I was lucky enough to catch the very first screening of Koe no Katachi in Singapore's cinemas on March 9, 2017. This is also my first review, so please bear with me if my review layout is not great.
Please also note that my review of this will be Anime-only, as I have not yet read the manga. I do plan on reading the manga to get the full experience though.
- The story starts off with a young girl named Nishimiya Shouko, who walks in to a classroom and introduced herself in pieces of paper she wrote before coming in, then "I am deaf." was written. Ishida Shouya and a few of his friends bullied her as her time in school goes by to the point where she had to be transferred out because they have been damaging her hearing aids -which is very expensive- and the teachers were suspicious of a potential bully in class. Shouya's actions then turned onto him and he has to suffer almost the same fade of bullying as what he did to Shouko. Many years later, both of them met again. Regretting his actions, Shouya tries to make friends with her in hopes of trying to reconcile.
This is a rather interesting story to me as not many manga/anime generally does not focus a story about a deaf character. It's fairly genuine in the Anime community and I really applaud the setting and effort being put into the movie.
- As expected from Kyoto Animation, it has one of the most vibrant and smoothest animation one could get. Comparing this to Tamako Love Story, the quality is about the same, if not better.
- First of all I must say that the ending song "Koi wo Shita no wa" by aiko is flawless. However, there are instances where the sound does not seem to fit with it's current scene/setting. Some of which threw me off in the cinema that I'd just prefer to watch it raw and without sound. Overall, there ARE still some music which really fits it's current scene/setting, but it's just that one or two sounds which were really unfit to be in there.
The voice acting is spot-on; especially the Nishimiya sisters, which was actually the main reason why I watched the movie. Saori Hayami did a perfect-close-to-flawless job in performing as Shouko and Aoi Yuuki's tone as Yuzuru is completely different from the other roles she took before this, which bewildered me because I almost thought that it's a completely different person. Miyu Irino's preformance is great as well.
- The only thing that left me a good impression while I was sitting in the cinema was Shouya's development throughout the movie. He makes a major change to himself in order to reconcile with Shouko. I really love his change and one can really relate (especially people who regret bullying their victims) to how he's doing his best to show his regret on his actions.
- Throughout this sitting I've never fidget at all and my eyes were glued to the screen for the entire movie. Fidgeting a lot has been a habit for me when it comes to watching shows in cinemas and I was really surprised when the movie ended. Hence why I gave my enjoyment the fullest.
- I'm not really a person who cries at a really touching scene but this movie takes the cake. It's a very enjoyable movie to sit back and relax and I highly recommend people who do that to watch this.