5 years after the original TV animation has aired, I finally had the chance to go watch my favorite TV series of all time on the big screen. Shirobako Movie was pretty much the best animated movie I’ve seen.
What is it about?
To give the slightest bit of synopsis, the Shirobako Movie takes place 4 years after the Shirobako TV anime (which fits directly in time with the time between the movie and anime). Miyamori, Ema, Shizuka, and Midori have all grown and gained more experience under their belt. However, Musashino Animations has changed in a completely different direction than what anyone could have imagined over the past 4 years. Through hardships, Miyamori has to guide Musashino Animation to the completion of their new project: an animated movie.
I can confidently say that after leaving the theatres that the Shirobako movie is my most favorite movie, if not media, of all time. The movie had almost everything you would want out of a sequel from the TV anime.
In fact, the show actually does a lot of fan service for the fans of the original TVA. There are scenes that directly reference the show and scenes that twist scenes from the show to reflect the changes that Miyamori and Musashi have gone through.
Because of this, the movie absolutely requires you to watch the show before the movie. If you haven’t watch the show, you absolutely suggest that you do; you won’t be regretting it a single bit.
From here, I’ll be looking at different aspects of the movie that I enjoyed. So if you don’t like spoilers I advise you wait till January when the movie comes out on blu rays.
Music, art, familiar bits
The best part about the movie is obviously seeing the characters that I expected I would never see again, again. While the movie is less focused on characters outside of Miyamori, seeing how the characters grew over the 5 year blank period was great. As you would expect, there are drinking scenes in the small restaurant that the group always goes to. There, the personalities of characters slipping through the drinks that they drink, the events that they talk about, and the way that talk is such a great feeling to experience again. I think the creators of the movie really dialed their focus on giving fans of the original show more character and events of the five. And I think they did it perfectly by giving that nostalgia feeling.
As you may know from the trailer, there is a new character in the movie. Her name is Miyai Kaede and she is the assistant producer of the new movie that Musashino Animation will be responsible for. She is voiced by Sakura Ayane, something that many will get excited for. She’s pretty much a cool-beauty type character that shows the gap moe of frustration about work while she drinks with Miyamori.
Though she is nice and all, I don’t think her presence was needed in the show at all. Other than marketing that they did with Sakura Ayane, she added almost nothing to the show. Most of the scenes were her supporting Miyamori on the side with her most notable scene being her introducing the movie that they were going to make (which was also done in a previous scene by the producer.)
To start off, after a recap of the TVA through the narration of Lolo and Mimuji, the movie moves into Shirobako’s signature driving scenes. The cinematography, lighting, and the location is essentially identical to episode one of the anime. I can’t tell you how much I was excited for the rest of the movie as soon as I saw the beginning.
But a few distinctions from the first episode really made the movie stand out.
First, the tone of the music is completely different. The opening scene of Shirobako features an upbeat, enthusiastic opening theme of EXODUS! A show that Musashino Animation makes throughout the first half of Shirobako. The opening scene of the movie, however, features a melo song from a new show from a different series. The thing is, the show that the song is from isn’t even by Musashi. Unlike the crazy driving in the first episode, the car that Miyamori drives also stops working on the cross road. Her driving seems to have normalized as well. This reflection with the TV was really a great way to start the movie for the fans.
From here, the movie moves on to what is probably the funniest scene in the movie.
Miyamori and the remainder of Musashi’s staff sit down to watch the spin off of 3rd Arial squad from Studio Titanic. Of course with Studio Titanic being Titanic, it takes the show and completely crashes it. We see a short bit of the show. But rather than it being a seriously made show that we saw in the second of Shirobako, we see a very mundane ecchi show. This was one of my key moments in the movie just because of how meta it is. Shirobako is a show that looks at the anime industry. And what other perfect reflection is there other than cheaper made ecchi spin offs?
Other than that, the rest of the movie was Miyamori creating the movie. After ending up getting assigned to a movie with short time remaining to create, Miyamori goes to find the previous Musashino workers. While most of this is basically for the fans of the show (granted perfectly done) My favorite part was when Miyamori goes to meet the lolita dress. She was jogging outside with track suits and when she returned home saw Miyamori waiting at her front doors. Without her dress we see her yell “Noo! This isn’t me!” I thought it was pretty hilarious since we see her cool self most of the time in the show.
The movie that they made in the end was great too. While the TV show had two shows that seemed pretty mediocre and pretty cliche (CG Idol show and Girls + Military) the movie that they made this time was actually very interesting. All we saw was an action scene at the end but it was a pretty damn exciting scene.
I think I bought like 20~ tickets so I can get all of the special event goods that they gave out at the theatre. And I don’t regret it a single bit. The movie was probably the best anime movie that I’ve seen in my life and as I’ve repeatedly mentioned through this post, was probably the best that they could have done to follow up on what I believe is the best anime of all time. The movie is coming out as blu ray in January so I urge everyone who wasn’t able to watch the movie in theaters to go watch it when it comes out. As for me, I’ll be rewatching it when my Blu-Ray arrives home.