Aug 10, 2015
SnotPockets (All reviews)
Yousei Florence or The Journey to Fairyland is an enchanting and colourful experience. It is, or I believe it to be, an abstract depiction of Michael's thought process at a cross road during his life.

Michael, the main protagonist, is a kind-hearted character who enjoys gardening but has passion for music too. This film feels like a slow discovery of his forgotten feelings for music and a compassionate departure from horticulture. The premise is interesting and is brought to life in a fantasy setting with the use of colour and music to give off a fairy tale vibe.

I particularly liked that mostly everything was referring to Michael's decision, it felt like everything had a purpose. From the character designs to the way they were animated. For example, the MokiMoki were all liquid-like substances which represents how lazy musicians go with the flow due to properties of liquid. Although the visual connotations were intriguing, I was entranced by the wonderful tunes that blended in with each scene and mood.

However, the editing was unnatural due to some scene transitions. The Fairyland section was nice but the real world setting appeared to be of minimal interest: characters shown for no reason, the area felt too quiet (perhaps due to fairy-like aspect of Michael's life) and some peculiar lifestyles (living in a greenhouse). Also, the story played out in a typical fashion albeit tailored for kids.

Despite some peculiar references to Hello Kitty among others, though I don't know why, it was a beautiful experience for a 1.5hr film. It felt like a dream due to the contrasting of the two worlds and it was worth a watch. If not for the story and themes at least watch it for the cohesion between music and animation.