Anime Film Review: The Last: Naruto the Movie

The Last: Naruto the Movie is the seventh and final film to be released for Naruto Shippuden.

The Last: Naruto the Movie
Directed by: Tsuneo Kobayashi
Written by: Maruo Kyozuka
Starring: Junko Takeuchi, Nana Mizuki, Chie Nakamura, Showtaro Morikubo, Satoshi Hino, Kazuhiko Inoue, and Noriaki Sugiyama
Run Time: 112 minutes
Rated: TV-14
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Format: Blu-ray/DVD Combo

Two years have passed since the end of the Fourth Great Ninja War, and peace has been established. However, that peace is threatened when it’s discovered that the moon is getting closer to Earth and the two will soon collide. It turns out the crisis is being caused by Toneri Otsutsuki, who is a descendant of Hamura Otsutsuki (the twin brother of the Sage of Six Paths).

Meanwhile, Naruto is being treated as a celebrity, even though it’s been two years since the end of the war. He has several younger girls following him around. As the Rinne Festival approaches, Hinata knits Naruto a scarf similar to the one he wore when the two first met as children. But Hinata feels uncertain about how her gift will be received, especially after seeing that the girls hanging around him are giving him gifts as well.

Toneri arrives in the village and tries to kidnap Hinata to advance his goal, but Naruto intervenes. But Toneri turns his attention to Hanabi, Hinata’s younger sister, and abducts her instead. Naruto, Hinata, Sakura, Sai, and Shikamaru are assigned the mission to rescue Hanabi. During this adventure, Hinata and Naruto spend a lot of time together, and Naruto starts to understand his feelings toward her. But Toneri threatens this blossoming relationship through manipulating Hinata.  Everything comes together with a climactic battle with Toneri and the resolution of the relationship between Naruto and Hinata.

Of the seven films released for Naruto Shippuden, I believe this one is the strongest. It ultimately helps to bridge between the end of the Fourth Great Ninja War and the final seven episodes of the series, and it incorporates a canon relationship that is part of the foundation for the “next generation” franchise. The story was riveting, and I was so happy to see the interactions between Naruto and Hinata. Of the seven films, I also think this one got some of the best animation of the later films.

When it comes to the Blu-ray/DVD Combo release, the video on the Blu-ray is 1080p High Definition 16×9, while the video on the DVD is 16×9. The audio in the Blu-ray is DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and 2.0 in English and Japanese (with English subtitles), while the DVD has English 5.1 and 2.0 audio in English and Japanese (with English subtitles).

Both formats have the following for special features: Japanese Commercial Videos, Japanese Promotional Videos, and Japanese Trailers. Technically, there’s only one video under “Promotional Videos,” so that’s a little misleading. On the Blu-ray, there are subtitles on most of these bonus features, but there was one where there were no subtitles. Unfortunately, most of these commercials and trailers were very similar, so watching them all felt repetitive. They also have a “More from VIZ Media” feature, which includes trailers for five of the Naruto Shippuden films and all four Bleach films. I thought it was interesting that VIZ decided to leave Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie out of this, especially since it was the film that immediately preceded The Last: Naruto the Movie.

Only the Blu-ray includes an Art Gallery. This is made up of production art from the film, which is presented in a slideshow format.

If you’re a fan of Naruto, you will want to see this movie in order to see this bridge the end of the Fourth Great Ninja War and the events that end the Naruto Shippuden anime series. If you collect the Naruto home video releases, then you’ll want to add The Last: Naruto the Movie to your anime home video collection.

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