When I was little I was never particularly interested in anime, not because it wasn't good, it just wasn't all that popular here in the United States. It wasn't until I discovered Hayao Miyazaki years ago that I realized what a fool I was and what I've been missing out on. Ever since then my love for the genre has grown, and here today I find myself being more excited for the next Studio Ghibli instead of the next Pixar and Dreamworks film. That's not to say that these two studios don't produce anything good anymore but, Pixar has been in a recent slump, Cars 2 was mediocre and Brave was good but, it was below the normal Pixar standard. Dreamworks has slowly been climbing up the ladder in the animation field but, it still has a little more to go before it reaches the top. I know I'm getting off-topic since this film is over 15 years old but, I still stand by with what I said about Studio Ghibli.
I'm always finding anime movies to watch, but with school and the crazy amount of snow we've been getting over here has taken up a good portion of my time. I needed to sit down and watch a movie so I was looking for some anime movie and to my surprise I found this movie as it was mentioned by someone on the forums. I should thank that person as I would never have found this movie. Though this isn't from Hayao Miyazaki this film easily stands side to side with many of his greats.
As much as I loved this movie I do have one small quibble, it's the ending. I don't know why but, I can't seem to make up my mind about the ending. Part of me understood why it ended the way it did but, the other part of me was a little disappointed. Maybe because I didn't want the film to end that it disappointed me a bit, I don't know, maybe this was the best way to end the movie. Whatever the case, without giving it away, I will say it did catch me off guard and it did not end the way I wanted it to. Who's too say that the way I wanted it to end was any better but, I'll stop now and move on. Despite this, I simply loved the rest of the movie.
The story is simple but, there are some fresh twists along the way to keep you engaged. This isn't your typical teen romance crap, It isn't about the rich guy or girl falling for the poor guy or girl, they're just two normal teenagers falling in love with one another. The characters are well-developed as well as the relationship between the two main characters. By the end I was rooting for these two to be together, I cared about what happened to them and their relationship which took me by surprise. It's very rare that a romance movie, let alone an anime romance movie makes me feel that way.
Though this movie is almost 18 years old the animation is still gorgeous. The settings are well drawn out as well as the characters. I've always had problems with English dubbing's when it comes to anime films(Yes that includes one or two Hayao Miyazaki films) but, this is an exception. Not one voice feels like it shouldn't belong, the voice acting was great, they couldn't have chosen better voices for the dubbing. It felt like the voices fit perfectly with their characters which is always a great thing because like I said, when they pick wrong voices it ruins my enjoyment of the movie.
The music is lovely and I absolutely loved that song that the girl wrote. In fact, one of my favorite scenes was when she was in the basement with the boy and they start playing and singing the song, then the boy's grandfather comes along as well and joins in, it's just a beautiful scene.
Overall, this is a great anime movie, a must see for those like me, who have a penchant for this genre. The ending was a tad disappointing but, it didn't ruin my enjoyment of the film at all. This is a simple story about two normal teenagers falling in love, and a good one at that. The animation is still gorgeous even if it's 18 years old, the characters as well as the romance is really well- developed, the voices chosen for the dubbing were perfect, and the score is lovely. I haven't seen this movie in it's original language but, the English dubbing isn't a bad at all and it wouldn't be a bad option if you can't find this movie in it's original language with English subtitles.