Japanese anime is about the last type of vehicle where I would expect to see a body switching comedy, but here it is.
Two teenagers in Japan find themselves inhabiting each other’s lives when they are dreaming, and general nuttiness ensues. Of course, this is Japanese anime, so things get a little deeper and metaphysical than two kids simply switching lives at high school. As the film goes on, there are comets, allegorical braids, time travel…this movie is nutty in a good way.
Writer-director shoots for the stars with his spiraling, inventive movie, and he reaches them. On top of being a great story, the animation is startlingly good. Actually, it’s some of the best animation I’ve seen in years. Does the movie try to do too many things at once? Perhaps, but it’s done so well you will forgive it it’s complications.
In a week where Hollywood released a pale Japanese anime remake in Ghost in the Shell, it’s nice to see a film that takes the anime art form to new heights. Let’s all just cross our fingers and hope Hollywood doesn’t try to do a live action remake of this one. That would be a confusing mess. It’s best to leave well enough alone, and this is a remarkably beautiful movie.