An anime masterpiece about the pain of teen romance
Brian Camp | Bronx, NY | 09/07/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Kimagure Orange Road: The Movie" (aka "I Want to Return to That Day") is a 70-minute movie sequel to the KOR animated Japanese TV series and is best appreciated if you've seen at least a handful of TV episodes first to get familiar with the love triangle at the heart of the show and its high school-aged participants--earnest young Kyosuke, bubbly Hikaru and the more reserved Ayukawa. The movie takes place during summer vacation as Hikaru rehearses a role in a school musical and Kyosuke and Ayukawa go to summer school to cram for their upcoming college exams. Kyosuke has always been drawn to the more aloof Ayukawa but he's been sidetracked by the lavish attention poured on him by the devoted, somewhat puppy-like Hikaru. Things come to a head this particular summer as Kyosuke and Ayukawa bond at summer school and Kyosuke finally tells Hikaru his true feelings and that he doesn't think they should see each other anymore. The poor, stunned girl cannot believe this has happened and continues to call Kyosuke and seek him out and show up unannounced on his doorstep late at night. Her misplaced confidence tells her that such tactics will insure his return to her.
This is easily the most brutally honest treatment of teen romance I've ever seen--in either live-action or animation--and it's absolutely heartbreaking. Anyone who's ever been on the receiving end of a breakup like this will recognize all the different stages and sheer range of emotions on display.
It's all very beautifully animated, with strong character design and detailed visualization of the concrete everyday aspects of the Tokyo suburb where the action takes place. The music soundtrack includes a couple of love songs by Wada Kanako, an actual singing star referenced in the film. The movie's director is Tomomichi Mochizuki, who went on to direct another superb high school drama, Studio Ghibli's TV movie, "I Can Hear the Ocean" (1993), which has yet to see any kind of release in the U.S. The DVD comes with a Japanese soundtrack only, with English subtitles. I wouldn't have it any other way.
Heartbreaking, yet beautiful
Ronnie Clay | Winnsboro, Louisiana | 10/19/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"After watching the whole series, and after have so many fun, I knew it wasn't to be a good end to the characters and your friendships. But in this movie, it happens to be so sad....anyone who have some affection by the characters will certainly cry and above all you will have so much melancholy. It will mark you."
A PERFECT ending for a unique and superb anime!!!
P. Garita Canet | Miami | 10/26/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is the actual ending to the KOR series and OVAs. Even though this movie was release first than the OVA, happens later than the OVAs episodes, which have no real chronological order (I only know they happen somewhere between the last 10 ep. of the series and the first movie [this dvd]). In it, the final resolution for the Kyosuke, Madoka and Hikaru love triangle is finally resolved. Keeping always a complete reference and respect (animation, actions, voice, form, etc) for the original series, this movies depicts the moment when Kyosuke decides what he wants for him in order to be happy. With an INCREDIBLE character personification and development, this movie will leave any KOR fan very satisfied. Relationships, its problems and day to day are depicted as real as any real experience one has lived. The music brings back Wada Kanako, which is the same to say that the OST is great if not perfect. This is truly a masterpiece and a good reference for a movie based on an anime series. Normally, these kind of movies fail in capturing the real essence of what was experienced in the anime, but this one is definitely not the case. This DVD edition is out of print according to ADV Films, so if you have any chance to get a copy (as I did), GET IT. This DVD is part of a box set with the other OVAS (dvd) that's why it reads "DVD 3" somewhere in the case."
A Good Movie if....
J. A. Hart | Cheyenne Wyoming | 05/20/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a great movie for fans of KOR. But if you've never seen the Kimagure Orange Road the TV series, you will be hard pressed to follow this story, since it truely does end the series."