Anime Meta-Review


Street Fighter 2


By Date




Title Info

  • alias: Street Fighter 2: The Animated Movie
  • type: movie
  • grade: worthy
  • genre: magic_war
  • made: unknown
  • Review created: A while ago, i'll revise it eventually.
  • mod: none

I believe this is the high-water mark for anime adoptions from fighting video games. Indeed the weaknesses typical of both this origin, and the magical warrior genre in general, are well demonstrated here. Given those restrictions this is a fairly solid anime. The origin means that there is a large cast inherited from the video game. In addition we are asked to believe that these warriors have such a tactical significance that interpol (Chun-Li) and the american military (Guile) are investigating the powerful bad guy organisation (Bison). The bad guy organisation is interested in mind-washing fighters, and is trying to hunt down possibly one of the strongest fighters in the world (Ryu and Ken) to recruit him.

As you can probably sense the plot is a mix and match, with all the streetfighter characters given a personality, a role and an allotment of screen time. The need to have all the characters, visit many parts of the world (in the game each fighter represented a region) and a lot of character fights clearly weighed heavily on the writers, and the plot is the best they could come up with. Still, given the artificiality of the plot it is not too painful. Likewise the characterisation is as good as could be hoped for.

Still, the focus is the animating of impressive fights and this is quite well handled. The animation is solid and quite ambitious. The fights, while super-powered, are well animated, believably physical and quite interesting to watch, although many are quite short. Where many fighting movies rely on endless `Ki-Energy' blasts this has some complex and inventive physical moves, which well represent the characters fighting styles taken from the game. The voices, design and general production quality is high throughout.

Be warned the movie is quite long, and if you can't cope with lots of fighting by people in silly outfits and `martial-arts' level philosophy you won't enjoy this much. In addition there is a gratuitous shower scene with Chun-Li (who else?) followed by her fighting for her life (good fight) against a blade wielding psychotic (Vega) while in underwear and T-shirt. Bonus points for almost believable versions of the games `special attacks' and some well drawn anatomy on the profusion of muscular guys. Negative points for some of the `cameo' appearances, which felt forced and pointless, although I was suprised to see so little done with Camy (one of the two females in the cast).

Akemi's AnimeWorld doesn't have much to say, but says that this is the most enjoyable and approachable `fighting game' anime there is in this review. Also it appears the American version does not have the shower scene. The Anime Critic gives it a positive review but a poor rating, saying "anything without a decent plot or proper character development just doesn't cut it for me". There's a review at THEM which says effectively the same things.


Words by Andrew Shelton, Web by Ticti, Last Compile: Wed Aug 5 12:39:25 WST 2009