'Your Name' - Movie Review

Starts out with a classic low-rent Anime trope: two high school students in modern Japan find themselves swapping bodies a day at a time at random intervals. We get laughs from the young man mesmerised by the lovely pair of breasts he's occasionally in possession of, and all kinds of cross-gender, cross-life humour as one is from a small town and the other lives in Tokyo.

But this is Makoto Shinkai, a man who proved in his early films - like "5 Centimeters per Second" (2007) - that he could make billboards, trains, and factories look stunningly beautiful. More importantly, he's not just going to give you teenage hijinks - he's interested in making you think. This is the man behind "Garden of Words" - which was impressive enough that when I was in Tokyo I made sure to go to the garden in question. After the untimely death of Satoshi Kon, this is the guy - this is the future of Japanese Anime. Yes, he's that good.

Our two main characters are Mitsuha Miyamizu (voiced by Mone Kamishiraishi), a young girl living in the fictional small town of Itomori, and Taki Tachibana (voiced by Ryunosuke Kamiki), a young man in Tokyo. They swap places occasionally and try to navigate each other's lives. They tamper with each other's lives both intentionally and unintentionally, while leaving each other notes on cell phones and sometimes their own skin. But around the hour mark the connection breaks. And I must admit here that I guessed a part of the disconnect (and other fans - there aren't many - of "The Lake House" may guess as well) - this is a product of having watched so many movies. But that's all I guessed: I had no idea where he was headed with it from there.