Three 90s kids had the brilliant idea of watching the 2022 movie ‘Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero’ in 4DX, so it turned out to be literal roller coaster experience, because the seats kept moving, even when there was no need. Did that make the film any less entertaining and nostalgic? Not really. It was fun, despite the bumpy ride.
Directed by Tetsuro Kodama, the animation isn’t great, but loyal fans would perhaps be too busy enjoying watching their favorite characters fighting the bad guys to care. A quick recap at the beginning helps non-fans get a basic drift of the story too, so you don’t have to worry about never having seen the animated series to understand what’s going on. Although, the film is definitely meant to draw in old fans, rather than create a new following. Why else would you still have Masako Nozawa still voicing Goku?
Scripted by Akira Toriyama, Tetsuro Kodama’s Dragon Ball movie isn’t ambitious in scale, nor does it have the intensity of emotions some of the major face-offs in the series did. A nefarious organization called ‘Red Ribbon Army’ defeated by Goku is resuscitated for the film, complete with a new boss who hires a talented scientist called Dr Hedo to make powerful droids that can wipe out Saiyans. It’s up to Piccolo to investigate what the villains are up to and find a way to stop them.
The character design for Dr Hedo stands out against the rest of the characters, he is a rotund little genius, who looks more like Pugsley Addams from ‘The Addams Family’, than someone from the Dragon Ball universe. In-fact, super-hero enthusiasts will be able to detect a lot of callbacks and allusions to not just older DBZ episodes, but also to other famous fictional onscreen characters. With a 1 hr 40 minutes runtime, the film is pacy, with just the right amount of laughs, and a whole pack of familiar faces that will keep fans invested till the end.
It’s a 7.5/10 from me.