REVIEW: Assassination Classroom – Graduation (2016)

assassinationclassroomgraduation

japan-icon

2016, Fuji Television Network/J-Storm/Robot Communications/Shueisha/Toho Company

Director:
Eiichiro Hasumi
Producer:
Juichi Uehara
Writers:
Yusei Matsui (original manga)
Tatsuya Kanazawa (screenplay)

Cast:
Ryosuke Yamada (Shiota Nagisa)
Masaki Suda (Karma Akabane)
Maika Yamamoto (Kaeda Kayano/Akari Yukimura)
Seika Taketomi (Rio Nakamura)
Mio Yuki (Yukiko Kanzaki)
Miku Uehara (Manami Okuda)
Kippei Shiina (Tadaomi Karasuma)
Mirei Kiritani (Aguri Yukimura)
Kang Ji-Young (Irina Jelevic)
Masanobu Takashima (Tadaoka)
Kenji Sugawara (Ryoma Terasaka)
Seishiro Kato (Horibe Itano)
Kazunari Ninomiya (Koro-Sensei/The God of Death)
Kanna Hashimoto (Ritsu)
Hiroki Narimiya (Kotaro Yanagisawa)
Tsuyoshi Abe (Red Eye)

It’s time for the 3-E Class to finally “graduate” in this long awaited finale to the film adaptation of Yusei Matsui’s great manga.

It has been six months since the 3-E Class of Kunugigaoka High School has started with their new teacher, Koro-Sensei, a superbeing who plans to destroy the Earth at the end of the school year. During the school festival, an attempt from both the students and a government assassin named Red Eye proves failure. However, 3-E student Kaede Kayano surprises Koro-Sensei when she reveals she has tentacles like her teacher. Then she reveals that Koro-Sensei was responsible for her sister’s death but thanks to Nagisa, Kaede loses her tentacles and it is then that Koro-Sensei reveals his past.

An assassin only known to be The God of Death was the perfect guinea pig for a rogue organization experiment to involve bringing in anti-matter to human DNA. With no known name or information, the Reaper finds solace in part-time scientist and school teacher Aguri Yukimura. She was engaged to the head researcher of the project, Kotaro Yanagisawa, who only cared about the experiment. When an accident happens, the Reaper, who by then began his transformation, accidentally kills Aguri but not before he makes her a promise to teach her 3-E Class as they all have the common notion of being the lowest of the low. After learning the truth, the kids soon have reservations about killing their teacher, but when the military get involved, will it be too late?

Yusei Matsui’s manga about the superbeing Koro-Sensei and his Assassination Classroom, aka 3-E, gets a proper live action finale with a question that aches to be raised: “Will the classroom kill Koro-Sensei as they have been trained to do?” Screenwriter Tatsuya Kanazawa takes the final volumes of the manga, in which Matsui ended a week prior to the theatrical release of the film, and properly ends the film but not without adding some twists to already open up the film.

ARASHI member Kazunari Ninomiya not only reprises his role of voicing the hilarious superbeing teacher, but in a twist we get to see him play Koro-Sensei’s former self, an assassin with an unknown past. Think of him as something similar to perhaps the likes of Jason Bourne, but more relentless until the appearance of a reluctant teacher assisting with the experiment gives him something he never thought he had: a heart. The role of Aguri, well played by Mirei Kiritani, is exactly the type of person in terms of characterization that can bring warmth to an otherwise cold-hearted assassin.

Once again, the young cast as the students are great, notably Ryosuke Yamada as Nagisa, Maika Yamamoto as Kayano, and Masaki Suda as Karma. Former K-Pop star Kang Jiyoung really adds a few notches from the previous film in her role of assassin turned foreign language teacher Irina Jelevic. Her one scene with Koro-Sensei, in which she gets mad when he is gazing at her, is the funniest scene of the film. The scene is what truly is needed as opposed to its serious minded general tone to the film. The finale of the film is admittedly one that could bring even the biggest fan to tears. It is one of those moments where you know what is going to happen, but still wish that either it doesn’t or feel like you are one of the people involved.

Assassination Classroom: Graduation is a fitting yet still tear-worthy end to the film adaptations of the beloved manga. With a cast who truly give it their all and a really good human performance from Kazunari Ninomiya in addition to his excellent voiceover work as Koro-Sensei, this is truly one for anime and manga films to watch.

WFG RATING: A

The film was released on Blu-Ray in an All Region edition in Japan. It can be ordered from YesAsia.com

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s