Naoko MatsuiPreCureToshiyuki MorikawaHappinessCharge
HappinessCharge PreCure the Movie: The Ballerina of the Land of Dolls
Also known as: Happiness Charge PreCure! Ningyou no Kuni no Ballerina
Medium: film
Year: 2014
Director: Chiaki Kon
Writer: Yoshimi Narita
Actor: Asami Yano, Daisuke Ono, Funassyi, Haruka Tomatsu, Jun Hirose, Konami Saitou, Megumi Han, Megumi Nakajima, Miki Hase, Miyuki Kobori, Naoko Matsui, Rina Kitagawa, Ryosuke Kanemoto, Ryuichi Kijima, Sachiko Kojima, Seria Fukagawa, Shiho Kokido, Shouma Yamamoto, Takahiro Miwa, Takuya Masumoto, Tomomi Tachibana, Toshiyuki Morikawa, Yayoi Sugaya, Yui Horie, Yuki Takada, Yuya Tashiro
Keywords: HappinessCharge, PreCure, anime, magical girl
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 71 minutes
Website category: Anime 2014
Review date: 2 June 2020
happinesscharge precure
It's one of the weakest PreCure movies. It's as thin as the Smile and DokiDoki! movies in 2012-13, but without the power of their emotional endings. It's trying to repeat the trick, but it doesn't get there.
A wheelchair-bound girl called Tsumugi loves ballet. Soon the PreCures will get invited to the Doll Kingdom, where Black Fang is waiting for them.
The film's mostly formulaic and a bit plodding. Baddie. Fights. Impassioned speeches. Megumi appealing to Tsugumi's forgotten feelings. Occasionally, my attention drifted. I appreciated the film's dissection of the season's themes, mind you. Cure Lovely keeps promising to bring happiness, but what if she casually said that to someone who'd lost their legs? You can't fix everything with a smile and earnestness. I was quite impressed when Megumi owned up to that, apologised and admitted that she can't cure Tsugumi, while also arguing that misfortune needn't stop us from finding other forms of happiness.
Hime brings the film alive, albeit only for short periods. She participates in a Snow White puppet play at a nursery, which triggers her Silly Romantic Dream tendencies that will then get turbocharged by the Doll Kingdom. A prince on horseback! Hime immediately decides that he's smoking hot and lets her hormones overload her (few) brain cells. Within about sixty seconds, she's decided to marry him. Hime's overreactions and eccentricities are by far the liveliest thing in the film.
Apart from that, though... well, there's not much here. I like Tsugumi, but she didn't tug my heartstrings like Bebel and Mallow in 2013, or Nico and Miyuki in 2012. She should have, theoretically, but the wheelchair thing stays in the background and the film ultimately cheats by saving Cure Lovely from having to make a difficult choice. (We'd been told that defeating Black Fang would have a price. Nope.) Also, more fundamentally, one of the film's two antagonists is basically a self-pitying mope and we're waiting for her inevitable change of heart.
I like the whimsy of Doll Kingdom. PreCure movies are good at that.
The ending theme song is played in its extended version, but not the opening! I wanted my "wow".
I liked Black Fang offending the PreCures. Cure Lovely's cool when attacking with an angry face.
This isn't a bad film, really. It's earnest and good-natured, with worthwhile things to say about Tsugumi and her problems. However it's also mediocre and not filling its running time. There's not that much to discuss here.