464th G-View: Shoujo☆Kageki Revue Starlight The Movie

Note: While not mandatory it is highly recommended to watch the recap movie “Revue Starlight Rondo Rondo Rondo“. It is mostly a recap of the important scenes in the anime but the additional exclusive scenes that tie them together are important for setting up the movie. Plus the movie helps give a certain girl an even bigger spotlight and show a side fans only got a glimpse of in the anime.

As always Western fans have to wait a while for translations of anime movies. The review for this one is convenient because one week prior to it the movie had a limited theatrical screening in the US. What better way to celebrate the occasion than to find out if it was worthy of the hype and people who missed out should one day get the Blu-Ray as we take a look at Shoujo☆Kageki Revue Starlight: The Movie.

Main series review HERE.

Spoiler warning for readers who have yet to watch the series or recap movie.

Revue Starlight Movie Poster

Genres: Action, Drama, Yuri

Themes: Theatre, Takurazuka

Length: 120 minutes

G-Rating: 10/10

Plot Summary: The Stage Girls of Seisho Music Academy’s 99th graduating class succeeded in their revolution and avoided tragedy in their second performance of Starlight. As their senior year waxes on, Hikari leaves Karen yet again. With graduation fast approaching the stage girls find themselves once again on stage but this time the stakes higher than merely becoming the Top Star.

Revue Girls Back in ActionWhere it all began again.

Admittedly it was a bit difficult for me to follow the symbolism and metaphors during conversations in the first two chapters. It is a movie that requires repeated viewings to understand the metaphors, symbolism and spotting references besides a quick one that confirms the other schools from the mobile game are canon in the anime universe. This is more for deeper meaning behind the girls’ new motivations and unsettled business. I am not saying this is Ikuhara levels of complexity but it is not simple either. Once they were again called to the Battle Theatre World things started making more sense. The setup were the girls discussing future goals, which college to go and their art choice for example. Then uncertainty and doubt clouded their minds as some claimed to have their lives under control while others were openly more indecisive or confused, consumed by anxiety. If the anime has Revolutionary Girl Utena vibes then the same goes for this and the Adolescence of Utena movies.

Kaoruko playing with Futaba's emotionsWhere it all became clear.

Once the first battle after the epic reintroduction to the BTW began the main theme became crystal clear. The Revue Starlight movie is about lesbian lovers quarrels. All but one of the duels featured the established couples duking it out in specially prepared stages that reminded me of the second anime series I would love to see Arc System Works turn into a fighting game along with Symphogear. Even the one duel that was not a lovers quarrel was a long awaited duel fueled by gayness…Oh was it ever. So the ladies clashed letting out all worries over their futures and more importantly the futures with their significant other. Most are followups of events in the anime but one was definitely fueled by a specific moment in the anime…or in my meta view “It’s the fault of fans of that one crack ship”. Think the Revues of the TV but with stakes ramped up to quintillion. Most had a similar outcome. Viewers familiar with a certain magical girl franchise with yuri couples in many entries can figure out what I mean. The yum is very much there despite the classic resolution. Nothing bad, mind you, just straightforward routes going forward.

Karen and Hikari Childhood LewdEverything I mentioned above is best presented in the story arc of the main duo of BaKaren and Hikari where we get their complete backstory. Something fans only saw the surface of in the anime. Think of it like an extended edition with many more scenes beyond the classic “Crybaby Karen at the playground”, which they repeated verbatim because it is the catalyst of their story. Uncertainty about the future, things left unsaid, unfinished business, stakes higher than before, all bundled up in their story.

Also this series set in the Bushiroad Universe there were some background male characters featured or mentioned to show viewers they exist but as we already know it is a lesbian dominated universe. Even the Demon Giraffe had moments of grandeur. His catchphrase was at its best in this film with his farewell one being hilariously epic.

Mahiru's oathLike any good movie long episode/sequel/continuation/conclusion the presentation takes the best parts of the TV anime and cranks them up to 11. That is the Revue Starlight Movie. The stages, metaphors and symbolism about the girls/couples, the intensity of the duels, the soundtrack and dueling songs between combatants etc. Everything that made the show awesome is magnified in the movie. I envy people who were able to watch this in theatres, especially on IMAX. So good.

Nana's greatest moment in the seriesIt was in this one moment the movie went from a 9 to a 10/10. Peak magnificence right here. My poor gut.

Overall The Revue Starlight Movie solidifies this franchise as one of the best in Yuridom. Everything that made the anime great: Great stages, symbolic/metaphorical set pieces and intensely gay duels with clashing performances are ramped up to quintillion. The girls’ reach the climax of their high school lives and face their biggest challenge yet, deciding the futures of themselves and with their significant others. The conclusions are mostly expected routes going forward but everything leading up to the decision is so good and gives viewers a good feeling for our heroines. May require repeated viewings to understand the metaphors, symbolism and spotting references. Recommended to fans of the series and stage/theatre girls.

About OG-Man

Yuri and Slice of Life are my anime passion.
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9 Responses to 464th G-View: Shoujo☆Kageki Revue Starlight The Movie

  1. Since we’ve already covered the deep analysis privately, I’ll give a cliff notes summary of my thoughts here.

    This movie really took what the TV series started and cranks it all up to max velocity. Everything is bigger, better and louder. The angst and drama naturally follow this pattern as expected. However, the production quality and execution has also risen to match it, and they pulled it off brilliantly.

    Every revue really laid it all out for us to understand the couples and their feelings. Be it anger, fear, confusion or burning passions, each girl and pairing got their chance to shine. Futaba and Kaoruko with their mutually selfish desires to belong only to one another, but on equal ground. Junna and Nana and their fear of change, but acknowledgement that they can still shine in their own ways. Claudine and Maya pledging their souls to each other and declaring their eternal rivalry for the stage. Mahiru and Hikari admitting their secrets and then encouraging each other to do their best, ultimately becoming friendly rivals. And, of course, the main event, an epic show of brilliance and rebirth of their newfound ambitions and fated love for Hikari and Karen.

    Every revue served a purpose to either resolve lingering issues, clear up misunderstandings or serve as pledges to always be together, no matter the distance and time. It solidified the blooming couples and clarified that they were destined to be together and very much in love with each other.

    The entire movie was quite poetic and literal art tbh. It’s more than just a gay theater drama series with supernatural elements, but actually an art piece crafted carefully and with care by the production staff. Every scene and action means something, and even the environments serve some purpose. So it’s true that it really does require several viewings to understand it fully.

    One thing I can say for sure is, this series truly is an artistic masterpiece, starting from the TV episodes and through to this movie. It’s an impressive culmination of all that came before and the execution delivers with an exceptional payoff. The VA performances are worthy of high praise. This movie has earned its spot on my top anime movie list. It will certainly be joining my collection when the bluray is released.

    Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      That we did Doc. What a fun discussion it was.

      You summed up all that made the movie, its Revues and this series most excellent quite well.

      KuroMaya’s was once again my favorite Revue. They’re that glorious of a couple to me. The others were great too of course.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Mauron says:

    I caught this in theaters, and it was great. Highlights for me were gay battles, Mimorin (I have watched anime just because she was in it), HikariKaren, and surprisingly the Futaba Kaoruko battle. Futaba in a suit, Kaoruko in a dress, and Kaoruko as a gambler woman were all wonderful.

    The theater I went to was also showing the Wizard of Oz and Morbius. I think I made the right choice, since Dorothy’s girlfriend isn’t in the movie.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. ntnb says:

    i watched this a little while back, and really loved it. a worthy conclusion to what is definitely one of my favourite animes ever. my fave kaoruko’s fight with futaba was so much fun, and maya and claudine were absolutely spectacular of course, but the one that really hit me was junna and nana. nana lashing out and desperately trying to provoke junna into moving past her insecurities and self-imposed limitations, and her gf rising to the challenge was really something.

    there was a ton of other great stuff, and visually the whole thing was amazing, a step up even from the series. the epilogue closed things out nicely. 11/10 i only wish there could be more..

    Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      The Revues were indeed excellent with KuroMaya’s being my favorite. They’re my Top 2 girls after all.

      Banana showed her true power in the recap and sequel movie.

      A non-chibi spinoff about one or all the other schools would be nice.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Kotori_Sonoda says:

    Ah, the recap has new stuff added huh?
    Guess I’ll add that to the watchlist.
    I watched this wihtout watching the recap, but it was still such an enjoyable experience!
    The songs were really good and the fights were a real visual spectacle.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. yurimylove says:

    just watched this theatrical spectacle. Undoubtedly what stands out most for this anime movie from its peers is the heavy use of colorful and creative stage motif. Even if I didn’t get some of its metaphors and symbolism, I was still blown away by its stunning artistry and presentation. Not only are there several different themes which match the actress couples for their parts, but within each theme there are multiple breathtaking visual extravaganza.

    That part where Tendō Maya swtiches between Madam Butterfly, Lady Oscar, and Cleopatra roles is amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

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