For those keeping score, Tsuneo Kobayashi's The Last: Naruto the Movie is the seventh film in the Naruto: Shippūden subseries and tenth Naruto film overall; an eleventh picture is on the way, in spite of the final-sounding title. This is also the first to take place in the canonical story line of the recently concluded Naruto manga, meaning it doesn't pick up where last year's Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie left off. Thus is the tangled anime web that puts the forthcoming domestic deluge of comic-book movies to shame, but where Road to Ninja was self-contained enough to be friendly to newcomers, The Last: Naruto the Movie is far more mythology-heavy.
While dealing with the fact that the moon is falling from its orbit for densely complicated plot reasons, series protagonist Naruto (Junko Takeuchi) must also deal with his burgeoning love for fellow ninja-in-training Hinata (Nana Mizuki). (Sakura, Road to Ninja's more compelling female lead, is present but largely sidelined.) The picture features the excellent animation and music that's to be expected from this series and modern anime in general, and if the romance is mostly of interest to dedicated fans, at least there's solace in the fact that this is by no means the last Naruto movie.
Tsuneo KobayashiJunko Takeuchi, Chie Nakamura, Showtaro Morikubo, Satoshi HinoMaruoElevent Arts