One peaceful day on Earth, two remnants of Frieza's army named Sorbet and Tagoma arrive searching for the Dragon Balls with the aim of reviving Frieza. They succeed, and Frieza subsequently seeks revenge on the Saiyans.
Akira Toriyama (Dragonball Z creator), FUNimation, and everyone behind Dragonball Z are having the best possible year ever! Dragonball Z: Battle of The Gods is introducing new super villains in the form of Whis and Beerus, the God of Destruction. A new anime series titled Dragonball Super has premiered in Japan during the summer. And finally, the return of Frieza, in Resurrection ‘F’! Now is a good time to be a DBZ fan. In case you didn’t get a chance to catch Dragonball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ during it’s limited release run of August 4-12th in US theaters, you’re probably wondering if it’s worth your time.
Well, let’s break things down:
****Warning Things Are About To Get Spoiled****
The Return of One of The Most Well Known Super Villains of The DBZ Universe
Obviously, one of the selling points of watching DBZ: Resurrection F is to see the return of Frieza. It was a special time to be an American anime fan during the original run of DBZ on Cartoon Network. So much in this storyline makes it one of the most memorable in the show’s history. Highlights include Freiza’s increasingly new and terrifying transformations, Vegeta’s dying plea to his former nemesis, Goku, to lose his compassionate nature and kill Frieza with everything in his power. And finally, Goku witnessing the death of his best friend Krillin at the hands of Frieza prompting Goku to become the legendary warrior, the Super Saiyan, putting an end to this epic villain’s bloody legacy. It’s not surprising that DBZ was supposed to come to an end shortly after the original Frieza arc concluded.
Nostalgic Fan Service
There are some nice callbacks to the original Dragonball/Dragonball Z anime, like seeing the condition Trunks left Freiza’s body (this was the second time he was killed), when he is wished back to life. The film also includes some new characters exclusively created for Resurrection ‘F’ by Toriyama, Sorbet and Tagoma, and another new character, Jaco, The Galactic Patrolman.
(Image Via Wikipedia)
Watching Resurrection ‘F’ was the first time I had heard ever of Jaco, so I “did my Googles”. Jaco, The Galactic Patrolman was an 11-chapter manga released by Toriyama in 2013 that served as a prequel to the events of Dragonball and Dragonball Z. You can read more about Jaco here.
(Image of Frieza in his final transformation form of “Golden Frieza” and Goku as “SS God SS”)
New Transformations—If You Like That Sort Of Thing
One of other big draws for Resurrection ‘F’ is the new transformations that Goku, Vegeta, and Frieza undergo. Goku and Vegeta actually get two each; Saiyan Beyond God and (….sigh, why am I typing this) Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan. Not much detail about the transformations is given in the film itself, but you can read explanations for both of these transformations online. While I thought the new transformations were cool to look at, they really didn’t amount to much of anything and ***Spoiler Alert*** Goku and Vegeta really didn’t have to transform to get the job done. With Frieza, we get the Golden Frieza form, but like I’ve said, it doesn’t mean much of anything, Frieza still sucks.
Krillin Is A Cop
(Image Via YouTube Channel Video DBZanto Xenoverse)
Seriously, how can you not love this! Think of all the fanfiction possibilities! Law and Order: Dragonball Z, a buddy cop story with Krillin as the “by-the-books” veteran is teamed up with a young, reckless new rookie on the force by the name of Goku working together to solve a series of crimes. Or the movie Training Day DBZ-style, with Piccolo as Alonzo Harris and Krillin as Jake Hoyt; someone start writing this immediately!
THE BAD ***MAJOR SPOILERS HERE***
ABSOLUTELY NO STAKES WHATSOEVER
Given the fact that Earth that may be destroyed (again), this time at the hands of Frieza, Goku and Vegeta are pretty unbothered by the whole thing. The new transformations add up to jack. When Goku and Vegeta quickly realize Frieza’s weakness, they just make a game out of the whole battle. In fact, in between fighting they argue about how long Goku is taking to fight Frieza, while Vegeta hasn’t had his turn yet. Even when Frieza does manage to get the upper hand, there is a deus ex machina (more on that in a bit) established at the beginning of the film with a throwaway line that seriously drains away the urgency of the story.
BEERUS AND WHIS ARE BORED AND HUNGRY
No one, including Frieza, is a match for Beerus and Whis, so they don’t have much of anything to do (which in a way makes sense since the story is not about them). The pair just eats ice cream during the fight between Goku, Vegeta and Frieza and gives commentary like the annoying guy behind you at the movies.
WHAT IN THE WORLD HAPPENED TO GOHAN?!
(Image of Gohan from Resurrection ‘F’ via Dragonball.wiki.com)
Gohan has had one of the most interesting character arcs out of everyone in the whole series. However, since he let his ego get in the way of quickly killing Cell, forcing Goku to sacrifice himself to prevent Cell from blowing up the Earth, the character not been right. In this film, Gohan has to transform into Super Saiyan mode just to defeat one of Frieza’s men that has come to earth. Are you kidding me?! Of course, Gohan is motivated by the fear of Piccolo dying and all the Dragon Balls disappearing with him. Even so, it’s still ridiculous that Gohan when from surpassing his father to this. And can someone please explain his outfit to me? He mentions in the movie that he was in a hurry, but why in Kami’s name was THAT the first outfit he picked up?
VEGETA LOSES OUT AGAIN!
Now about that deus ex machina, which is a literary device that is an unexplained event that turns a hopeless situation in the protagonist’s favor. Earlier in the movie, Goku and Vegeta are sparring with Whis on Beerus’s planet and Whis explains that Beerus accidentally blew up both of the planet’s suns. Whis then used a technique called a “temporal do-over” which allowed him to rewind time by three minutes to reverse what had happened. Well, put that little fact in your back pocket and keep it.
Later in the film, Goku has been gravely injured during his fight with Frieza. Vegeta steps in, turning into “Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan”. Just as Vegeta’s about to finally get his own revenge, Frieza hits Earth with a small blast, completely destroying the planet and everyone except Beerus, Bulma and some of the DBZ fighters. And Whis, who created a protective barrier around those nearby him. Unfortunately, Vegeta doesn’t make it. Goku is saddened that he didn’t destroy Frieza sooner. Of course Whis then explains his technique for the “temporal do-over” again and rewinds time so Goku can quickly take out Frieza with a Kamehameha, preventing Earth from being destroyed.
You know, Goku doesn’t always have to come out the top dog. There was no reason whatsoever for Goku to be the one to kill Frieza again. It would have made more sense story-wise and been more fulfilling for Vegeta to be the one that sends Frieza back to the Next Dimension where he belongs. Especially for us fans of the anime who saw Frieza take everything away from Vegeta, including his life.
Overall, Dragonball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ is a fun, yet very flawed film that doesn’t add anything new to the DBZ universe save for a few transformations. Hardcore fans might like just watching it for these new transformations and to inspire new arguments about which who is stronger and who can beat who in a fight. But anyone expecting anything different will leave disappointed.
P.S. Poor Yamcha. Not only is he the subject of a nasty meme, but we’re told by Tien at the gathering of Z fighters for battle against Freiza’s men that he told Yamcha and Chizou to not bother coming out to fight with them.
So tell me anime fans, what did you think of Resurrection ‘F’?