Makoto Shinkai’s 2016 film Your Name has probably been one of, if not the single, most hyped anime series/film to come out in recent memory. And after having seen the film in theaters, the film lives up to that hype in almost every single aspect. To begin, this film—like all other Shinkai films—looks absolutely breathtaking and that’s not just for a few key scenes, but the level of clarity and detail stays at that awing level for the films entirety; it is simply mind-blowing. The story is also very well orchestrated, and the sheer level of symbolism and foreshadowing are outstanding: every little conversation, word, and background has importance and relevance to the story, and if you’ve ever tried to write a story, you know how difficult that is to include and still have your story make sense. The two character’s troubles, barring the obvious, are certainly relatable and add to drama of the narrative. And while this review has been mostly praise of the film, there are still a few things that I disliked about it, such as some of the character actions being a little bit less than believable, and a couple of moments that kind of, though not entirely, feel a little deus ex machina. These few flaws however, are simply minor grievances, and don’t really take all that much away from the film as a whole. If you’re wondering whether or not the film is good, I would say it certainly passes that margin by a mile, now if you’re wanting to know whether or not the film is number one on MAL good, then I’d say no: I don’t believe Your Name to be the best anime I have ever seen, but nonetheless, the film is truly a fantastic masterpiece that you should absolutely see. This is a Must Watch film that you do not want to miss, and I also award Makoto Shinkai’s 2016 miracle, a Certificate of Excellence. You will not regret checking this film out, and I highly encourage you to seek it out whenever you get the chance.
Solanin is a great example of a series that really knows how to hit hard with its drama and atmosphere, while also keeping in touch with reality. Inio Asano has truly done a fantastic job in this short series of illustrating his points perfectly. He has incorporated every emotion into this timeless piece and made it truly something special. The hardships of becoming an adult, adapting to the world, and the constant contemplation of why you exist are key aspects of the story, which while depressing, always seems to imbue a sense of hope and optimism to whoever is reading. This is truly a fantastic story you do not want to miss out on, and one that really reflects the feelings a lot of people have towards the world and others around them, even if those emotions are subconscious at most. Understanding oneself and the world around is something everyone has to go through, and I cannot give Asano enough credit when it comes to that very simple, yet powerful theme. I award this series a Certificate of Excellence, and the status of Must Read. I highly, highly encourage you to pick it up, especially since Viz Media gave this series such a high quality release. Please read this series! You won’t regret it!
A short, fun little series that’s just a fun time to watch: Oshiete! Galko-chan is quite entertaining. Since this is a short series, there isn’t a whole lot to talk about, not only that, but the episodes are also mostly divided up quite a bit, and while it doesn’t quite have the same feel as a 4-koma adaptation would, if you’ve seen any of those this is similar to how those are. The series mostly is about the interactions between the three main characters: Galko, Otako, and Ojou, all of whom are supposed to be representative of a specific clique or archetype, as are all of the other characters. The names are also pretty telling as to who each character is supposed to represent. The series is also unlike a lot of other series and talks about subjects that most other series stray far away from, and that is one of the reasons it was a little refreshing. It’s a nice fun comedy that was enjoyable the whole way through, not to mention that it was easy to digest since the episodes are short, at only 8 minutes in length. Overall, while not being particularly outstanding, it was certainly entertaining to watch. As such, I would give this series that recommendation that you watch it, as I’m sure you’ll at least find it enjoyable. While it isn’t particularly amazing, it is definitely worth checking out, and since it’s so short, there isn’t much of a reason not to.