“What is this I don’t even…” is what I’d have said if I hadn’t watched End of Evangelion. After an amazing start, we have to realize that 14 years have passed since the end of Eva 2.0, which basically means 14 years of plot are missing and don’t even think of getting an explanation in the movie. The desperate Eva-Nerd is thrown into a completely new situation after analyzing and interpreting for years to understand enough of the series to feel highly sophisticated about it. No, Anno really didn’t give the fans what they wanted, or at least what they expected from the trailers at the end of Evangelion 2.0.
It’s a desolate world, there is no trace left of the social life, no schools, and as a matter of fact: no-slife-of-life scenes. Instead, we get a lot of meaningless Mari and Asuka-fanservice (not the ecchi sort though). And that’s all we get of them, no need for character development, or in Mari’s case, character. She has remained a waste of screen time, and so have the new characters introduced in the movie. The one with the pink hair caught my interest (yes, “only shallow people do not judge by appearances”), but I don’t expect her to be of any relevance in the following movie.
In retrospect, it is really interesting how the characters, one of the strongest point of EVA, have been portrayed so weakly. Ayanami being mute and lacking character is, of course, nothing I can blame her for. But all the effort of making her into an emotional human being is neglected in this movie. Then there is the long awaited appearance of Kaworu, rest assured fangirls. Yet, he didn’t leave much of an impression. Though his relationship with Shinji, still being as whiny as we know him, was the best kind of character interaction in the movie, which is rather sad. Then there is Fuyutsuki’s conversation with Shinji, releaving him the truth about his mother, a great attempt, but the expected mindfuck was rather disappointing.
When did EVA stop to be an allegory depicting characters and their problems with society and themselves? I guess with the start of the Rebuild-Movies.
Apart from philosophical and psychological themes, there is still the good old plot: the Human Instrumentality Project, Adam, Lilith aso. This movie means a good piece of work, even or especially for people like me who stockpile their EVA theories, only to get them messed up by Anno every time. 3.0 is truly confusing, not only because 14 years of information is not revealed to the audience. Too much happened, and it will take time to figure things out. Of course we’ll never figure them out completely, but there is a lot to be found out and that’s what makes EVA worthwhile, even after 18 years since the start of the series.
This movie was a disappointment. I have to admit, I didn’t expect the Freudian depth of the original series. Nor did I want to see End of Evangelion being redone. I didn’t expect 3.0 to become as good as 2.0 either.
Yet, I didn’t get what I wanted, but isn’t that why I’m watching Anno?
I’m one of the few people that don’t hate him because of that.