Film RED came out some ten days ago in Japan and France, and having seen the film, I wanted to discuss in depth all its events and big spoilers. Given how the spoiler embargo is now over, let’s talk about all the juicy things that happened in this film. Of course, be warned that THIS OBVIOUSLY INCLUDES FULL SPOILERS FOR ALL OF FILM RED. CHECK HERE FOR A SPOILER FREE REVIEW.
ALSO, ALL THE EVENTS HERE ARE RECALLED FROM MEMORY FROM THE CINEMA SHOWING. WHILE I AM CONFIDENT ABOUT THE ACCURACY OF MOST OF THIS INFORMATION, I CANNOT MAKE SURE TO CHECK IF EVERYTHING IS COMPLETELY ACCURATE SINCE I’M GOING FROM MEMORY. BY READING THIS YOU UNDERSTAND I DO NOT TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANYTHING THAT IS MENTIONED HERE OR HOW YOU INTERPRET IT.
Let’s begin with a complete summary of the movie. If you prefer it, you can also view this in video format here.
The movie begins with a narration: wealth, fame, power. With the beginning of the Great Pirate Era, many pirates were able to flourish and explore the world. However, in turn, this also resulted in the suffering of many citizens. We get a reel showing recordings of several citizens around the world mentioning how much they’ve suffered from the violence of pirates and how much they’ve lost because of them, begging to the one watching to help them. We pan out to see that these are all comments that Uta has been receiving through den den mushi from her viewers, as she contemplates all the people suffering while she snacks on a mushroom.
Uta prepares herself as thousands of people are gathering just outside at Elegia Island, where the New Genesis live concert is about to begin. The Straw Hats are cooking a barbecue in one of the special seats in the front rows, with some of them explaining to get the audience caught up that Uta is the world’s greatest and most famous singer, with Brook saying that he can’t even compare as Soul King. Uta has attained massive fame by streaming her songs via den den mushi, however, now she is performing for the first time on a live stage in front of an audience and thousands of people from all over the world came to support her. The lights go dark on stage and Uta appears, with the crowd chanting “U-T-A”, so Uta begins to sing Shin Jidai (New Era), the first of her songs.
As her musical number ensues, a gigantic birdcage appears around everyone in the concert hall, and soon after cute animals and objects appear around the air as if everyone was living inside of a music video, which some realize is likely coming from Uta’s devil fruit powers. These combine to make an incredible concert experience as everyone becomes immersed in Uta’s music with all the special effects of her powers. We see that people from all over the world are watching her concert too on den den mushi livestream, including Woop Slap and the others at Foosha Village, the cooks at the Baratie, Drum Island, people at Sabaody on the same screens they watched the Summit War on, etc.
Finally as her musical number ends, Uta greets the audience and mentions how she wants to usher in a New Era that will put a stop to the violence of pirates, in a world where everyone will be happy for all of eternity. She declares how today is the day she’ll start this New Era and deliver joy to everyone through her music.
As Uta was performing, Luffy seemed to recognize her, so as the song ends, he swings up on stage and looks at her up close, exclaiming how he knows her. People are surprised to see someone jumped on stage, but recognize his straw hat and the guy on stage as the “fifth emperor”. Uta takes a second and notices Luffy’s face as her hair perks up, so the two tearfully embrace each other in a hug. Sanji grits his teeth in jealousy. Luffy’s crew is surprised that he knows Uta so personally that they would hug, but Luffy casually explains that it’s because she’s Shanks’s daughter, causing the entire auditorium to go in shock. Uta is mildly annoyed that Luffy dropped that fact when she was trying to keep it a secret, but just dismisses it as it’s not too big of a deal.
A group of pirates called the Jellyfish Pirates start moving from the audience to close in on Uta, claiming that given her fame, they can gain a lot off of kidnapping her. After Luffy drops that she is Shanks’s daughter, they’re even more pleased, as they can hold hostage someone who is incredibly close and important to one of the Yonko to leverage things out of him. As they surround her, Uta seems fairly unfazed by their threats, but as soon as they try to get in closer, suddenly Charlotte Oven jumps in from the crowd and sends some of them flying with his “Heat Denasshi” attack. Oven pulls out a mirror from where Brûlée comes out and they announce that Big Mom has shown interest in kidnapping Uta.
Luffy and the others jump in to protect Uta, with the Straw Hats showing a bunch of their moves with a lot of cool animation shots. The Jellyfish Pirates are easily disposed of by them, though Oven puts up a bit of a fight. Jinbe creates a giant shark made of water and rides against Oven, but Oven negates the attack with his heat, so Franky jumps in to clash against him. However, just as things are getting heated, Uta raises her hand asking everyone to stop. She thanks Luffy for the help, but she asks him to let her handle things.
Uta asks the Big Mom Pirates and the Jellyfish Pirates to stop being pirates and just get along together and have fun with the joy of singing, saying she’s willing to forgive their previous bad actions if they accept to live in peace together from now on. The pirates obviously dismiss this idea, with Oven stating how there is no peace in this world, but Uta accepts their refusal and begins singing Watashi wa Saikyo (I’m the Best).
As she does, colorful objects and effects appear around her again, just like in a music video. Uta transforms into her armor from the trailers, which has a crown that looks an awful lot like Imu’s (which the film booklet also hints at, interestingly enough). She dances around the arena, using music notes to attack and strings in the shape of music sheet to entrap her enemies.
Within a second, she instantly defeats Oven and Brûlée by wrapping them up in strings, as well as the Jellyfish Pirates, hanging all of them up on a music sheet in the air. Uta starts flying around the stage as she keeps singing while Luffy is really impressed that she’s gotten that much stronger. The audience is glad to see that despite being Shanks’s daughter and hesitating for a second, she’s still on the side of good and willing to defeat evil pirates.
After the song is over, we cut to Whole Cake Island, where Big Mom, sporting a new outfit, is watching the live show alongside Perospero, Smoothie, Citron, Cinnamon, Amande, Nusstorte, and Flampé. Big Mom is impressed Uta was able to stand up to Oven that easily, but is now even more interested in capturing her, not just for her devil fruit powers, but also for her connections to Shanks. Perospero also mentions how this would be a good opportunity to get some pay back against the Straw Hats given her connections with Luffy as well. Someone appears from behind them and says they’ll go to Elegia Island since they want to save their little sister. This is shown to be Katakuri.
Meanwhile we cut to Mary Geoise, where the Gorosei are observing the concert as well, though they have muted the audio for some reason. They are intrigued that Uta is the daughter of Shanks, but mention that the Cipher Pol has already confirmed this fact. The sword-wielding Gorosei mentions that this would mean she’s from the “Figarland Family” (In Japanese it’s フィガーランド, which could vary depending on the translation). This would imply that this is due to her being Shanks’s daughter, implying (even if not fully confirming) that Shanks is of the Figarland Family, which could even be his surname. The way this is framed could potentially also imply they are referring to a Celestial Dragon family, particularly when tied with information later in the movie, but this isn’t really stated directly in any way so we can only speculate about it.
They also refer to Uta as another bud of revolution that poses a threat during this era and how she is particularly dangerous because the masses all support her and believe in her. More than anything though, they are concerned by Uta’s abilities and her connection with a weapon from ancient times (seemingly not related to the three ancient weapons from the main story, but still considered a weapon of equal power to those, capable of “destroying the world”) that lies dormant in Elegia Island, called “Tot Musica” (literally meaning “All Music” in some languages). We cut to Sakazuki at New Marineford who is also concerned about the situation, summoning thirty Marine battleships (basically the equivalent to three buster calls!) to completely annihilate Uta and the threat she poses. Kizaru wonders if it’s overkill to send so many ships, but Sakazuki tells him not to underestimate Uta’s power. Kizaru and Fujitora head to take care of Uta alongside the fleet.
MEMORIES OF LOST TIMES
Meanwhile, Uta takes advantage of break time in her concert to talk a bit with Luffy. She and Luffy always used to partake in duels together, with Luffy claiming he’s held a 183-win record, though Uta is certain Luffy is misremembering because she’s the one who holds that record. The two decide to settle another duel: a challenge where they have to finish food as quickly as they can before a bull Uta created runs them over.
Luffy is confident about being able to eat faster, but Uta magically creates a giant mug of orange juice and gives it to Luffy to distract him (just like Shanks did in Chapter 1, which is a nice reference), keeping him busy enough for her to finish and to be hit by the bull. Luffy falls into water, but Uta pulls him out really easily with her powers, apologizing because she didn’t take into account that he’s a pirate now. Uta teases Luffy by telling him “you lost again!” as she does a cute pose where she gropes her fingers as she smiles.
Meanwhile, while Sanji is cooking, he notices among the food ingredients he was provided by the island a strange mushroom, but he throws it away in the can as he realizes what type of mushroom it is. Random detail, but in the background, Robin is gracefully drinking from a glass of champagne.
Uta takes advantage of winning the duel and asks Luffy where Shanks is getting up close in his face, but Luffy says he doesn’t know. She brings up the hat, but Luffy says Shanks simply left it with him before he left. As Nami inquires about Luffy and Uta’s relationship, we get a flashback of Luffy and Uta during their childhood and the time they spent together. We see how they used to engage in silly duels of all types for a long while, showing us a duel just like the one they did right now in the present, where Uta won by offering Luffy orange juice and distracting him enough to win.
Makino tried to stop them, but Shanks decided to just watch since it’s just a duel. As she won, Uta teased Luffy again with the same cute pose, but Luffy got mad that he lost and tried to battle it out with Uta. As the two readied to punch each other by flailing their arms in circles, Shanks came in to stop them both by hitting them on the heads with his sword’s guard and asked them to get along. As the two kids kept arguing, Uta pulled the fact that she’s “Shanks’s favorite child” and hugged his leg, but Luffy got jealous and hugged Shanks’s leg as well. Shanks let the two kids climb on his back as they kept bickering like siblings. Luffy brought up how it’s odd that Uta calls Shanks by his first name, but she mentions how she calls him she calls him that way because she’s not just her father, but also the captain she admires. Luffy asked Shanks again to bring him to sea like he did so often at the start of the manga, but Shanks refused, explaining that Uta is different because she was already experienced in sailing since she was a kid, compared to Luffy who had no experience. Uta agreed and proudly declared herself as the musician of the Red-Haired Pirates. Everyone gathered around for her to perform, so Uta began to sing Kaze no Yukue (Where the Wind Blows), where everyone ended up transported into a world of memories and emotions. Suddenly the song stopped though, as Luffy woke up, realizing he was asleep all along. However, as he looked around, he noticed everyone else was mysteriously asleep too. He noticed Uta also fell asleep herself, so he decided to begin singing himself instead.
Nami wonders about how Luffy and Uta got separated though, but suddenly Uta seems to freeze up. Luffy tries really hard to jog his memory, but he recalls and explains that one day 12 years ago, as Shanks’s crew returned, everyone was awfully silent and refused to talk to Luffy. At that point, Luffy dismissed them for being so aloof and said that at least Uta would greet him warmly. However, Uta was not on the ship that day. As Shanks disembarked, Luffy asked him what went wrong, but Shanks commented how Uta decided to leave somewhere to devote herself to becoming a songstress, assuring him that she would be fine.
Back to the present, Uta asks what Luffy’s doing at the moment, which of course Luffy replies he’s a pirate, adding that he’ll become the Pirate King. Uta freezes up for a moment and starts shaking, but she tries to regain her composure as she asks Luffy to stop being a pirate.
She says he and his crew can all just hang out with her on this island and share in the joy for all of eternity. Luffy however just walks away and ignores her, as Uta grows impatient and angrier. Luffy simply says that it’s only fair Uta should do what she wants, and he should do what he wants. He says he’s glad to have seen her again and bids her goodbye, but Uta refuses and states that she absolutely can’t let him go. Uta shows a smirk on her face as her eyes begin to look more deranged, making it apparent that, surprise surprise, Uta is a bit of a yandere and is the villain of the movie.
Nami tells Uta to calm down, that even if they like her music staying for all of eternity is a bit too much, but Uta pushes her away with a music note. Sanji tries to save Nami but Uta captures the two of them into a music sheet just like she did with Oven and hangs them up for the audience to see. Uta begins singing Gyakko (Backlight), sprouting two wings with her powers as she summons a horde of “Music Note Knights” with her powers who start fighting the Straw Hats.
Luffy gets in his gear second pose to fight Uta, but then realizes something and stops. He pulls his hat down, imitating Shanks, and says there are some fights not worth fighting.
Uta gets angry but tells Luffy to suit himself as she unleashes her powers on the other Straw Hats. They all fight back, but little by little, despite showing some opposition, are very easily folded in front of Uta, who uses her strings to stick them all to the music sheet alongside Nami and Sanji. Luffy finally decides to try fighting back when his crewmates are in danger, but Uta uses her strings to tie him up and thrown him on stage, where Luffy is covered in water that some viewers dump on him. Uta asks the crowd if these “evil pirates” should be punished, as the crowd chants “U-T-A” in unison, wanting revenge for the pirates that destroyed their lives, even if Usopp begs her that Luffy doesn’t commit crimes like that. Uta does the same cute pose on Luffy again, saying “you lost again!”.
Among the crowd, an undercover Helmeppo tries to go after Luffy, but Koby says not to worry. It’s not clear if this is implying that Koby has future sight, or just really good prediction abilities, but on two occasions he is able to tell what will happen. Sure enough, before Uta can attack Luffy, suddenly a barrier is erected around Luffy, and Bartolomeo, who was also a fan of Uta and showed up at the concert, mentions how he is happy to help his boss out. The two of them then suddenly vanish as a rock appears and falls in their place.
FORMULATING A PLAN
Away from the stage, on another side of Elegia Island closer to the city, Luffy and Barto suddenly appear. Turns out that it was Law who saved them with his powers. Barto mocks Law and says how he’s a closet idol fan, but Law says he only showed up to chaperone someone else… as Bepo appears in full idol fan gear and of course, immediately apologizes.
The four of them begin moving away to safety as Uta appears and follows after them with a music-designed tank and an army of her followers in tow. Among them, Koby, Helmeppo, and Blueno from CP0 have infiltrated, who were undercover at the concert to assess Uta’s threats. The two of them are concerned with
the fact they are rivals, being from SWORD and CP AIGIS 0, but they decide to work together given the importance of the crisis. Koby asks Blueno if they can rely on his Doa Doa no Mi powers, but Blueno mentions how they are limited by his stamina, so he can’t go too crazy with them beyond a certain limit.
The island is suddenly swarmed with Music Note Knights, who are looking all over for Luffy in the air. As Luffy’s team seeks shelter, the mysterious man Gordon suddenly appears, and invites them to take refuge in a ruined church. He introduces himself as the former King of Elegia. Barto is surprised he can be a king when the island is in ruins, but Law explains how Elegia was once known as the world’s “Capital of Music”, until a certain pirate came 12 years ago and annihilated all on the island overnight. Uta, who had been left behind, was then raised by Gordon, the sole survivor, to become the best singer there is, but Uta was in a really bad mental state due to a certain trauma from her past and struggled to find any motivation. However, one day 3 years ago, Uta found a bunch of discarded den den mushi at the shore. Curiously, on those den den mushi are three letters: SSG, or “Super Science Group”.
Uta then decided to use those den den mushi to broadcast herself to the whole world, which brought hope back again into her life as she saw how much her music helped people. At the same time though, it exposed her to how much some suffered because of pirates all around the world, which led to Uta developing hatred for pirates, on top of her past trauma. Gordon however gets mad because Luffy is playing around with a pile of rubble trying to form a mountain rather than listening to him, while Bepo accidentally activates the music lights on his back and apologizes …twice in a row.
Gordon pleads Luffy to help stop Uta since he’s so close to her, but as Law tries to think of a plan, he is bothered by Bepo’s noises once again. He however realizes Bepo has been turned into a chibi-like mascot who keeps making noises and saying his name like a Pokémon.
Uta suddenly bursts into the room and it turns out she’s the one who transformed him with her powers. Uta steals Luffy’s straw hat from him, calling it a symbol of piracy, with Luffy asking in turn just what went on with Shanks for her to act like this. Uta however snaps as she orders Luffy to not mention Shanks’s name anymore and tries to capture him, but Law takes him and Bartolomeo away with his abilities to save them once again.
Uta is angry, but just tells her followers to hunt after them, as it’ll be a “fun game”. Uta apologizes to Gordon, who was left behind with Bepo, for not telling him about the live concert she threw. Gordon says the concert isn’t the problem, but mentions how he’s realized her true plan and begs her to stop, but Uta traps him in a music sheet. Gordon tells her he’s just concerned because there’s no way the Government will sit back and do nothing. Uta however dismisses it with a smile and says she can handle them no problem, as she brings out a music sheet. The music sheet is very old, and at the top of it is a symbol that looks almost identical to Doflamingo’s jolly roger (without the eyepatch though, so closer to Law’s flag) and above it the text “Tot Musica”. Gordon suddenly grows pale and tells her in a panic that she mustn’t awaken it at any costs, but Uta is angry that Gordon hid this music sheet away, meaning he didn’t trust her, so she just dismisses his pleas as she walks away.
Luffy wants to go back to Uta to get his hat back, but Law says they must think of a plan. Bartolomeo encases Luffy in a barrier ball to make sure he is protected from Uta’s powers or an ambush at all costs, but as they roll around in the barrier, they accidentally fall of a cliff and are catapulted far away. Luffy gets motion sick by all the spinning, but they end up crashing by the piers. Meanwhile, Koby makes use of Blueno’s powers to rescue the Straw Hats, and teaches them the trick to break free from the music sheets, which is to play the respective note they are assigned to. Oven pleads to save them too and agrees to cooperate with the Marines for their freedom. Meanwhile, at the church, Gordon does the same, and manages to break free of Uta’s powers thanks to making chibi Bepo play the right note.
Back at the pier, Luffy is shocked to see that the Thousand Sunny has mysteriously disappeared, meaning they can’t escape the island, but in its place is Sunny-kun, a small anthropomorphic version of the Sunny that has been transformed by Uta’s powers into a mascot. Bartolomeo finds it odd however that no Marines have showed u
p despite all that’s happened, as he sees no ships in the distance. However, we then cut to a different scenario where the island is somehow surrounded with Marine ships and the weather is stormy (unlike how it was sunny in the previous scene). Mysteriously, the Straw Hats, Law, Barto, Koby, Blueno, etc. are all sleeping at the arena, at complete odds with the scenario we saw before. Clearly, something is going on.
As Bartolomeo and Luffy reunite with Law, Koby then shows up in front of them with Blueno’s powers. Law is surprised he was able to find them, but Koby mentions how he has very good Observation Haki. Koby then explains the intel the Government has on Uta’s fruit, elaborating that she ate the Uta Uta no Mi (Song Song Fruit), a fruit that allows her to entrap all those who hear her music into a virtual dream world that she has full control over, basically allowing her to manipulate it as if it were a music video. This virtual dream world is a parallel world identical to the normal one, but exists on a separate parallel plane where Uta can modify its properties at will. As explained above, she can basically affect anything in real time as if it were a music video, making her practically omnipotent within her world. Her powers as we see them include being able to generate items out of thin air, transform people into cute chibi mascots, trap people in music sheets, summon Music Note Knights, and attack people with music note-like attacks, though she can only control reality within range of her vicinity. She can also negate most attacks like bullets or impacts too. This explains why she was able to overwhelm so many fighters so easily, because from the second the concert started, all the people on the island where entrapped in her dimension (when the birdcage appeared) by hearing her singing voice. However, the important thing is that only the consciousnesses of those affected travel to the virtual world, while their real bodies remain in the real world, but asleep. The body of anyone who has been trapped within the dream world can be freely manipulated by Uta in the real world while they sleep, allowing her to command all the bodies of those she trapped like an army of sleeping puppets, while their consciousnesses are trapped in a virtual world that they can’t leave. Furthermore, you know how it goes, you die in the game, you die in real life, so people affected have to be careful they don’t die either in the virtual world or that their bodies are killed in the real world while they’re asleep. Luffy mentions that “oh yeah that’s how Uta’s powers work”, as she already had her devil fruit back when they were kids (hence why they all fell asleep when she sang), but the others get angry at him for not bringing it up before.
Law mentions that there has to be a weakness to the devil fruit, and Blueno affirms that indeed all devil fruits have one weakness or another. Just like his Doa Doa no Mi, the Uta Uta no Mi requires a lot of stamina to use, so it’s hard to be kept continuously. Furthermore, every time the user falls asleep, all the people that were trapped in the dream world are released. However, Uta has managed to find a way to circumvent this weakness. Uta has been consuming a drug known as the “insomnia mushroom” (the same that Sanji found among his ingredients), a mushroom that stops someone from falling asleep when eaten. Since Uta has been eating them since before the live concert, she can’t fall asleep, essentially trapping everyone within her dream world forever. However, the mushroom has the side effect that it starts affecting one’s sanity after a while due to sleep deprivation, and continuous consumption leads to the body weakening from the lack of sleep, eventually causing death.
Law is relieved to hear that, because it means they will be able to break free if she dies, but Luffy is mad because he doesn’t want Uta to die. However, Koby mentions the grim reality that if the user of this fruit dies while their powers are active, then everyone remains trapped in the virtual world forever. This is in reality Uta’s true master plan, as she wanted to use the mushrooms to keep everyone trapped within the virtual world and eventually die so they could all live away from violent pirates and the troubles of the Government to get along in this world of joy and happiness forever. Of course this is a very naive goal, but all the comments Uta has received across the years caused her to become obsessed with making this idea a reality. Luffy and the others are concerned by this turn of events, but Koby says he sent the Straw Hats to investigate the archives of Elegia castle to find some way to escape this world, so Luffy feels relieved since he can count on his crew.
DESCENT INTO MADNESS
Meanwhile in the real world, Uta is by herself in the music stage as somber rain falls down, while everyone around her is asleep on the ground, trapped in her world. The Marines finally arrive as Momonga is shocked to see everyone asleep, wondering if they are all dead, but Uta reassures him they’re all just asleep. Uta is carrying a basket with Luffy’s straw hat in it and a bunch of insomnia mushrooms, but is completely unfazed by all the Marines around her as she seems to be starting to lose her grip on reality as she shakily bites into a mushroom.
Fujitora recognizes the smell of the insomnia mushrooms and catches onto Uta’s plan, asking her to release everyone, but Uta refuses. Fujitora realizes Uta won’t listen to reason and sees himself forced to resort to violence, but Uta isn’t afraid of even the Admirals as she can just trap them in her world, so she begins to sing. However, all the Marines put on visors with a red light that shield their sight and plug their ears, which makes them immune to Uta’s powers. Uta is still fairly unfazed though, as she knows she can just use those who are asleep, exclaiming how it’s already too late as Koby jumps in and begins fighting the Admiral. Uta then starts performing Utakata Lullaby (Fleeting Lullaby), causing the civilians to swarm onto the Marines.
Fujitora tells his men to not hurt the civilians, but many of them begin to take off the visors from the Marines, causing more of them to fall to her music. Blueno, Oven, and many others begin to hunt down the Marines, as they become overwhelmed and even Fujitora is kept at bay. Law appears behind Momonga and sends him flying into the water below, while Fujitora is forced to get serious and start slashing his own men, remaining one of the only not to be affected by her powers as he fights to keep his visor on while Uta psychedelically sings away.
On the scene, Kalifa looks from afar on top of a tower and realizes that Uta is still broadcasting her songs to the livestreams all around the world, affecting anyone who is hearing her songs regardless of where they are. All across the world, all those that were watching the livestream begin dropping to the ground one after another as they become trapped into her world, with entire cities losing their populations to the songs. Ganzack from the original One Piece OVA makes a small cameo, as he collapses as well. Lucci reports this to the Gorosei (who had muted the livestream to avoid hearing her music and being affected), stating how given the massive worldwide success of the concert, if Uta isn’t stopped, it’s possible that in an hour from then up to 70% of the world’s population would vanish away into Uta’s world (you know, I find it awfully coincidental that Eren’s voice actor voices one of the side characters in this movie and Hiroyuki Sawano did some of the music, just saying). The Gorosei are terrified by this, as it could veritably spell the collapse of society.
Within the dream world Koby, Helmeppo, and Blueno reconvene with Luffy, Barto, and Law, as well as Oven and Brûlée. However, Oven says teaming up with Luffy was never part of the plan, so all the Big Mom pirates present decide to leave in Brûlée’s mirror. Cutting to the castle with the Straw Hats, Chopper asks a pair of mice to guide them as they finally discover the archives. There Robin begins to search for info, but a bunch of instrument-shaped golems left by the island’s old inhabitants appear to stop the intruders from searching the forbidden contents of the archives.
Robin is worried that she won’t be able to look for info since she’ll be too busy fighting but Usopp tells her to trust in her crewmates to protect her, to which she happily agrees. Robin realizes there’s a mural on the ceiling and realizes something. Meanwhile, in a cool action sequence, the Straw Hats fight off the golems, but Franky finishes off with a “Radical Beam Giant Slalom” attack where he spins as he flies through the air, essentially blasting the entire cavern with his laser. The whole castle begins to collapse, as Franky says “Suuuuper sorry dude”, so the Straw Hats make their getaway. Nami and Robin are left behind, so Zeus tries to cover for them, but they are about to be crushed by rubble. Nami runs up to a mirror and starts screaming for Brûlée, telling her that if they die, then she can say goodbye to ever escaping from the virtual world or seeing her family again. Brûlée concedes because she wants to see Katakuri again and helps them get away right before the entire room collapses.
Meanwhile, back at the main stage (still in the dream world), St. Charloss appears before Uta, who came to the concert to take her back with him to Mary Geoise because of her pretty voice. As soon as he appears, the entire audience bows before him in fear. Charloss offers to buy Uta for one billion belly, but Uta refuses, calling Charloss an old pathetic geezer who is part of the detestable Celestial Dragons, but offers him to join him in her new world as a normal person. Charloss snaps, so he orders his bodyguards shoot Uta down with their guns. Uta easily blocks the bullets with her powers as she laughs it off, but both bodyguards are shot down by Charloss, who calls them incompetent. Uta suddenly enters in shock and desperately tries fixing their wounds with her powers, being traumatized by the sight of blood. Charloss orders Marines around to capture her and Uta is annoyed that the “allies of justice” would follow the orders of such a monster, but they say they have no choice. Uta then uses her powers to entrap Charloss and the bodyguards in a music sheet just like she did before and reassures the Marines and her entire audience that in this New Era, they won’t need to fear the Celestial Dragons anymore, as everyone will be equal. However, the audience grows concerned, feeling that Uta is basically just taking their place (which would be interesting given the potential connections of the Figarland Family), and fear that the Government will retaliate by sending an admiral, so several people want to start leaving.
Koby then appears on stage through Bueno’s Doa Doa no Mi. The audience is shocked to see that the hero who saved the people of Rocky Port has appeared and Koby explains to the audience how Uta’s powers work and how she deceived them all. Uta tries to argue that she didn’t deceive them, but some people are getting fed up with her, with the young kid Yorueka from the promotional material deciding to leave. Uta tells him that they can’t leave, that there’s no point in leaving, because in her world they’ll be happy forever and won’t have to worry about work, studies, or anything else. With her powers she can create unlimited food and anything else they want. However, while some agree with her, others in the crowd begin to boo Uta and say they want to leave. Some don’t want a life of laziness where they don’t work, others just want to go home to their families, and many just don’t care about this New Era and only liked Uta for her music. The audience begins arguing against each other, but Uta panicks because this goes against her idea of peace and happiness. Uta finally begins to fall under the pressure and says that she realizes how she was wrong, and she simply has to force everyone “to have more fun”, drowning the stage in a deluge of water which turns anyone who touches it into chibi mascots and other cute items. The crowd desperately tries to avoid escaping the water but they are all slowly turned chibi, including St. Charloss. At Mary Geoise, the Gorosei panic at this sight and say that they need to get serious. Koby and Blueno manage to escape the deluge last moment, but as they leap into the air door, Blueno is hit by the water and is turned chibi as well, though he manages to make it out, even if this form severely limits his powers by making his doors way smaller.
Koby and Blueno reconvene with Luffy and the Straw Hats, as well as Oven and Brûlée once again, who discuss what they’ve learned and how they can stop Uta. Robin mentions what she has found, explaining that the music sheet Tot Musica serves as the vessel where the weapon known as the “Devil King” was trapped within. In ancient times, legend says that the negative emotions of people came together to form a demonic creature that people called the Devil King. Its power was so strong that it is very much capable of “destroying the world”, and Uta is the only one that can awaken this monster by singing the music on the sheet, which is why the Gorosei are so afraid of her (this seems to reaffirm the theory that each ancient weapon requires a user that can unleash it upon the world, but I’m just speculating here). As a small note of speculation, it’s not really specified if this “Devil King” is connected to the “Sea Devil” who created the devil fruits that Shanks mentioned during Buggy’s flashback, but I wonder if there is a connection.
But it’s interesting how much importance the Devil King is given in this film, begging the question of if it is canon, given how it is in Oda’s notes in the film booklet regarding Uta’s past (with its design and story also coming from Oda), or if it was simply made for this movie alone, but might still be hinting at something within the story. Eitherway, its existence alone is interesting to consider, especially since it’s mentioned to be a being that existed in ancient times, perhaps maybe even in the Void Century, but I’m just speculating about that last bit at this point.
Anyway, Robin explains how the Devil King Tot Musica exists in both planes, the real world and the virtual one. So if they defeat Tot Musica, that should make things unstable enough to undo the fruit’s power and fuse both worlds back together, but this would require it to be attacked from both the virtual world and the real world at the same time. Everyone is concerned since there’s not any particular allies they have in the real world at the moment, but Gordon appears with Bepo and says that they should have faith that Shanks will appear, and use that opportunity. Luffy asks Gordon about what happened with Shanks but Gordon refuses to elaborate, so Luffy just leaps ahead and leaves into the forest to go fight Uta. Barto panics, but Usopp says it’s impossible to stop their captain, so they should just focus on making a plan.
PRELUDE TO THE FINAL BATTLE
Uta finds herself in the middle of the sea she’s created, which has sunk most of Elegia Island. Despite it being water, she can walk on it. Luffy then appears before her and Uta teases how Luffy lost again by doing her cute pose: “You lost again!”, but Luffy isn’t in the mood for jokes, so Uta playfully begins to attack him as she says they’ll settle things in one final duel. The two of them clash for a while as Luffy uses some moves like Gomu Gomu no Storm and then entering Gear Second, but he can’t really bring himself to harm Uta as he keeps missing her over and over. Uta feels offended by him holding back and comes out on top by just generating water that weakens Luffy. Luffy falls to his knees debilitated by the water, and two Music Note Knights put spears around his neck, imitating the pose of Gol D. Roger during his execution. Uta asks Luffy why he is so desperate to become the Pirate King, only to end up with such a fate, but Luffy exclaims that it’s… “for the sake of a a New Era!”. Uta is irritated by this claim, grabbing Luffy’s hat and pulling it apart. Luffy panics and begs Uta to stop, but she keeps pulling as the hat is ripped in half. Luffy is furious, but says that even if he lost, he has faith that Shanks will come to help out. Uta finds it pathetic that Luffy needs to be saved by Shanks, but Luffy says he wasn’t talking about Shanks coming to save him… but coming to save Uta. Because there’s no way that Shanks would just stand around if his daughter is suffering so much. Uta is shaken by this claim, but tells Luffy how he’s completely wrong, because Shanks will never come back. She reveals that despite the fact that she and Shanks are actually not related by blood, that she has always viewed him as her real father, which is what made his betrayal so painful. Uta explains what really happened on Elegia 12 years ago:
Shanks took Uta to show her musical talent at Elegia, which marveled and astounded the people of the island due to her being a singing prodigy. Uta really enjoyed herself there, so Shanks encouraged her to stay behind to learn music at the island’s academy. Shanks mentioned how there is no peace or equality in this world, but that music can help deliver joy, something he legitimately believed Uta was capable of doing in a New Era. However, Uta began crying, wanting to stay as the Red Hair Pirates’ musician forever, as she’d much rather be with her family than studying somewhere she didn’t know, so Shanks told her to forget about it and that they’ll depart together tomorrow.
However, Uta woke up during the night and saw the entire island in flames. She ran out and found Gordon, who cursed the Red Haired Pirates for killing all on the island and plundering their beloved land. Uta asked where Shanks was, but Gordon mentioned Shanks simply used Uta’s singing abilities to approach the island and then take advantage of a surprise attack to take Elegia’s many famed riches and wealth. Refusing to believe this, Uta ran to the shore only to see the Red Force in the distance and the Red Hair Pirates partying on it all happy and peppy, not caring that they left Uta behind.
Heartbroken, Uta broke down crying, but Gordon stopped her from jumping into the sea to go after them. After that, the tragedy ended up all over the newspapers, with Shanks identified as the suspect for pillaging the island and being given a bounty of 1,040,000,000 belly at the time, with his bounty poster showing him posing with his straw hat (in retrospect, this makes Higuma’s claim in Chapter 1 of an 8,000,000 belly bounty all the funnier).
Cut back to the real world, Uta is talking to a sleeping Luffy, at the same time that she is talking to the Luffy in the dream world. The real straw hat is still intact, since the one she broke is only the one in the dream world, but she places the real hat on top of the real world Luffy and pulls out a dagger. She lifts it up in the air, ready to take Luffy’s life and stop his ambition to become Pirate King as she tells Luffy “bye bye”. However, as she plunges the dagger down, it’s stopped by a hand that grabs Uta. As Uta looks up, she asks “what are you doing here?”, to which the person replies “I’ve come to hear my daughter’s singing”.
Shanks and his crew all stand in the rain smiling, while Uta tries to hold back the tears. She however quickly begins to laugh maniacally as all the people who are sleeping gang up on the Red Hair Pirates and start attacking them. Shanks however stays completely still and unfazed with the biggest gigachad face as the citizens can’t even hurt him, simply looking at Uta while confused. Howling Gab opens his mouth and a laser beam appears, identical to those of the Pacifista, but Beckman tells him to stop or he’ll injure the civilians. Meanwhile in the virtual world, Luffy realizes that Uta has met Shanks by how she is reacting, but she gets really angry. However, right then Koby appears and everyone charges in to fight Uta. All the Straw Hats and the others try to attack her, but she manages to fend off their attacks with her powers fairly easily with a silent angry look on her face. However, as Chopper distracts her, Law manages to find an opening and shambles her inside Bartolomeo’s barrier, where she remains stuck inside. Bartolomeo soundproofs the barrier (turning it a golden color) so that her voice can’t get out either, and suddenly all her Music Note Knights and all her effects outside the barrier are negated and vanish due to her voice being locked inside.
Suddenly, in the real world, a Marine shoots a civilian and the Red Hair Pirates realize the Marines are shooting down everyone to get to Uta. Beckman asks Kizaru to show himself, and as Kizaru walks in, he says that while killing Uta might trap all those in her virtual world forever, he’s been given orders to still kill her, because that’s still better odds than if Uta summons Tot Musica, since that might be it for the world if the Devil King is awakened. Uta snaps at the person who has been shot just like she did with Charloss and tries to do what she can to stop the man’s wound, ripping off her sleeve to stop the bleeding, but since this isn’t her virtual world, she can’t do anything to heal him. However, Hongo, the doctor of the Red-Haired Pirates, comes in and helps her heal the wound.
Kizaru tries to take advantage of the situation and leaps into the air to attack with Yasakani no Magatama, but Shanks instantly nullifies the attack with one swing of his sword. Kizaru shows a scared expression for a second as Shanks suddenly leaps towards him. Kizaru tries to shoot another Yasakani no Magatama, but Shanks pushes away every single laser beam with his sword, cutting in half one of the stage mountains/spires in the process. Kizaru moves away at light speed but as soon as he reforms Shanks has already hunted him down and has his sword on Kizaru’s neck, asking him to not step into his family troubles. Kizaru stands completely still and raises his arms in apology, kind of like how Ryokugyu did in Wano, unable to move. Fujitora approaches Shanks with sword in hand. Some Marines try to shoot the civilians, but Benn Beckman stops the bullet with his bare hands by coating them in haki, telling the crew to protect the civilians at all costs. Lucky Roux is shot down shielding civilians, but the bullets just sink in the fat of his body rather than injuring him, while Rockstar deflects some bullets with his sword.
In the dream world, Uta is on the verge of a mental breakdown, slamming the barrier, stating how she wishes she had the courage to pull the trigger earlier. She stops and pulls out the Tot Musica sheet: it’s time to awaken the ancient Devil King.
RISE OF THE DEVIL KING
Uta begins dropping some sick Sawano beats that are so incredibly powerful they instantly shatter even Bartolomeo’s barrier, shocking him that something exists that can do that. The outfits of everyone present in the dream world change into battle attire thanks to Uta’s powers, transforming the Straw Hats and the others into their second gear for the film. Meanwhile in the real world, Kizaru once again tries to attack, but Beckman puts a rifle up against him, to which Kizaru raises his arms in a very delightful callback.
Kizaru comments how ironic it is that it’s pirates protecting civilians from the Marines, but mentions how at this point that Tot Musica has been unleashed, it’s basically pointless to fight back Uta’s powers and gets rid of his protective headgear. At Mary Geoise, Lucci tries to cut off the broadcast so the Gorosei won’t be affected, but they mention how now that Tot Musica has been awakened, it won’t make a difference, as both planes are fusing together.
The Devil King appears from the ground, appearing in both the real world and the virtual world; it has a scarecrow-like appearance (just my observation, but looking oddly similar to Blackbeard), with a large jaw, puffy lips, and a big nose, as well as a large slanted hat. Around its chest are three skulls… just like those on Blackbeard’s flag, or alternatively, those found around Oars’s waist (who was also called the “Devil” fittingly enough), while its arms are basically piano keys stitched together. Its hair is pure white just like that of a Lunarian/Gear 5th/Sulong, and has an X-shaped scar over its left eye. Uta herself transforms and her wings also become black like those of a Lunarian.
Shanks leaps in to attack the Devil King, but even his powerful attacks simply bounce off of it, being pushed back. Shanks lands on a tower where Kalifa is standing, and Kalifa mentions to him how the only way to really hurt the Devil King is to attack it from both planes, which may prove difficult. Meanwhile in the virtual world, everyone begins attacking, but Luffy stands still as he stares down at Uta. They try their best to attack the monster, but their attacks all prove fruitless, as not even Zoro or Law can lay any real damage on it. Luffy finally attempts to attack as well as he goes Gear Third, but as he unleashes Elephant Gatling, he too is unable to do much.
Usopp is hit as the Devil King bounces his attack back at him, falling on the ground. Luffy worries but Usopp tells him to leave it to them and to just focus on Uta. Luffy leaps towards her and tries begging Uta to listen to him, refusing to attack her. Law gets mad at Luffy and tells him to just strike her, but Luffy stands his ground. Uta summons her spear from the Watashi wa Saikyo musical number and sends it flying to pierce through Luffy. However, at the last second Gordon jumps in the way and gets stabbed in Luffy’s place.
Gordon tears up and mentions how he doesn’t want to see Uta falling to the level of killing one of the people she’s closest to, and that Uta has it all wrong, as she’s been a victim of a lie he’s guilty of. He reveals the truth of what really happened all that time ago, as when Uta and Shanks were invited to the party after her performance, Uta found the music sheet of Tot Musica lying around. Gordon mentions that the Devil King residing within the music sheet possesses a will of its own of sorts (which is very reminiscent of what the Gorosei said of Zoan devil fruits, interesting because of the devil connection) and used it to be helped to escape from the archives and be led all the way to Uta through its will so that she could unleash itself upon the world (makes me wonder if the Nika fruit did the same by letting it be “led” to Luffy). As such, Uta naively sang this music sheet she found at the party, unknowing that she just unleashed the weapon that is the Devil King upon the world.
Tot Musica took over Uta’s body to wreck havoc on the island, wiping away its entire population in a matter of instants. We see the true power of an ancient weapon of this capacity as the Devil King blasted lasers that destroyed dozens of buildings in a second, killing countless people in an instant. The citizens, screaming in horror, mentioned that Uta would end up “destroying the world”. The Red-Haired Pirates however fought back, with all of them (including Monster) charging towards the Devil King. Shanks leaped into the air and used a powerful attack to pierce through the devil king’s chest while flying. Because of Uta’s still young body and weak endurance at the moment, the weakened Devil King was overwhelmed by Shanks’s strong attack and was fragile enough to be sealed again within the music sheet. As Gordon, the only survivor, was saved by the Red Haired Pirates’ doctor Hongo, Shanks asked him to never tell Uta the truth because it would be too much for her. He also asked Gordon to take care of Uta and become her foster father, because Shanks believed it would be too dangerous now for her to sail with them anymore, as if the Marines found out that she was the one who unleashed this weapon, then she would be hunted down by the Government, which is why he needed to cut away any connections with her so that they wouldn’t find out what really happened on the island. He also decided to take the blame for destroying the island, to take away attention from Uta and cover up the incident, which they successfully manage to do. Gordon agreed to keep the secret and play his part, vowing to help raise Uta to become the best singer she can be on Shanks’s request. As Uta desperately cried to Shanks’s crew leaving, we find out that when the Red-Haired Pirates were partying as they left, they were in reality crying overcome with sadness, but tried to hide their tears because they wanted Uta to forget about them and move on, rather having her believe that they betrayed her than her finding out about the horrible things she committed. Clearly not exactly the best parenting move with how things turned out, but Shanks be Shanks I guess.
Back to the present, while Law begins tending to Gordon, Luffy says that there is no more need for Uta to do any of this because Shanks did in fact care about her as he reaches his hand towards her. Uta however is still emotionally confused and seizes Luffy by reaching out her hand and attacking him. However, Luffy notices the motif drawn on her hand’s sleeve.
Luffy recognizes that it’s a drawing that he made for her when hey were children, which as we see in a flashback, was a very crudely drawn version of Shanks’s straw hat (given Luffy’s poor drawing skills), that Luffy proposed to her to make it “the symbol of the New Era”. Uta begins recalling those happy memories together from long ago when they acted like siblings and is emotionally confused, but Luffy tells her “more than anyone else, you know very well this isn’t true joy! This isn’t the New Era!”. Uta begins to tear up, calling out Luffy’s name.
However, she is engulfed in music notes, as her body is absorbed into Tot Musica. Robin notes it’s too late, as the Devil King is now consuming Uta to gain strength. At this point, it becomes evident Tot Musica won’t be defeated as easily as Shanks did back 12 years ago. The Devil King begins to transform even further into its final form and sprouts a pair of Lunarian black wings on its back. The skulls on its chest become five, and it becomes gigantic.
Trapped within Tot Musica, Uta, overwhelmed by her emotions, recalls how she found a recording of what happened on the island that night just recently around a year ago, finding out the truth that Gordon hid from her. But after all those years of hating Shanks, she couldn’t bring herself to change, and she was already so influenced by all the comments she kept receiving from her viewers that she couldn’t stop her plans for this New Era, as she felt it’s what her viewers asked- no, demanded of her.
THE FINAL BOSS
The entire area around everyone changes and becomes like space, both in the virtual world and the real world, allowing everyone to float in the air just like space. The Devil King gets ready to consume everyone, easily destroying several of the Marine battleships like butter, posing it no threat. Brûlée is almost hit by an attack, but Sanji protects her, telling her how he’ll always come to a lady’s defense, to which Brûlée blushes, and tells her to be careful since she’s key to their plan. Luffy is knocked away by the Devil King’s transformation and falls unconscious, his eyes turning black just like he did when he was defeated by Kaido. However, the Straw Hats aren’t willing to go down without a fight, so Nami asks Koby for guidance. It turns out Koby is seemingly a really good battle strategist, as he commands everyone with his excellent tactical abilities.
Brûlée is instructed to help evacuate all the chibified citizens through her Mirro-world, with Nami and Robin guiding them to her and Bepo, Blueno, and Sunny covering her. The rest of the Straw Hats are instructed to cover the flanks, with Chopper guarding Luffy and Gordon, Usopp firing from the back, and Zoro, Law, and Oven leading the charge. Everyone gets in formation as they prepare their offense, and they all leap to attack on Koby’s command. They all charge in and begin to attack the Devil King. Epic final boss piano music begins to play. We get several cool scenes, with Koby and Helmeppo running over Tot Musica’s arms together while they beat up Music Note Knights, the Straw Hats fending off the horde of Music Note Knights, and Zoro using Sanji as a springboard to unleash Rokudo no Tsuji on its chest. However, they still can’t deal much damage. Luffy regains consciousness and throws away his coat, turning into Gear Fourth, ready for battle. Gordon pleads him to save Uta, stating that while Uta’s music may very well be capable of destroying the world, in the right hands, it could also legitimately save it and bring joy to everybody.
Meanwhile in the real world, Shanks alone is fending off Tot Musica, but isn’t able to deal much damage either, as it is hard to coordinate. Some Music Note Knights try to attack Shanks but are hit by blocks of mochi. Katakuri appears behind Shanks, and when Shanks inquires about what Big Mom’s son is doing here, he says he’ll lend him a hand, since he wants to save his sister. Katakuri mentions how really good observation haki can allow someone to briefly peer into the virtual world, which they can use to synchronize their attacks. Shanks thanks him for the info, but tells Katakuri he isn’t the only one with such a skill for observation haki there, looking at Yasopp. From within the virtual world, Luffy gets ready to attack but he suddenly feels a presence and exclaims: “Shanks!”. In the real world, Shanks also notices Luffy, and encourages him to attack together. At the same time, Usopp tries to use his observation haki, but he suddenly hears a voice in his head. Yasopp mentions how “you finally realized, dumb son!”, and explains to him how they can use both of their really good observation haki to coordinate attacks between the real world and the virtual world so that Tot Musica can be brought down. Usopp is overcome with joy to hear his father and gets ready to fight by his side.
It’s time for the final battle, as an orchestral remix of Shin Jidai begins playing: At unison, Luffy and Shanks say “Men, let’s do this!!”. Shanks raises his sword as it is enveloped in what look like flames. On Usopp and Yasopp’s command, the Straw Hats and Red Hair Pirates begin their final offense: Koby opens up with a kick and Zoro jumps ahead and coats his swords in advanced Conqueror’s haki, which looks like green flames. Together with Beckman shooting with his rifle, they strike Tot Musica together, with Zoro entering Kyuutoryuu Nine Sword Style Mode and destroying one of its limbs.
Next, Jinbe and Lucky Roux attack together, with Jinbe throwing a wave attack with Helmeppo’s help and Hongo throwing Lucky Roux like a spinning bowling ball, destroying another limb. Howling Gab and Sanji attack together, with Oven casting fire onto Sanji, helping him turn his leg’s flames blue as he enters Ifrit Jambe. Together with Katakuri and Howling Gab using his Pacifista-like laser, Sanji strikes Tot Musica and destroys another limb.
Robin and Chopper attack together with Bonk Punch and Monster, with Robin entering Gigante Fleur (the move she used against Black Maria) to propel Chopper. Nami unleashes Zeus Breeze Tempo alongside Limejuice, while Brook attacks with Rockstar. All the Straw Hats keep attacking together with the Red-Haired Pirates, hitting critical parts of Tot Musica’s body and destroying away its arms and legs. Finally, Usopp and Yasopp combine and shoot Tot Musica, who tries to block the attack but is stopped by Franky and Building Snake (who attacks by spinning like a screw), allowing Usopp and Yasopp’s attack to land. All of the Devil King’s limbs are now gone, leaving Luffy and Shanks to come together for one final attack. Luffy enters Snakeman and the Devil King tries to hunt him down with its lasers, but Luffy keeps evading and charging up his attack. The two rush ahead, but as they are overwhelmed by a blast from Tot Musica, Shanks remembers a moment from the past.
A piano piece of “Shin Jidai” plays: 19 years ago, when Shanks was still 20, he raided a pirate ship with his crew. Among the loot from the ship, he found a treasure chest but heard something from within it. Inside was a young baby, being a 2 year old Uta. It turns out her parents were killed by the pirates they had just raided, who had kidnapped her. Uta started to loudly cry, so Shanks tried to make Uta stop crying, and had the idea to start singing a song, despite the fact he is terrible at it (guess that explains where Luffy got his “Minami no shima waaaaa” from). However, in spite of how bad Shanks’s singing was, after hearing that music… she laughed. Shanks was shocked by this, as he thought back to the past, with the scene shifting to God Valley. There, 38 years ago, Roger, Rayleigh, and Gaban, seemingly leaving the island in a ship, looked into a treasure chest they plundered from the island, and inside found a red-haired baby, Shanks at age 1, with a note with his name on it. Shanks thought back at the similarities between how Roger found and adopted him and how he found Uta that he realized “could this be the work of fate?”.
Back to the present, Luffy and Shanks are emotionally overwhelmed by their memories together with Uta, and push forward in order to save her. The song turns into a remix of “We Are” and “Shin Jidai” that I like to call “We Are New Era”. The two of them charge towards Tot Musica, but Luffy’s Snakeman isn’t enough. However, suddenly, pushed to the brink, Luffy’s eyebrows change as he begins to morph and his hair and clothes turn pure white. Luffy enters Gear 5th and readies a massive attack, while Shanks unleashes a massively powerful advanced Conqueror’s haki attack that coats his blade in a powerful aura. Both planes fuse together and side by side, Shanks and Luffy stand together as they shoot their attacks: Luffy’s attack takes the shape of a lion and Shanks’s the shape of a hawk. The two attacks combine and fuse together, as they take the form of a gryphon. The gryphon charges forward and envelops Tot Musica, who receives the full blunt of the attack and is overwhelmed, causing it to explode as it lets out a devilish shriek, finally ending the fight.
Everyone rejoices, only to realize that they somehow aren’t returning to the real world. Those in the real world are also concerned, with Katakuri being attacked by Brûlée (who is incredibly agile as it turns out) as those sleeping are rampaging about hurting each other. Robin realizes Tot Musica becoming so strong resulted in the two planes remaining divided. Uta is now in Shanks’s arms and Shanks gives her some medicine that Hongo brought to help her sleep. Uta however tosses the medicine away as it smashes on the ground, and says that if she falls asleep then Tot Musica’s influence will still keep them trapped in the virtual world, and how the only way to free them now is to use her powers. Shanks grits his teeth, but agrees to her choice. She tries to walk up to the stage but struggles, so Shanks helps her up. In a beautiful scene, Uta prepares to sing as she starts to chant “Sekai no Tsuzuki” (The World’s Continuation).
Her song reaches into the virtual world, embracing everyone in a beautiful golden light as they calmly fall asleep with smiles on their faces in the light of a shining sun. Monster brings out a den den mushi in front of Uta, which connects to the broadcast that was going on, releasing everyone all around the world from the virtual world as well. Brûlée returns to her body and falls asleep into Katakuri’s arms with a smile on her face, who embraces her. As everyone peacefully falls asleep to the beautiful sound of Uta’s singing voice, their consciousnesses return to their bodies, though they’ll remain asleep for a little bit before waking up. Little by little, the world is restored to normal.
Finally, as things are resolved, Shanks stands with Uta in his arms with the Straw Hats still sleeping around him. Uta thanks Shanks for coming after her despite her not believing in him. However, their reunion is cut short by the Marines, who all aim their weapons and surround them. The Red Hair Pirates get in battle formation to fight against the Marines, but Shanks simply says… that Uta is his daughter. That she is precious family. As Uta breaks into tears, Shanks proudly proclaims that he will not let anyone lay a hand on his daughter, unleashing a massive Conqueror’s haki blast that shakes the entire sea and creates waves. His blast knocks out every single Marine outside of the Admirals, even Vice-Admirals as Kizaru points out, with only Momonga resisting among them as he collapses to his knees and barely holds on. Kizaru begins to profusely sweat and Fujitora retreats his sword saying it would be foolish to start what would be a war with so many civilians around. The two Admirals decide to retreat as every single Marine ship remaining quickly leaves. Kalifa, overlooking the arena, also decides to leave. Everyone can finally breathe easy, but as Uta is glad that everything was resolved, she collapses in Shanks’s arms. Shanks tells Uta not to worry, because the real New Era is almost here. With her final strength and a crippling voice, Uta sings Kaze no Yukue (Where The Wind Blows) as a farewell to her family and crew, with Shanks trying to hold his tears back as her voice begins to fade from her body.
Luffy regains consciousness in his dreams. In front of him is Uta. Uta asks Luffy why he kept holding back against punching her, but Luffy says it’s because, just like he told her when they were younger, “his punch is as strong as a pistol”. Uta laughs and jokes around about losing another duel, doing one final time her cute pose with her hands saying “I lost again!”.
Luffy however stays silent given what happened and sits down. Uta gets more serious and apologizes for everything she’s done and brings out Luffy’s straw hat within the dream world, fixing it back. She mentions how this hat is important to her too, and as she approaches Luffy and puts it on his head, she tells him that one day, that hat will suit him better than any before him. She gets close to Luffy but the scene cuts as Luffy wakes up.
Luffy realizes he is on the deck of the Sunny, already leaving Elegia Island. Most of the Straw Hats are asleep, though Jinbe, Franky, and Zoro are awake, the latter drinking from a bottle of sake. Luffy asks Zoro where Shanks went, but Zoro points out to the side of the ship with the bottle. Luffy gets up and looks ahead at the sea, where he can see the Red Force. There he sees Shanks and the Red Hair Pirates, who are all gathered around a casket with their flag on top of it, implicitly holding Uta’s funeral. Luffy’s expression turns grim as he lowers his hat to cover his eyes. He and Shanks turn facing their backs on each other, as they somberly depart ways, silently saying goodbye to the girl that influenced their lives and dreams so much.
One Piece Film RED -END-
Credits roll, as Kaze no Yukue (Where the Wind Blows) plays in the background.
We get updates from people all around the world, almost like a cover story. We see the Cipher Pol gathering, with Stussy and Kaku too, we see the Baratie, Water 7, Katakuri and Brûlée reuniting with Pudding in the background, Perona flying in the air, Bellamy working on his flag, Johnny and Yosaku fishing, Garp and Shakuyaku walking around a town, the Jellyfish Pirates now turned into Uta fans, Bepo fanboying over Uta, Shirahoshi listening to Uta’s music, Smoker and Tashigi looking over some kids playing in peace, Hancock seeing Gloriosa obsessed with Uta’s music, Gaimon and Sarfunkel enjoying their life together, and even Gambia’s Grandma giving children sweets among many others. We also see that Gordon, who survived, went back to teaching children about the joys of music and appears to be happy once more.
All the people we see around the world in the credits are listening to Uta’s songs, with Makino among them smiling as she picks up a TD (tone dial) of Uta’s songs. Everyone all around the world are going about their lives while enjoying Uta’s music. Though she may have passed on, her will lives on within all of her songs spread all around the world, delivering joy to everyone wherever they are. The credits end with a faint image of Uta singing as people smile and laugh in joy listening to her TDs in the background, with Uta looking at the camera and smiling before she fades away.
In a post-credits scene Luffy is sitting on top of the Sunny’s figurehead, with a somber expression. He taps on top of the Sunny’s head and tries talking to it, but the Sunny doesn’t reply back. Luffy thinks back and recalls Uta smiling at him with his straw hat in her hands, implicitly being from the last sequence where they spoke together in dreams, as she says some words, but the words are purposefully muted out so that we can’t hear what she’s saying, keeping her final words a mystery from the audience. After recalling this, Luffy then smiles and raises his hands in the air. He takes in a deep breath and exclaims… “KAIZOKU OU NI ORE WA NARU!”
DISCLAIMER: EVERYTHING BELOW IS JUST PERSONAL SPECULATION
With the summary out of the way, I’d like to add my own thoughts about a few things that stood out about the movie:
For starters, the entire conversation with the Gorosei at the start of the film is massively fascinating. First up there’s the mention that Uta, being Shanks’s daughter, would make her part of the Figarland Family and let’s open up with that, being Shanks’s lineage. The whole way that dialogue is framed makes it sound like Shanks is a Celestial Dragon, which would explain a lot of things. Considering that Roger found Shanks in a treasure chest at God Valley when he was just a year old, and how we were told about the presence of Celestial Dragons at God Valley, it would make sense that Shanks was born there as a Celestial Dragon. This is something that had been speculated for a while since Oda already hinted at it quite a bit, such as with Roger’s claim that it had been quite a while since he last held a baby, so many believed that Shanks was born at God Valley as a Celestial Dragon.
There’s also been the common theory that Shanks could have been Rocks D. Xebec’s kid, but the fact that he comes from the Figarland Family would suggest against that, as he otherwise would be from the Rocks family, unless there’s a catch, as it’s essentially implying that his name is Figarland Shanks. We also know that Shanks is his original name since Oda’s notes confirm that his name was included in a note within the treasure chest. This name is particularly quite interesting, because “figar” means melancholic, or wounded at heart, which combined with land would sort of represent a land of melancholy. Is it referring to something in specific or hinting at anything else?
With all this taken into account however, there’s something very interesting about Shanks’s origin that gives some more details on God Valley. This is particularly the fact that we know that Shanks originates from the West Blue, and since we’ve never been told in which sea God Valley existed, it is possible it perhaps was originally found in the West Blue. More interesting however is how Shanks mentioned during his encounter with Whitebeard how he brought sake from his hometown in the West Blue. This had to either have been God Valley, or somewhere else Shanks was born before being taken to God Valley within his first year of life, since ever after he had been sailing on the Oro Jackson with Roger, but with how important sake is to the story, the implication that God Valley may be known for having some of the best sake in the world is kind of a big deal.
But wait, aren’t we forgetting the elephant in the room? Or rather, the clown in the room? Because Buggy has been together with Shanks for many many years, being practically inseparable, and the two grew up together on the Oro Jackson having the exact same age. So was Buggy added to the crew later on for completely unrelated reasons or… is he too related to the God Valley incident? Is Buggy actually a Celestial Dragon too??
It’s also quite interesting to hear that Shanks is also basically Roger’s son, much like how Uta is Shanks’s daughter, which basically means that Shanks served as both Luffy’s father figure but also his… stepbrother, yeah this whole family tree is a bit of a mess when you think about it.
THE DEVIL KING
Anyway, moving on, the other big thing of interest in this movie is particularly everything that has to do with Tot Musica. So it’s a bit hard to exactly tell apart which elements of this movie are canon and aren’t, because the actual events of the movie aren’t canon, but characters like Uta, her entire past, and many things revealed within the film are all canon, so it’s hard to say if the Devil King was made just for the sake of this movie or if it’s hinting at something bigger. Personally I think that the Devil King as it appears within this movie may not be canon, but few details really stand out: when Gordon explains what happened at Elegia, he details how the music sheet of Tot Musica appears to have a will of its own and how it used its will to be led directly to Uta. This is not only very similar to what the Gorosei said about Zoan fruits having a will of their own, but also potentially suggests that the Nika fruit used its own will to be led all the way to Luffy, just like Tot Musica used its will to be led to Uta.
It seems that in some way or form these things can affect those around them, or perhaps even the power of fate itself, to be led to places. After all, the Gorosei mentioned how the Nika fruit used its will to continuously evade the World Government, drawing in people to take it away so the Government could never seize it, something we saw happen again when Shanks stole the fruit, leading it to Luffy. And speaking of the music sheet, I found it really shocking how on the sheet there seems to be a smiley face incredibly similar-looking to that of Doflamingo’s jolly roger. Is this just a similar-looking smiley face and just a coincidence, or did Doflamingo somehow know something as a Celestial Dragon?
And I think subtle details like these are kind of a big deal because even the Devil King’s appearance is oddly familiar. Am I the only one who see this, or does it heavily resemble that of Blackbeard?
A large jaw with puffy lips, a long nose, long scruffy hair and three skulls as its symbol. Considering that Luffy is likened to being a god, with the color of pure white, it would be fitting that Blackbeard would be likened to the devil, symbolizing black. Though interestingly, the Devil King possesses both white hair and black wings, just like those of a Lunarian. Considering the Lunarians were called gods from the God Country, what connection do they have to the Devil King? Was there really a Devil in the ancient history of the world of One Piece?
After all, it was Shanks himself who in Chapter 19 mentioned the Devil for the first time: Shanks said that according to legend all the devil fruits are the incarnation of the Devil of the sea. Was this referring to Tot Musica, the Devil King, or someone related to it? Given its name, is Tot Musica related to the origin of Devil Fruits in some way or another? After all, we know that Oars was so terrifying that people began likening him to the Devil, and some even started calling Oars the “Devil” itself. Why is it then that Oars decorated himself with three skulls around his waist, just like those of Tot Musica the Devil King?
There’s just so much that connects to previous mysteries when it comes to Tot Musica, and especially above all else is its connection to music. After all its name literally means “All Music” in some languages and I’ve already explained a lot in the past how I think music itself is instrumental to the larger mysteries of the story and the One Piece itself, so what does Tot Musica represent in the grand scheme of things? After all, legend says in the movie that the Devil King was born from all the negative emotions of people, which is the complete opposite of what Joy Boy was able to do, delivering joy through music, through the rhythm of his drums and of Binks’s Sake. Here we have two opposites, the music that represents joy and laughter, Binks’s Sake, and the music that represents fear and hatred, Tot Musica, the Sun God and the Devil King respectively. One of them being connected to our Straw Hat-wielding hero, and the other being connected to his eternal foe, darkness itself. The opposite parallels couldn’t be clear enough, but just how deeply does this connection go? Well, I have a few ideas, but I’d like to talk about it in more depth in the future if I get the chance.
MUSIC IS THE REAL TREASURE
Really though, I’d like to wrap up this spoiler talk by focusing on how important of a theme music is to the movie and how it pretty much lines up with my grander idea of the One Piece treasure. Of course one of the biggest emphasis of this movie is on the concept of this Shin Jidai, or New Era, that Uta wants to bring through music. This is an idea that we later see she got from Shanks, and this particularly has to do with that line from the trailer he mentions to Uta: “There is no peace or equality in this world”, but music is capable of bringing joy to the whole world, and Shanks believed Uta would be capable of delivering that joy and laughter to all in the world with her singing. And it all kinda begins to click in when you really think about it: the New Era refers to the Dawn of the World, the time when a new era will dawn in where all can live under the same sun. And if this era is dawned in by music itself, then it would just make sense that it is Binks’s Sake that will deliver this laughter.
As I’ve talked about in depth in the past, we’ve already seen its capability to deliver laughter and connect people all across the series, but once the Government crumbles and the order of the world changes, then it really will have the power to dawn in a New Era. And this only becomes more apparent when we take a look at the lyrics of Uta’s song, “Shin Jidai”, which talk about “delivering a never-ending song”, which is literally the definition of Binks’s Sake, using the lyrics from the song.
This is why Shanks wanted so badly for Uta to become a prodigal songstress, and why he left her with Gordon to train her to become so talented, to eventually lead her to the point that she could become the world’s biggest singer and one day perhaps help deliver Binks’s Sake. And nothing better shows the real power of music bringing laughter than the scene when Shanks first meets Uta. The little baby Uta is crying, scared for her life, but Shanks tries to cheer her up by singing. Though his singing is awful, when Uta hears this… she laughs. Just like Roger did, because singing is the one thing that can bring any person joy.
Of course, in the end, unfortunately Uta passed away. She was so deluded with her vision of a New Era that she couldn’t make it to the real New Era, which as Shanks mentions in the film, is almost here. But even though she’s passed on, her will remains engrained in all of her songs, which as we see across the credits, are still being listened to by millions of people across the world, bringing them joy and laughter to the many struggles in their daily lives. And in that regard we are kinda the same, because even in our world, these songs will continue encouraging us through our own daily lives and helping us move on across throughout our lives. In that regard, Uta will never die, because she will forever be remembered in her voice residing within these beautiful songs. And her own dream, her own hope to see a new era ushered in by delivering joy and laughter through music, will likely be brought by Luffy, who will inherit her dream, just as her father Shanks inherited it from Roger, to deliver Binks’s Sake across the whole world.
As a final detail, I’d like to bring up the post-credits scene. We see Luffy reminiscing about his final moments with Uta, and we see him recalling Uta’s final words, but these are purposefully muted and we only see her lip flaps. This could perhaps just be referencing one of her other lines, but why did they mute it? What were Uta’s final words? Are they relating to Luffy’s true goal, or perhaps even Binks’s Sake? I guess we’ll eventually find out!