Flavors of Youth (2018)
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The film is told in three chapters, similar to that of 5 Centimeters Per Second. Chapter one, "The Rice Noodles," focuses on a young man with a nostalgic fondness for noodle soup in Beijing. Chapter two, "A Little Fashion Show", is about two sisters, one a fashion model and one a fashion designer, the former of whom's career gets in the way of their time together. Chapter three, "Love in Shanghai", concerns a young architect regretting not confessing his true feelings to a girl he knew in his childhood.
Showcasing gorgeous animation and artwork, Flavors of Youth is a carefully told and often touching collection of stories about living in the moment and enjoying the simple pleasures of life. Each individual protagonist lends themselves to their story in their own unique way, but never so much that the overall tone of the film feels inconsistent. The English dub voice acting is solid as well, featuring great performances from the likes of Crispin Freeman, Erica Mendez, and even Hollywood actress Evan Rachel Wood. While not on par with better anime films in CoMix Wave's library like 2016's Your Name, Flavors of Youth is certainly worth a viewing on Netflix.
I rate it 8/10
The animation was also beautiful done that made it a joy to watch.
From the simple pleasures of a hot meal, to family, friendship and planning for the future, these stories are represented variously and concisely.
Although some of the character designs feel generic (mainly background characters and minor characters with brief appearances), the backgrounds are detailed and grand like any quality theatrical release.
The opening segment took a minute or two to find its footing, but I was rewarded by the quality of the animation, the warmth of the narrator's voice, and the poetry of the description.
After that first segment, I was more patient, allowing the rest of the film to wash over me like a warm bowl of San Xian noodles (the art of noodles figuring prominently in that first segment).
For a change, the setting is various cities and towns in China, which works for me, adding needed variety compared to seeing the usual City and town backdrops used in many anime depictions of Japan.
Be sure to watch past the final credits of the last segment, as there is an end credit scene (of course there is) that bookends with the opening scene at the airport.
I thought I would have to work to pay attention (I have ADD), but the brevity of each segment made it easy to follow along. The first segment is so warm and poetic, it brought a joyful tear to my eye.
The second segment took a little longer to get into, but the characters slowly developed (just like in real life, it takes time to get to know people), and the payoff was unexpectedly grand.
The final segment really could have been developed into its own story, but the brevity added to the drama and could easily be the best of the three stories. I suppose it could have been presented first, but then I would have missed out on that beautiful opening segment that really sets the tone for the rest of the film.
I really enjoyed the film. It reminds me of 5 CM Per Second and Only Yesterday, similar films which reward the viewer while relaxing and feeding your soul like a warm bowl of noodles.
This review is based on the international version, in Japanese with English subtitles.
Give it a watch it's explore the different things that face a young person.
Overall this was a really good slice of life/romance movie, especially if you like Your Name and 5cm Per Second. I would definitely binge it. I am not sure where the sub is available but I watched the dub which I believe is available on Netflix if you would like to check it out.
As I sated on my Big Fish and Begonia review I am generally not a fan of chinese anime but this was again a really good change of pace. Especially because I got exposed to a bit of Chinese culture.
Spoilers Ahead! 1. Food "Hidamari no Choushoku" (Sunny Breakfast) It took us through the need for food. The magical taste of San Xian noodles. How the loss/change of the taste would make us feel, the people with whom we eat and the atmosphere of where we eat.
2. Clothing "Chiisana Fashion Show" (A Small Fashion Show) It shows how fashion has changed the Clothing industry in a good/bad way (depends how you see it). And the people/models who work in this industry are working so hard to be at the top. Finally, it shows that just a normal type of clothing of your favourite colour made by your sister would make you feel better than a super-costly dress.
3. Shelter "Shanghai Koi" (Shanghai Love) It shows that the main character is interested in Architecture. Also, the area where he grew up will soon be demolished and renovated as it is kind of old currently and is in the middle of a great city. It also covers other important needs of life like Love, Education, and you know Life itself.
Post credits scene: Its kind of a happy scene where we see all these characters of individual stories at the same place very near to each other. And it shows how small and simple the world is but we just don't notice it.
It's really great to create an anime of such quality with such basic needs in life. I'm glad to notice this without reading the description of the Anime.
I've seen people comparing Shikioriori with Kimi no na wa and review Shikioriori as a bad anime that just copied the style. That's completely absurd. Both the anime are unique in their own style. And yes, the art looks like Kimi no na wa and its good. Because anyone would love to see an art with such great detail and quality. And that's one big factor we all watch anime.
Firstly what impressed me was its beautiful background art, for me this really makes the movie and takes me out of my environment and makes me think I'm in theirs.
I like that the film is 3 separate stories and each are quite different to another, I was half expecting them to tie in together in the final part of the movie however this is not the case, its still a fun and flowing movie all the same.
My only niggle is the background people in scenes are completely static which left me with a sense of cheapness and for me to really believe the stories I feel the background humans should have more movement.
The music and detail in this movie is superb and the animation overall is very good, it might be more simplistic than other animated movies but i feel it works for the movies style. Am sure will watch this again some day-
Story 1: I absouletely cannot stop thinking and drooling over the noodle dish that the character Xiao Ming always was chowing down on. The way he described it, made me feel that i badly need ramen now but at night lol! I love how he always was apperiected by the town he grew up in, his grandmother who always brought him noodles from the first noodle shop they got it from, of course the other noodle shops he tried the noodles from and the girl he admired since he was in high school. I actually would've loved to have seen them reunite at least but oh well! It was really sad in the end that he had to move away from home but had to come back to his dying gran. Honestly it was such a heart breaking moment between grandson and grandmother like they were inseparable even if he was further away! This story may have been a lot more emotional then the other two but definitely was great to hear Crispin Freemans voice! :D
Story 2: Theres not really much to say with this one but I was glad that the model was able to get back on track after she was killing herself with starvation. Like the third story, this was hard to watch as well because it does show how pressure society can be when it comes to looking good, and really the only way to look good at the end of the day, is looking after your health & well-being! I'm also glad that her sister helped her out, especially with the clothes she was secretly designing and creating! That stunned me since it was unexpected she was a master of fashion design all along! Good encouraging story even if it did have hard scenes in it!
Story 3: Basically we see a high school student trying to forget about the past since like any typical young adult, he wants to be independent, be with his love interest and do well on his own terms in college. However things take a turn when his love is being beaten by her horrendous dad and the pair don't contact for years. That's until he found the cassette tape that his love left to him but he didn't play it before since he was stuck up with school and concentrating on getting into college. I totally forgot the ending part but it was hard to see the main character struggling to finding his love and making the best for himself really.
Good anime film of 2018