9/10
Just when you thought "Endless Waltz" could not get any better........
29 August 2009
Along comes the "special edition" MOVIE version of the 1998 Endless Waltz OVA.(which i reviewed in the "Shin kidô senki Gundam W: Endless Waltz (1998) (V)" IMDb entry.

Before you think that this movie is a waste of time and money that just cobbles the 3 episodes of the endless waltz OVA into one long show, think again. There are an additional 10 minutes of footage that further develop the already intriguing plot and flesh out the Gundam pilots' back-stories in greater detail. This manages to clear up some of the plot holes that remained in the OVA and resulted in a more enjoyable movie experience. Some of the musical cues seemed to be changed or reshuffled, but most of the changes are for the better and matches the scenes well.

Aside from the additional footage, the battle sequences look like they have been touched up and extended. Just when you thought the final battle between the Gundams and the Serpent mobile suits in Brussels could not get any more epic, it just did. I got the DVD of Endless Waltz which had both the OVA and the movie version and i can safely say that the movie version is superior. By being longer, it actually makes it more believable that the Gundam pilots would fall victim to fatigue. You can see how their fighting style changes from the decisively professional strikes in the initial scuffle to an almost desperate, wild flailing once the Gundams have run out of their primary ammunition and are low on energy.

I do not know if the other battle scenes were touched up by the animators or if was a result of a better film master or transfer, but the art and animation in the movie looked sharper, more vibrant and detailed. The fluid character movements and tight combat sequences are pure eye candy surpassing many action scenes in other mecha space anime.

I highly recommend "Gundam Wing Endless Waltz: special edition movie" to any fan of mecha and action anime. It takes all that was good about the TV series and OVA and makes it a lot better. Engaging story, complex but likable characters, thought provoking themes about war, and amazing animation that is years ahead of its time. This movie sets a whole new benchmark in the standard of animation that one would expect from anime movies.

Be sure to get the "special edition" and not the "toonami edition" though.
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