Review: Puella Magi Madoka Magica The Movie: Part 3 – Rebellion DVD

Release Date
Blu-ray / DVD
Manga Entertainment
Language / Subtitles
English, Japanese / English
Run Time
116 Minutes

Puella Magi Madoka Magica The Movie: Part 3 – Rebellion is the third, and final, movie in the Puella Magi Madoka Magica movie trilogy from Manga Entertainment. While the previous two movies, set for release on the 12th October, were based upon the television series, Rebellion features an all-new story and animation.

“Were all the magical girls truly saved from despair? Now… the great “Law of Cycles” leads the magical girls to their new fate.

Madoka Kaname – a girl who once led an ordinary life sacrificed her very existence to set every magical girl free from their cruel destiny. Homura Akemi – another magical girl who was unable to keep her promise with Madoka continues to fight in the world Madoka left her behind in. Madoka has changed the world. In this new world, is what the magical girls see a world of hope… or despair?” – Manga Entertainment

We somehow follow on from the previous two movies and, after the opening segment, we experience some familiar ground, a frame by frame copy of the very beginning of the story in movie one, Beginnings. There are a few differences to note, though; Kyubey can be seen in the background of various frames but never speaks, on the walk to school Hitomi is replaced by Kyouko, and finally, when you would expect the introduction of a new transfer student, Homura Akemi, this timid shy girl is not the Homura we have come to know. With a rather interesting setup, and given the events of the previous two movies, a lot of questions arise; fear not as these will be answered, but will keep you guessing until the end.

With the witches no longer the enemy and non-existent in Rebellion, the girls have a new threat to deal with – Nightmares, born from the negative human emotions. In stark contrast to the series and previous two movies, the girls actually seem to get along rather well, even fighting alongside each other to take down their enemies. There is a constant sense of something not feeling quite right in the movie and the only character seemingly as concerned as us is Homura; taking more of a lead in this movie Homura is our focus throughout with Madoka actually being pushed to the side-lines, another point of note with regards to the uneasiness within the story.

I will admit I’m rather surprised with Shaft’s animation quality; always known for their excellent animation they tend to employ a more minimalist style when it comes to the backgrounds, in Rebellion however they have gone all out to fill each scene with glorious details literally filled to the brim and amazing visuals around every corner. Everything has been amped up in Rebellion; the Nightmare segments are even crazier if that’s possible than the witches of previous movies. The opening segment of the movies featured the most superior transformation sequences of the entire series. Visually it’s an absolute feast for the eyes with so much going on it’s hard to know where to look.

Rebellion comes with both English and Japanese language options presented in 5.1 surround sound with yellow subtitles accompanying the Japanese option on the DVD version and, based on our Blu-ray review of the previous two movies, we assume white subtitles to feature on the Blu-ray. The score handled by Yuki Kajiura, who also worked on the previous movies and the series, has really outdone herself with Rebellion and words really can’t do it justice.

Extras on disc include textless opening and ending animations, commercials and a theatrical trailer. The shorts, Monogatari Manners, are also included; these were short video shown in theatres before the start of the movie, used as a way to promote good manners such as not taking pictures during the movie. They feature various characters from Shaft series such as NisioisiN’s Monogatari Series and of Madoka Magica.

Puella Magi Madoka Magica The Movie: Part 3 – Rebellion is like the perfect marriage of animation studio Shaft, director Akiyuki Shinbo and writer Gen Urobuchi; each element while brilliant individually only serve to increase the potential of the others. Rebellion is an awesome experience that is helped by fantastic visuals, an amazing score and brilliant storytelling if your fan of the series you owe it to yourself to experience this movie.