Anime Review #3 - Koe no Katachi / A Silent Voice
[ Completed Anime on tuesday 19-01-22 ]
omg im feeling many things after this one bois.♡
So I finally got around to watching this film after it’s been sitting in my ‘want to watch’ section and omg my heart is so warm and soft! This review is going to contain SPOILERS, by the way, so if you have not seen the film, I don't suggest you continue reading this review. Now with that out of the way, I just wanted to explain my initial thoughts of the film before we dive in. Having seen only the trailer and not knowing much else about the film other than how popular it was, I had no idea what I was getting into with this one. But wow can I just say how touching this film was! It discussed serious topics such as bullying, depression, and suicide while still maintaining a thoughtful, heart-warming, and relatable story centered mainly around 2 different classmates and how they come to realize how similar they are once getting to know one another (and fall in love). This film was so wholesome I have to admit I was wiping away tears at some parts that just hit so close to home. There are sad moments and cute moments in this film but if you're scared of getting attached to these characters only to be left with a sad ending, i promise you’ll be okay with this one! (it’s a happy ending!)♡
EDIT: Also, I watched this film in ‘english subtitles’ because I prefer watching films such as this with japanese voice actors (idk it makes it feel more authentic and personal? to me) so I’m only discussing my thoughts on the english sub, NOT dub!!! (just incase the dub is shit i’m adding this bit here lol)~
The plot: A young girl named Shouko Nishimiya transfers to a new elementary school and the class comes to find out that she cannot hear. Nishimiya is deaf and chooses to communicate with her classmates using a notebook and pens. Of course, some students in the class find her to be weird and ‘disgusting’ because of her disability so she soon becomes a victim of bullying by her peers. One of her bullies is a boy named Shouya Ishida who goes out of his way to make fun of Nishimiya with his friends. Soon the bullying becomes too much for Nishimiya when she ends up having her hearing aid stolen and destroyed by her peers 8 different times, so she ends up switching schools. Years go by and Ishida is now in high school. Things are different, however, and the classmates whom Ishida was friends with before turn on him because he’s a bully (a bit hypocritical since these classmates bully Ishida soon after). Feeling isolated and alone, Ishida begins to imagine everyone with x’s over their faces since he doesn't feel like he’s capable of looking anyone in the eyes anymore. Along with this, Ishida begins planning his suicide by working hard to leave some cash for his mother for after he’s gone. On the day he’s planning to kill himself, Ishida runs into Nishimiya again at school after all these years. Feeling regretful for what he did to her in the past, Ishida tries to make it up to her by giving her her old notebook back which she accepts gratefully. This good deed leaves Ishida feeling a small sense of closure so as he’s about to jump off the bridge, something stops him before he can climb over the ledge and he returns home. What ensues next is Ishida trying to apologize to Nishimiya for what he’s done to her, as well as try to become friends with her and hopefully make some more new friends along the way. He also learns sign language and makes sure to visit Nishimiya everyday when they feed bread to the koi fish.
Main Character Time!!! *:･ﾟ✧*:･ﾟ✧
-Ishida: meanie bully at first >:-( grr in the beginning i really wanted to teach this punk a lesson because he was being so RUDE to cutie little Nishimiya,, but ofc he changes for the better and realizes what he did was wrong after feeling what it’s like to be bullied and isolated. I couldn’t help but start warming up to him as he got older and worked hard to provide for him family and make amends with Nishimiya while also dealing with suicidal thoughts. I related a bit to his character in the sense that having no friends really sucks and when you feel like no one truly cares about you it can be easy to come to the conclusion that all your problems will be solved if you just kill yourself.. This mentality isn’t sound and suicide is not the answer! I’m getting a bit on a tangent here but I don’t want to sound hypocritical. I’ve admittedly had thoughts of suicide on a couple of different occasions though I’ve never actually done much in actually going through with it.. Basically what i’m trying to say here is that Ishida was a refreshing character to relate to and see in a film openly struggling with suicidal thoughts as well as trying to become a better person and uhhh i .. luv him <3 !! ~~he’s a good boy and you know he’s really changed when he (SPOILERS) saved Nishimiya’s life by risking his<3 ahh so wholesome and good i STAN!!! Cute baby boy uwu uwu~
-Nishimiya: I LOVE her character yall omg. She’s so adorable with her pink hair and sweet as a button personality<3 Though she struggles with her disability constantly, she doesnt let it stop her from trying to live her life. I feel for her when she constantly apologizes and blames the misfortune of those around her on herself :/ Nishimiya is also a character I can relate to because I also know what it’s like to be bullied though not to the extent that she experienced. Constantly feeling like you need to apologize and that the world would be better if you didn’t exist, yeah that hits a bit close to home with me hah. I love how determined she is to speak even though her voice is ‘a bit funny’ <3 i think it’s adorable! She’s always so kind even to those who are nasty to her which just shows how much of a bigger, more mature person she is than them which is really respectable! Her sign language is so cute as well and I just really loved her character so much ok!!! <3 <3 <3 cutie baby!!! Also she looked adorable during that fireworks scene but sad :( that she was about to commit suicide. :( <3 i love her yall uwu
Other Characters I Enjoyed/Wanna Talk About!!!･:*:･ﾟ☆
-Nagatsuka: omg this dum broccoli head baby mustache boy was literally my fav character! He was Ishida’s first real friend and was so goddamn loyal to him omg i need me a Nagatsuka in my life<3 His character provided a bit of comic relief to lighten the serious tone and I really enjoyed him a lot!
-Uneo: Just like Ishida she is a meanie in the beginning but she doesn't change until the end end of the film. I still don't really like her character, but I thought it was sweet how she stayed and took care of Ishida in the hospital after his accident and in the end when she signed ‘stu-pid’ to Nishimiya~ that was cute since she learned sign language<3 okay!!!
-Yuzuru: Nishimiya’s boyfriend aka little sister!! We stan a short photographer queen! She cares a lot about her big sister which is wholesome and she’s very protective of her and her feelings. She doesn't hold back and always tries to remain positive and grounded. I thought she was a really cute character and I enjoyed her relationship/friendship with Ishida in the end with her going over to ask for help with her homework! Aw so cute<3 future sister/brother in law perhaps :p lol
I decided to rate this anime an 9.5 overall! I though the plot was really interesting and touching, having been from the former bully’s perspective for a majority of the film, and it did a good job of showing how one should never belittle another person or make them feel worthless for simply being themselves. I think the film did a good job of conveying harsh emotions such as having suicidal thoughts and relating it back to how this doesn't solve your problems. People care about you regardless of what you believe during your times of weakness and one is never truly alone. Be kind to everyone because you don't know what they're dealing with. Though there are a lot of things i loved about the film, such as the characters Ishida and Nishimiya, there were some characters that i found a bit pointless and some of their actions in the film felt strange to me. Getting into specifics, I feel like Nishimiya’s mother acted a bit too emotional rather than level-headed when dealing with Ishida hanging out with Yuzuru and trying to be nice to Nishimiya. I know that what Ishida did to her daughter was horrible, but you’d think a mother would know when she’s going to far(?) if that makes sense lol.. I just feel like she should’ve seen that Ishida was trying to right his wrongs as best as he could. Like he fed Yuzuru, gave her his old shoes, and walked her home in the rain.. She didn’t have to slap him but whatever. Also I found the character Mashiba to be a bit pointless lol.. His only ‘purpose’ was to serve as Ishida gaining new friends but he was never really part of the ‘gang’ you feel me? Also I wished the Ishida x his old friends beef would’ve been solved better but ehh just a minor critic. Overall though, I really did enjoy the film and I would honestly watch it again! I also do want to read the manga at some point because I really enjoyed the characters Nishimiya and Ishida and i wish they could've at least kissed or something lol. Oh well,,, I still highly recommend this film unless you’re sensitive to bullying and suicide!!! Okay so this is the end of the review! I don’t really feel like proofreading this since it's almost midnight and ya girlie has classes tomorrow, soooooo,
that's all folks :-)