Austin’s review published on Letterboxd:
A visual and thematic summation of Makoto Shinkai's filmography up to this point. This is another gorgeously animated, intensely emotional love story from a filmmaker who excels at creating internal and external beauty.
I've said it in so many of my reviews this year (technically last year I suppose but 2016 won't release its strangle for quite some time I imagine), but I've so far been pretty incapable of adapting to life without my closest friends.
Yousef was here visiting for the last two weeks, but as I'm writing this he's probably flying over the ocean back to Saudi Arabia. I don't think it's quite set in yet that he won't be a daily presence in my life again. Same with Eric. Same with John. Same with Aj.
And I'm so terrified for my memories with them to become foggy, because it's an inevitability that time will take them.
And this movie is heartbreaking and sweet and I cherish it for helping me to articulate some of these feelings.
I haven't figured out how to stop every happy memory from also hurting and I'm not sure if anyone actually ever does, but I'm beyond grateful that I have these memories in the first place. Even when they begin to fade, their impact won't.