Got pretty bored of doing episodic reviews. Probably didn’t help that I disliked all the ones I set out to review. I mean sitting through GGO:A and writing down flaws I feel should be blatantly obvious to anyone watching is just taxing. It’s stressful enough just sitting through an episode of it. I might do it again for some anime but, for the most part, I’ll just go back to giving short anecdotes on anime I found had something meaningful to say.
Speaking of which, I wanna offer a little more in this post so let’s talk about “Coquelicot-zaka kara”! I was pretty surprised to find a semi-appealing high school slice-of-life! Entirely because the film took itself seriously. It offered a story- an unconventional idea for its genre and the setting wasn’t your typical boring looking high school. It was set in 1965… I think? 1960s for sure. I don’t know if that’s the exact date. And we’re also placed somewhere around a seaside port in Yokohama. So, a lot of distinct variables that helps create a more unique setting than… “High school girls in high school”. I really enjoyed that. Helps when it is made by Studio Ghibli; a studio that works hard in making their worlds look as good and detailed as possible. It is no different for this one.
The characters were charming, for the most part. Umi, the aptly named heroine, had a very genuine demeanor. Just as Ghibli always does; I was impressed with how organic she was. I always feel like I can trust Ghibli to make their characters more… Empathetic. The hyperbolic and energetic high school girl can just never do that for me. It just makes it a lot harder to get to know the character when all they’re doing is following redundant jokes, cliche moments, typical expressions and makes themselves look like clowns in the process. But this is a lot better! Y’know what? There’s not much to say. It wasn’t the most interesting movie I’ve ever seen. I don’t think that’s a case you can make. But it was definitely pleasing.
There was a few hiccups. Some information wasn’t conveyed… Perfectly, I would say. Umi’s deal with the rest of her Family that she lives with isn’t defined well enough. You’d think they’d all be blood-related but that seems to not be the case. She just lives with other boarders that help her with stuff around the manor. I’m not sure what they do exactly. Umi, herself, raises and lowers the flag every day and night but that’s because of her own character arc and stuff. I’ve gone this long without mentioning anything too spoiler-y so I might as well make this spoiler-free even though I usually don’t care about that stuff. That’s why i’m not going too into detail. The ending was a little quicker than it should’ve been. It seemed like they had to rush the finale.
Yeah, it certainly wasn’t the greatest film and I realized that it was Gorou Miyazaki who directed this one as well; just as he did Gedo Senki. I know this guy gets a lot of flak for not quite matching his Father, Hayao Miyazaki. In my personal opinion, he did a fantastic job. Not everything can be perfect and certainly when you’re constantly compared to probably the best director in the industry. I feel Gorou has proven he’s up there with the best of them. But let me know what you guys thought! Assuming you’ve watched this one. Not the most popular film; certainly not for Ghibli, either. I’d say give it a shot if you have the opportunity!