The Naruto franchise has spawned many OVAs and Movies. Despite this one being titled “The Last,” it is certainly not with the upcoming Boruto movie. Be that as it may, most of the time, anime movies only serve as side stories since they take some elements from the canon material, but are typically not considered canon to the main storyline, but this one, actually is!
Our story takes place during the time skip in Chapter 700 of the manga where Kakashi Hatake is still the Sixth Hokage and the Fourth Great Ninja War has concluded. The movie opens up revealing the end of the Sasuke/Naruto battle in the manga so if you’re not a manga reader then watching this movie is going to spoil a lot of things that the anime has not yet revealed.
The movie starts out with flashbacks of Naruto and Hinata as children and how Naruto tries to protect Hinata from some bullies and fails miserably, but Hinata takes notice of this. We then see them in class where Iruka-sensei says “in the event the moon will fall and the world will end, write the name of the person you want to be with in the end.”
Plot device, much? I mean, seriously… what teacher asks that sort of specific question… to children no less? Yeesh…
Of course, Naruto folds his paper into an airplane and lets it loose because he doesn’t know who his mom and dad are and he has no friends. Hinata writes Naruto’s name down on the paper, obviously. After these flashbacks we see a mysterious man confront Hiashi Hyuga, head of the Hyuga clan, stating that his decision will determine the fate of his people. Hiashi’s response is to attack this unknown man. Hiashi is defeated and buried underneath falling rock as a result of his decision, thus setting up our main antagonist for the film.
We fast forward a bit where Hinata is knitting a red scarf to give to Naruto in order to use it to confess her feelings for him. We are now introduced to Hanabi Hyuga, a young girl (whose name translates to Fireworks, by the way) who claims her Byakugan is already at the level of an adult’s. Hinata finishes the scarf and is indecisive on whether to give it to Naruto today or tomorrow. Hanabi convinces her to do it tonight and Hinata leaves, which sets up for this mysterious man to infiltrate the Hidden Leaf Village and kidnap Hanabi.
After meeting up with Naruto and Sakura at Ramen Ichiraku, Hinata gets too scared to give Naurto the scarf, she runs off. Sakura gives chase and gives her some womanly advice. Depressed in her failures, Hinata visits a park when she is confronted by the same man who confronted Hiashi. His name is Toneri and he says that HInata is coming with him. He tries to kidnap her, but Naruto shows up and after a chase through the village, Naruto is able to rescue Hinata, but Tonkei says that he will, one day, be back for her.
Now here comes the big plot thanks to the foreshadowing of flashbacks and Iruka-sensei. The moon is falling!
The Five Kage hold a summit to discuss this phenomenon and Kakashi has a hunch that the event is influenced by man and is not natural. Naruto, Hinata, Shikamaru, Sai, and Sakura are dispatched to look for Hanabi. Kakashi alerts them of the moon situation and gives Shikamaru a clock on the palm of his hand which is a timer counting down to the end of the world… bet you won’t find that in a Timex catalog. While searching for Hanabi, they discover a cavern in which the water doesn’t make you wet.. instead, it transports you to and alternate dimension.
In the middle of this pathway is an area filled with golden spheres that places anyone who passes through into a genjutsu. It is here that Naruto relives all of the flashbacks from his adult perspective and he finally realizes his feelings for Hinata and vice versa. Sakura, who is resistant to genjutsu, doesn’t fall for it and wakes everyone up. When they enter the other side of the gate, they’re in the alternate dimension where things seem rather warped. For instance, they can see the sun in the water.. and by that, we’re not talking about a reflection.
This is where the story takes an interesting turn because it explains something that Masashi Kishimoto didn’t touch upon in the manga. We know about Hagoromo Otsutsuki, also known as the Sage of the Six Paths, however, it is known that Hagoromo is one of two sons that Kaguya birthed. Kishimoto never told the story of the other son… until now.
Toneri and the entire Hyuga clan are descendants of Hamura Otsutsuki and, according to Toneri, Hamura lived on the moon and wished to destroy Earth because he felt that his brother’s teachings spread war and not peace. There will never be true peace with Hagoromo’s Ninshu Teachings so therefore, the only course of action is to reset the world. Toneri wishes to carry this out by evolving the Byakugan into the Tenseigan.. and eye of tremendous power. Toneri kidnapped Hanabi because of her eyes being the most pure.
So, by knowing the story of Hagoromo and his two sons, Ashura and Indra, you’re probably thinking that sibling rivalry runs in the family and this is just a manifestation of that rivalry, right?
Turns out that Toneri is just out of his mind. While inside the dimension, Hinata has been knitting a new scarf for Naruto, since the original one got destroyed during Hinata’s attempted kidnapping. While knitting the scarf… for Naruto… Naruto shows up and finally says the words Hinata has wanted to hear… that he loves her. That’s when Toneri shows up and the two of them stand united, willing to fight together in the name of love!!
Well.. not really. Hinata willingly dumps Naruto and goes with Toneri.
Toneri then uses a move on Naruto that knocks all of his chakra out of his body, blowing a hole in the surface and revealing the Earth. Naruto is saved and this is when it dawns on everyone that they’re not in an alternate dimension.. but in a dimension within the core of the moon itself…. and here I thought it was just made of cheese. During Hinata’s stay at Toneri’s castle, Haruma visits her in a dream.. much like how Hagoromo visited Naruto and Sasuke. Haruma tells Hinata that only she can destroy the Tenseigan.. which isn’t an eye, per se, but an artifact shaped like an eye with tremendous power… after it’s fed thousands of Byakugan eyes, of course.
Tonegi, while having Hanabi’s eyes transplanted in him, experiences a pulsing in his eyes followed by a headache. This is how he knows the Tenseigan is nearing completion.. so in the most obvious plot device ever, he goes to bed and Hinata leaves to find the Tenseigan. She finds it, but lo and behold, she’s much too weak to destroy it despite the fact that the brother of the Sage of the Six Paths told her she is the only one who can. Of course, Tonkei finds her, captures her, and she is rescued by Naruto who is about to do battle with Toneri when… HEADACHE!
Rather than killing Toneri in his completely vulnerable state… they leave him alone to head to the Tenseigan. There, Hinata joins hands with Naruto and destroys the artifact proving that nothing can be done in this world unless Naruto is directly involved. Of course, Toneri realizes his plans are shattered and turns into a green version of Naruto’s Kyuubi-Sage mode. The two of them do battle… on the moon’s surface… and eventually Naruto wins.
Of course, in order to instil more drama, the Raikage of the Hidden Cloud Village unveils a Chakra Cannon. Yes… you read that right.. a mechanized cannon. Suddenly this has turned into Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. The Raikage plans on blowing up the moon to save Earth.
Go ahead.. I’ll wait until you’re done scratching your head, laughing, and/or face-palming.
The only reason why the moon wasn’t destroyed by the Raikage is because Bee is at the controls and they learn that Naruto is on the moon fighting and Bee refuses to shoot his friend… because shooting the main character of a franchise is far worse than destroying an object that influences the tides and gravity on your planet, maintaining balance, and stopping everything on Earth from being plunged into chaos. The Raikage is about to fire the cannon himself when the nine tails writes a character on the moon’s surface which translates to “Mission Accomplished.”
So Toneri doesn’t die and he realizes the error of his ways when he’s taken to see the graveyard of the Otsutsuki clan. After everything he’s done, Hinata INVITES HIM TO LIVE ON EARTH, UNPUNISHED! But, Toneri decides to atone for his sins by remaining on the moon alone. They return to Earth through the gate.. Naruto and Hintata kiss.. and the movie is over.
Okay… where do I even begin here? First off.. how in the world are they battling on the moon’s surface with no oxygen when there have been countless times in the manga that have proven that everyone in the Naruto universe requires oxygen to live. Heck.. it wasn’t even that long ago when Guy fought Kisame and Kisame trapped people’s heads in water bubbles, causing them to suffocate.. but yet.. we can fight on the moon because there’s air up there, supposedly.
Second… they even stated earlier in the movie that if the moon would collide with Earth, it would be done for… also.. common knowledge exists that without the moon, Earth would also be doomed due to the lack of gravitational influence.. so why is the Raikage trying to save the world by destroying something that maintains balance!?
Why didn’t they just kill Toneri when he was crumpled in a heap having a headache!?
Oh my God.. just so many ridiculous plot points to even fathom in this movie… and you’re telling me THIS is how Naruto and Hinata fall in love and get together? This story, right here!? Sheesh..
So yeah.. I guess it’s cool we got some backstory on Hamura Otsutsuki and the origins of the Hyuga clan, but when it’s the base of one of the most ill conceived plots I’ve ever seen to come out of Naruto, it just does nothing but bring shame to the series. What was Kishimoto thinking here!?
With the exception of Toneri and Hamura Otsutsuki, there’s really no characters worth mentioning because you should know them if you follow the Naruto universe and if you’ve watched this movie, the chances are near 100% that you follow the Naruto universe.
Art, Sound, and Animation
Okay, it looks as if the budget for this anime was all over the place. The opening recap to the ending of the Naruto manga was very well done. The CG was amazing and the effects were glorious. Then we transition to the actual film and the animation only seems slightly above normal TV animation quality. Then there are times when the animation budget really shines, such as the fight scenes as well as the Hinata kidnapping sequence, but when there’s no action going on, it just looks like a slightly better shaded version of the anime.
Dare I say that the Chikara filler arc during the Naruto Shippuuden series had much more detail and quality than this movie, which is pretty sad since when compared side by side, the Chikara arc was actually longer than this movie. The soundtrack was filled with typical Naruto flair and some of the tracks were pretty good.. especially the ending fight between Toneri and Naruto… that really stood out.
There were some animation errors though. There were times when the characters were speaking, but their mouths weren’t even moving at all. Then there are times when there were characters talking, but they decided to do some “time skip” scenes to show plot advancement and the character’s dialogue was acting as narration, but that was never really distinctly established so you were left wondering if the audio was off or if it really was just narration.
Enjoy some scenes from the movie.
The Last - Naruto the Movie definitely could have been a lot better
If this was intended to be “The Last” Naruto movie, then Kishimoto and company really dropped the ball here. It wasn’t really all that enjoyable and while it did provide some good backstory to characters that were never touched upon in the manga, it felt like a slap in the face due to the cornball plot points this movie brought forth to the table. I know anime and movies in general, serve as a way for someone to suspend their disbelief and enjoy the entertainment that is put in front of them, but when your disbelief cannot be suspended because the plot goes against everything you know and even things established in the Naruto universe itself, it poses quite the problem for the viewer by preventing immersion.
All I can say is the movie is what it is.. it’s decent at best, but compared to the other movies, some of which were really good… this one just disappointed all around.
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