Doragon Bôru Z: Ora no Gohan wo Kaese
1989 / 41m - Japan
Action, Fantasy - Animation
Dragon Ball Z: Dead Zone poster


May 25, 2023


And this is where it all went southward. The first three Dragon Ball films were surprisingly fun, but they were all part of the old series. This fourth film is linked to the Z series, which is a very different beast. Gone is the lightness, replaced by more action and a stronger dedication to the plot and characters. Both are incredibly dumb and uninteresting, especially when forced to take them seriously.

The plot is as basic as can be. Young Gohan is kidnapped because of the dragon ball he wears on his head. Garlic Jr is behind the plot, as he needs all the dragon balls to wish for control over the entire universe. Garlic gets what he wants, but Son Goku and his friends band together to stop him in his tracks. It turns out that Gohan himself isn't exactly powerless either.

The art style is a big step down from the original. The animation isn't quite as good either, but still better than many similar projects of its era. The film itself is little more than a single, big fight, interrupted by uninteresting dialogue. Not my kind of anime, and I'm not sure if I'll get very far with the coming films.