Review: Bleach the Movie: Memories of Nobody (2006)

BLEACH has followed the well-travelled path that has been taken by many other anime franchises. It started off as a manga, then became an anime series, and with increasing popularity, has been made into movies. It is well known for its interesting characters, spectacular action and supernatural themes. So how does Memories of Nobody, the first movie based on characters from BLEACH, compare with the successful manga and anime series? Here is what I think.

The Soul Society is the world of the afterlife where the souls of the dead end up. This is separate from the World of the Living where living people are. A bizarre new dimension has formed between the World of the Living and the Soul Society, and is now expanding rapidly bridging the gap between the two worlds. The Stealth Force was sent out to investigate this but they failed. Meanwhile, a lot of strange spirits called Blanks, as well as a mysterious girl known as Senna, have suddenly appeared. Senna meets and befriends the Soul Reaper Ichigo, but soon dark enemies appear and attempt to capture her…

BLEACH the Movie: Memories of Nobody is primarily for fans of the manga and anime series. Those new to BLEACH may find it hard to follow because of the large cast of characters and the use of terminologies that require some background knowledge to fully understand. While all the main characters make appearances in the movie, the focus is very much on Ichigo, and the newly introduced character of Senna. Thankfully, they are both immensely likeable and therefore make the show highly watchable.

Fans will be expecting plenty of action and they will not be disappointed. The battle scenes here are no less impressive than the best from the anime series, and really are pretty cool. My favourite scene is when Senna takes on the Blanks, where hundreds of autumn leaves spin around in the air. It is so inventive and beautiful.

I am pleased that the makers of the film have put much effort into injecting emotions into the supernatural themes. By the end of the movie, viewers have been made to realise how valuable memories are, and that they are to be cherished. On the topic of the movie’s ending, here is just a little hint for our readers: the ‘real’ ending is actually shown after the end credits conclude. It is not very long, but it does make the whole movie more complete.

Overall, the filmmakers have managed to combine action, drama and comedy in BLEACH the Movie: Memories of Nobody, making it into an entertaining whole. Fans should not be disappointed, while those new to the world of BLEACH will probably feel lost but nevertheless still find quite a lot to enjoy about the movie. I would like to finish up by sharing with you a quote taken from the lyrics of the movie’s closing theme song: ‘…no matter how scared or hurt I become, I tell the person I love “I love you”’. I like it.

7 red ribbons for tying hair out of 10.
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