* AlternateCharacterInterpretation: While it's definite that [[spoiler: Aerith is helping them from beyond the grave, with her Great Gospel limit break]], the conversations Cloud has with her (and Zack in ''Complete'' as well) could be real. Or they could be his imagination, as a way of trying to forgive himself.
* AuthorsSavingThrow: ''Advent Children Complete'' was an attempt to do this; many new scenes and extended scenes better explain critical plot elements, better develop the characters, and overall streamline the film's pacing and story. If the finished product is actually good is still up for debate, and some new elements are claimed to be even weaker, but they at least tried to improve it and it's generally agreed that the improvements outweigh the negative changes.
* SugarWiki/AwesomeMusic:
** "One Winged Angel" is back (in a [[ThePowerOFRock metal version]]), and it's cooler than ever. The other Black Mages remixes are pretty awesome, too.
** "Divinity I", complete with OminousLatinChanting, complements the impending destruction that Bahamut rains down on Edge, whilst "Divinity II" is more epic, coming to a climax as Cloud faces Bahamut with the help of his old allies. Some of Uematsu's best work with a full orchestra.
** The ending songs: "Calling" (original) and "Safe and Sound" (''Complete'').
** "Opening", an orchestral rearranging of the song that plays during the original game's TitleDrop.
** "Battle in The Forgotten City" can count too. Its pace complements Cloud's arrival to The Forgotten City being attacked by Yazoo and Loz; then Kadaj walking towards him, and finally the actual fight.
** "The Promised Land", the song that plays during Marlene's narration and after the battle with [[spoiler:Sephiroth]].
** "Those Who Fight", an industrial metal remix of the iconic battle theme from the original game.
*** Let's not forget the piano version that plays in Tifa's fight.
** [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xUt7wcLVV50 "Black Water."]]
** "The Reunion."
* BadassDecay: Rude and especialy Reno. They were serious threats in the original game but became PluckyComicRelief in the film. Given who they were up against, though, it's somewhat understandable.
* BaseBreakingCharacter:
** Cloud, infamously so and far more than in the original game. Over both versions of the film, fans argued for him either having a strong character arc and having an impressive weapon and flashy fight scenes to his name, or having a contrived character arc and spending much of the movie as an unlikable, whiny emo, and being a far cry from the well-rounded and highly variable character he was in the original game.
** The Fusion Swords themselves are either flat-out awesome, or an overblown and impractical take on the Buster Sword that tries too hard to be cool.
** Mena Suvari's performance as Aerith was this at the time of the film's release. It didn't help that she replaced Mandy Moore who had voiced the character in ''VideoGame/KingdomHearts'' (and the other ''VII'' characters had kept their actors from that game, aside from Sephiroth whose replacement voice Creator/GeorgeNewbern was widely liked). When ''Kingdom Hearts II'' came out, she became even more disliked and that was her last time voicing the character.
* BrokenBase[=/=]ContestedSequel:
** The entire movie split the ''VII'' fanbase down the middle. Then ''Complete'' came along and split it ''again''.
** The release of ''Anime/KingsglaiveFinalFantasyXV'' has provoked arguments about how it and ''Advent Children'' compare to each other, due to both movies' very similar formats and criticism for similar reasons.
* CriticalDissonance: A mild case, due to the fact that both critics and general audiences were highly divided on the film. ''Advent Children'' received mostly negative reviews from both gaming and non-gaming critics alike due to its confusing plot, along with other issues such as ContinuityLockout and {{Flanderization}} of many characters.[[note]]The latter was at least partially addressed by ''Complete''.[[/note]] However, ''Advent Children'' was very successful commercially, and as the main demographic of the film, some ''[=FFVII=]'' fans are more forgiving of it (especially ''Complete'') and argue that it works (to varying degrees) as a companion piece to the game, rather than a standalone film. It stands at a Rotten Tomatoes rating of 33%[[note]]which is lower than ''Anime/FinalFantasyTheSpiritsWithin'' which is an InNameOnly adaption in contrast to this being a direct sequel[[/note]] (although most of the reviews are for the original and not ''Complete''), but has an [=IMDb=] rating of 7.3 out of 10.
* DorkAge: As the pilot project of the "Compilation of ''Final Fantasy VII''", ''Advent Children'' started one. The movie was met with highly mixed reception, and many fans were not happy with the {{Flanderization}} of various characters, particularly Cloud, who was bashed as the kind of "emo pretty-boy" stereotype that [[NeverLiveItDown eventually became a frequent point of criticism]] for ''Final Fantasy'', and Square Enix, as a whole. As the Compilation continued to build up, ''[=FF7=]'' lost much of its prestige and recognition, and only started to see a rise again with the announcement of ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIIRemake'' and Cloud's addition to ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros'', both of which were driven by HolyShitQuotient reactions and drew heavily from the original game while ignoring developments from ''Advent Children'' and the rest of the Compilation.[[note]]However, Cloud's popular ''Advent Children'' costume is an alternate costume in ''Smash''.[[/note]]
* DracoInLeatherPants: Kadaj, Loz, and Yazoo, who actually happen to wear full-body leather.
* EnsembleDarkhorse: Moogle Girl, who even gets an expanded role in ''Complete''. Her voice actress was likewise upgraded to voicing Aerith for ''Crisis Core''.
* EpilepticTrees: Some of the speculation regarding the movie back in 2004, particularly regarding the identity of the man in the wheelchair, was pretty crazy, which was only spurred on by the very slow drip-feeding of information at the time.
* FoeYay: Cloud and [[spoiler:Sephiroth]]. Sweet Christ, is there ever.
* GuiltyPleasure: '''Very much so'''. Very few fans will argue that ''Advent Children'' is good as a whole, but many enjoy it as the piece of {{fanservice}} that it was intended to be.
* HilariousInHindsight:
** Creator/DaveWittenberg voices Yazoo, a remnant of Sephiroth, in ''Advent Children''. Years later, in ''VideoGame/DissidiaFinalFantasy'', he voices another ''Final Fantasy'' character: [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI Kefka Palazzo]], who is also one of the rivals of Sephiroth in terms of the fanbase.
** George Newbern and Rick Gomez were picked as the English voice actors of Sephiroth and Zack respectively. They had just done ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX2'' where they were again soldiers together, Newbern's character went mad and Gomez's character got shot.
* HoYay: [[LauncherOfAThousandShips Cloud with... everyone.]] Also a lot between Reno and Rude, especially in ''Complete''. As for Rufus and Kadaj, well, there's a MissingTrailerScene of Kadaj bending over and taking his hand.
* HypeBacklash: The movie was highly anticipated as a return to the beloved ''Final Fantasy VII'' universe ever since the original game's release in 1997. Upon release, ''Advent Children'' was very polarizing, and many people saw it (as well as the concurrent ''Advent Children'' presence in ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsII'') as the beginning of ''[=FF7's=]'' derailment and oversaturation into an incomprehensible, confusing [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking and overly]] {{bishonen}}-focused franchise.
* ItWasHisSled: What, you didn't know Sephiroth was going to come back somehow? It was pretty much the selling point of the movie to build up a second confrontation between him and Cloud. ''Complete'' ditches the pretense and works it into Rufus's conversation with Cloud in the opening that Geostigma is Sephiroth's doing and is a mechanism for his resurrection. WordOfGod is also that the point of the film from conception was a second battle between Cloud and Sephiroth, everything else was wrapped around that idea and how to make it happen.
* JustHereForGodzilla: There are many reasons people watch ''Advent Children'': to see the cast of ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' again after eight years, to see the cast animated in (especially by 2005's standards) jaw-dropping CGI, for the fight scenes, for the fight scenes in the context that they are what it would be like if you took a JRPG boss fight and choreographed it, or you are just waiting it out until the Cloud vs. Sephiroth rematch happens. What's rare to find though is someone who appreciates the movie for itself, or likes the whole movie, including the non-action scenes.
* MagnificentBastard: Rufus Shinra - [[spoiler:He spends most of the film pretending to be a cripple, and has Jenova's head with him the ''entire'' time. The reveal of this comes with Rufus going full on MagnificentBastard as he ''openly mocks Kadaj'' for never figuring it out, simply remarking "A good son would've known."]] Then, [[spoiler:he jumps off a building, basically depending on the fact that the Turks will stop him hitting the ground (which of course they do).]]
* MemeticMolester: Certain fans have gone on to characterize the Silver Haired Men, but especially Kadaj, as paedophiles. The sad thing is that that ''isn't'' far-off how their mass child-kidnapping goes.
-->'''Reno (''in-film''):''' Kadaj's gang.\\
'''Rufus (''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z73RN_KBiXY watching film]]''):''' Did film Reno just say Kadaj is gay?\\
'''Tseng:''' Most likely.
* MemeticMutation:
** Sephiroth's wonderful present for Cloud: "Shall I give you [[{{Mondegreen}} dis pear]]?"
** "Unforgiveable!" -> "[[MoodWhiplash You meanie!]]" Because Loz apparently needed to be even ''more'' of a ManChild.
** "[[LipLock Dilly dally shilly shally]]."
** "There's not a thing I ''don't'' cherish!" So really Cloud, you value ''everything'' in existence? That's either Narm or a hell of a PapaWolf.
*** It's Cloud. Probably both.
** [[http://i583.photobucket.com/albums/ss280/auntiebedjo519/Banana.gif BANANA]]
* {{Narm}}: In the English dub when Reno and Rude are taunting Loz and Yazoo during their fight by insulting Jenova. It was actually a pretty intense fight but due to the previously mentioned LipLock, the best comeback the dub team could come up with? "You meanie!"
* NarmCharm: From the English dub, "dilly-dally, shilly-shally". It's rather silly when it's said by Tifa and Aerith, in response to Cloud isolating himself. However its original Japanese counterpart was very hard to translate into English[[note]]What was said in the Japanese was "zuruzuru", an onomatopœia that mimics the sound of dragging a heavy load. "Dilly-dally" is an expression that's used when someone's wasting time focusing on unimportant things - making this quite close to an English counterpart[[/note]]. It's so silly in the context of the scene that it becomes rather cute.
* NeverLiveItDown: You can thank this film for hogtying Cloud -- and ''Final Fantasy'' protagonists in general -- to the term "emo."
** It doesn't help that Steve Burton sounds incredibly bored when voicing Cloud -- becoming a [=NLID=] for his portrayal as Cloud too; even though he has improved since then. [[AngstWhatAngst He barely acts angry at some moments]]! On the other hand, Takahiro Sakurai makes a more expressive Cloud.
* NightmareFuel:
** The effects of Geostigma, ''especially'' the beginning of ''Complete'' version and Denzel's OVA.
** Denzel's OVA had NightmareFuel when he first [[spoiler:turned her over.]]
** "[[PsychoticSmirk Good to see you...Cloud]]." Cue genuine terror in Cloud's eyes as a reborn Sephiroth begins [[CurbStompBattle thrashing him six ways from Sunday.]]
* {{Sequelitis}}: Regardless of one's thoughts on the movie, very few will argue that it lives up to the classic, universally-acclaimed video game that it follows up on.
* TearJerker: Some of Marlene's lines:
-->"For every battle, there was more sadness. Someone I loved went back to the Lifestream too."\\
"Please don't take Denzel away..."
** Denzel's OVA is one long TraumaCongaLine with occasional {{Hope Spot}}s. His parents are killed when Sector 7 is destroyed. His caretakers after that die from Geostigma. The others kids in the scavenger gang he joined all move on one by one, and a thoughtless comment ruins his relationship with his last remaining friend. By the end, he's teetering on the edge of the DespairEventHorizon and considering suicide until he meets Cloud.
** The ending is made very bittersweet when it's implied that [[spoiler:Aerith and Zack]] are ''finally'' at peace, and can finally rest.
--->"Hey, you're okay now, right?"
** Villain or no, Kadaj's death is surprisingly moving. The GrayRainOfDepression doesn't hurt.
** The Moogle Girl's expanded backstory in ''Complete''. She and her brother are implied to get the stigma from a man they help in an alley. She's seen trying to carry her brother on her back, while trying to hide their sickness. Her brother then is implied to have died from it before she goes with Yazoo.
* SubbingVersusDubbing: The English dub, while generally considered above par for an anime dub, is highly contentious. On one hand, many of the performances and memorable lines were praised, particularly with Creator/GeorgeNewbern who made his debut as Sephiroth and replaced the unpopular Lance Bass from ''VideoGame/KingdomHearts''. On the other hand, the LipLock is considered a consistent problem, both in terms of immersion and in terms of lines that were changed to fit (such as the infamous "dilly-dally shilly-shally"), and Steve Burton's performance as Cloud, while debated, is generally considered inferior to Creator/TakahiroSakurai's in the Japanese version.
* ToyShip: Some people appear to like Denzel/Moogle Girl. Especially once ''Advent Children Complete'' came out, and they got more scenes together. There's also Denzel/Marlene for others.
* VideoGameMoviesSuck: ''Advent Children'', particularly ''Complete'', is widely regarded as one of the better video game movies out there. However, this is a case of DamnedByFaintPraise, as most fans argue that it doesn't hold up on its own as a film (with [[ContinuityLockout overreliance on the viewer's familiarity with and emotional investment in the original game]]) and that its overall setup more closely resembles a game than a movie.
* {{Wangst}}: People accuse Cloud of this despite being about to die. Nevertheless, he actually gets over it about halfway through the film and ''says so.'' This is one of the things most people agree ''Complete'' fixes, as [[AuthorsSavingThrow it explains that Cloud's wangst is a side-effect of Geostigma's affect on the mind.]]
** ''On the Way to a Smile'' manages to do this with ''Barret'', and truthfully nearly every character the novellas focus on.
* VindicatedByHistory: Cloud's character arc in ''Complete'', mostly due to CharacterRerailment in newer appearances. With Cloud being readjusted to his old, cockier and more confident personality in TheNewTens and shaking off the "mopey emo" stigma that this movie gave him, some fans have noted when rewatching ''Complete'' that they pay more attention to the actual CharacterDevelopment he goes through in the movie (regaining his old levels of strength and confidence), as opposed to his {{wangst}}ing overshadowing everything else and overtaking his character in general.
* WinBackTheCrowd: Many in the fanbase prefers the director's cut version over the original. This because of how the director's cut improved Cloud's characterization giving him more heartwarming scenes that tried to overshadow his brooding, further flashbacks that help to understand the story to newcomers and extended fight scenes. However, the movie still has a BrokenBase, as the director's cut also undercuts Cloud's defeat of Sephiroth by adding in Zack as a factor.
* ZeeRust / TechnologyMarchesOn: Advent Children may be a futuristic movie. But the characters use flip cellphones! This movie was released in 2005. The first smartphone would not come out till 2007. At the time, the flip cellphones used in the movie seemed advanced and futuristic. But eventually they would become very outdated.
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