Your average awkward gamer and otaku. Book girl. Tsundere. Freelancer. Struggling to become an author.
Kimi no Na wa is probably one of the long-awaited movies of the year. The director of this anime movie is Shinkai Makoto, the so called “New Miyazaki”, winner of multiple awards, and simply put, a genius mind. One could say with no doubt that all his works are masterpieces, but his chef-d’oeuvres are 5 Centimeters Per Second, Voices of a Distant Star, Children Who Chase Lost Voices, The Garden of Words, and so on. It has been roughly three years since his last movie, and everyone was quite hyped up after the initial announcement of the new movie. Here in Japan, the movie has been advertised everywhere. Posters are still in every convenience store and retail shop. You can even find some in universities.
The movie premiered last week and it topped the charts during the weekend. Being a huge fan of Shinkai Makoto, I went to watch the movie as soon as it premiered. And I must tell you, I was not disappointed. I am sure the movie will continue to top the Japanese box office for several weeks.
Shinkai Makoto is widely known for his animation style. He uses an enormous amount of details, and his art is so realistic it astounds me every time I see it. His stories mostly revolve around young lovers, and Kimi no Na Wa wasn’t an exception. It’s the story of two high-schoolers, Mitsuha and Taki, who are destined to be connected by the ‘red string of fate’. However things take an unusual turn. Taki lives in Tokyo while Mitsuha lives in a faraway village which is pretty much cut off from civilisation. In some magical way these two start switching bodies in their dreams. This is of course followed by various jokes, gags, and personality changes that will make you chuckle and laugh wholeheartedly. However, if you have ever watched Shinkai Makoto’s movies before, you already know that the lighthearted mood of the anime is just one side of the coin.
The charm of the show is its character development. You get to see how two people start falling in love with one another without even realising it themselves. You get to experience their worries, relate to their daily life issues, and cheer them in their endeavours.
As one can see on the posters, the anime focuses on a comet that appears once in a millennium. The scene with the comet is probably one of the most beautiful, refined, and gorgeous pieces of animation I have ever seen in my life. However, the beauty of the scene was that, despite its elegance, it was predicting a disaster, an end, a demise. This is exactly where Shinkai Makoto’s magic interferes and helps make things straight; it manages to overcome the tragedy.
Nonetheless, because of the disaster, the ‘red string’ that was connecting Taki and Mitsuha gets stretched and becomes forgotten in the flow of time and space. But a thin memory, which is ready to melt away any moment, still lingers in the air, always radiant. It never fades away, never disappears, and it always guides them. It leads… to the string of connections.
As someone who has watched all of Shinkai Makoto’s movies, I can say that Kimi no Na wa is his best work. His soul pours out of the movie. The amount of work that was done on this is horrendous. Shinkai definitely deserves every bit of glory he gets.
Kimi no Na wa is a masterpiece that appears once in a decade. It pictures perfectly the development of its main characters, their growth into adults, the ways in which they mature up, and their relationship. It’s a representation of their connection, their bond, and their love. Kudos to Shinkai Makoto for creating the perfection he called Your Name.