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Chloë Grace Moretz,
Kôichi Uehara is a fourth grade student living in Higashikurume City, a suburb of Tokyo. One day he picks up what he thinks to be a fossil of an ancient creature but turns out to be a baby ... See full summary »
Kenji Koiso, an eleventh grade math genius, agrees to take a summer job at the Nagano hometown of his crush, Natuski. When he arrives, he finds that her family have reunited to celebrate the 90th birthday of the family matriarch. His job is to pretend to be Natsuki's fiancé. Meanwhile, his attempt to solve a mathematical equation causes a parallel world's collision with earth.Written by
Mamoru Hosoda completed all 500 pages of storyboards for the film at Denny's, working in hugely long 12 and 16-hour shifts. See more »
Never turn your back on family, even when they hurt you. Never let life get the better of you. And if you remember nothing else, remember to find time to eat together as a family. Even when times are rough; especially when times are rough. There's no lack of painful things in this world, but hunger and loneliness must surely be two of the worst.Thanks to you, my precious family, I didn't know a moment of either of those the last ninety years.
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The story begins with a math genius high school boy Kenji and his secret idol Natsuki going back to her hometown Nagano to celebrate her great grandmother's 90th birthday. One night, Kenji unintentionally helped crack the security code of a second life net community called "OZ" where billions of users communicate and live. Eventually a single password crack in virtual reality caused an enormous disaster to the real world. And young hero and heroin, and heroin's families are united and determined to fight against their overwhelming enemy.
The characters, designed by Yoshiyuki Sadamoto, including a young hero and heroin, are all vivid and adorable enough to make me feel that I actually want to be with them and related to the family. Also I think it was a right decision for a casting director not to use popular TV personalities for commercialism because I often witnessed their unexceptionally poor voice acting destroying masterpieces into pieces. Here the voice acting by the experienced actors or actresses enlivened all the characters, especially the great grandmother's affectionate yet dignified voice was just awesome.
The script woven by Satoko Okudera involved me into the story from the beginning to the end. The advanced internet technology and the traditional large family of Japan are cleverly integrated into one cloth, not contradicting to one another. The main plot of the movie is the fiction, however, I read and watch similar types of accidents on the paper or TV now and then. And the fact, I think, added the reality and impact to the story.
In 2006, Mamoru Hosoda proved himself a promising animation director in "The Girl Who Leapt Through Time". This time he proved himself a truly talented story teller who is capable of entertaining anyone regardless of age, gender, or culture. In this movie, he successfully had a virtual network and a real life coexist and interact with each other seamlessly in order to make the 'save-the-world' type main plot as tangible as possible and let it roller-coaster on. The reason why I called this a masterpiece is that this is not a mere roller coaster; he elaborately described the family tie, the growth of youths, and the romance between the young hero and heron, too.
Up until today, the avatars on the internet were just 2D/3D images or computer programs for me. But after the end roll of this movie, I've become aware that he or she actually lives behind avatars and I am "connected" to them in some way through the internet. It is a highly recommended animation film!
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