Note: Mild spoilers ahead. Read at your own risk.
Finally! Weathering With You is now in the Philippines and I am very lucky, it is available in my local cinema. This weekend I indulged in the heavenly visuals, heartbreaking moments, and the rad OST of the film.
Watching this movie reminded me how similar yet so different it is with Your Name. Both films showcased the Shinto religion, everyday Japanese life, and raw human emotions. Despite the similarities it has with its predecessor, Weathering exudes a different energy that made it stand out on its own.
While Kimi No Na Wa made use of breathtaking bright colors of Japan and showcased the beauty of the country. Tenki No Ko used the dreary gray tone of the rainy days. It also took the opposite route from its predecessor by showing places like abandoned buildings, filthy sidewalks, and flooded roads. It was a fresh take on modern Tokyo since it was the first time I get to see this side of the city. Nevertheless, the beauty of the animation remained.
See also: Reminiscent: The Human Memories Zine
Watching a Shinkai film, one can expect to experience a series of emotions. From laughing out loud in funny moments to shedding a sea of tears in sappy scenes, it never failed to provide me with a rollercoaster ride. These were amplified with the musical ingenuity of Radwimps. Kimi No Na Wa became a worldwide phenomenon was because of the band’s ability to amplify the emotions through music. That is why hearing the news that they will be in charge of the official soundtrack of this new film, I was pumped up. And boy, they did it again! The whole soundtrack puts more color and emotions to these lovely moments. If it were a different musical score, maybe these two movies may not be as impacting.
There are also moments of sentimentality when Your Name’s Taki Tachibana and Mitsuha Miyamizu appeared on different scenes. I only wished I haven’t read reviews to experience the exhilarating feeling of a fangirl scream-inducing surprise. Anyway, I am hoping to more cameo appearances of Shinkai’s characters in the future (how about a scene with Taki and Mitsuha together?)
Shinkai has a knack of making you think long after you’d watched his works. After seeing Your Name, I continue to reflect on the mystery of the human mind. Why do you forget important things? Are you missing on something or someone significant?
In Weathering, I contemplate on Hodaka’s decision. Is that the right thing to do? But what should have been done? Save the person you love and let the majority suffer? Or sacrifice your feelings for the sake of everyone? But that is the thing about love. It will make you do things you shouldn’t do. You wouldn’t care if the whole city drowns as long as you spend the rest of your days with the love of your life.
This part could also imply another obvious but less talked about theme – climate change. The incessant rain in summer is possibly caused by it – an effect from the irresponsible actions of many. Shinkai may want to send the message that resolving this issue does not only lie in the hands of one person. That a collective effort is needed to rescue the world from its deteriorating state.
Tenki No Ko had served me everything I need. But there was one thing that is off here. It was the unnecessary violence in it. Coming against thugs is ordinary. Fighting policemen is normal. But a teenager using a gun against someone is not. They could have eliminated that part since it does not play a vital role in the story.
Overall, the movie is a delight to watch despite its weak points (hey, every movie has that). I still lean towards the greatness of Kimi No Na Wa (a matter of preference). But I still recommend everyone to watch Tenki No Ko since it has a charm on its own. What a wonderful to live in a time when the prodigious Makoto Shinkai thrives!