Basically all comic-based movies start with an origin story, but not Doraemon. A huge number of Doraemon movies were made, remade, and with the same formula rehashed repeatedly, but nobody thought of showing his origin story in a movie, until now.
Stand by Me Doraemon (Blu-ray release 2015-2-18) smartly combines the origin story and extends its theme to become a movie, while integrating some of the most memorable segments from the manga. Unlike the rest of the Doraemon movies, it is not using the same formula. Those who watched all the Doraemon movies with the same formula will understand how groundbreaking this is. Doraemon stories are based on the foundation of the protagonist being a loser and need Doraemon’s help. In this movie, we get to see his rare progress as a person.
When the first images of 3D CG Doraemon were released, many people including myself were horrified by the really odd CG design of the characters, who look too different from the anime. After getting over the initial shock and now having watched the actual final version, my feeling is that it’s still odd, but not intolerable. With the good story it becomes acceptable. Although not flawless, this movie is much better than I expected, and is one of the best Doraemon movies.