Makoto Shinkai, who has created numbers of films, commercials, and other media works, credits Japanese teenage life to manga, anime, as his inspirations. Makoto has also been known as “The New Miyazaki” because of his creative talent and beautiful visual artworks, And his newest movie “Kimi no Na wa. (Your Name.)” created a historical hit in Japan and worldwide. Let’s take a moment to explore 5 of his best-rated works today.
5 Centimeters per Second (秒速５センチメートル)
This could be the saddest Makoto Shinkai movies, it’s a story about first love and the physical and emotional distance between people that keeps growing larger and larger. It has split into three segments, while the segments come together to create an overall story, the first one is about sadness when a friend’s move away from felt like the end of the world. And while Takaki does grow up over the next two segments, something inside his heart can’t let go of his elementary school mood. The film’s conclusion intends to leave us with not only the regretful of acceptance but also a nostalgic reverence for the dreamed life that we all have when we’re young.
The Garden of Words (言の葉の庭)
The Garden of Words, is an emotional express of loneliness, sadness, and the ways how human beings mature through hardship from life. The film follows the interactions between a highschool boy who’s dream of becoming a shoemaker and a school teacher in her 20s. Over the rainy season, the pair consistently meet each others in a garden, where bit by bit, the two start to form a connection. Characters shared something very important — a platonic but touching romance. This movie is about two different individuals who realize that, despite of differences in age and willing, they expressed a universal desire for emotional connection.
The Place Promised in Our Early Days (雲のむこう、約束の場所)
This is a military and sci-fi anime film about a wildly different Japan and a mysterious tower linked to 2 boys and girl. Sayuri begins suffering from a strange sleeping sickness and eventually disappears. A few years later, the boys find out that the sickness was caused by the tower, and they begin planning to destroy it. Fabulous, yet oppressive new world technology, friendship, and a subtle love triangle amongst this three friends make this film a fantastic and emotional ride.
Voices of a Distant Star (ほしのこえ)
Voices of a Distant Star is a romantic long-distance love story between a high school girl and boy which set in the near future. While the lovers continue to drift apart, wondering if their connection can overcome time and star-crossed distance, Mikako curled up and floating in the beautiful but empty space where she can no longer feel the earth, and Noboru sitting alone at the bus stop where they once sheltered in together on a rainy day. This scene really touched me by the truly felt the endless inability and emptiness.
Your Name (君の名は)
Your Name, a body-swap story in which Tokyo boy Taki and country girl Mitsuha find that their bodies and minds sometimes happen to be exchanged while they are dreaming. Initially it is very much a teen romance, however, the meteor strike that threatens Mitsuha’s sleepy lakeside town in the film’s second half is obviously a metaphor for the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. And then we will see how they intend to save the village and people’s life. You will be right away drawn into the unpredictable story along with beautiful anime world. It also seems to be saying that: the city or the countryside, this is a beautiful world and we only need to find our place in it.
Makoto’s unique strength has always been defining a sentimental mood not only through the story but also by using his dazzling crafted backgrounds and fantastic lighting to express emotion to us. Talking about his narrative elements are quite simple: love, longing, loss, and solitude, but he really combined them well.
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