REVIEW: KAMEN RIDER DRIVE SAGA: KAMEN RIDER MACH/KAMEN RIDER HEART

 

Starring

Tomoya Warabino (First Kiss)
Fumika Baba (Code Blue)
Shōta Matsushima (Godhand Teru)
Chris Peppler (Tokyo Eye)
Taira Imata (Super Hero Taisen GP: Kamen Rider 3)
Rei Yoshii (Kishiryu Sentai Ryusoulger)
Kenta Hamano (Segodon)
Ryoma Takeuchi (Detective Pikachu)
Yu Inaba (Clone Baby)

rick-and-morty-fans-have-to-check-out-the-solar-opposites-trailerWhen a Kamen Rider series draws to a conclusion, rarely is it truly the end. Not only does that Rider make a return alongside the current one in next year’s Movie Wars release, but in recent years the additional Riders have shared the spotlight in their own V-cinema releases. This trend initially kicked off with Kamen Rider W’s Accel and Eternal movies but has recently been revived with Kamen Riders Gaim, Drive and Ghost. In terms of Drive movies Kamen Rider Drive Saga: Kamen Rider Chaser, may have been a side story taking place during the course of the film but the second – Kamen Rider Drive Saga: Kamen Rider Mach/Kamen Rider Heart acts as a true epilogue to the show, bringing back Gou Shijima/Kamen Rider Mach and the Roidmude Heart for one last outing.It’s been three years since the defeat of the Roidmudes, and Gou Shijima has travelled the world to learn the skills needed to resurrect Chase. Finally returning home, it isn’t long before he, Rinna and Kyu put these skills to the test and attempt to revive their fallen comrade. However something goes wrong and it isn’t Chase that returns – it’s Heart, complete with Brain and Medic’s consciousness also merged into his body. In Kamen Rider Heart, the three Roidmudes team up with First Division inspector Genpachiro Otta as a Roidmude amalgamation targets the humans previously copied by Roidmudes. While the two unlikely partners don’t get along, the weaker Heart learns where true strength lies as he sets out to extinguish this bug from the Roidmudes programming. Meanwhile in Kamen Rider Mach, Gou has developed a close friendship with Reiko Nishihori – supporting her during her prison stay and then meeting her upon release. However when Roidmude 005 returns and begins to haunt and frame Reiko with his own string of murders, it’s up to Gou to prove her innocence and free her from her father’s curse once and for all.  If there was any Kamen Rider Drive character deserving of their own V-cinema movie, it was definitely Heart. As one of the most fascinating and layered villains that Kamen Rider has produced in years, it’s great to see him take the lead and develop from his defeat at the end of the series. Heart’s strict code of honour continues on into this story, which instantly covers any questions of why he’s allying himself with humanity here. His weakened state also makes him considerably more vulnerable, putting the character in a position he’s never really been in before since his only real ‘defeat’ was his death. As a character that plays far more on intelligence and emotion than he does on brute strength, this is the perfect setup for a Heart movie and the writers play on it wonderfully. With Brain and Medic almost acting like his conscience, Heart gets one last hurrah where he truly gets to play the hero – acting both as redemption and progression of his former status of a villain with a (somewhat) noble cause. Plot-wise Kamen Rider Heart is fairly by the numbers – the Roidmude amalgamation 5886 makes for a good one-off villain. What his inclusion does bring however is some nice cameos and call-backs to Drive’s episodic cast members. Shinnosuke himself is also used sparingly, only really appearing to offer a few words of advice to the Roidmude who’d happily call him a friend. It’s just about the right amount, as it doesn’t take away from the fact this is Heart’s (and later Mach’s) story but means there isn’t something integral missing from the proceedings either.  Since it is of course impossible to make a Kamen Rider movie without the debut of some new Rider or form, Kamen Rider Heart of course sees the Roidmude himself become the hero – appearing in retooled Type Tridoron suit complete with a new Heart-esque head and other elements that reference the character’s evolved form. Upon initially seeing images of the suit I wasn’t exactly won over by it, but both learning of how it comes about and seeing it in action definitely leaves a far more positive impression. Kamen Rider Mach definitely draws from its more serious side, tackling murder, depression and attempted suicide while littered with corpses and a pretty graphic hanging scene to boot.. All in all it’s a pretty serious affair that suits Mach’s character perfectly, given that he easily the most emotionally and tonally varied Rider in the show. Despite the entire film’s set up focusing on Gou’s attempts at resurrecting Chase, his portion of the story sidesteps into completely different territory as it takes place on a smaller and more personal scale. The Nishihori storyline is one of the more significant cases in Kamen Rider Drive (running through Episode 0 as well as the series itself), and having the characters return again hammers it home that Drive isn’t the kind of series where cases and characters are simply forgotten about. With Gou having mostly gotten over his daddy issues and Roidmude xenophobia, it’s time for him to do the same for considerably more damaged Reiko. Even though prior to this movie the pair have only spent a minimal amount of time onscreen together, the development of their relationship feels surprisingly natural thanks to the close parallels between them. If anything the film is actually about letting things go and then being able to move forward creating a new family, something Kiriko explains to Gou in a particularly poignant scene.

This core theme also means that the reuse of Roidmude 005 doesn’t feel lazy either. Even through the voice alone Toru Nomaguchi’s portrayal of Koya Nishihori is chilling, and coupled with his sadistic murder pattern 005 makes for a rather compelling villain that’s far more human than he is monster (in a purely outward sense anyway). The claustrophobic warehouse fight scenes also contrast nicely with Heart’s brighter forest fights, highlighting the differences in tone between the two segments even if it was done unintentionally.  Kamen Rider Drive Saga: Kamen Rider Mach/Kamen Rider Heart is an excellent send-off for two of Drive’s best developed characters. While their wider implications as an epilogue are relatively small, both parts play wonderful service to individual episodes of Drive and (especially in Mach’s case) build them up into something far more substantial. If the Returns movie is now going to be an annual thing with the franchise, then this movie seem like a big step in the right direction.

REVIEW: Kamen Rider x Kamen Rider Ghost & Drive: Super Movie Wars Genesis

 

Starring

Shun Nishime (Kamen Rider Ghost)
Hikaru Ohsawa (Tokyo Slaves)
Ryosuke Yamamoto (The Travelling Chronicles)
Takayuki Yanagi (Amanogawa)
Naoto Takenaka (Hideoyoshi)
Takuya Mizoguchi (Kamen Rider Decade)
Reo Kanshuji (Blue Demon ver.2.0)
Kazuhiko Nishimura (Choujuu Sentai Liveman)
Aoi Yuki (Kamen Rider 555)
Yoshiyuki Morishita (The Grudge)
Hayato Isomura (Hiyokko)
Ryoma Takeuchi (Detective Pikachu)
Rio Uchida (Chimamire Sukeban Chainsaw)
Taiko Katono (Gaki Rock)
Yu Inaba (Clone Baby)
Tsurutaro Kataoka (Sharaku)
Chris Peppler (Tokyo Eye)
Rei Yoshii (Kishiryu Sentai Ryusoulger)
Kenta Hamano (Segodon)
Taira Imata (Super Hero Taisen GP: Kamen Rider 3)
Tomoya Warabino (First Kiss)
Shōta Matsushima (Godhand Teru)
Fumika Baba (Code Blue)

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Just as the latest Kamen Rider is beginning to find his footing, his predecessor returns for one last goodbye as part of a Movie Wars crossover which has been a franchise staple for the past seven years. This time it’s the turn of Kamen Rider Ghost, reuniting once more with Kamen Rider Drive in the time-travelling Kamen Rider x Kamen Rider Ghost & Drive: Super Movie Wars Genesis. Other than boasting a “super” along with the typically lengthy title, Movie Wars Genesis throws one big format change into the works – making it a particularly notable entry in this popular series of crossovers.

When first division police officer Shinnosuke Tomari is asked to investigate mysterious going ons that cannot be explained by science, he encounters Takeru Tenkuji and Mysterious Paranormal Insitute during a fight against a Ganma thief. Following a brief misunderstanding between Kamen Riders Drive, Mach, Ghost and Specter, the two groups settle and begin to learn more about each other. All of a sudden a space/time portal appears, sucking in both Takeru and Shinnosuke and transporting them back to 2005. Here the two find themselves in the care of Takeru’s father Ryu – mere days before his untimely death.

However what they also discover is a Ganma plot to awaken a Leonardo da Vinci Eyecon, and a young Akari is right at the centre of it. Meanwhile in 2015 Specter and Mach have their own problems, as the space/time rift causes the resurrection of Roidmudes Heart, Brain and Medic – led by  none other than the Da Vinci Ganma himself. What unfolds is a battle across two time periods, as Ghost and Drive battle in the past to defeat the Ganma and fix the present.

Regular viewers of the Movie Wars series will notice that the biggest change when it comes to Movie Wars Genesis is that the Rider 1 segment/Rider 2 segment/Crossover format has finally been done away with in favor of a feature-length story that features the casts of both series’. While it still may have two stories running parallel, the film happily jumps between the past and present where appropriate to keep the story flowing. This new approach highly benefits the crossover aspect of the film, tying the two Riders together early on whereas previous movies kept them strictly apart until the last half an hour or so.


This revamped format definitely works just as well in execution as it does in theory, with the casts of both Drive and Ghost almost immediately showing excellent camaraderie that develops beautifully. The cast of Kamen Rider Ghost have constantly proven themselves to be a welcoming bunch and welcome the cast of Drive with open arms. This doesn’t just apply to the five Riders either  the extended casts also work wonderfully together. Villains are also handled well too, with the idea of a Da Vinci Eyecon/Ganma tying nicely into Ghost’s overall themes. The presentation of the three Renaissance Ganma is good enough to portray them as a threat more notable than the usual Ganma, but without having to rely on the gimmick of a poorly placed movie Rider to up the ante.


Movie Wars Genesis is a film that raises several questions and inconsistencies, but definitely has its heart in the right place. The altered format not only improves the crossover element of the film considerably, it offers a less predictable and more unique viewing experience that will hopefully carry forward into future Movie Wars instalments. As a farewell to Kamen Rider Drive it could have perhaps done better, but it manages to perfectly capture the excitement of Kamen Rider Ghost’s early episodes and provide a satisfying crossover that brings out the best in both casts.

REVIEW: Kamen Rider Drive Saga: Kamen Rider Chaser

CAST
Taikô Katôno (Gaki Rock)
Ryoma Takeuchi (Yell For the Blue Sky)
Rio Uchida (Bloody Chainsaw Girl)
Yu Inaba (Clover)
Taira Imata (Doctor X)
Rei Yoshii (Love My Life)
Chris Peppler (Crazy Taxi)
Shôta Matsushima (Stepfather Steps)
Tomoya Warabino (Masshiro)
Fumika Baba (Kuroi Bodo)
Masakazu Morita (Dragon Ball Super)
Minehiro Kinomoto (Gakudori)
Mami Yamasaki (GoGo Sentai Boukenger)
 
Roidmude 051, whom Chase defeated before both as Kamen Rider Proto-Drive and Mashin Chaser, returns as a robber and left a girl named Hinako injured. Chase decides look after her brother Hiroshi after she got hospitalized, as they remind him of Kiriko and Go. Because Chase does not show any emotions, Hiroshi, who is mildly sociopathic, does not trust him. Chase wishes that he can become a real human and feel the full extent of human emotions when suddenly, the Angel Roidmude appears. She has golden wings – a sign that she already achieved Ultimate Evolution. She grants Chase the emotions he wanted.
The Special Investigation Unit is surprised with a completely different Chase who can now express emotions like a human. However, as he learned more, he became concerned about Angel’s actions and her wish to create a peaceful world–a world that differs from what Heart and Brain want to create, and thus puts the Roidmudes at odds with each other.
Meanwhile, while Shinnosuke Tomari is working on the case of 051, he goes to a nearby town where he meets a man named Ryu Terui.
An excellent V-Cinema that showcases one of Kamen Rider Drive’s greatest characters,  not to be missed!!!.

REVIEW: KAMEN RIDER DRIVE: SURPRISE FUTURE

 

Starring

Ryoma Takeuchi (Detective Pikachu)
Rio Uchida (Chimamire Sukeban Chainsaw)
Taiko Katono (Gaki Rock)
Yu Inaba (Clone Baby)
Tsurutaro Kataoka (Sharaku)
Rei Yoshii (Kishiryu Sentai Ryusoulger)
Kenta Hamano (Segodon)
Taira Imata (Super Hero Taisen GP: Kamen Rider 3)
Chris Peppler (Tokyo Eye)
Tomoya Warabino (First Kiss)
Shōta Matsushima (Godhand Teru)
Fumika Baba (Code Blue)
Mackenyu Maeda (Pacific Rim: Uprising)
Shingo Yanagisawa (Ultraman Orb)
Miwako Kakei (Key of Life)
Shun Nishime (Kamen Rider Ghost)

imagesThe Kamen Rider summer films have always been quite an interesting series. While most of the pre-Kamen Rider Decade films looked at their respective series in alternate universe scenarios, the arrival of Kamen Rider W brought along a closer connection between series and movie. More recently last two films, Kamen Rider Wizard in Magic Land and Kamen Rider Gaim: Great Soccer Battle! Golden Fruits Cup! have gelled the two together by taking the series’ Rider and then throwing them into an alternate universe for most of the action. Kamen Rider Drive however decided to take a different route for its movie, drawing inspiration from a different beloved sci-fi trope – time travel! So strap yourselves in, because its time for Shinnosuke Tomari and co to find themselves with a Surprise Future.

When Mr Belt has a sudden malfunction during battle, Shinnosuke is greeted by a man claiming to Eiji Tomari – his son from the year 2035. Eiji goes to explain that in the future Mr Belt’s AI will turn evil, with Krim Steinbelt subjugating humanity under a Roidmude rule. However before Shinnosuke can properly process this he’s attacked by another stranger from the future – Kamen Rider Dark Drive. Suddenly Shinnosuke finds himself not only on the run from Dark Drive but also the police as well, believing the “hero of the people” Kamen Rider to have suddenly gone rogue. Unable to transform and facing the possibility that he won’t even have Mr Belt to turn to, its up to Shinnosuke to help save the future from the Roidmudes.

One thing that’s always nice to see is a summer movie that has a strong connectivity with its respective series. But when it comes to Surprise Future, being up to date with Kamen Rider Drive is almost a necessity. Essential explanations such as where Mr Belt’s inexplicable evil streak may come across as simple foreshadowing in the show, but are in fact the entire basis for the film and something Surprise Future chooses to omit altogether. It’s tie-in media at both its very best and worst – offering fans something more than a simple side story but at the same making it hard to understand things on its own.

Kamen Rider Drive is a series with a pretty big cast. We certainly aren’t talking Gaim or Ryuki standards here but with three Riders, a group of villains and a fairly extensive supporting cast it isn’t a show short of faces. One might assume that as a result Surprise Future might feel rather overcrowded but in fact it is quite the opposite – the film focuses on a very small section of the cast in great detail, leaving the rest as mostly extras. If you’re a Mach or Chase fan this might leave you a little disappointed (although both get their fair share of good fight sequences), but focusing primarily on the bond between Shinnosuke and Mr Belt was a marvellous decision. In its latter half Kamen Rider Drive wasn’t a series that knew how to handle action and suspense, it was one that was really able to tug at the heartstrings when it wanted to. Surprise Future takes that same emotion and multiples it considerably, so if you haven’t already wept over the bond between a man and his toy belt once then this might be the thing that breaks you. Even Shinnosuke’s reactions towards his future son Eiji, a character whose introduction is rather undeveloped, are full of emotion. Kamen Rider Drive is the people’s Rider, and this isn’t just reflected in the way people feel towards him but also how he is towards others.

While the characterisation and drama is where Surprise Future really hits top gear, that isn’t to say it doesn’t have its share of great action sequences too. From high speed car chases to flashy hand to hand combat, this film offers a variety of different high-octane shots that perfectly suit Drive’s vehicle motif. Perhaps there is a little over-reliance on Toei’s hit-or-miss brand of CGI, but in general its use thankfully adds to the action rather than detracts from it. It’s nice to see Surprise Future remember that the Ride Crosser is a thing too – a interesting little concept that felt woefully underused in the series itself.

Surprise Future also features an impressive amount of new Drive gear, boasting not only three new suits but also two new cars as well (the Proto-Tridoron is rather predictably a black and purple Tridoron but it still counts). First you have Dark Drive Type Next and the NEXTridoron, sporting very Tron-esque black and blue colour schemes that suitably give off a futuristic vibe. The same can be said for Kamen Rider Drive Type Special, adding in some of Drive’s own design elements to create something similar but with much less of an evil Rider vibe. But before we come to that there’s also Drive Chou Dead Heat – a beefy hybrid of Type Speed and Mashin Chaser. Odd naming aside (there’s nothing Chou/Super about it – they even say it’s a pretty weak form in the grand scheme of things) the suit is a great departure from the usually sleek Drive suits and puts a next twist on the old favourite of Mashin Chaser.

On a pure enjoyment factor there’s little to fault this film on, but for time travel nuts all the minor details glossed over add up to something far bigger that leave you pondering it over long after the credits have rolled. Finally, as is often the case with these films Surprise Future also marks the first appearance of next Kamen Rider – in this case Kamen Rider Ghost. Ghost makes a very strong debut in this film, not quite stealing the spotlight by taking out one of the big name villains but at the same time leaving an excellent impression in the few minutes he appears for.If you aren’t one to get too caught up in nonsensical time travel paradoxes, then Kamen Rider Drive the Movie: Surprise Future is everything you could want out of a Kamen Rider summer movie. It was nicely woven into the events of the series, has features brilliant action, wonderful new suit designs and most importantly pulls at the emotions in all the right ways.

REVIEW: KAMEN RIDER 4

Kamen Rider 4 is a net series which was released as an accompanying special to the film Super Hero Taisen GP: Kamen Rider 3. It introduced a new rider, Kamen Rider 4, who is the fourth Kamen Rider cyborg created by Shocker after Kamen Riders 1, 2, and 3.

Starring

Ryoma Takeuchi (Detective Pikachu)
Rio Uchida (Chimamire Sukeban Chainsaw)
Yu Inaba (Clone Baby)
Chris Peppler (Tokyo Eye)
Yuichi Nakamura (Kamen Rider Hibiki)
Kento Handa (Kamen Rider 555)
Mitsuru Karahashi (Ultraman X)
Mitsuru Matsuoka (Kamen Rider W Returns)

Consist of three episodes; the first two was released on March 28, 2015, while the third was released on April 4, 2015. However, the first episode also was released as a DVD to the first million viewers of the premiere of Super Hero Taisen GP: Kamen Rider 3.


Shocker’s plan to alter the past to rule the future was foiled, returning the past to its rightful place, at the cost of Go’s life. Or has it? Strange events are happening around the Kamen Riders of yesterday and today as Shocker returns to try again to take over the world. But can Drive save Go’s life, who seems fated to die?

Kamen Rider 4 is born. The Kamen Riders realized that Shocker’s History Modifying Machine is not quite as destroyed as previously thought, but Shocker’s newest Rider cyborg that flies under Shocker’s flag confronts them, bringing with him legions of war planes. With other Kamen Riders under the hellish army’s flag, the Riders will be in for the fight of their lives.

Kamen Rider 4 is a great addition to the Kamen Rider Franchise and it finally asks the question of what happens to Go as anyone who seen Kamen Rider Drive knows hes still around by that series end. It’s worth watching but make sure you have seen Kamen Rider 3 film first.

REVIEW: KAMEN RIDER DRIVE

Kyoryuger vs. Go-Busters Dino Mecha

Starring

Ryoma Takeuchi (Detective Pikachu)
Rio Uchida (Chimamire Sukeban Chainsaw)
Taiko Katono (Gaki Rock)
Yu Inaba (Clone Baby)
Tsurutaro Kataoka (Sharaku)
Rei Yoshii (Kishiryu Sentai Ryusoulger)
Kenta Hamano (Segodon)
Taira Imata (Super Hero Taisen GP: Kamen Rider 3)
Yukihiro Takiguchi (Mahō Sentai Magiranger)
Kisuke Iida (SP)
Chris Peppler (Tokyo Eye)
Tomoya Warabino (First Kiss)
Shōta Matsushima (Godhand Teru)
Fumika Baba (Code Blue)
Masami Horiuchi (Long Dream)
Masakazu Morita (Tiger & Bunny)

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Recurring / Notable Guest Stars

Maari (Kamen Rider Gaim Gaiden: Kamen Rider Knuckle)
Masashi Shirai (Kamen Rider Kuuga)
Hitomi Isaka (Kamen Rider Girls)
Mitsuki Endo (Kamen Rider Girls)
Tomonori Mizuno (Please Please Please)
Kohei Yamamoto (Kamen Rider W Returns: Kamen Rider Accel)
Kenta Uchino (Kamen Rider Zero-One)
Isamu Ago (Kamen Rider W)
Toru Nomaguchi (SP)
Ulf Ōtsuki (Kamen Rider Super-1)
Haruka Suenaga (GoGo Sentai Boukenger)
Takaya Aoyagi (Ultraman Orb)
Yui Kato (Honey Spice)
Tareyanagi (Kamen Rider Den-O)
Shugo Nagashima (Kamen Rider Fourze)
Kazuyuki Tsumura (Kamen Rider Kiva)
Shun Nishime (Kamen Rider Ghost)
Hassei Takano (Kamen Rider: The First)

maxresdefaultSix months ago, various parts of Japan faced a brutal massacre under what was since then dubbed the “Global Freeze”. It birthed a phenomenon called “Slowdown” which would cause people to fall under a sort of neural lag in which the brain retains its average function and cognition, while the body becomes subject to extreme slow motion movement. The “Slowdown” crippled the populace as they met their deaths at the hands of cybernetic monstrosities known as Roidmudes, who began walking and blasting through commercial and residential areas without prejudice.
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In another ruined part of the city, a young Metropolitan PD cop had his hands full trying to apprehend thugs taking advantage of the chaos. However, as he readied his pistol to defend his partner from an incoming attack, a Slowdown wave overcame him. His pistol discharged just a second too soon as the bullet intended to stop an armed thug set off a flammable structure behind the young cop’s partner, his body flying off the upper railing of the construction site he stood upon. To make matters worse, a large pile of debris and steel beams came down upon the cop’s partner. The young cop could do nothing, powerless against the Slowdown as he watched his partner get crushed before his eyes.

The Roidmudes’ rampage would not last very long. From a distance, an expanding rail of RC car tracks began stretching throughout the affected area as three little cars the size of matchbox cars raced along the tracks and began destroying the Roidmudes with their own special powers of flames, spikes and illusory tricks. From the shadows, an armored humanoid appeared, brushing the rain away as he called for his automotive supports to return to him. Who is he? What were those little cars? What kind of state is Japan in now after facing such a catastrophe?

Kamen Rider Drive is the newest entry in the long-running Tokusatsu franchise produced by Toei Company. This entry goes in a more grounded area than most of the recent Heisei-era entries. Instead of having walking allegories of godhood or total caricatures for protagonists, we’re presented with a policeman by the name of Shinnosuke Tomari (played by Ryoma Takeuchi). With a slightly frumpy detective uniform and a red tie adorning his collar, he comes off as a real average Joe, a refreshing break from Deus Ex Machinas like Decade and Kabuto or monsters in human skin like Faiz and Kiva. Instead, we have a more classic type of hero that I’m sure long-time fans will appreciate.

Flash forward to the present. Slowdown awareness is a day-to-day issue for the status quo. Posters are everywhere reminding people to report any related incidents to the authorities. Our protagonist, Shinnosuke has been transferred to the Special Crimes Unit of the MPD following the Global Freeze. Since then, he’s become a listless, lazy man who often misses meetings or important information due to constantly playing hooky with his job and slacking off. The only other person able to deal with his laziness is his SCU co-worker Kiriko Shijima (played by Rio Uchida), who keeps constant tabs on Shinnosuke’s every move (complete with a notebook/checklist of all he does) in the hopes of getting him back on track as a policeman.

Aside from Kiriko and the rest of the SCU peanut gallery, we meet “Mr. Belt” (portrayed by radio personality Chris Peppler), a mysterious sentient attachment mostly present on the dashboard of Shinnosuke’s car, the Tridoron. A voice of encouragement to the traumatized cop, he aims to aid Shinnosuke in not only being free from his anguish of the past, but to also lend his power to Shinnosuke to become Kamen Rider Drive in his battle against the Roidmudes. We still don’t know how Mr. Belt or Tridoron came to be in Shinnosuke’s possession, but it can be assumed that whoever saved Japan six months ago chose him to continue the fight against the lag-switching baddies.

Drive’s general gimmick of miniature cars plays out interestingly. In his debut battle, Drive employs a “Tire Swap” in which he switches between several abilities based on the Shift Car used in his Shift Brace. Aside from his default Type: Speed car, he also uses Max Flare, Funky Spike and Midnight Shadow, each granting Drive access to projectile and melee supplements. His finisher Rider Kick is one of the most unique in a long time, one that has to be seen to truly enjoy.

I find Drive’s general design truly different. It exudes the traditional Rider feel in all the right places (bug-like eyes, bulky belt), but various aspects like the piping by the sides of his mouthpiece and the giant tire sash around his body are what really help its design stand out   As the series went on Drive, became one of the best entries in the Kamen Rider franchises, as we got to know the villains they weren’t evil they had feelings and emotions and turned out to be more human than some of the actual humans on the show. When Medic is introduced she brought a great dynamic to the show and some grace to the show. Kamen Rider will be missed I just hope Kamen Rider Ghost (the next season) will just as heartfelt as this one.
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REVIEW: Kamen Rider × Kamen Rider Drive & Gaim: Movie War Full Throttle

 

Starring

Gaku Sano (GTO)
Yutaka Kobayashi (Meiji Tokyo Renka)
Mahiro Takasugi (Ghostwriter)
Yuumi Shida (Saki)
Yuki Kubota (Garo: Makai Senki)
Tsunenori Aoki (Nekonin)
Gaku Matsuda (Kamen Rider Gaim)
Ryo Matsuda (Lychee Light Club)
Tomohisa Yuge (Sh15uya)
Metal Yoshida (Keizoku)
Ryoma Takeuchi (Detective Pikachu)
Rio Uchida (Chimamire Sukeban Chainsaw)
Taiko Katono (Gaki Rock)
Rei Yoshii (Kishiryu Sentai Ryusoulger)
Kenta Hamano (Segodon)
Taira Imata (Super Hero Taisen GP: Kamen Rider 3)
Chris Peppler (Tokyo Eye)
Tomoya Warabino (First Kiss)
Shōta Matsushima (Godhand Teru)
Tsurutaro Kataoka (Sada)
Yu Inaba (Clone Baby)

 

Kyoryuger vs. Go-Busters Dino Mecha

Kamen Rider Gaim: Advance to the Last Stage title

The film begins in the planet where Kouta Kazuraba and Mai Takatsukasa settled after the events of Kamen Rider Gaim when a mechanical life form who introduces itself as Megahex kidnaps Mai and fights Kouta while obtaining data from his memories, which he uses to open a portal to Earth in order to attack it. Despite using the power of the Kiwami Arms, Kamen Rider Gaim is defeated and seemingly destroyed by Megahex over the skies of Zawame City before the astonished eyes of the other Beat Riders. Mitsuzane Kureshima, being the only Rider left with his Sengoku Driver, fights Megahex and his forces as Kamen Rider Ryugen, but is forced to flee when the enemy summons a mechanical copy of Ryoma Sengoku, as Kamen Rider Duke Dragonfruit Energy Arms, that overpowers and injures him, but not without taking with him one of the Drivers used by his army of artificial Kurokage Troopers.

As Mitsuzane is treated by the other Beat Riders, he has a vision of Mai asking for help in his dreams and upon awakening, they find one of the Helheim Vines from which Takatora Kureshima obtains a Melon Lockseed, combining it with the Driver obtained from his brother to become Kamen Rider Zangetsu once again. In the next day, the Kureshima brothers return to fight back, with Zangetsu confronting and defeating Duke while Ryugen fights through an army of artificial Roidmudes to rescue Mai. Once the three are reunited, Mitsuzane entrusts a Melon Energy Lockseed to Takatora who uses it to become Kamen Rider Zangetsu Shin using the Genesis Driver he obtained from Ryoma’s body. However, Megahex empowers itself with the Kiwami Lockseed he got from Kouta’s body to fight them. Despite reclaiming the Lockseed, Mai and the Kureshima brothers are about to be killed by Megahex when a revived Kouta emerges from it. The three Riders then destroy Megahex with their power, just to find that it was only one of many copies of the real Megahex, whose core lies on the massive spaceship on the other side of the portal and watch helplessly as the copies spread.


Kamen Rider Drive: The Challenge from Lupin

The story then shifts back to some time before, as the police confronts a criminal known as “Phantom Thief Ultimate Lupin”, Shinnosuke Tomari and his partner Kiriko Shijima arrive at the scene and discovering that the thief is actually a Roidmude, Shinnosuke confronts it as Kamen Rider Drive, but fails to prevent it from escaping. In the next day a letter arrives at the Special Investigations Division with a challenge from Lupin, claiming that he will steal a precious artifact while it is being escorted by the police. Shinnosuke joins the escort, but once again fails to prevent Lupin from escaping. Having a hint of the enemy’s identity, Mr. Belt takes Shinnosuke to an abandoned mansion where they discover that Cyberoid ZZZ, an artificial Roidmude created by Krim is missing. Lupin then appears and reveals that he is actually ZZZ, who came to life upon coming into contact with an old, dying master criminal known as Zoruku Tojo. In the occasion, Chase arrives at the scene determined to destroy ZZZ, deeming him unfit as a Roidmude, but the enemy drives him away after transforming into Kamen Rider Lupin. Drive then fights Lupin just to be defeated as well and Mr. Belt sacrifices itself to protect Shinnosuke from a fatal blow, becoming unresponsive.

First appearance of Kamen Rider Mach

While being consoled by the Shift Cars, Shinnosuke has an idea and leaves in a rush. Some time later, a white-colored Kamen Rider appears at the Drive Pit in the middle of the night. In the next day, the Special Investigations Division receives another letter apparently sent from Lupin, but upon arriving at the place mentioned there, they are greeted by Shinnosuke, who reveals that he figured that at some moment Lupin switched places with Kiriko and is impersonating her since then. Lupin then reveals that the real Kiriko is held hostage somewhere else, and Shinnosuke must choose between chasing after him or rescuing his partner. Shinnosuke decides to chase after Lupin instead, and while Tridoron rescues Kiriko, Shinnosuke regains the ability to transform into Kamen Rider Drive once Mr. Belt awakens. Assisted by Kiriko and Tridoron, and with an unexpected help from Masshin Chaser, Drive defeats Lupin, but while Chaser departs, having the white Kamen Rider following him, ZZZ’s body is stolen by one of the Megahex copies who fuses itself with it becoming ZZZ Megahex, and Shinnosuke chases after him.

Movie War Full Throttle

Back to the present, Gaim, Ryugen and Zangetsu Shin confront an army of artificially created Inves and Roidmudes when Drive arrives to assist them. In response, ZZZ Megahex creates an artificial copy of Kaito Kumon to fight for him, but it rebels against him instead, transforming into Kamen Rider Baron. The Roidmudes Heart, Brain and Mashin Chaser also arrive to fight Megahex as well, discontent at him for stealing Roidmude technology. Leaving the enemy force to the others, Drive and Gaim fight ZZZ Megahex together, but the enemy regenerates upon taking their attacks, until Mai arrives and gives them the idea of combining their powers, producing the Shift Fruits Car and the Drive Lockseed, allowing the two Riders to use each other’s powers and destroy its body. However, ZZZ’s core remains intact and is sent to the Megahex mothership, prompting the two Riders to chase after it on an empowered Tridoron, which they use to reach the nucleus of the ship on the orbit of Jupiter and destroy it, defeating Megahex once and for all, while incapacitating the artificial Inves and Roidmudes, including the artificial Baron as well. After the battle, Kouta and Mai are about to return to their planet when they are approached by their friends, who appear to give them a proper farewell. Meanwhile, a Bat Viral Core containing Lupin’s memories, briefly appears before Shinnosuke, warning him that they will meet again.Kamen Rider Movie Wars Full ThrottleA good film, but a bit complex as it feels like a two part episode crossover, it all comes together in the end thou and its always nice to see riders teaming up