My Own Anime Filmfest (Part 1): On Makoto Shinkai

For someone who prefers reading and writing short stories, I prefer movies to consume-in-bursts TV series. I could come up with several reasons as to this choice, but movies just tend to be a less compromised creative output, if you ask me.

That, I believe, is another thing that differentiates me from the typical otaku, but I’m referring to the stereotype though: he, or she, who follows the popular, and the latest and greatest in, say, anime. On my end, I put on my wannabe-critic cap, and do some online research first, consult with Noel Vera if he has written about it already, and screen movies based on directors. Anime or NOT anime, that’s usually how I am before deciding to watch a film.

5 Centimeters Per Second

Makoto Shinkai has been touted as the next Miyazaki, and the movies I’ve seen so far does prove that Shinkai’s output is more than impressive to the eye, his storyline a few notches up versus the typical mecha-context love story, but this is not in the vein of Miyazaki’s timeless works. The imagination seems to be limited to the what-if’s of middle-school friendships and crushes, and growing up and being involved in modern Japan’s space alien battles (Voices of a Distant Star), and post cold-war scenarios (The Place Promised in Our Early Days). I’m not dismissing what he’s done so far, but I find the Miyazaki comparison a long shot.

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