Anime Review #10: Anthem of the Heart (Spoiler-Free)

Anime Title: Anthem of the Heart 心が叫びたがってるんだ。“Kokoro ga Sakebitagatterunda”
Production Studio: A-1 Pictures
Director: Tatsuyuki Nagai
Composer: Masaru Yokoyama
Release Date: Sep 19, 2015
Running Time: 1 Hour 59 Minutes
Genres: Drama, Fantasy, Music

The show must go on! This famous phrase in show business in which it talks about no matter what happen will always begin no matter if someone is left behind.. A story about redemption of a girl who leaves her fears and emotions behind herself while in search for a way making a voice for herself. So sit back, relax, and enjoy my reading my latest review of Anthem of the Heart.

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~Story 8/10~
The story of AotH is one about how a girl grows to get out of her shell of being alone and secluded. This girl slowly grows from becoming the one person in the class who rarely ever talks, to singing front and center on stage. In the movie a high school class is tasked to come up with an idea for something to do for the school’s festival thing… and the thing that they come up with is a musical. However, lucky for them they decided to take the hard way out by deciding to write their own show. This includes the writing the following all from scratch: script, music, costumes, set design, choreography, etc.

Wait…you say that I am forgetting something major? Oh yeah! In the film the girl I talked about above has one little secret. The said “secret” is that the girl is cursed by an egg… let me repeat this… she is cursed by an EGG. The said curse is that whenever the girl talks she randomly ends up getting stomach pain soon after. So to avoid having stomach pain the girl just decided to give up talking entirely and just texting everything she is thinking on a cellphone instead. Honestly I think that this idea is just so outlandish, but I do feel that it makes for a very unique and well written character in the long run.

~Characters 7/10~
Jun Naruse is the female main character in AotH. Naruse is silent all of the time and this is due to the fact in how she is afraid of speaking due to the curse that I explained up above. Personally I believe that the egg and the curse is all in her head and is just a way to compensate for her major role in the divorce of her parents, which occurs in the first ten minutes of the movie. However the thing that makes this character memorable is how you slowly notice the character grow overtime and eventually break out of her shell *no pun intended*. Over all, I absolutely fell in love with this character.

Takumi Sakagami is an male lead character in AotH. He is an talented musician with a heart of playing the piano. He is the songwriter for his class’s musical, meanwhile trying his hardest to make sure that Naruse is able to have her voice be heard. Takumi is always by Naruse’s side no matter what happens and is also a child of divorced parents just like how Naruse is as well. Takumi is also the kind of guy who is willing to say anything in order to calm down another character, even if he knows that he is lying… he just does not want to talk about his true feelings to others. I believe he was a good character but would enjoyed to see more of him.

Daiki Tasaki is an male lead character in AotH. He is a sports jock that specializes in Baseball, and is in fact one of the leading members of in his team. Even tho he is a sports guy, he still has a kind heart and is willing to step up and be a leader in his class when it comes to the time of setting up for the musical. He isn’t afraid to ask a girl out, and even if he is rejected he turns around and understands as to why the answer is no. Daiki was a decent character in my opinion, but I feel as if the script writer could have done more with him.

Natsuki Nitou is an female lead character in AotH. She is the main leader of the group that wants to start up the play in the first place. In the past Nitou was at one point Takumi’s girlfriend. Over time we are shown how this relationship did not work and the two decided to part ways, but at this point in time they are friends. She is willing to step in for the absence of another character being missing right before the musical performance, and this is quite the brave thing to do last second since it was so unexpected. Other than that, I don’t know much about this character to whom of which I believe is the most underused character in the entire movie.

~Music 8/10~
What can I say about it other than it is slow and relaxing and was cleverly written to not only convey the emotion in the scene but also amplify it towards the audience. And as for the musical pieces, they were very basic. Just re-writing the lyrics to famous songs that I’m sure that most of you know, for example “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” which is mentioned quite a lot in this movie. But this is to be expected for the musical pieces since it is a completely original performance written by a bunch of high-schoolers with not much time at all, so it is actually very realistic for this to be the case.

Overall, I really enjoyed this soundtrack and believe it fit well with the themes of the movie. My favorite song from this soundtrack is one that goes by the name of “Harmonia”.

~Art/Animation 8/10~
The art and animation is beautiful for the most part but there are a few derp faces sprinkled in here and there but it isn’t obvious unless if you look for them. However the background art for this movie were beautiful and highly detailed, and I would like to applaud A-1 for making such a gorgeous looking film. If you are interested in seeing some screenshots of the movie, I will post them at the bottom of this review.

~Final Thoughts~
Over all I thought it was an excellent movie that had a few problems here and there but I enjoyed it. However I feel like this movie could have been a better story if it was turned into an twelve or eleven episode tv series instead. I can tell that some people will criticize this movie for being too “melodramatic”, but personally I am completely fine with it and it isn’t too overbearing either unlike a little series called Plastic Memories. I was surprised how this movie revolved around a class musical, in which I can deeply relate too because I am a theater kid and is partially why I enjoyed this movie. I feel like the characters could be fleshed out better with the exception of the main character, in which I feel was handled perfectly. Man did I love the scene in which *minor spoilers* Naruse has finally cracked and just lets loose of all the anger that has resided within her for years *minor spoilers ends*. Also I believe the egg was just a figment of Naruse’s imagination and was just used as an excuse for her to not talk in fear of messing up another relationship with a friend or family member, again.

“I need him [the egg] to exist, or I’d be lost” Jun Naruse

I have to be honest with all of you, if this review seemed a bit off or sloppier than most, the reasoning behind that is due to the fact in which I had writer’s block and had barely any desire to finish this review. So I decided to just stick with it and push out the review while also trying my hardest to make the best quality product I could.

After careful consideration I have decided to give this movie an 7/10, and a recommendation to watch it on your own time. Not exactly a high priority movie to watch, but it was definitely worth watching. And I must say, I was hit by the feels train quite a few times while watching this movie.

I also wanted to apologize for my absence on the reviews a bit, I got sidetracked by schoolwork and college visits for the last few weeks. But be sure to check out my First Impressions post of what my thoughts are on all of the first episodes that I’ve seen from the Spring 2016 anime season, in which the post will be released sometime later this week.

~Similar Anime Recommendations~
Anohana, Kokoro Connect, & Your Lie in April

~Upcoming Review~
The goals for my next review is to be Neon Genesis Evangelion. If by the off chance that I am not able to finish the show in time, I would review KonoSuba in it’s place.

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15 Comments Add yours

  1. Kapodaco says:

    Writing’s a little sloppy grammar-wise, but otherwise a standard review. Good work.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah i can agree, it’s not entirely my best review.

      Like

    2. Yeah i can agree. Personally this was probably my least favorite review so far. I started it about two weeks ago, and just lost the drive to finish it. So i decided last night to just go with it and get it done.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Rocco B says:

    Pretty understandable Mag. RL comes first. Good review, I haven’t seen this anime. But from the screen shots and what you’ve said it sounds promising. Keep up the good work!!! : D.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks 😀

      It really is a good movie and is worth the watch. If you are interested, it is pretty much made by the same team who worked on Anohana. Same script writer and director included.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. LitaKino says:

    This was a good review I enjoyed getting around to reading someone’s opinion about this movie XD

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks lita for the comment. It means a lot to me.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. LitaKino says:

        Your welcome 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  4. If I eat eggs before going to bed I get a stomach ache. Am I cursed too???

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Karanux says:

    If someone calls this “too melodramatic” then I will gess that persons looks for a different kind of show. This movie is not too melodramatic but a very nice mix between reality and fantasy just to represent better that realism.

    I love how, through simple things, this movie shows the deepness of the human comunnication and mind. The character development was rushed a little at some points but there was nothing to do about it with that kind of time. This was a magic trip trough reality.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Karanux says:

    Btw
    The egg and the stomach ache is nothing more, for me, than the rationalization to keep mental balance (defense mechanism from psychoanalysis) and the concept of the “big other” from lacan to structure her reality. The stomach ache is the somatization that comes with the trauma like the hysteria. It makes perfect sense for me, maybe for my formation in psychology I do not see this as childish. For me is the same as everyone do.
    In fact, I think this is a very good movie for didactic purpose of showing how trauma and somatization can work.

    Liked by 1 person

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