an anime character with spikey brown hair surrounded by pink flames

Demon Slayer the Movie: Mugen Train by Katherine Giroux, 17


Image credit: Funimation

BALTIMORE, MD– In December of 2020, Demon Slayer the Movie: Mugen Train became Japan’s highest-grossing film ever when it hit 313.7 million USD. However, the animated film managed to beat its own record when it became 2020’s highest grossing film internationally. Mugen Train pulled in over 500 million USD globally, topped box office revenues in Japan and the US, and pocketed many prodigious Japanese film awards in just six months. What’s more, every achievement feels all the more impressive considering the film was released during the COVID-19 pandemic, a time when most people were not generally going out to theatres. So what made the movie so successful?

Part of the film’s success may be owing to Ufotable, the studio that adapted Demon Slayer’s manga for a televised first season and then the big screen. Stunning animation and action sequences distinctly set apart the franchise from its competitors, with a vibrant color palette that brought the mysterious and terrifying world of the demon slayers to life. In addition to unique visuals, worldbuilding, character development and design, Demon Slayer’s serious themes and musical scores also contribute to its success as one of Ufotable’s best works.

It should be noted that the film is rated R in the US due to “violence and bloody images,” so even though it’s animated, please proceed with caution. The subject matter also becomes rather intense at times. Japan only rates the film PG-12, but that’s not to say the R rating is unjustified. Violence is nearly constant, but for those who enjoy action – and can stomach it – Demon Slayer remains a thrilling watch.

If you have not watched Demon Slayer the Movie: Mugen Train yet, it is certainly worth your time, though you should be advised that this film is actually a sequel to a television show. The movie should be preceded by the television show for context’s sake. At this time, only one season has been released, but another is fast approaching, so before the second season drops, be sure to catch up on anything you might have missed. Swords, monsters, and magic await!

Demon Slayer Season 1 is available for streaming on Netflix and Hulu.

Demon Slayer the Movie: Mugen Train is available for streaming on Funimation and for purchase on Amazon.

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