Jose A. Benavides’s review published on Letterboxd:
So much to say, but I'm really not motivated to articulate anything beyond my impressions. Is one of those rare cases where a film is simultaneously tragically missing its own potential while being fully realized. I wanted it to be either a 40-minute short or an entire anime season — as chunky and dense as it could get. To be short and sweet or to be painstakingly detailed, but I got a weird middle. I get the mixture of both stories is the reason it's so memorable for so many, but it just crams way to much.
Probably my best description is that it's like a Wong Kar-wai film without the critical eye and love for textures, or a Miyazaki film without the visual poetry or patience for its ambiance. My final thought is just "that was cute", which I assure you that's the last reaction Shinkai wanted out of me.