The Persona 3 movies are collectively a real treat for fans, retelling its engaging story in a compelling new format. Split into four parts, Winter of Rebirth covers the final section of the narrative, and ties up the series with a competent adaptation of the game’s most fiddly section.
As the third film in the tetralogy, Persona 3: Falling Down faces all the challenges that the previous two movies have already struggled with. At the same time it’s now easy to take the impressive visuals and production design for granted – this look is now to be expected. In light of this I didn’t expect Falling Down to surprise me in the way it did, but the movie has several notable improvements over its predecessors, and the result is the best Persona 3 film yet.
Whilst widely regarded as one of the PlayStation 2’s best games, there’s also a sense that no one really knows what to make of Persona 3. In many ways it’s an accomplished title, and one of the underground hits that defined the final years of the PS2’s lifespan. But it’s also slow, repetitive and unrefined. It’s easier to define what’s bad about Persona 3 than what’s good about it, yet it is good. It must be good, they make movies about this game.
It’s been ten months since Persona 3: The Movie #1 Spring of Birth; a great film that left me wanting more. Having covered only the first portion of the game, Midsummer Knight’s Dream begins right at the point things pick up, and progresses the story with the addition of several new characters. This does however come at a cost, and several members of the main cast have marginalised roles as a result. In spite of this, Persona 3 The Movie #2 mostly succeeds at fighting the difficult battle of translating its source material into the most compelling film possible.
I can’t have been the only person who watched Persona 4 The Animation and then saw this coming. I can’t have been the only one who, after finishing the highly enjoyable and faithful retelling of the Persona 4 story, thought that one day the same justice would be done to Persona 3. That one day we’d have a P3 anime that wasn’t Trinity Soul. Well, that day has finally arrived. The first Persona 3 movie is here.