Review: One Piece Film Red – Another Fun Adventure With the Straw Hats

review one piece film red

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ONE PIECE FILM RED has started hitting theaters worldwide, and my own small country (Montenegro) also unexpectedly began showing it yesterday. Having managed to catch the premiere, I will now try to quickly review and explain why I believe ONE PIECE FILM RED is a fun watch for any ONE PIECE fan without any major spoilers about the plot.

First and most basic, there’s something special about enjoying an anime on the big screen. You are there together with a bunch more fans and it feels a lot more immersive than watching it by yourself or with some friends. Besides a few loud guys trying to be funny with barking and comments like ‘mid piece’, it felt refreshing to see people clap for several scenes and at the beginning/end. Note that this was the first time an anime movie was shown here, so it might not be as refreshing for someone already well used to it.

review one piece film red

Moving on to the story. As shown in the trailers and synopsis, it takes place on the island of music, Elegia. While not really groundbreaking and at times predictable, it’s still enjoyable. Kenjiro Tsuda joined the cast as the island’s king Gordon, and his relationship with Uta is also something ONE PIECE fans are used to. Each of the Straw Hats gets the time to shine, as well as some of the Big Mom Pirates and the Heart Pirates. Bepo caused some of the loudest reactions with his appearances! We also see the Red-Haired Pirates and a bit of what they can do. It’s been a while since Shanks appeared in the TV anime (besides the ONE PIECE FILM RED prequel episodes), so it felt exciting even just hearing his voice. He demonstrates his abilities again in the movie along with his crew, and we also learn more about what happened to Elegia in the past. We also see Coby, Helmeppo and the rest of the Navy, who also show their own morals.

While I’m not too knowledgeable on animation, I can say that ONE PIECE FILM RED did have the expected ‘movie quality’ and it felt amazing in its action scenes. The final fight especially blew me away, and there’s a teaser there for the manga readers that might get spoiled for the anime-onlies by the reactions when it happens.

review one piece film red

One of the main complaints I heard regarding the movie was that it had too much music. While it’s true that there are many scenes where Uta breaks into song, Ado’s voice is incredible and I enjoyed each of the songs (though I’d already listened to them a lot from the music videos these last few months). Since they announced the collaborations with all the different artists, it was bound to have a musical vibe, so it’s best you go into expecting it. You can listen to the main theme song below:

Overall, the ONE PIECE FILM RED is not canon and you don’t ‘have’ to watch it, and I hope this review might help you decide since I believe any ONE PIECE fan will miss out by not watching it. There is the feeling some characters were just thrown in to please the fans, though it does also give some insight into the Red-Haired Pirates that will likely be made canon in the manga and TV anime in the future.

Images via official YouTube
© Eiichiro Oda/2022 “One Piece” production committee

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