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Gantz: Perfect Answer

A movie directed by Shinsuke Sato

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More "Perfect" Questions Than "Answers" in This Last Chapter

  • Mar 29, 2012
The first live action film based on the manga “Gantz” was a little slow in some areas, but it was enjoyable enough. It had some good action scenes and it teased the viewer with several unanswered questions. I mean, I really wanted to figure out just what was “Gantz” (see review of first film here) and why was it doing what it was doing? I mean, what are these aliens and will Kei get his points to resurrect a friend? It was actually successfully in making me curious enough to see this second film “Gantz: Perfect Answer”. Well, despite some weaknesses and I understand how it deviated so much from the source material, “Perfect Answer” proves to be a solid film despite the fact that it asks more questions than actually answering them.

The film starts off with the introduction of a new character in the person of Eriko Yukawa (sexy Ayumi Ito) as she finds herself in the possession of a black ball that works much like the black orb called “Gantz”. The Gantz team led by Kei (Kazunari Kamiya) is still carrying out missions against the aliens as they aim to reach 100 points so that they can have their reward of either freedom or resurrection. Shadowing the strange activities of the team is a cop named Shigeta (Takayuki Yamada), and has become so curious that he even made contact with aliens who are hell bent on revenge against the mysterious black orb…

I’ve said that this second half of the “Gantz” film franchise deviates heavily from the source material’s focus on sex and violence as well as the change in personalities and moral stances that Kei Kurano stood for. The live action films did not have his self-centered and arrogance that may seen as either good or bad by fans of the source material. Be that as it may, this last installment of the film series presents more questions rather than wrapping up the ones that were in the first film. In a way, those answers come in the form of more questions that even fans of the manga and anime may become a little lost. The conflict with the aliens is explored, but it never answers the core of their existence on Earth nor the question as to how did Gantz ever come into existence? It hints some answers and yet it fails to attain closure, as the writers of this film series were obviously trying to foreshadow details as to not ruin the manga. This is a problem for most adaptations, it almost always ends with an anticlimax. (the live action “Death Note” did manage to deviate and allow for an awesome resolution though)

New characters were also introduced and some characters who I thought were’ fillers’ in the first film managed to make it to the central spotlight in the film. Suzuki (Tomorowo Taguschi) presents a character caught in a moral struggle and newcomers Yamamoto (Ayako Yoshitani) and Eriko (Ayumi Ito) added some intricacies to its plotting. Old and new characters return, some even twice, to wrap up the film’s plot. It is all about what is worth fighting for this time, and who is willing to make a sacrifice.

The film does more foreshadowing as the mystery of “Gantz” is brought into exposition. The following comments is just my way of trying to aid in its understanding, this is in no means spoil anything. I saw several existential themes and Buddhist overtones as in ‘karma’ as well as a commentary that no one should decide who lives and who dies. Strife is caused by more strife and war, and one needs to stand behind one’s own morality stance to make a difference. The direction by Shinsuke Sato makes a stance that sometimes, humans have desires that drive them and yet even righteous sacrifices can become rather selfish. I am not sure, but the messages in the film appeared to be more along the lines of acceptance. It is a little hard to follow, and it became heavy-handed in several areas, but I felt that the stakes of the struggle was more on our choices.

Now, put aside the alternate reality clash and hard to follow mumbo-jumbo, the film does deliver the goods in the fight scenes. The fight sequences were good and exciting, especially in the scene where Kei’s team confronts an alien group in the subway trains. It was wonderfully chaotic as civilians were caught in the encounter filled with gunfights and swordplay. It was odd that the aliens remained in human form while shaping their mist-like form into weapons, but once I saw the bad-ass female swordswoman who almost takes a good number of “Gantz” members down, it didn't matter anymore. The film was a little more violent and bloody this time around and it helped raise the stakes quite a bit. The final fight was pretty well choreographed, but it stretched out a little too far. Nonetheless, they were good that it was hard to tell who would win in the end, but it did open up major plot holes.

“Gantz: Perfect Answer” provide good entertainment. It would be rather pointless to put things together since the film never does provide solid answers contrary to its title. The action sequences and the effects were as solid as in the first film and it even serves up some interesting twists. But once you take notice of the plot missteps and take in the anticlimactic third act, the film’s excitement starts to wane as answers became more questions. Not sure how the film would satisfy purists of the source material, but it does have a good serving of “Gantz” fever however  incomplete.

Timid Recommendation for Fans of the Anime series and a RENTAL for Everybody Else 
[3 ½ Out of 5 Stars]

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March 29, 2012
My local mom & pop video store hasn't been able to score either this one or the first one of this for me yet, dangitall.
March 30, 2012
If you really want to see this, make sure you see the first movie first.
March 29, 2012
"the film never does provide solid answers contrary to its title", excellent writing WP, love that. Excellent review man.
March 30, 2012
Thanks, Alex!
More Gantz: Perfect Answer reviews
review by . June 04, 2012
GANTZ II: PERFECT ANSWER Gets A Bit Closer to the Bulls-eye
NOTE: If you’re here to read this review and you’re at a loss in the slightest, then you may want to go and check out my review for GANTZ, the first installment, as these two films are so closely tied together in terms of plot, characters, and continuity that you’d almost have to see the first one before fully appreciating the second.      Fresh-faced hero Kei (played by Kazunari Ninomiya) and several other members of the Gantz team – those trapped in …
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