Thursday, June 26, 2014

Anime Review: Anohana

It's Thursday, and that means it's time for another anime review.  This week, I'll be talking a little bit about a short series with a long name.  Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai is quite a mouthful, and the English title shortened it up to just Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day, which is a bit of an improvement.  However you call it, Anohana is a short series, at only 11 episodes, but it makes the most of the screentime to create an engaging and heart-wrenching story of love, loss, and growing up.

The Super-Peace-Busters was the name a group of six friends gave themselves one summer day.  Hanging around having adventures and running through the woods together was the funnest way to spend an afternoon.  Unfortunately, this wasn't meant to last.  When harsh words are said, and feelings are hurt, one of the girls runs away from the clubhouse.  Unfortunately, she trips and falls, presumably drowning in the river.  Fast forward ten years, and each of the remaining Super-Peace-Busters have drifted apart, and are still struggling with dealing with Menma's death.  When her spirit appears to one of them,  the friends are forced to confront feelings they had long forgotten.

Main Characters:

Jinta "Jintan" Yadomi

Meiko "Menma" Honma

Atsumu "Yukiatsu" Matsuyuki

Naruko "Anaru" Anjō
Tetsudō "Poppo" Hisakawa

Chiriko "Tsuruko" Tsurumi

This series is short enough to watch in one or two sittings, but drawing it out may be a better option, especially if you don't have a box of tissues handy.  As a bittersweet look on childhood friendships and growing apart, this series isn't only tragic because of Menma's death.  If you're looking for something short to fill out your summer vacation anime watching, this series is definitely a great option. 

This year at Anime Boston 2014, there was a really great Anohana amv that was chosen as a finalist in the drama category.

The Anohana Movie was released last August in Japan, and will be hitting shelves in the US on July 15th of this year.  The movie will continue where the series left off, serving as an epilogue to the series.  See the subtitled trailer here (spoilers for the series).

Hope Burns Bright

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