When I think about the long-running Gintama animated series, there’s a few words that come to mind; colorful, stylistic, lively, humorous, and even poignant. But when I initially heard that there’d be a live-action adaptation of that very same series on its way, you’d have to forgive me for expecting a very different set of words to come forward. That being said, here we are just mere days before the debut of the film nationwide here in Japan, and I’ve most definitely done a total 180 degree turn on any pre-conceived notions I held.
Warner Brothers Japan have recently shared an all-new trailer for the aforementioned Gintama live-action film, and it’s through this very trailer that we’re offered an even closer look at the fan favorite “Benizakura” story arc to the series, this time stepping into the realm of live-action film. Before we get any further into things, you can check that very trailer out below:
Firstly, you almost immediately notice both actors and actresses absolutely nailing their respective characters in both mannernism and personality, all accompanied by the bright and colorful costumes and hair stylings that we’ve come to know and love. If nothing else, I have no doubt in my mind that this film will present a convincing alternative take on Japan’s esteemed “jidaigeki,” or “period drama” samurai films that mostly anyone will be able to get into the groove of.
Perhaps in stable opposition to the trend of sedate Hollywood adaptations of rather serious franchises like Ghost in the Shell or Netflix‘s Death Note, the Japanese film industry is content with allowing some of the (potentially unavoidable) cheese to stick around in order to remind us exactly from which world Gintama is coming from. The special effects all-in-all look pretty good, all things considered. The budget certainly won’t be matching the likes of the latest ‘Bay flick, but little things like the tentacles emerging from the Benizakura sword itself are a nice touch for sure. The presence of the gang’s glossy-looking CG-rendered pet alien dog Sadaharu reminds us that we can’t get too complacent with our newfound earthly surroundings however.
If both new and returning Gintama fans can walk out of the theater feeling as though they have witnessed a genuine slice of the Yorozuya gang’s antics, the movie will have accomplished its mission. Tackling one of the most popular arcs in the entire series, whilst also maintaining a faithful renditions of Gintoki’s natural perm, it might just not be too hard of a landing to stick.
The inclusion of the iconic opening scenario of the entire saga in which Shinpachi and Gintoki meet for the first time is more than enough to leave me feeling giddy. If you haven’t seen that scene however, I’ll leave you with this earlier trailer that depicts that exact scene itself. Gintama opens in theaters across Japan on July 14, and you can expect the excitement over here to stay pretty consistant until I can finally check it out.
Gintama: Official Site