Anime Film Review: Haikyu!! The Movie: Battle of Concepts

Haikyu!! The Movie: Battle of Concepts was the second of two compilation films released after the third season of the Haikyu!!
anime series.

Haikyu!! The Movie: Battle of Concepts
Directed by: Susumu Mitsunaka
Written by: Taku Kishimoto
Starring: Ayumu Murase, Kaito Ishikawa, Satoshi Hino, Miyu Irino, Yoshimasa Hosoya, Yu Hayashi, Nobuhiko Okamoto, Koki Uchiyama, Soma Saito, Toshiki Masuda, Koutarou Nishiyama, Nobuyori Sagara, Kaori Nazuka, Sumire Morohoshi, Hiroshi Kamiya, Hisao Egawa, Ryota Takeuchi, Teruyuki Tanzawa, Subaru Kimura, Shimba Tsuchiya, Toshiyuki Toyonaga, Daiki Omori, Kenji Fukuda, Takuma Terashima, Ryusei Nakao, Kenji Sugimura, Daisuke Namikawa, Hiroyuki Yoshino, Yuichi Nakamura, Hiroshi Naka, Tomoaki Maeno, Shuhei Sakaguchi, Takahiro Sakurai, Yuka Komatsu, Asami Seto, Kyosuke Ikeda, Seigo Yokota, Hiroshi Iwasaki, Hayato Taya, Fujita Daisuke
Run Time: 89 minutes

I appreciated how this film opened with a scene from the second season of Haikyu!!, when Hinata and Kageyama encounter Ushijima from Shiratorizawa Academy, because this helped to refresh the audience’s memory of the interactions between Hinata and Ushijima prior to Karasuno making it to the final tournament against Shiratorizawa Academy (which is what this compilation film covers).

There were portions of the five sets that the two teams play against each other that are focused on heavily, especially in the first set and the last set. But there were at least a couple of sets that were primarily shown on screen through montage sequences. What I was very happy to see was that the character development Tsukishima received in the anime series wasn’t cut down or eliminated entirely in this film. I loved seeing this character progression in the original series, and I enjoyed it just as much when I watched this compilation film. This film also reminded me of just how intense the final plays in the final set were, and how they kept the viewer on the edge of their seat.

Like with the previous compilation film, this one also included new footage that focused on Karasuno’s opponent after the match was over. In this film, we see the third-years at Shiratorizawa Academy hanging the reins of the team over to the second-years and first-years that will be continuing the team after they leave. But the one thing this film doesn’t do is include the final scene from the final episode of the third season, where a major bombshell was dropped onto Karasuno and acted as a cliffhanger for the end of the season. I suspect this was done because they wanted an actual ending for the film, yet still leave room for the story to continue.

This wasn’t bad for a compilation film. Like the previous one, it boiled down the story of the third season to the important parts and helped to keep the action moving. Luckily, it was harder to tell that anything had been skipped, because there was nothing that blatantly showed any kind of continuity error.

After watching both compilation films, I was reminded how much I like Haikyu!! and how much I’ve missed the series. It’s hard to believe it’s been two years since the third season ended, and that nothing more has come out since. Now that I’ve watched these films, I really want a fourth season of the series. Please, Production I.G, make this happen in 2019!

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