“YOUR NAME.” | Hawai‘i Premiere | Japan | Japanese w/English subtitles | 105 min.
Written and directed by Makoto Shinkai.
HIFF closes this year’s festival with “Your Name.,” the biggest moneymaking film in Japan. The film is based on director Makoto Shinkai’s award-winning novel. “Your Name.” is universally acclaimed and has been deemed a modern classic of animation, especially outside of Japan.
Mitsuha and Taki are total strangers living completely different lives. When Mitsuha makes a wish to leave her mountain town for the bustling city of Tökyö, they become mysteriously connected. Mitsuha dreams she is a boy living in Tökyö, while Taki dreams he is a girl from a rural town. What is the meaning of this new connection, and how will it bring them together?
The story is wonderfully crafted. While the spiritual element serves as a key component of the story, it does not overshadow the human emotion that has been caught up in it. The animation, also, is breathtaking. Detailed landscapes, rich color palettes and scrupulous detail blend together to form a gorgeous iteration of two Japans — rural and urban. Shinkai succeeds in communicating the appeal of both.
“Your Name.” is a heartfelt, genre-bending coming-of-age romance that is sure to enchant, delight and touch hearts. It will be in competition at the London and Busan film festivals.
Screenings: Nov. 13, 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.