Children Who Chase Lost Voices DVD Review
Children Who Chase Lost Voices is
the latest film from acclaimed filmmaker
Makoto Shinkai (5
Centimeters Per Second, The Place Promised in Our Early Days).
Shinkai is one more of the most
highly regarded filmmakers working within the anime film industry
Drawing on comparisons to Hayao Miyazaki and to Studio Ghibli,
delivers films many anime fans have said herald him as a second-coming
Ghibli. Can that possibly be accurate? I will raise that as a question
Who Chase Lost Voices begins
with a girl named Asuna,
who we learn had lost her father and is being raised by her mother, who
work long shifts at a hospital. Asuna can actually hear strange musical
being broadcast through a special crystal radio. The radio was an
gift from her father. Asuna's only close friend appears to be a cat
that looks like a mix between the design of the cat Jiji from Kiki's Delivery Service and
fox-squirrel Teto of Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind.
storyline progresses, we witness a giant monster attempting to kill
this young and mysterious boy swoops in to save here. Then he appears
Then Asuna is wondering what could have happened. She goes to school
learns about the place "Agartha", which is supposed to be a place of
day Asuna finds herself meeting another young boy who bears a
resemblance to the first boy. It turns out that it is his younger
Before long, she is dramatically thrown into a story where she enters a
gateway, faces down scarier, frightful enemies.
probably doesn't sound horrible based on that description. It is oh so horrible, though. Everything
about this film was convoluted and messy. The characters are not
characters and are instead mere caricatures carrying out the plot in a
feels false. Storytelling-wise, I can't even begin to try and explain
readers why anything that was happening in this film was truly
film felt like a giant missed opportunity.
the storytelling within Children Who
Chase Lost Voices is unbelievably bad on essentially every level
filmmaking one can consider. At every turn, Shinkai seems like an
filmmaker who is an unfocused and unsure artist who has been inspired
by the great
anime filmmakers without proving himself capable as a competent
is not capable of telling a well-crafted and emotionally-resonant story.
animation isn't all it's cracked up to be either. Frankly, I don't
the appeal of an artistry that feels forged. Everything from the
designs to the backgrounds seems like something that is attempting to
the Ghibli method. Unfortunately, as pretty as the art actually is it's
most memorable artwork and it can actually feel a bit bland at times. I
understand the immense acclaim. It's not that it's a badly animated
just that I have seen much better artwork and done in a much more
disagree with the generous praise thrown to Shinkai as a filmmaker. So
have seen two of his feature films (The
Place Promised in Our Early Days and Children
Who Chase Lost Voices) and I
have been largely unimpressed
by both of these efforts. I cannot understand how this filmmaker has
so much acclaim and attention from both anime fans and by press.
his style feels genuine to me and all I could think about after
viewing this film was what a poor job I thought Shinkai did attempting
what a film made by Miyazaki means from either a storytelling or
perspective. Children Who Chase Lost
Voices lacks a distinct voice and is a forgettable effort that
release contains a first-rate transfer of Children
Who Chase Lost Voices. This is as stunning a DVD presentation as
possibly hope for. The transfer does a good job of representing the
quality and presents the film in top-notch quality. The transfer has
issues in nighttime scenes and had minor digital noise in a few of
moments, but this transfer comes close to being a perfect
representation of the
film on the DVD format.
quality is also impressive to behold. The release contains two options:
5.1 and Japanese 5.1 surround sound. Either option does a solid job
immersive and exciting experience. There are many moments throughout
the film in
which the surrounds were well utilized and it adds to the enveloping
the film. The music by Tenmon also gets a reasonable chance to shine
in well with sound effects in the film.
release includes English subtitles for viewing Children
Who Chase Lost Voices with the original Japanese language
Who Chase Lost Voices
arrives on DVD in a two-disc release containing a plethora
of extras that will satisfy fans. The first main supplement is a full
commentary with director Makoto Shinkao, the production staff, and VA.
following video supplements are
included on this release:
with the Staff and Cast (55
min.) contains many interviews with those involved with
making the film.
Making of Children Who Chase Lost Voices (45
min.) is an extensive behind-the-scenes look at the
film's creation and production.
present three short promotional videos advertising the film for cinemas
Brief Interview with Makota Shinkai is a
readable (text-based) interview with the filmmaker.
Works of Makoto Shinkai (7 min.)
is a promotional piece about the films and work of the filmmaker who
Who Chase Lost Voices.
(5 min.) is a promotional piece for Children
Who Chase Lost Voices.
Who Chase Lost Voices
wasn't my cup of tea. I didn't enjoy it and I don't
understand why the film has appealed to fans of Studio Ghibli. It lacks
strong narrative and characters to connect to on any notable level.
visual feast but also one that feels like imitation Ghibli rather than
something that is authentic in its own realm of imagination. It
just doesn't feel unique enough to be
successful in its own right. Children Who
Chase Lost Voices disappoints, underwhelms,
and feels like a
poor knockoff of a Ghibli effort more than anything else. This is not a
would recommend to any anime fan looking for something more than mere
of what is truly great in anime filmmaking.
Neil Lumbard is a lifelong fan of cinema, and a student who aspires to make movies. He loves writing, and currently does in Texas.