Starring: Akiko Yajima, Rie Kugimiya, Kenji Utsumi
Director: Akira Shigino
Running Time: 100 mins
Crayon Shin-chan: Super Dimension! The Storm Called My Bride is a Japanese film and the eighteenth in the Crayon Shin-chan series. After being approached by a woman claiming to be his future fiancée, Shinnosuke and his friends are transported into the future, where they discover their home has become a part of Neo Tokyo, under the control of a brutal businessman, and they must find and rescue adult Shinnosuke to save the world.
If you’ve seen any of the Crayon Shin-chan movies, then you know exactly what you’re in for here. Following the formula of the consistently entertaining and successful series, this is yet another very entertaining and easy-going watch, complete with fun animation and good laughs throughout, even if its story doesn’t quite manage to provide the intrigue of the best of the series, nor keep you fully engaged from beginning to end.
Let’s start with the best part of the whole film, the comedy. Much like the TV show, this film excels in combining humour that’s appropriate for young children with a level of comedy that can still make older viewers laugh, meaning it’s a properly enjoyable watch for all.
That’s not to say there’s any particularly intelligent humour at any point, but the mix of purely idiotic slapstick with some more adult jokes here and there (which will completely go over kids’ heads) is perfect to keep you laughing throughout, something that’s particularly impressive given the film is the eighteenth in the series.
The comedy is definitely the film’s strongest point, but it also proves entertaining thanks to its vibrant and imaginative animation. As this film series goes on, its scenarios become more and more ridiculous, but that opens the door for new worlds for Shinnosuke and the gang to explore, with this film taking the characters to Neo Tokyo in the near future.
Taking clear inspiration from the likes of Akira, the animation here is a lot of fun, as it combines the brilliant neon lights of the big city with the dark, dilapidated side streets to create a (sarcastically) dystopian atmosphere. It’s not something you’d expect from a movie of this sort, but it does leave a good impression, and the consistent vibrancy of the film proves an extra level of fun.
When it comes to the story, things aren’t quite as great, even though it isn’t totally flawed. On the one hand, the plot does open the door for some fun mishaps and action sequences, particularly for the viewer as you get to see what all the characters are like a good few years in the future. Again, it’s something that may prove more fun if you know the show or the film series, but there’s still a lot of fun in that part of the plot.
On the other hand, the overall story arc is fairly inactive throughout the movie, and over the course of 100 minutes – which feels far too long – things don’t really develop at the most entertaining pace, with the characters spending more time walking around the city waiting for the next action sequence, and especially in the drawn-out final act, which brings the film to somewhat of a frustrating end.
Overall, however, I had fun with this film. It’s by no means the best of the Crayon Shin-chan series, but it’s got all the fun and action that makes the series so enjoyable on a regular basis. With strong, vibrant and imaginative animation throughout, as well as a fun, albeit somewhat frustrating plot, it’s an enjoyable watch, all the while featuring that classic brand of comedy that’ll definitely make you laugh, and that’s why I’m giving it a 7.2.