Your Name (2017)
Starring: Ryûnosuke Kamiki, Mone Kamishiraishi, Ryô Narita, Aoi Yuki, Nobunaga Shimazaki
Directed by: Makoto Shinkai
Written by: Makoto Shinkai
Rating: PG Running Time: 1 hr 46 min.
I went into this film blind. I knew nothing about it other than it was an anime film (Japanese animation). I am very happy to report this was not a wasted trip to the theater, Your Name, was a wonderful surprise and well worth seeing on the big screen.
Your Name, is a fantastical exaggeration of adolescent identity issues, impermanence, and destinies. A city boy called Taki (voiced by Ryûnosuke Kamiki) and a country girl, Mirsuha (voiced by Mone Kamishiraishi) repeatedly switch bodies and explore each other’s ‘greener’ pastures. Resulting in a lot of confusion and humor as they try to spend time living in each other’s shoes. Eventually learning to pass notes to each other via their smart phones while they exploit the bizarre phenomena that has taken over their lives.
Your Name, however, as body switching comedy dramas go, is more in the vein of Big (Tom Hanks) than, say, Vice Versa (Judge Reinhold). And this film operates on an artistic level neither one of those films can touch. This film, like a lot of anime and manga productions, references the cultural impact of WWII, and the devastation after being hit by two nuclear bombs. Those themes are blended seamlessly into a touching, often hilarious, romance story. Your Name is also beautifully drawn and animated, and the music by Radwimps, adds an extra emotional punch.
If you’re a fan of Anime movies, or animation in general, this is a must see. Tonally, think Kika’s Delivery Service or The Tale of The Princess Kaguya. If you enjoyed Song of the Sea and/or The Secret of Kells, I think you’ll like Your Name too.
The animation following Taki’s visit to Mitsuha’s family shrine is stunning.
The running joke where Mitsuha’s younger sister, Yotsuha, repeatedly finds Mitsuha (with Taki driving) grabbing his (her) breasts, is hilarious.