Fate/stay night: Heaven’s Feel – III. Spring Song

Fate/stay night: Heaven’s Feel – III. Spring Song

Fate/stay night: Heaven's Feel - III. Spring Song anime movie cover art
Fate/stay night: Heaven’s Feel – III. Spring Song

Movie Overview

Fate/stay night: Heaven’s Feel – III. Spring Song (劇場版「Fate/stay night [Heaven’s Feel] III.spring song」) is the final movie in the Heaven’s Feel trilogy. The first movie is Presage Flower and the second movie is Lost Butterfly.

By this point in the route, it’s been established that Sakura Matou is the antagonist. The first movie set up the Holy Grail War, and the second movie set up Sakura’s character. Now, we follow Shirou as he teams up with Rin, Illya, and Medusa to save Sakura from herself.

You’ll notice that I said Medusa is on Shirou’s side here, not Artoria. That’s something I liked a lot about this movie. Although Artoria was corrupted in Presage Flower and was an antagonist in Lost Butterfly, I assumed that Shirou would somehow bring her back over to his side in Spring Song.

Artoria Alter (Saber) from the anime movie Fate/stay night: Heaven's Feel - III. Spring Song
Artoria Alter (Saber)

However, Artoria never came back. She remained as an antagonist. What this means is that Shirou and Sakura effectively traded servants. Shirou has Medusa and Sakura has Artoria. I liked this because I think Artoria is a way better antagonist than she is a protagonist.

I know a lot of people really like Artoria. But to me, she’s extremely bland. At least when she’s an antagonist, she’s a very formidable opponent. And, I like Medusa as a protagonist more than an antagonist.

The problem with Medusa being an antagonist is that she tends to get defeated extremely easily. For example, Artoria one-shots her in Presage Flower. But as a protagonist, Medusa actually gets a chance to show what she’s capable of. So, this switch, I feel, brings out the best in both Artoria and Medusa.

Best Action of the Trilogy

Spring Song easily had the best action of the trilogy. I remember Presage Flower had some good action with Artoria vs. Medusa and Cu vs. Hassan. And while Lost Butterfly’s Artoria vs. Heracles was cool, I don’t really like the animation effects on Heracles.

But, Spring Song really had the best of everything. It still had cool Heracles action like Lost Butterfly. And it also had an amazing rematch between Artoria and Medusa. Honestly, the Artoria vs. Medusa fight in this movie alone is probably enough to make this movie the best of the three.

As I just explained, Artoria is way cooler as an antagonist because she’s so powerful and intimidating. And Medusa didn’t get one-shot this time because she’s on Shirou’s side. We actually got to see Medusa use her mystic eyes and Noble Phantasm. It was an awesome fight, and that’s the best part of any Fate anime.

Medusa (Rider) from the anime movie Fate/stay night: Heaven's Feel - III. Spring Song
Medusa (Rider)

Going back to Heracles for a moment, I also want to point out how much I liked his “death.” I think Shirou is a dumb character so having him defeat Heracles was pretty lame, even if he wasn’t really Shirou in that moment. He was a Shirou/Emiya (the servant) hybrid.

But, anyway, I loved that we got to see a glimpse of Heracles without his madness enhancement. I’ve wanted a non-Berserker Class Heracles in Fate/Grand Order for a very long time. Seeing Heracles’s personality show through just before he disappeared in this movie just made me want him even more.

Oh, and since this section is about the action in the movie, we also got some pretty decent action at the end. I didn’t really care too much for the Shirou vs. Kirei fight. But, Rin vs. Sakura wasn’t bad even if it wasn’t much of a fight.

The Hentai Plot Is Gone

Easily the best part of Spring Song was that the hentai plot of Lost Butterfly was gone. Presage Flower didn’t have that kind of plot. It was just Lost Butterfly that was the problem. And because of that, I think the trilogy would actually be better if Lost Butterfly was cut out.

Sure, there are still parts of Lost Butterfly that are important, such as the reveal that Sakura is the corrupt Grail. But overall, I think Lost Butterfly was a waste of time. Spring Song fixes everything wrong with Lost Butterfly simply by dropping the hentai part of the plot.

It’s kind of crazy how a simple change in Sakura’s character can have such a drastic effect. I couldn’t take her seriously in Lost Butterfly because she was so horny 24/7. But remove that aspect of her character, and suddenly she becomes a tragic antagonist who you’re rooting for to be saved.

Rin Tohsaka using the Jeweled Sword Zelretch from the anime movie Fate/stay night: Heaven's Feel - III. Spring Song
Rin Tohsaka using the Jeweled Sword Zelretch

I’d also argue that Rin becomes a better character in this movie, as well. I’ve always liked Rin. But since Heaven’s Feel is Sakura’s route, Rin takes a bit of a back seat and didn’t get much development in the first two movies.

That changes in Spring Song because Rin and Sakura are linked as sisters. We get to see Rin step up as the older sister to bring down her younger sister. And while Rin didn’t succeed with this in the end (because she didn’t want to kill Sakura), I still really enjoyed seeing her conviction.

As a shounen battle series fan, there’s just something I love about seeing a hero break out their biggest attack. That’s precisely what Rin did when she pulled the Jeweled Sword Zelretch. She doesn’t even need to truly fight with it; simply the fact that she flexes on Sakura with it is enough to be cool.

Conclusion

Fate/stay night: Heaven’s Feel – III. Spring Song is an 8/10 from me. That’s the same score I gave to Presage Flower, but I think this movie is definitely the better of the two. And it’s way better than Lost Butterfly.

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