Monday, February 20, 2012

Professor Layton and the Eternal Diva

As you've all probably guessed by now, I love a lot of things. Games, franchises, shows, movies, songs....there's a lot of love going around. I love the Layton games. The puzzles, character development, voice acting and amazingly animated cut scenes are fantastic. So when I found out there was a movie, I jumped all over it like.....well, like anything else I jump on quickly.
Sadly I only just got around to watching it now with everything that's been going on, and boy, it's amazing. I recommend this movie to anyone, not just Layton fans. The way the movie starts out, it quickly explains who everyone is and how they connect to each other, with more connections being explained as more people are introduced, so you never get confused or feel like you're missing something important. For people who have played through all the games, it doesn't bore you and some cameos and references are made, as well as a few familiar twists that are to be expected of anything with the Layton name on it.
The story is that a former assistant of Prof. Layton's is a famous opera singer named Janice who has a mystery for him to solve about her dead friend Melina and how it seems she was reborn or granted eternal life in another body. Yet when he goes to talk to Janice after the play, it seems there are bigger things afoot. A masked man appears and tells everyone that they must play a game and solve his puzzles. The last person standing wins eternal life. The people who lose, lose their life. At this point, people start freaking out, but the masked man anticipated this. The theater is actually a ship, which sets sail amid shark infested waters, preventing anyone from leaving. Your choice is play or die.
I'm going to skip past the animation and voice acting since there isn't really anything to say about it, both are as top notch as ever and in the style of the games that came before. Starting with the puzzles. Now this is a movie, so you would think interactive puzzles don't work that way. I'll go into detail on just the first one.
Everyone is still standing or sitting in the theater still, roof open to the night sky when a mysterious booming voice comes out of nowhere

"Ladies and gentlemen, now we are all passengers together on the Crown Petone, it is time for our little puzzle-solving game to begin. The rules are very simple; the winner, meaning the last player left, receives Eternal Life. Let us begin.
Puzzle Number 001: Look around you, ladies and gentlemen. Look for the oldest thing you can see and gather by it. Sounds simple, but there is a catch.When the music stops, your time is up. If you want Eternal Life, then there's no time to lose."
The ship just so happens to be full of artifacts, fossils and other things which are immeasurably old, and we cut to scenes of people choosing different artifacts to stand by in hopes of winning. By now you should have guessed what the answer is, but they give you a bit more time before Layton tells Luke the answer is the stars you can only see in the theater itself.
Rewinding a little bit, I just have to say I couldn't stop laughing when the voice came on and said it was puzzle 001. And he does that for all of the puzzles, I love it!
Moving on to the character development. Nearly all of it is dedicated to Janice, Melina and her father Oswald Whistler and the relationship they each have together. I'm not going into this since it spoils the plot and you should all go see this movie.

Lastly, a few comments I had while watching the movie.
"Why do all the villain's "houses" in Layton games have second forms?"
"....You know Tayron, all of these villains always make so much trouble for Layton, but he STILL helps them out in the end when the plan goes wrong because they were too stupid to look underneath the underneath. Why can't they just ask him for help in the beginning, you know, since he's going to HELP THEM ANYWAY!"

"Wow. This man can play musical instruments, build different mechanical objects, solve way out there puzzles, rock a top hat and is an archaeologist? Why is he still single-oh yeah, his girlfriend blew up, then returned and accidentally crushed his heart into little pieces 10 years later. No wonder he's single."
Hope you enjoyed!

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