Your Name. ★★★★★

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“I AM SHOOK” as Brendan Michaels exclaims in his Nocturnal Animals review, is a statement that I feel is appropriate here. No, not in a way that left me in fright or with shaking tension, but rather left in a trembling emotional state that bubbled from experiences of melancholy and heartache. I felt that my foundations have been on crumbling edge as I walked quietly out of the cinema. I have yet to shed so much tears as I have in a theatre in my life, as most of my waterfall-like tears towards cinema tend to take place in the comfort in my own room. So in a way, Your Name was quite a special experience.

Your Name plays upon the concept of time through the experiences of a boy and girl, whose lives are swapped in alternate days, living their radically different lifestyles that may benefit or emerge with conflict in the different perspectives and values of that given person embodying their lives. Its thematic through-line is of notable importance in shaping the relationships and emotions that are explored in the narrative, but it is a factor in the storytelling that I personally choose not to divulge since that much of the film’s appeal is knowing very little of the turns and beats that shape the film, and one does require a stretch of oneself to simply just accept the gears of its plot, as there is really no grand explanation that leads their lives to be switched, instead placing its concerns with the emotions at hand.

In saying that, I will say that director Makoto Shinkai utilises its complicated premise to great effect, in that it sells its melodrama to such powerful proportions, aching those who are particularly susceptible to those who have affinity to fate-led romances, one that feels truly cinematic and sweeps you off your feet. Once its foundations have been constructed, Shinkai begins to probe the audiences with the depicted growth in the two character’s relationship, slowly tapping onto our desire for a light bounce in its slices of comedy, then slowly allowing its drama to swell to serious and demanding quantities, successfully selling the urgency that drives these characters forward.

It is best for me to conclude this write-up here and simply emphasise the need for you all to see this, I am sure that many of you would be underwhelmed given the vastness of my showering affection for this film, and that this overwhelming admiration may be far too immediate, but nevertheless, it possess enough genuine strengths that makes this almost a necessary viewing, and given the downward state in Studio Ghibli, in that their halt status triggers warnings of a potential dissolution, beautiful films like this are needed more than ever.

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