Back in 2015, there was a Pilot episode for a fan made Dragon Ball Z movie, it was meant to be a combination of Dragon Ball Z movie and the manga: History of Trunks. Well, episodes 2 and 3 were released last week and Keith and I finally got a chance to sit down and watch it and…well…
Light of Hope is a passion project, you can tell right off the bat that RobotUnderground2 wanted to capture the magic of the Dragon Ball Z that fans new and loved from the 90s and does it show. The movie sticks pretty well to the source material, with random bits to develop the characters further, we get to see a lot more growth of Trunks as a character and Gohan acting more as a struggling mentor. The acting in the movie, while not Hollywood quality you can tell that each cast member is enjoying the ride of this fan-made film. The effects in this movie could be better but they do have moments that feel like you are watching the Dragon Ball Z series.
With that being said, the acting at times feels hollow and the dialogue can be inconsistent, one character will say something but the next character will say something completely meaningless to what the other was saying. This mostly occurs between 17 and 18, while it is nice to give them personality they still felt like two Androids attempting to be human while still trying to remember that they don’t really care. But then again, Dragon Ball Z never had consistent or great dialogue, to begin with, so we can say that it gives this movie charm. The movie with the acting is taken rather seriously, which is great but at times there could be a tad bit of humor sprinkled in to break the tension between characters. Example: Trunks and Gohan conversation about Vegeta…Gohan’s reaction was could have been more fleshed out and less robotic. but like we said before, you can tell each actor is enjoying their role and their time on the project.
The effects of this movie at times felt like I was watching a shaky camera on a runaway mine cart, while yes as we said the energy attacks and martial sequences were wonderful and felt like a Dragon Ball Z episode, the remaining flight and that weird teleportation sequence felt awkward and forced, yes seeing live action Gohan flying Super Saiyan looked awesome and 18 choking Trunks was sweet, but at times everything felt rushed. But…that was one sweet epic finale.
In conclusion, Dragon Ball Z: Light of Hope, has quite a few glaring flaws, you can tell this is a fan-made film and they had a budget, but my God is the film exactly what Dragon Ball fans would want. If you are a Dragon Ball Z fan like us, it is worth the watch, even with the clunky dialogue and the awkward acting, it doesn’t stray away from being Dragon Ball Z. If we were to say one thing, it’s that this is how you do a Dragon Ball Z live action episode…make it weird, awkward, clunky and tons of action…its one fun ride.
Final Score: 7/10
WATCH DRAGON BALL Z: LIGHT OF HOPE: HERE!
Capsule Corp. Scientist