This short but sweet film revolves around She, a woman whose name is never uttered, and her pet cat, Chobi. Their first meeting was beautiful. One rainy day, She found Chobi abandoned outside and decided to bring him home with her. Chobi instantaneously fell for his kind and gentle owner. He had not only found a home, but also the love of his life. But can their relationship ever become anything more than just pet and owner?
Kanojo to Kanojo no Neko is a short animated film that explores love in an extremely innovative way. The subtle romance is both heartwarming and thought-provoking and is sure to bring a gentle smile to your face.
She and Her Cat is told from the perspective of Chobi; a cat that was recently adopted by She, an unnamed girl. Chobi is quite a philosophical little cat but his observations don't go past of what a regular cat might think. He notes how the girl cries, but does not wonder why, only that She is perfect and must not be at fault. He notes that She leaves during the day, but does not wonder where, only that the scent of the outside world comes through the door each time. He just knows that they are together, and that's all that there needs to
Being that there is no color in She and Her Cat adds to the OVA rather than ruins it. This could've happened because of the popular belief that cats see in black and white (they really see in color), but it really makes this 5 minute story stand out that much more. There are many freeze frames in the OVA, with the most animation coming from the background images, but this makes the story more involved and focused on and therefore it seems to fit the mood.
As with the simple, but highly detailed animation comes the sound. Chobi's voice is constant in this OVA; he gives his side of his conversations and tells everything from a narrative point of view other times. There are a few other sounds such as sound effects, but the soft background songs in it are great and soothing.
There are just three characters in this: Chobi, She, and Mimi, the cat that Chobi dates in the summer. The unamed girl She is shown as a lonely person who's only true friend in life is Chobi. While Mimi, on the other hand, is a cute kitten who wants to marry Chobi. Chobi disagrees; he thinks it is a false promise due to her just being a kitten and that he loves the more 'adult' woman instead.
Overall, She and Her Cat was delightful. Very rarely can you tell a great story in just 5 minutes, but Makoto Shinkai pulled it off very well for being his first project. While maybe a little rushed, it was still a wholesome work of art. It's short, it's sweet (yet dark on some levels), and it has just a bit of innocence everyone needs once and awhile. And even if you think you won't like She and Her Cat, just try watching it once. 5 minutes is all you need.
This OVA, though barely five minutes long, has more emotional depth and impact than many longer anime.
The animation is, simply put, incredible. Beautifully drawn black and white scenes that are contrasted against detailed backgrounds - this could even remind someone of an old live-action film (as improbable as that sounds, just watch it yourself). Everything looks incredibly realistic except for the cat, but it was purposefully drawn in a simplistic way to put emphasis on its persona and plight.
There was very little music that I can remember but I liked the cat's calm, quiet, maybe even melancholy, voice. Although the main character is a
cat, he speaks like a wise scholar.
The story...well, there's actually none, but that hardly matters since the fluid, interesting narration was the meat and bones of this OVA and more than made up for its lack of plot. She and Her Cat is about a cat's romantic love for its owner and how it sees life. Sounds a bit boring to you? You'll be surprised and impressed at how much thought Makoto Shinkai put into this. The cat's remarkable intelligence and subtle narration actually made me contemplate about my own life, and all the mistakes I made throughout it. For such a short piece, is nothing short of astounding.
There are only two characters here: a cat and its owner. You'll learn an impressive amount of information about these two, even though this anime is so short. I was actually able to relate to, and feel sympathetic for, the cat's wistful love for his owner, and his heartbreaking desire to have a lover that was more like her. For everyone who has ever loved someone who was unattainable, this will definitely strike home. As for the cat's owner, you'll learn through the touching monologue why the cat loves her so.
Overall, an excellent use of 5 minutes. You will not be disappointed in the slightest. If only a third of all anime series were as profound as this...
There doesn't seem to be a story beyond 'I am a cat. This is my opinion of the world.' That by itself makes for a philosophical short with an interesting take on life. Anyone who's owned a cat has wondered what goes on between those ears, and I believe that if cats could talk they'd agree with everything that this cat does.
The art in this OVA is rather interesting - it's done in a black-and-white, simplistic, somewhat grainy manner. Despite the fact that the human is very realistically done and the cats are simplified and 'chibi', it still maintains an intriguingly real appearance.
Perhaps I am
biased, but I had a hard time with the sound. Although it is nicely done, the sound effects and music are much louder than the vocals and detract from the overall enjoyment.
Although you never quite become bonded close enough to the human of the series to feel for her, you do bond very quickly with the cat and his quirky philosophy. Although the cat feels somewhat flat, anyone who has dealt with a cat will quickly recognize the "I'm so smart" face they try to put on.
Overall this is a very enjoyable, and quick watch for someone looking to have a 'Five-Minute Philosophy Break', or who is just looking for a quirky anime.
She and Her Cat is the first film from director Makoto Shinkai (5 Centimeters Per Second, Garden of Words). At just under 5 minutes, there’s no plot to speak of, just the musings of Chobi the cat as the seasons pass and his bond with his owner grows. Chobi is a pretty deep cat, dwelling on topics such as love, existence, the limits of his perspective, and his unshakeable faith in the girl’s goodness. He reminded me of Henri the Existential Cat.
Shinkai’s concept is clever, and for anyone who has ever owned a cat, it can be touching. As a cat lover, though, I expected
a more moving and realistic story. It’s cute to show how a cat can be completely infatuated with its owner, but Chobi’s affection is blind love rather than earned respect. Cats are deeper than Chobi. They’re aloof, calculating creatures that basically ran Egypt for centuries. If they love you, it’s because they have deemed you worthy, and it’s for their benefit, not yours. Chobi’s fascination with his owner is sweet, but it didn’t remind me of any cat I had ever met.
The soundtrack is just a single piano theme that spans the entire film, but it’s beautiful, and Tenmon does a great job of showing off his talent. The animation is a unique and stunning monochrome that shows the world as it might appear from Chobi’s perspective. And Chobi, despite some naysayers, is adorable. Aside from the musical help from Tenmon, everything is made with love by Shinkai, who even voices Chobi (and does a great job). Unfortunately there’s no official dub and the dialogue moves quickly, making it hard to pay attention to the animation, but you can find a decent fandub here.
She and Her Cat is a charming little film, and at 4 minutes you really have no excuse not to watch. It’s a great start to an illustrious career, and it’s refreshing to see Shinkai putting forth an original idea.