Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom (2015)

Wake Up, Girls!  Beyond the Bottom is the second part of the film sequel to the anime series.  Continuing right where the first part left off, with the group temporarily giving up on Tokyo and returning to Sendai, they once again prepare to enter the Idol Festival 2015.  The fact that this plot is rehashed from the anime feels somewhat lazy, right down to the fact that one of the group members encounters issues with their family trying to accept their participation in an idol group.  Nevertheless, the characters retain their charm and it is good that while the hype for Hayasaka’s new song for them at the end of the first film was high, they did not end up using it and instead, they are challenged to win without Hayasaka’s help, which was what they were always leaning on as a crutch all along.  With this weakness out of the way, the characters have grown.  Once again, we’re shown how hard it can be for an idol group to break out against all the competition.  Perhaps one of the stronger aspects is the depictions of Wake Up, Girls! diehard fans, showcasing their loyalty and dedication without falling into the trap of depicting them as gross and creepy human beings.  Even with the buildup, it never quite reaches the heights that you would have liked (nor does it match the atmosphere of the ending of the anime), and the new song isn’t all that catchy.  Nevertheless, the ending was great and the previous “antagonist”, Shiho, was given an honoured send off.  Beyond the Bottom may not be the best continuation, but it is still worthwhile and a great watch.


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