Before I get started with this movie review, I would like to thank one of my awesome followers, Lovely, for suggesting me to review one of the newest anime films Kimi no Na Wa (a.k.a. Your Name). And what did I think of it? There…are no words to describe how touched I was by this movie and how emotional I was at the end of it. When first learning about this movie, I was immediately interested in seeing what other critics and bloggers had to say about the film, and I kept seeing a whole ton of positive comments and reviews on the film. After finishing the film today, I can say that it was really worth my time sitting down and watching this movie.
In Your Name, the viewers follow two opposite teenagers: Taki Tachibani (no, not Makoto Tachibani, although the male protagonist of the movie did remind me of him…), a young male student from the famous city of Tokyo, and Mitsuha Miyamizu, a young female student from the small town of Itomori, who magically switch bodies after Mitsuha wishes—and I quote—to make herself “…a handsome Tokyo Boy in her next life…” After the two notice that they have switched bodies, they learn how to live each other’s lives and embark on a journey to meet each other and figure out how to switch back to their normal selves.
With this movie directed by Makoto Shinkai, who also worked on films such as 5 Centimeters Per Second, Garden of Words, and The Place Promised in Our Early Days, he delivers one of his usual “star-crossed lovers” films, but Your Name differentiates from his other movies. In other movies, whether it be live-action or animated, the body swap idea is quite unique in a film like this, but this is carried out beautifully and I did not spot any problems with this at all.
As for the characters, I thoroughly enjoyed them…well, mainly the two main characters and Mitsuha’s family. These characters are so memorable in their own ways, and their lives are so interesting to learn about throughout this film, specifically Mitsuha’s. The rest of them, though, seem to be very bland and the viewers are left in question about them. For example, Taki’s friends Miki Okudera (ex-crush) and Tsukasa Fujii are shown in the film for some of the time, but their backstories are not shown. The only things the viewers know is that they work together as waiters at this fancy restaurant and that Taki had a crush on Miki. Anyways, other than those two, Taki and Mitsuha shine in this movie as protagonists and will generally be remembered the most from Your Name from their emotional, heart-tugging journeys in meeting one another.
Right before I get into the animation and art for this film, I would like to talk about the symbolism from Your Name. Now, I just figured this out from taking notes on the differences between Western and Eastern movies: most films made in the East focus on the symbolic, implicit reasoning behind the movie while the Western movies focus on the chronological, explicit reasoning behind a story-line. With that in mind, I took a look at some of the symbols used in this movie, especially the comet that glides through the air. First of all, I had an idea about the comet symbolizing the two main protagonists, somehow, but it doesn’t, really. It mostly symbolizes the “dream” Mitsuha and Taki seem to be having (I am making this a spoiler-free review, so explaining this symbolism will be a bit harder than in a review filled with spoilers). Well, besides the comet, there are many other symbols in this film that are just as important, but the viewers will have different interpretations on them, so there is no right or wrong answer for each of the representations of the symbols.
Now, onto the animation and art for this movie. These aspects of the movie are the ones that really shine and stand out. Produced by CoMix Wave Films, the animators execute the art and animation wonderfully! From the uniquely hand-drawn animation cells, to the gorgeous colors used for the scenery, I was mesmerized by how beautifully the art was excecuted in this film. Honestly, this movie has some of the best animation I have ever seen in an animated movie. Here are a few gifs to show you, readers, the magnificent art and animation from the film:
When reading reviews for this movie, I always see something familiar in each and every one of them: comparing the soundtracks between Your Name and A Silent Voice. I can understand why critics would do so, because they are both magnificent in their own ways! With the music composed by the band Radwimps, the music can vary from quiet and classical to soft and emotional rock music. A couple of the memorable pieces, Dream Lantern and Nandemonaiya, make their way into the movie by helping the viewers tell the story even further…but they also tend to get the ones watching this movie to feel a bit emotional, especially listening to the songs outside of the movie. After listening to the soundtrack once on YouTube, I have put a few of the songs on my playlist to listen on a daily basis.
But…back to what I was saying in the beginning of that paragraph…which has a better soundtrack: A Silent Voice or Your Name? Even though I really like both of them with all of my heart, I would have to say that this film has a slightly better soundtrack. The songs are more emotional and give me chills every time I listen to them. Overall, I’m in love with this soundtrack, and those of you who enjoy listening to anime soundtracks will certainly love this one.
Unfortunately, I was not able to find Your Name in English Dub, so I watched the film in English Sub. I did not mind, of course, but I still wished to have watched this in English. The Japanese voice acting for this movie is superb and each of the actors and actresses portray their characters nicely and remarkably well! I was able to feel what the characters were feeling, especially Mitsuha (voiced by Mone Kamishiraishi), through her tone of voice, and the way she used her voice to say how she feels about a certain situation. Some of Mitsuha’s scenes even made me tear up at a few points in the movie from just hearing her voice. Overall, though, the cast does a wonderful job with their characters and making them believable in their emotions and tones.
In conclusion, Your Name exceeds all of the requirements needed in a wonderful, beautifully animated film, leaving me rating this film a perfect score of five out of five stars! Despite the small lack of development for the side characters, this movie brought me to tears at the end and left me questioning the ending, which was surprisingly well thought out. If you enjoy watching anime and don’t have anything on your list to watch, then Your Name will definitely fit your needs for an enjoyable, heart-tugging anime film.
Warnings: Few Bits of Profanity, Some Violence, Some Suggestive Scenes, MAJOR FEELS!!
Again, I would like to thank Lovely for suggesting this movie for me! This movie was truly a gem and it is definitely worth the hype. If you have not seen the film, I hope that you will give this anime movie a chance. It’s amazing and a perfect for those of you who are looking for something unique to watch. Ah, I can’t recommend it enough! It’s really worth watching!
I hope you enjoyed reading this movie review. There will definitely be more to come!
GG 🙂 ❤