Of Nostalgia and Childhood | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 14, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, March 14, 2019

Of Nostalgia and Childhood

Devoid of any action, drama, mystery or a witty screenplay, Mirai, is an anime movie set with quite a plain storyline. However, it has one thing sprawling dexterously in every moment of the story and that is emotion.

Kun is the only child of his parents who loves, like every kid, the undivided attention of his parents. But, one day, his parents return home with a white fluff of a baby and Kun learns that it is his baby sister Mirai.

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That is mainly, the ground plot of the story. Pretty basic, isn't it? But, what really sets this movie apart is the powerful way this simple story is shown. All elder siblings will nod their heads to all that Kun encounters. Personally, I was transported back to my own childhood. When my younger brother was born, I also reasoned that my parents didn't love me anymore and came to the most predictable conclusion: I must be an adopted child.

Loving your siblings is pretty much a weird thing. You learn to love your parents because they always irrevocably shower you with their care and love and most importantly, buy you things. But speaking from a child's mind, how to love a person that suddenly drops out of nowhere and doesn't buy you anything; rather, snatches all the affection you had been enjoying greedily all by yourself? You might say you don't. But deep down, amidst all the silly fights and endless bickering, we all do. But how and when do we ever start to grow fond of the little brats we call our siblings, is what is perfectly showcased in Mirai. Director Mamoru Hosoda has deftly twiddled the script with such expertise that you can't but plummet down the path of Kun's feelings. Yet the movie doesn't just target the character development of Kun, rather it craftily constellates the development of the whole family, ending with a sweet note about the importance of family roots. In the thick of all the anime that focus on young viewers and teenagers, Mirai stands out as it garners both children and adults' emotions with a childlike wonder equally matched by the subtle maturity behind each encounter Kun makes. Perhaps, that is the reason it was nominated for the Best Animated Film at the 91st Academy Awards.

What I absolutely loved about the anime is that it pivots professionally between the fine lines of reality and imagination. Though sometimes, the events feel redundant which may curb the interest of its viewers. That said, everything about this movie has some deep metaphorical significance including the stunning backdrops and the artful cinematography and if you've got the eye for it, you definitely should give this movie a try to stumble back into the good old days of childhood.


Maisha Nazifa Kamal doesn't understand why all the black cats meow at everyone else except her. Send her ways to communicate with them at 01shreshtha7@gmail.com

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