Makoto Shinkai’s latest film Weathering with You initially premiered in Japan July 19th and as of this writing, it has already garnered 9.64 billion yen domestically. According to Toho, the distributor of the film, Weathering with You broke Shinkai’s previous film Your Name’s opening gross by 118%.
Here in the Philippines, I got the chance to watch the pre-screening of the film before it hits local theaters next week on August 28th. Pioneer Films, the film’s local distributor in the Philippines, held two separate pre-screening days – which were both sold out, the first one on August 17th and the second one, which I attended on August 21st. Two sold out pre-screening days for an anime film is a rare occurrence in the Philippines. Anyway, I am here to discuss my thoughts about the film without giving out any spoilers.
GKIDs, the US and North America distributor, describes the show as:
The summer of his high school freshman year, Hodaka runs away from his remote island home to Tokyo, and quickly finds himself pushed to his financial and personal limits. The weather is unusually gloomy and rainy every day, as if to suggest his future. He lives his days in isolation, but finally finds work as a writer for a mysterious occult magazine. Then one day, Hodaka meets Hina on a busy street corner. This bright and strong-willed girl possesses a strange and wonderful ability: the power to stop the rain and clear the sky…
I must say that compared to Your Name, I’m satisfied with how Shinkai wrapped things up in Weathering with You, and by satisfied, I mean completely satisfied, considering that it didn’t leave me hours or even days asking myself what happened with the fates of our main characters. On the animation part, just when you thought that the quality of animation in Shinkai’s films couldn’t get any better, Weathering with You continues to exceed those expectations. What I noticed is the clean use of camera angles and how very refined the cinematic elements are. Each scene feels lively and it doesn’t give you the feeling of stagnancy – everything just flows smoothly and feels authentic. If I must say, Weathering with You is like a combination of Your Name and Garden of Words in terms of animation.
The film also has a lot of moments that will make you burst out laughing. I actually remember that during the screening, there was one long moment of continuous laughter from the audience because of a succession of comedic scenes. This also leads me to a thought that somehow, Weathering with You is a bit less emotional than Shinkai’s previous films even though the film takes a bit of a darker outlook on Tokyo. Looking back, I don’t think I didn’t see or hear anyone even faintly crying at the cinema.
Not only did the film contain lots of moments of laughter but I still remember how many times the audience found themselves in awe and screaming on the surprises the film showcased. As to those moments that left the audience surprised, watch the movie as to see why cause it might be a spoiler but hint: is this a start of a possible CU?
Out of all the characters, Nagi Amano is the most beloved character of the film. As for the reason why, well, if I must say without significantly spoiling anything, you will end up calling him senpai – just like what Hodaka Morishima, the male lead, eventually calls him. He’s someone very remarkable who you wouldn’t expect, especially with his unassuming appearance.
We would like to thank Pioneer Films once again for the opportunity to watch and cover the pre-screening of yet another beautiful and amazing film from Makoto Shinkai! (And for the umbrella freebie). We encourage everyone in the Philippines to watch Weathering with You on Wednesday, August 28th for its general theatrical release. We’ll also be posting the full list of cinemas once it comes
P.S: For a proof that I was at the second screening and for those who are wondering who I am: