniversary when the number of precures could be ... legion.