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The Best (and Worst) Works of Makoto Shinkai


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KH91



Joined: 17 May 2013
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:22 am Reply with quote
Mega Shinkai! As expected that the top movie would be KnNw. It's only fitting as that is the film that turned Makoto Shinkai into Mega Shinkai. It's also my favorite movie out of the others and it's well deserved from the visuals to the cast. I have one issue with it, but it was so expected that I from the start that I let it go. lol
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Spastic Minnow
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:39 am Reply with quote
I'm a little surprised this wasn't one of ANN's round table discussions where a spectrum of all or most writers get to name their favorites and disposables. I'd kind of like to get one of the writers to echo and maybe better vocalize why 5cm/sec. is such a turn off.
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willag
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:51 am Reply with quote
angelmcazares wrote:
Let me guess, without reading the piece, that Anne gave Your Name a B+ because she does not give many A's.


The post above was deleted. We don't need to start derailing this thread as well. Anyone else who wants to make similar snarky comments will just have their words deleted also.
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angelmcazares
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:52 am Reply with quote
I have watched about half of Shinkai's stuff, and I consider most of his work Decent to Good. The big exception being the Excellent Your Name. My top 5 would be:

1. Your Name
2. The Garden of Words
3. She and Her Cat
4. Children Who Chase Lost Voices
5. The Place Promised in Our Early Days
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Blackiris_



Joined: 06 Sep 2013
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:57 am Reply with quote
5 Centimeters is easily my favorite Shinkai film. I think Shinkai is best when he's telling down-to-earth story. That's why I found your name. so disappointing. The story is full of holes, the twists explained badly (or not at all) and it's basically plot convenience from start to end for the sake of entertainment. The romance also develops in a rather crude way, I think. But others seem to love the movie - good for them!

I hope Shinkai's next work will not dive into supernatural territory again. I didn't particularly mind this elements in his works, especially if they were just "magical/scifi realism" elements, but I definitely think low-key drama is what he's best at.

So yeah, 5 Centimeters will probably forever stay his best work in my book.
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Blood-
It...it's not like I post for you or anything!It...it's not like I post for you or anything!


Joined: 07 Mar 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:59 am Reply with quote
willag wrote:
angelmcazares wrote:
Let me guess, without reading the piece, that Anne gave Your Name a B+ because she does not give many A's.


The post above was deleted. We don't need to start derailing this thread as well. Anyone else who wants to make similar snarky comments will just have their words deleted also.


Great, so now ANN is practising censorship to protect its reviewers. It should be clear that complaining about a reviewer's review is not a "derailing" of a thread... the entire point of a discussion thread is to discuss the reviewer's work. Hey, why not simply disable all commentary about a reviewer's work? Oh wait, I guess positive comments would still be okay?
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JacobC
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:03 pm Reply with quote
Blood- wrote:
willag wrote:
angelmcazares wrote:
Let me guess, without reading the piece, that Anne gave Your Name a B+ because she does not give many A's.


The post above was deleted. We don't need to start derailing this thread as well. Anyone else who wants to make similar snarky comments will just have their words deleted also.


Great, so now ANN is practising censorship to protect its reviewers. It should be clear that complaining about a reviewer's review is not a "derailing" of a thread... the entire point of a discussion thread is to discuss the reviewer's work. Hey, why not simply disable all commentary about a reviewer's work? Oh wait, I guess positive comments would still be okay?


It literally has no relevance to the editorial in question. It's an off-topic personal attack intended to kick off soapboxing about something unrelated. So yeah, that's against forum rules.
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Kougeru



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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:04 pm Reply with quote
As great as Kimi no na wa. was, I don't think it's his best. It was far too generic as a whole.

1. 5 Centimeters Per Second - by far left the strongest impression on most the fans, including myself

2. Kimi no na wa. - As generic as it is, it's an absolutely beautiful story in both visuals and storytelling. Super predictable, done executed very well. I disagree about the music being perfectly inserted. A lot of the vocal tracks felt forced in, TBH

2. Voice of a Distant Star - Largely because of the production story behind this.

3. The Place Promised in Our Early Days - Story is a bit too hard for casuals to understand but overall it's a really beautiful story.

4. Garden of Words - You're underrating this greatly. Maybe it goes over your head. If looked at from the right angle, it's an extremely powerful story for someone who has dealt with true depression

5. All the shorts i enjoy pretty much equally

6. Children Who Chase Lost Voices - generic, uninspired. His worst work by far. Still enjoyable and absolutely beautiful, but it just felt like he was trying hard to make a Ghibli film.



As someone who absolutely hates censorship, I feel the need to chime in. I'm on ANN's side here. That person clearly didn't even READ the article. There was no letter ratings given at all, for example. I'm sure it's meaningless to say, but that is NOT censorship but rather simply removing a troll comment that had nothing to do with the topic. Anyone that knows me knows how much I hate censorship. I would never defend censorship. This was NOT censorship.
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willag
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:20 pm Reply with quote
@Blood- The post was deleted because it had nothing to do with this thread and was just carry-over from a debate about Anne's ratings on TAMB. This thread is for discussion on Makoto Shinkai movies.

EDIT: If you want to debate further on this, go to this thread. But let's all stop derailing this one.
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Zin5ki
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:37 pm Reply with quote
I dearly wished for Your Name to be as rewardingly cathartic an experience as Shinkai's earlier films were, though despite an execution that was as refined as anyone could expect, it left me rather ambivalent.

As someone who wished for another tonal piece without substantial complications—Voices of a Distant Star being my favourite instance of which—Shinkai's impressive appeal to broader audiences was their gain and my loss. It must be granted that the typical movie-goer could easily be taken by its troublesome relationship, abnormal premise, pervading mysticism and startling plot twist. Indeed, the stellar writing and direction gave such viewers more than sufficient reason to do so. But perhaps it was these deviations from Shinkai's norm that left me less invested than I might otherwise have been, his reliance on body-swapping especially. The occasional laugh or smile was all that was elicited under the circumstances; a far cry from my usual lachrymose state. Your Name was simply somebody else's film.

It is likely that films of a similar scope and ambition will be Shinkai's focus hereafter. Having rebounded triumphantly from the failure that was Children Who Chase Lost Voices, I don't doubt that he'll pen screenplays of similar complexity to suit his newfound admirers. As for me, I can still be happy that his early works came about, even if their minimal, melancholy qualities are unlikely to be reiterated in future works.
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whiskeyii



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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:39 pm Reply with quote
Wow, my list is almost entirely flipped. Anime hyper

Worst by far is Children Who Chase Lost Voices for being so nonsensical and meandering that it seemed to lose track of its own message, all while dropping far more interesting plot threads that it just never bothered with ("Oh, our world is dying because of our nonchalance towards death? We'll just never mention that again, then!").

The Place Promised in Our Early Days sits right next to Children for basically the same reason, except that even though Early Day's plot was far messier, that at least felt like a Shinkai film.

I think Voices of a Distant Star and She and Her Cat vie for fourth place; Voices for being the product of one person, which is a strong achievement regardless of the ultimately shaky product, and She and Her Cat because even though I could tell it was trying to move me, it just fell totally flat for me. The remake was much stronger.

In third place is 5 cm per Second, which was a fairly lovely experience, even with all the heartstrings it tugged at, but I did feel like the second act dragged on a little too long; to me it was always the section you tolerated to get to the good stuff in the third act.

Second place goes to Your Name for me; this was by far his most competent film, but I think the finale actually had too many "finale" points that made it drag on too long; I felt a bit like I was watching the many endings of The Return of the King. Still a good film, but needed some tightening up.

And in first place is Garden of Words. I think Shinkai does much better with short films than he does long ones, and both this and Your Name had some progressive character growth, rather than 5 cm's implied growth shown right at the end. But for me, this was punchy, to-the-point without being breakneck, and had strong characters; and this was finally the first of his films that made me connect with one of his characters without relying on the assumption that I too had suffered some "ships passing in the night" long-lost connection or something. This had the most organic-feeling relationship out of all his films, and it really resonated with me. Also it was drop-dead gorgeous, which didn't hurt.

But having said all that, I can also say that I'm not the biggest fan of Shinkai's work, as his signature melancholy longing that pervades his films just isn't a thing that resonates very strongly with me. So I kind of expect that my list is going to be more of an outlier than anything else. Laughing
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Blood-
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:47 pm Reply with quote
5 cm and The Place Promised in Our Early Days remain my two favourite Shinkai works so far because of their look, atmosphere (created by the visuals and music) and an unsettling mix of yearning and regret that, while not entirely comfortable to experience, nonetheless resonanted strongly with me.
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Sahmbahdeh



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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:52 pm Reply with quote
I am honestly not a big fan of Makoto Shinkai. He's great at background art and evoking a sense of melancholy and longing with his wide angle shots, but with only a handful of exceptions, his actual directing is pretty standard, and nothing to write home about. Also, there is a vast discrepancy between his background work and his character work, with every animation where he was in charge of character designs having plain, uninspired, boring designs and janky movements (with the notable exception being Garden of Words).

I would say Your Name is my favorite work of his, but that's mostly a function of it being totally unlike most of his previous work, incorporating humor, levity, a breezy pace and actual likeable characters. Seriously, until the twist, it feels like a movie by a completely different director. After the twist, it feels like a more conventional Shinkai movie, but because of the previous strengths I actually cared about it.

And can people please stop calling him (or anyone else for that matter) the "next Miyazaki"? Not only does it downplay and disrespect the differences between directors in general, for Shinkai it's especially inapplicable because Shinkai's style is completely different from Miyazaki's (and Shinkai is nowhere near as good as him, quite frankly).

There's a lot more I could say, and I might later, but I think this is enough for now.
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Key
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:52 pm Reply with quote
Apparently I've missed some of Shinkai's shorts. Now I have to go hunt down Dareka no Manazashi and A Gathering of Cats.

Absolutely agree with placing Voices of a Distant Star at #2. Though it has been surpassed in technical senses (especially character design!) by his later works, I've always been blown away by how succinctly and powerfully it conveys its core themes. It's one I point to as a masterpiece of efficiency in both visual and narrative storytelling, and the music is perfect. It was on my Top 10 list for the decade.

Among the other movies, I'd probably put Garden of Words ahead of Children Who Chase Lost Voices but otherwise agree with the rest of Anne's rankings.
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Parsifal24



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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 1:11 pm Reply with quote
For me Shinkai's best film is Garden Of Words and his worst film is Children Who Chase Lost Voices. Children Who Chase Lost Voices felt like some weird mixture of Indiana Jones and Kingdom Of The Crystal Skulls and a Studio Ghibli movie.
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