Pacing could improve to integrate more story elements across the movie
The last time I properly watched anything concerning Dragon Ball, it was 2009, had a terrible script, featured Emmy Rossum, Winston Zeddemore, Spike, and lotsa other white people for some reason. And Chow Yun-Fat was in it, too.
Needless to say, that, coupled with my vague memories of having witnessed 20+ minute screaming matches between cartoon characters on TV, was enough to keep me from ever watching a Dragon Ball episode ever again.
Throw in the half-a-dozen characters whose names I knew all sounding like vegetables, I was positive I had made the right decision in abstaining from from a series that was presumably about capturing dragons in balls that defied physics, or lizard genitalia.
Thankfully, over the years of witnessing a multitude of “Superman versus Goku” threads, as well as rediscovering my love for anime, and the positive influence of peer pressure, I’ve found myself retreading the realms of these screaming Japanese cartoons. Equipped with a functioning knowledge of Dragon Ball, I indulged in the experience of the Dragon Ball Super: Broly.
And it was awesome!
Clocking in at an impressive 100 minutes, Dragon Ball Super: Broly is honestly a feat. Perhaps it’s the magical touch of creator Akira Toriyama’s take on a previously non-canonical character, or the sheer understanding of what makes a successful recipe for a feature length dose Dragon Ball, but the film is a true exercise in contextual story-telling.
With a prequel-styled opening act that not only re-introduces Broly with a brand new origin (a superior one, at that), but also lays the ground work of the entirety of the origin for significant characters like Goku, Vegeta, and even Frieza, it allows just about anyone to be caught up for the purpose of the movie with little effort.
Transitioning from the past to present with a brilliantly done montage depicting the events of Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, and Dragon Ball Super, there is very little cause to feeling left out regardless of whether you’ve watched the show or not.
While Goku and his companions on Earth remain the traditional good guys, the film is faithful to its namesake, with Broly as its true protagonist. With the use of efficient expression from this largely silent behemoth (except when he’s screaming), to his interaction with his father and other surrounding characters Dragon Ball Super: Broly is, surprisingly, a somewhat poignant look at childhood abuse and redemption.
An underlying theme of Dragon Ball has always been the triumph of choice over fate, with the journeys of Goku, Vegeta, and even Piccolo all reflecting this. Broly is no exception, and the film’s ending for the character promises yet another iconic hero for the next leg of the Dragon Ball franchise, whatever it may be christened.
Dragon Ball Super: Broly is blowing up cinema halls across Singapore and deserves a watch while they’re still intact!