Bayonetta: Bloody Fate (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)
February 8, 2015 by Dennis Amith
“Bayonetta: Bloody Fate” compliments the original video game with its story, action, lewd humor plus its fantastic animation from Gonzo. But the animated film also serves as an introduction to the world of “Bayonetta” for those who are playing the “Bayonetta 2” video game on the Wii-U, having not played the original game. If you are a fan of the “Bayonetta” video games, then definitely give the animated film a try!
Image courtesy of © FUNimation. All Rights Reserved.
TITLE: Bayonetta: Bloody Fate
DURATION: 90 Minutes
BLU-RAY INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition, Japanese and English Dolby TrueHD 5.1, Subtitles: English
COMPANY: Anime News Network
Release Date: October 21, 2014
Director: Fuminori Kizaki
Screenplay by Mitsutaka Hirota
Storyboard by Fuminor Kizaki
Original Character Design by Mari Shimazaki
Character Design by Ai Yokoyama
Mechanical Design by Katanao Akai, Takashi Watabe
Produced by Gonzo
Featuring the following voice talent:
Atsuko Tanaka/Helena Taylor as Bayonetta
Daisuke Namikawa/Yuri Lowenthal as Luka
Mie Sonozaki/Grey DeLisle as Jeanne
Miyuki Sawashiro as Cereza
Norio Wakamoto/Grant Albrecht as Balder
Tesshô Genda/David Fennoy as Rodin
Wataru Takagi/John Kassir as Enzo
Twenty years after her awakening, Bayonetta is still searching for clues that could help unravel the mysteries of her dark past. Aided in her quest by the clandestine weapon smith Rodin – and his deadly creations: Scarborough Fair – Bayonetta continues to leave a trail of angel corpses in her wake. Her search for answers leads to encounters with a mysterious – and eerily familiar – little girl, a vengeance-obsessed journalist, and a deadly white-haired beauty that seems to know more about Bayonetta than the witch herself.
“Bayonetta” is one of the well-known third-person beat’em up games in America. Developed by Platinum Games and Sega, the game is best known for its sexy protagonist, a witch named Bayonetta, who uses firearms and special attacks to fight against the angelic enemies.
With two games released in the U.S., an animated film based on the video game was produced by Gonzo and released in Japan back in 2013. And the film was released on Blu-ray and DVD courtesy of FUNimation.
Featuring the same voice cast from the video game, the animated film follows the events and the characters of the video game with slight changes.
The film starts with a narration about how the Umbra witches which serve the demons and the Lumen sages of Europe serve the angels and both worked together to ensure the balance of time.
But when a lumen sage and a umbra witch violated the decree and had a child together, the woman was imprisoned and the man was banished.
With the birth of the child, many feared what would happen.
With both clans producing an eye, to govern the power of creation, the forbidden child that was taken care of by the Umbra Witches possessed the power of the left eye. When the eyes are brought together, Jubileas would be resurrected and would be incarnate once more.
The conflict over the left eye would lead a war between angels and demons. In the end, it led to their destruction and the truth of their existence slipped into obscurity. The child would grow up to be a witch but was kept in a secret place.
500 years later, the witch known as Bayonetta who slays angels has awakened with no memory of her previous life.
Meanwhile, a photojournalist named Luka tries to enter the church to expose the truth about Bayonetta and hopes to avenge his father who was killed by Bayonetta.
While Bayonetta fights a horde of angels, Luka who can not see them is unsure what is happening and tries to take pictures of her as she fights against Fortitudo, one of the four Cardinal virtues and defeats him.
As news shows the head of the Ragna believers making his first debut in public. The head, Balder is a modern day sage and while Bayonetta, Rodan (a bartender and weapons master) and Enzo watch the news, Balder looks at the camera and says something which startles Bayonetta.
As Bayonetta continues to look into her missing memories, she feels that maybe Balder is the person that may bring back her memories.
Bayonetta heads to the valley and comes into contact with a little girl named Cereza runs toward her and calls her “mommy”. She is surprised that the little girl can see the angels but suddenly they are attacked by angels.
As Bayonetta seeks out answers to restoring her memory, who is this young girl and why does she think Bayonetta is her mother?
“Bayonetta: Bloody Fate” is presented in 1080p High Definition (1:78:1 aspect ratio). Gonzo did a wonderful job with the animation as the film compliments the videogame with beautiful character animation, special effects and backgrounds. There are a few banding issues but for the most part, this animated film looks fantastic in HD with its vibrant colors and detailed character designs.
AUDIO & SUBTITLES:
“Bayonetta: Bloody Fate” is presented in Japanese and English Dolby TrueHD 5.1. The film features a wonderful, immersive lossless soundtrack thanks to the constant action throughout the film. There is good use of the surround channels and explosions feature LFE and crystal clear dialogue. Both lossless soundtracks are fantastic and the voice acting is wonderful! Fans of the video game will no doubt enjoy the film for its use of the original voice actors from the video game.
Subtitles are in English.
“Bayonetta: Bloody Fate” comes with the following special features:
- Actor Commentary – Featuring audio commentary with ADR Director Jonathan Klein and voice actress Helena Taylor.
- Storyboards – Navigate with your remote to see the storyboards from the animated film.
- U.S. Trailer – FUNimation trailer
For anyone who has enjoyed the “Bayonetta” video game, “Bayonetta: Bloody Fate” serves as a solid animated film based on a video game but also provides a storyline that may will want to watch if they delve into “Bayonetta 2” on the Wii-U without having played or beaten the first video game.
The storyline is rather intriguing because it features a role reversal as the witches/demons are seen as the good group, while the angels are seen as the evil group in the film and video games.
Of course, part of the most important factor of the “Bayonetta” video game is the main character’s sex appeal as she is constantly wearing a tight leather outfit and shooting her enemies and slashing at them without fear.
While the storyline has its slight differences from the video game, the storyline is pretty much on target about Bayonetta trying to learn more about herself and discovering things that may help her jog her memory.
Characters from the video game such as Luka and Bayonetta’s rival Jeanne, the antagonist Balder, the bar owner and weapon specialist Rodan and informant Enzo make their appearance in the animated film. And like the video game, the profanity also carries over to the animated film.
As for the Blu-ray release, the picture quality features fantastic animation and background artwork from Gonzo. The colors from the film feature darker colors to vibrant colors which look great in HD. There are some scenes with banding but for the most part, the animated film looks awesome! As for the lossless audio soundtrack, it’s another plus with this animated film because it features constant action, the animated film sports an immersive soundtrack that utilizes the surround channels and LFE. You also get a fascinating audio commentary with English dub voice actress Helena Taylor and ADR Director Jonathan Klein, storyboards and a theatrical trailer.
Overall, “Bayonetta: Bloody Fate” compliments the original video game with its story, action, lewd humor plus its fantastic animation from Gonzo. But the animated film also serves as an introduction to the world of “Bayonetta” for those who are playing the “Bayonetta 2” video game on the Wii-U, having not played the original game.
If you are a fan of the “Bayonetta” video games, then definitely give the animated film a try!
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