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YariMari

  • Sweden
  • Joined Aug 24, 2015
  • 28 / F

Whisper of the Heart

Aug 18, 2017

I feel like I have to like this since it's Ghibli, and I do, but that's about it - I like it, not love it. Now, don't bash me right away. I think it was a cute story about personal growth and following your dreams/heart. I just don't think it was anything else than that. The love story could have been fleshed out more (felt very, very rushed) and I felt like the side characters were pushed too far into the background. Their own personal stories were just... forgotten. There were so many story elements that could have been built upon, and I'm gonna put a spoiler warning for the following paragraph explaining what those elements are. So if you don't want any spoilers, skip this next paragraph.

First and foremost - Yuko and Sugimura. Their arc goes on for 10 minutes and is then completely left in the background after Sugimura confesses to Shizuku. You don't get to see whether Yuki finally battles up the courage to tell him how she feels, or whether he and Shizuku can stay friends afterwards. How does Yuki feel about him liking her friend instead of her? I don't get why it was even included in the movie if it was only going to be important for the first 10 mins of the film. And what about Shizuku's song lyrics? Did she ever find someone to sing her songs? Did she sing them herself? What happened? Shizuku's sister could also have been expanded upon. I would have liked to see how Shizuku dealt with having to live in her own room without her sister. If she liked it, or if she missed the company of someone else. The story of the Baron, and Shiro's story and backstory could also have been fleshed out more. I didn't need a full conclusion, but something would be nice. And finally, the love between Shizuku and Seiji is rushed. They have known each other for... what? A few days? Then he goes away for 2 months and the day he comes back he tells her he loves her and wants to marry her? I get that he has admired her from afar, but it's still a bit too early, don't you think?

What I'm trying to say is that it feels like they had too many ideas for this movie, and only ended up truly fleshing out one of them. It's a shame, because it had a lot of potential. It just needed a little polish - which is ironic considering polishing something until it shows it's true beauty is a main part of the movie's story.

This movie works great as a story about a girl who's trying to improve and do what she loves to do, but that's about it. There were some really nice moments, like when Shizuku, Seiji, Shiro and Shiro's friends create music together, and there were some really stunning shots as well. I also liked the small details they put into the animation, like when Shizuki couldn't reach her night light right away and had to get out of bed to turn it off, or when she knocked over the umbrellas in the hall without bothering to pick them up. Small things like this made it feel more life-like and real. There were no real reason why her night light had to be out of her reach, because she just went up, turned it off and went to bed as usual, but it still made it feel more realistic.

Overall, I recommend this movie. It's not what I expected, and it had it's flaws, but it's still a cute and nice story to follow. I will probably not watch it again, but I don't think I'll forget it soon either.

6/10 story
8/10 animation
8/10 sound
5/10 characters
6/10 overall

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