“Yu-Gi-Oh The Movie” was released in 2004. (same year The Incredibles came out) It received negative reviews from critics and failed to make a profit at the box office.
I used to watch Yu-Gi-Oh as a kid back when it first aired on Kids WB. The good ol’ days when kids never have to worry about grown up stuff. I also used to own cards to build up my own powerful deck. I haven’t watch Yu-Gi-Oh since GX. I was growing up as I enter a phase of watching mature works and admiring decent movies, shows and video games.
This review contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t seen the show or film, read at your own risk.
Victory & Defeat Qualities
Victory: The Main Voice Actors most notably Dan Green as Yami & Yugi reprise their roles from the show and they all did a great job for their respective performances.
The Animation looks very gorgeous. More detailed than the show giving animators time to polish.
The movie is set after the events of Battle City Arc. Yami & Yugi defeat Marik and obtain all three Egyptian god cards.
Notable duelists from the show including Mai, Weevil & Rex make cameo appearances.
Anubis is the main antagonist of the film. His goal is to fufill a prophecy to finish a duel that happened many centuries ago with two people who resemble Yami & Kaiba. Thank goodness it doesn’t contradict the timeline as in the “Alien” & “Predator” franchises. Unlike Yu-Gi-Oh, both Alien & Predator messed up their timelines as depicted in that god awful crossover “Alien VS. Predator.” The Alien franchise was supposed to be around in the future, not in ancient Egypt.
Anubis’ own individual millennium puzzle known as “The Pyramid Of Light,” plays a huge role.
After Kaibi’s defeat his first battle with Yami prior to the main battle, he shouts a big NO. Doc Ock also did it in “Spider-Man 2” which came out a month before Yu-Gi-Oh’s release.
When Yugi and his friends’ souls are transported to the millennium puzzle, it’s labyrinth environment reminds me of something off of “Inception.” Maybe Christopher Nolan was inspired by Yu-Gi-Oh and it could be one of his favorite anime shows alongside his kids.
Joey references two quotes from “The Godfather” & “On The Waterfront” Both films starred the late Marlon Brando. Coincidentally, he died a month before Yu-Gi-Oh’s release. I guess Joey is a movie buff.
Yugi said “Friends til’ the end.” A reference to Chucky’s line “We’re friends til the end.” “Seed Of Chucky” came out the same year as Yu-Gi-Oh.
Defeat: Remember in Duelist Kingdom arc when Evil Bakura killed and stole Pegasus’ millennium eye? How the actual heck is Pegasus still alive? He never appeared later after Season 1. There’s no explanation why he survived or was somehow resurrected offscreen. Oh wait, it’s 4Kids, because they don’t explain specific details behind Yu-Gi-Oh & Pokémon.
The duel between Yami & Kaiba takes place at the latter character’s corporation. As it suffers from massive collateral damage, a beam of light shoots up in the sky. Nobody outside the place witnesses a suspicious beam of light. If this were real life, many pedestrians will notice and call the police to investigate.
How on earth is Pegasus capable of summoning monsters without a duel disc? Doesn’t obey the laws of technology.
The Final Verdict: C, FOR CRUSH CARD!
From my point of view, Yu-Gi-Oh The Movie is a disappointing installment in the Yu-Gi-Oh franchise. If you’re interested in introducing your kids to Yu-Gi-Oh, buy the entire series on DVD/Blu-Ray alongside its spin-off shows like GX.