Final Thoughts: Weathering With You

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In the three years after the worldwide success that was “Your Name,” director Makoto Shinkai spent his time hard at work on yet another film, or at least that is what he said in an interview shown after “Weathering with You’s” premiere in U.S. theaters this week.

“Weathing With You” tells the story of Hodoka, a high school boy who runs away to the city of Tokyo, only to find out it is a little more than he bargained for. After finding a stable place to live Hodaka meets Hina, a girl who has the power to control the weather. Soon, the two decide to start a business, only for things to go horribly wrong.

The film certainly has a lot of interesting things about it, and so here are my final thoughts.

Weathering With You as a Message About Climate Change

Another thing Shinkai mentioned in the interview is that stuck out to me was that part of what inspired him to writer the film was the ever-looming threat that is Climate Change. Initially, I thoughts this was kind of posturing, and was something he only said to make the movie feel deeper than it really is.

However, the more I thought about it the more it maid sense. After all, the story focuses on a coporation (Hina and Hodaka) using the earth for profit at the expense of those around them (The people living in Tokyo), and Hina is almost made to pay for it. I suppose its fair to say, though, that this interpretation is a little mean, and that the message is much more general.

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The Guest Cameos

If you were not paying attention much at all while watching the movie, it would be pretty easy to miss the fact that the two main characters of “Your Name,” Mitsuha and Taki. While it is not super weird to see the two in the new movie, given that they are set in the same place at roughly the same time, it still kind of messes with my head a bit. Speaking of “Your Name,” though…

The Legacy of Makoto Shinkai

“Your Name” was an incredibly successful movie in every sense of the word. Not only did it become one of the highest selling Japanese films of all time, it also has had a cultural impact far beyond just the borders of Japan. It is certainly an epic tail that will be remembered well past 2016.

However despite the experience that “Your Name” was, I find myself gravitating much more towards “Weathering with You.”

Shinkai’s newest film actually feels like a departure in a lot of ways from his previous films. While movies like “Your Name” and “5 Centimeters Per Second” focused largely on the experience of the film, i.e. the overall atmosphere and feeling, “Weathering With You” feels a lot more grounded in its characters, which makes them feel a lot more human and not just random actors in a modern TV commercial.

Conclusion

Despite not feeling that great when going to watch it, “Weathering with You” managed to bring me on the emotional roller-coaster that only Shinkai films can, while also briging fresh ideas and interesting story lines as well. While maybe as ambitious as previous Shinkai films, the feelings it brings are real just the same.


How do you all feel about Weathering With You? Let me know in the comments.

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