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Anime / Bleach: Hell Verse

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Hell Verse is the fourth and final animated film in the Bleach franchise.

In the depths of Hell, a chained skeleton slowly regenerates while witnessing a memory of Hollow Ichigo's battle with Ulquiorra.

In the World of the Living, life is going on as usual for Ichigo when he encounters Renji and Rukia on a top-secret mission, and is told to mind his own business. Out of the blue, he and his friends are attacked by four mysterious beings wearing cloaks and masks. Renji arrives, and after one of the figures is unmasked the Gates of Hell appear and the figure is slain by a massive creature. Renji explains that the cloaked figures are Sinners, those condemned to Hell, and Ichigo realizes the attack was a diversion and that more Sinners are at his home. Arriving to see Rukia engaged in combat and his little sisters being abducted, Ichigo is powerless to stop them until a Sinner named Kokuto comes to aid him and chases off the others, rescuing Karin. Yuzu is taken to Hell, and Kokuto explains that the Sinners are trying to lure Ichigo to Hell in the hopes of helping them escape via his powerful Hollow transformation. Despite this, Ichigo — joined by Renji, Rukia, and Ishida — decides to follow Kokuto to Hell to stop the Sinners and save his sister...but not all is as it seems.

Released in 2010. Viz Media dubbed it in English and released it on Blu-Ray in 2012.


  • Action Prologue: The film begins with a very stylized scene recounting the battle between Hollow Ichigo and Ulquiorra. This is later revealed to be Kokuto watching this and hatching his plan to try and free himself from Hell.
  • Back from the Dead: Shuren and his flunkies are able to do this when killed, as Hell won't let them die until they utterly give into despair. They're reborn from a lava-filled cauldron of sorts on the fourth layer after the heroes manage to kill them. The only way to prevent or delay this is to either fall into the cauldron itself or prevent them from reforming, which Kokuto does to Shuren. Murakumo doesn't come back this way. On the lowest level, a lava pit among the all the bones serves this purpose for those that die and rot away there.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: When Rukia respawns from a lava pit in the lowest circle of Hell, she reforms very quickly. This is in contrast to Shuren's underlings, who reform much more slowly from the lava pit on the fourth layer and look like melted wax sculptures when they do so.
  • Big Bad: Shuren, one of the Sinners who orchestrates the whole plot of the movie or so he thought. In truth it's really Kokuto who tricked Shuren into luring Ichigo into Hell so he could enact his plan. Shuren turns out to be more a Disc-One Final Boss.
  • Bling of War: Hell grants Ichigo a skeletal golden armor of sorts in his final battle with Kokuto. It's also the only thing keeping the guards of Hell at bay. Once Ichigo deactivates it they resume their attack, forcing him and his friends to run for it back to the World of the Living.
  • Call-Back: A couple to previous events
    • The film opens with Ichigo beating up some punks who knocked over a kid's memorial vase, something he also did in the first episode.
    • Rukia defeats Gunjo similarly to how she beat Aaroniero, by materializing the other half of her broken sword inside his body.
    • Ichigo's hollowfication at it one point when he's trying to hold it back manifests similarly to how the Visored fell victim to it in the flashback arc.
  • Canon Discontinuity: Already a Non-Serial Movie, the film has moved into this with Kubo's revival of the manga depicting his own take on Hell as very different from the film version. Although a few ideas such as the inmates escaping Hell and Szayelaporro Grantz having ended up there, were carried over to the manga.
  • Cessation of Existence: Hell's prisoners only die permanently when they fall utterly into despair, at which point their bodies disintegrate into the blue sand that forms the fourth layer.
  • Chain Pain: Inverted. Kokuto is able to make his chains tangible as needed to defend against attacks. Against Ichigo, this has the added benefit of breaking them and bringing him that many steps closer to freedom with every attack.
  • Circles of Hell: We see five different layers of Hell over the course of the movie, from the "city" of blocks on the first layer to the stormy wasteland of lava and bones on the lowest.
  • City of the Damned: Subverted. The first layer of Hell is a mess of gray blocks that only vaguely look like buildings and provide no place to hide from the Kushanada.
  • Disney Death: Yuzu appears dead after being brought back from Hell with a chain still in her chest, but as it fades away later on, she is alive.
  • Divide and Conquer: Shuren uses this tactic to separate Ichigo and his friends, by having his henchmen hold back Ichigo's allies and rejoin him in confronting Ichigo when they are killed since nothing stays dead in Hell.
  • Don't Celebrate Just Yet: After a grueling fight, Ichigo manages to beat Shuren and his lackeys. But just as he's about to go save Yuzu he's impaled by Kokuto, who reveals he was the true mastermind behind the whole thing.
  • Dragged Off to Hell: Murakumo loses his mask during the initial fight and gets dragged back into Hell. He's never seen again. Kokuto also gets dragged deeper into Hell after being defeated by skull-clad Ichigo.
  • The Dragon: Gunjo leads Shuren's underlings in battle against Ichigo and friends.
  • Dumb Muscle: Gargogai is physically the strongest of Shuren's minions, fights like a berserker, and talks in Hulk Speak.
  • Feed It a Bomb: In a variation, Uryu defeats Taikon by feeding him energy until he's accumulated enough that Uryu can explode it all with another technique.
  • Fire and Brimstone Hell: The lowest layer of Hell is covered in rivers and streams of lava. If the opening is anything to go by, souls there are tormented by being blown to bits in fiery explosions and then Pulling Themselves Together in an endless loop.
  • Freudian Excuse: Kokuto reveals he ended up in Hell because he killed the murderer who killed his sister and finds the whole thing unfair. Subverted in that he's implied to have kept lashing out at the world to make others share his pain.
  • Freudian Excuse Is No Excuse:Ichigo ultimately calls Kokuto out for using his sister's death as an excuse to hurt people, pointing out he's just causing more suffering in her name.
  • Hellgate: Shuren wants Ichigo to destroy Hell's gate, which appears in the world of the living to claim damned souls and reclaim escapees, so that he and his allies can escape Hell for good. It turns out to be a misdirection by Kokuto. Even with the gate blown to pieces, the Sinners' chains are still there to drag them back.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Kokuto. He's the one that spread a rumor to Shuren about Ichigo's power to bust open the gates of Hell. He then gained Ichigo's favor by acting as an ally. Once they had beaten Shuren, he revealed his true nature and tried to get Ichigo angry enough to Hollowfy and break his chains.
  • Mask of Sanity: Kokuto is calm and rational in the first half of the film, but becomes increasingly deranged after the reveal of his true nature.
  • Moral Myopia: Kokuto goes on about the pain of losing his sister, ignoring that he's condemning Ichigo that same pain making him no different than the people who killed his sister.
  • Non-Serial Movie: Pretty much impossible to fit in manga canon, since Hollowfied Ichigo's fight with Ulquiorra plays a major part in shaping the Big Bad's and Ichigo loses his original powers not long after. It might fit in Anime canon since Ichigo's powers take while to dissipate, but even then its a stretch.
  • One-Winged Angel: When Ichigo sees that Yuzu has died and been claimed by Hell, he snaps and Hollowfies out of sheer rage, trying to annihilate Kokuto with a barrage of Ceros. During their final battle, Ichigo starts to Hollowfy when Kokuto threatens to go after his sisters again, but stops the process by breaking off his horn.
  • Perpetual Storm: The lowest layer of Hell is under a constant lightning storm that only lets up when Hell grants Ichigo the power to stop Kokuto.
  • Power Incontinence: Hell's atmosphere causes Ichigo's Hollow powers to act up, resulting in his mask spontaneously appearing several times.
  • Prequel: The only movie to have a manga and anime episode (Episode 299) that lead into the film. It showcases the return of Shrieker (the bat-like Hollow with bombs from in early in the series) coming back as a Sinner to take his revenge on Ichigo. He fights Rukia and Renji, but is defeated and manages to escape back to Hell, only to be killed by Shuren, who sent him as a test of the suits that they would wear to invade the human world. At around the same time, Szayelaporro Grantz and Aaroniero Arruruerie end up in Hell after their battles in Hueco Mundo and are likewise defeated by Shuren's crew, who prepare to start their plan.
  • Put on a Bus: Chad is taken out early on by Shuren's fire attack, leaving him out of commission for most of the film.
  • Quirky Mini Boss Squad: Shuren's lackeys Gunjo, Murakumo, Taikon, and Garogai who serve as Ichigo and co. opponents on their way through Hell.
  • Rescue Arc: The main focus of the arc which is to rescue Yuzu. Then later Rukia, Renji, and Uryu after Kokuto kills them and traps them in Hell.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Kokuto sets up the whole thing in the hopes of Ichigo using his Hollow form to break his chains. He succeeds in having his chains broken by Skullclad Ichigo...only for Ichigo to summon more chains to suddenly ensare him and drag him further down into Hell.
  • The Stinger: After Yuzu is safe, she and Karin hug while comically ignoring Isshin.
  • Super Mode: At the end of the film, a Kusanada grants Ichigo its power to fight Kokuto, giving him a golden bone-armored form called Skullclad Ichigo.
  • Sweeping Laser Explosion: One of Hollow Ichigo's Ceros during his first fight with Kokuto sweeps across the horizon and causes several colossal explosions that billow up through Hell's upper layers and blast a massive hole in Hell's gate.
  • Thanatos Gambit: Shuren's minions fought Ichigo's team with the knowledge they would be killed, intending to respawn and help their boss take on Ichigo and Kokuto.
  • To Hell and Back: The other focus of the plot involves going into Hell, something that was showcased in the series' early chapters but was never brought up again. Ichigo has to do this a second time after Kokuto kills his friends and traps them there.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Yamamoto rips into Ichigo for his actions, calling him out for breaking the Gates of Hell and putting the human world at risk.