Anime Review: Dragon Ball Z Movie Collection 3: Cooler’s Revenge & Return of Cooler

By Drew Hurley 03.12.2017

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Dragon Ball Z Movie Collection 3: Cooler's Revenge & Return of Cooler (UK Rating: 12)

Manga Entertainment is keeping up the regular combo packs of movies and the next in line is jumping to a particularly fan favourite point in the story. These next two films are set shortly after the end of the Frieza arc and both focus on the big brother of a diminutive monster. Dragon Ball Z Movie Collection 3 comes courtesy of Manga Entertainment and is available from 26th December. The first collection review can be read here and the second collection review is right here.

The first movie in this collection, Cooler's Revenge, gives the first glimpse into a different animation special, giving a glimpse into the series' history as Goku's father, Bardock, and the remainder of the Saiyan forces clashed against Frieza. After this flashback, the action jumps to after the close of the Frieza arc of DBZ. The Z fighters are back on Earth and once again off on a camping trip… they are more obsessed with camping than fighting! Goku, Gohan, Krillin, and movie mainstay Oolong head into the woods with Icarus when Cooler's forces show up on Earth. Despite there being no love lost between Cooler and Frieza, the insult of a Saiyan killing one of Cooler's family means he's out for revenge.

Cooler is pitched as even more powerful than his younger brother, and the battle in this first movie definitely lives up to the showdown at the climax of the Namek saga. It looks a little dated but it adds to the charm. The fight makes up the majority of the running time, with the supporting cast facing off against Cooler's corps while Goku struggles - even with Kaioken - to keep up with the new form Cooler has developed, something Frieza never mastered.


 
Despite taking out Cooler in the first film (spoilers? Surely the film title gives that away!), the second film, Return of Cooler, sees the Namekians, who have finally settled down on their new planet, suddenly attacked by a huge mechanical monstrosity. A planet-sized machine crashes down onto their planet and begins to extend robotic tentacles out to assimilate the world. At the same, robots begin to gather up the Namekians. Back on Earth, Dende senses the terror of his people and enlists the help of the Z Fighters to help them.

It turns out the machine absorbing new Namek is known as the Big Gete Star, a mysterious computer chip that travelled the universe absorbing any scrap technology it could find to grow. Along the way, the Star came upon the remains of Cooler and used the last scraps of his physical body to become something much darker and more powerful. This film is by far the best of all the Dragon Ball movies, thus far, for one simple reason: Vegeta. Yes, the Prince of the Saiyans and the best character is making his movie debut. The pink shirt rocking badman bursts onto the scene and, even though Kakarot can't deal with a little mechanical monster, Vegeta evens things out.

Both films come with Japanese and English dubs and it's always fun to watch both to experience the drastic difference between the personalities of Goku. In English, he is a Superman-esque protector of all that is good, standing up for the little man and defending the innocent. Meanwhile, the Japanese Goku is just a bit of an idiot that loves fighting. Once again, these movies are rather brief, clocking in at around 45 minutes each, and there are no bonus features other than a handful of trailers. This is one place these re-releases are failing horribly. It's a real missed opportunity not to include some features or interviews or commentaries or the like.

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10
Dragon Ball Z Movie Collection 3's Cooler's Revenge and Return of Cooler are instantly the best movies thus far, just from the introduction of the best character in the story. The two movies include some of the best battles so far and, while the stories are rather formulaic, they are certainly entertaining enough to keep the audience interested. There are more fun inclusions for any Dragon Ball fan's collection.

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