- Genre : Comedy, political intrigue, slice of life, bishonen banquet
- Episodes: 1 movie
What’s better than a bevy of blonde bishies? It’s a trick question. Nothing is better. The human brain isn’t equipped to handle more joy than what implied by that first sentence. But you know what’s not worse than that? Those same adorable blondes accompanied by equally attractive white-haired twins causing all sorts of trouble! This is the least and yet most descriptive summary I’ve ever written. And if we’re to be honest, all you really need to know about this movie but fine. For all you people who care about little details like “plot” or “story”, here’s a second try at a summary.
The kingdom of Glanzreich has prospered under king Viktor von Glanzreich and the decades of peace he’s managed to sustain for the good people of Glanzreich . In a bid to strengthen diplomatic relations with the neighboring region of Romano, King Viktor has invited the Royal Princes Ivan and Eugene to study alongside his on sons Leon, Licht, Bruno and Kai under the watchful eye of The Royal Tutor. Will his plan to form bonds of friendship between the ruling families of both kingdoms bear fruit or will the differences of these two families prove too great to overcome. With peace hanging in the balance, everything is riding on these delicate life lessons.
You know a movie is great when you need to write double summaries!
I don’t know if you guys saw the first season of The Royal Tutor. By far, the series’ strength lies in its character designs and beautiful art. An obviously limited budget was smartly invested by emphasizing on designers and illustrators and using visible but effective shortcuts for the animation. This remains true of the movie that maintains those gorgeous designs, although a bit more effort was put into the illusion of movement.
For instance, The Royal Tutor movie seriously cuts back on chibis with flat colour background and uses “moving stills” to simulate action instead of having the more animated scenes happen off camera. The illusion isn’t perfect, and I can’t say which I prefer myself, but I appreciate the effort. The only drawback for me was that the princes occasionally looked rather odd at certain angles, especially beautiful Licht.
Similarly voice acting is unpolished but endearing. What I mean is that it sounds like the actors are having fun. I noticed this too in Touken Ranbu. There’s something relaxed and happy go lucky in the delivery which may not make for Oscar worthy performances but does add to the fun silly atmosphere of the series. I did quite enjoy the soundtrack, even though it was occasionally comically grand. The storyline uses music as an actual narrative element, and they made sure it sounded good.
For once I agreed with the characters onscreen and really did find Eugene’s singing voice quite beautiful.
I keep joking around about The Royal Tutor being all flash and no substance. This isn’t exactly fair. Much like the series, The Royal Tutor movie more or less amounts to a light, pleasant enough slice of life adventure that can best be defined as cute boys doing cute things. Yes, the story is shallow, and the characters ill defined like you see in a lot of moe series.
And the staples of the genre are all there too. Finding common ground to form friendships. Overcoming minor obstacles through common activities like learning music or practicing fencing together. There’s a more serious politically charged story happening in the background but we at most get tiny clues of its existence.
You won’t get sucked into a fascinating tale that will make you think and feel. The opposite in fact, you will get gently lulled by pretty images and an easily digestible extremely light “plot” that will make you forget all your worries and enjoy the moment. But that’s an art all of its own. And one not to be dismissed. The story is well paced and executed. I was never bored at all and the entire movie felt like a single Royal Tutor episode.
All and all, I would compare it to my experience with Bungou Stray Dogs: Dead Apples. The Royal Tutor movie wasn’t as charming as the series. There was no time dedicated to introducing the world or the characters as it was clearly meant for already established fans and the new characters felt like add-ons. It never captured the charm that made me enjoy the show so much.
What it did do is remind me of the strengths of the series and create a story that was just familiar enough to get me really excited about season 2. And that’s really the only way I can recommend this movie. If you liked the Royal Tutor, then this short movie is a great little distraction. Otherwise, just watch season 1.
Favorite character: Viktor
What this anime taught me: always watch the credits to the very end
You made it out of bed! Let’s celebrate!
Suggested drink: Song of Songs
- Every time we see a chibi – take a sip
- Every time anyone sys “royal tutor” – take a sip
- Every time there are still shots – take a sip
- Every time you notice CG – cringe a bit
- Every time there’s a new lesson – get an apple
- Every time we see Ivan’s buster sword – take a sip
- Every time anyone blushes – squee
- Every time anyone sings – stretch
So a picture is worth a million words right? Get ready for the longest review ever!