This film has been credited "Best Animated Film" (59th Annual Mainichi film awards). Directed by, Makoto Shinkai (Also the creator of "Voice's of a distant star")
The Plot :
Within an alternate postwar period, in 1996. Japan is divided - Hokkaido is ruled by the "Union" while Honshu and other southern islands are under US authority. A tall tower was built on Hokkaido. The story follows three middle-school students, Takuya, Hiroki and Sayuri. Takuya and Hiroki are building a plane to fly to the Tower someday. The bond between the three are sealed within that promise to someday unravel the enigma lurking behind the tower.
Three years have past and all have drifted apart from each other. Takuya has estabilised a position within society, researching parralel worlds, Sayuri has drifted into a mysterious coma and Hiroki is hanging loosely throughout High-school. That promise and Sayuri's fate united the three characeters. This takes audience on a journey where friendships are lost and revived, where reality loses touch of illusion and vice versa.
Summarised Review :
The plot of the story is good, but overall it really isn't anything special. The success of the film derives from the unique poetic style maintained throughout the storyline. Also the soundtrack is truly superb.
"The cold wind gives off the smell of the day.
The clouds drifting fast and between them.
I can see the faded blue, like an old photograph.
The straight vapor trail that has just been drawn quietly melts away in the blue as if water has been mixed in.
On a day like this, the place deep in my heart that I usually don't show to anyone slightly hurts.
Its a pain that I usually pretend doesn't exist."
This film is truly captivating and a must see. I highly recommend everyone go see the creation of : Makoto Shinkai. (The promise land in our early days, Voices of a distant star)
Favourite Quotes :
In several scenes we witness Sayuri entrapped within her illusion, her dream-world. Makoto's ability to potray a domination of illusion over reality in such a poetic manner is truly inspiring.
Below list some of the captivating quotes featured during those moments:
Hiroki: "When I wake up. For a second I dont quite understand where I am. I sometimes think I might have come to the wrong place. But now I feel the dream about Sayuri is more realistic than the reality I'm living."
Sayuri: "I've been having the same dream over and over again.....
A dream that I'm alone in an empty universe...where theres noone around. In that dream all of me : Fingers, cheeks, fingernails, heels, even the tips of my hair ache from such loneliness. The world filled with warmth... the one where the three of us were together seems more like a dreram than the dream I'm having now. But I feel that so long as I dont lose the memory from those days I may be able to stay connected to reality. If only by a fragile, fragile hold."