So, if you couldn’t tell by now, we kind of like anime here at Everyday Owl. Thus, it only made sense to pick an anime movie as June’s movie of the month. Plus, it was the first movie I saw in a real theater once they started opening up in my area, so it just felt right.
A Little Context on the Movie
The movie premiered in Japan on April 23rd, 2021, and later came to the States in May. I was surprised at how widely available the movie was. Usually, you have to go to big cities and very specific theaters to see anime movies on the big screen, but even my tiny local theater had a few showings.
Backstory on Demon Slayer
I’ll give you a quick rundown for anyone new to anime or who just hasn’t seen the series.
Demon Slayer the series follows siblings Tanjiro and Nezuko Kamado in the aftermath of a terrible attack on their family. During the attack, Nezuko was changed into a demon. Demons in this world are pretty similar to vampires. They usually attack/ eat humans, will burn under sunlight, and are crazy hard to kill, etc.
Tanjiro, being the amazing big brother he is, promises to take care of his sister and change her back into a human. To do so, he joins the Demon Slayer Corps and learns to fight- or slay- demons. While protecting his sister he also wants to stop anyone else from losing their families like he did. His goal is to find the demon who hurt his family and force him to change Nezuko back into a human.
Nezuko’s strong bond with her family makes her pretty unique. Unlike any other demon, she doesn’t want to hurt humans and doesn’t need their blood to survive. She’s not in her right mind but she still is able to recognize Tanjiro as her brother.
With the help of some other members of the Slayer Corps, Nezuko is able to adapt to demon life and use her new strength to help protect humans instead of hurting them.
During the siblings’ journey, they meet a couple of other young members of the Corps and become a team. The movie picks up where the first season of the show leaves off.
About the Movie (Finally)
Tanjiro and friends are tracking down a demon that has been targeting people on a train with the help of the Flame Hashira, Rengoku Kyojuro. (Hashira is a title in the Slayer Corps that basically means they’re the strongest in the Corps).
The movie’s animation was gorgeous, the fight scenes were incredible, and the characterization of the main cast was amazing. I cannot say enough good things about this movie as a fan of the anime series. It made me feel things. What those things were exactly, I can’t say without spoiling, but this is definitely a movie every anime fan should see.
A Wonderful, If Tragic Story
A small warning, though. Demon Slayer is not your typical happy-go-lucky, the-good-guys-never-lose type of series. It’s funny and beautiful but also gives viewers a bittersweet look into what it’s like to fight a losing battle. Of course, there are still plenty of victories, but they’re often tinged with a sense of loss.
The demons in the series often act as allegories for the negative emotions humans carry: greed, fear, lust for power, arrogance. As much as we struggle against those things, it is hard to get rid of them completely.
Even so, we aren’t without hope. Just like in real life, where we can try to be more compassionate and do good, the Slayer Corps exists to fight back too.
I would give Demon Slayer Mugen Train a rating of 5 demon trains out of 5.
It was a great addition to the Demon Slayer canon and a heart wrenching story. I highly recommend it.
Where To Watch
If you missed the theatrical release of Mugen Train, it is available to watch on Crunchyroll.com which is basically North America’s best anime streaming platform.
The series will continue with season two of the anime, and for anyone who wants to see what all the hype is about or maybe just re-watch the beautiful animation, the series is available on Crunchyroll or on Netflix if you have a subscription.
If you’re looking for something a little different to watch, check out our previous picks for Movie of the Month. Last month we watched Meet Joe Black! We also have some staple shonen anime recommendations for our fellow anime fans.
What movie should we watch next?