The Disappearance Of Haruhi Suzumiya (Suzumiya Haruhi no sh˘shitsu) Reviews
Even though I haven't seen the show that this film is based off (The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya), I still could almost follow the entire story as I was paying attention to the plot intricacies and twists and I did some background research on the characters and the synopsis of the show beforehand, so it's not an absolute requirement to watch the Anime series as I absolutely loved how interesting this film was and I felt connected with the characters; I especially felt the anxiety and confusion that Kyon felt throughout the course of the narrative.
I highly recommend this film for people who love time travel, alternate realities, parallel world-esque plots. You will really dig this film, just as long as you read up on the basic premise of the show, this movie and the characters that inhabit it as it will help you appreciate and understand it more.
I am such an idiot. Why did I watch this before seeing the anime series that preceded it; the film does not spend a large number of time establishing its characters and relies on knowledge of the series in order to gain some sort of understanding. I actually had to pause for about 5-6 minutes, just so I could catch myself up with who these characters up online, and after a skim through, I had gained a better grip on them, but still wasn't enough for me to gain that sense of comprehension that I wanted. Nevertheless, The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya was an entertaining ride, with a complex and at times too convoluted story that manages to utilise its characters effectively, keeping me in thought on where and how all of its fantastical and science-fiction elements would come together.
The film allows the audiences to look past its complicated plot-devices, because it actually spends very little time on the gears and functions of the devices themselves, instead it reaches for something deeper, exploring more on the emotions of its characters, and how the sudden changes affect them at a personal level. Along with it, the characters depicted here are incredibly charming, full of imagination and most importantly, fun. These are characters that we could easily get lost in their personalities, not caring if all they do is mumble nonsense.
The film's ending may not be perfect, but I can see it growing on me the more I let it linger in my mind, understanding that it must be seen as a personal journey, rather than the large life-changing event that it actually is.
The visuals in this film were more like an upgrade of what could commonly be seen in an anime series, but it holds up on its own, allowing a sense of depth through its added detail, but ensuring it does not distract from the intimate and personal story it tells. My commendation and adoration for this film also stretches out to its musical elements, which is composed of a mixture of both original and non-original tracks, connected together with a tender and warm tone that touches us from the inside.
The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya is a wonderful film that I would not doubt revisit in the future, which then I would have more knowledge of the characters and their history together. Damn, it has been a while since a film adaptation or follow-up of an anime has impressed me.
Overall score: 10/10
Note: You must watch the first two seasons (even the Endless Eight) beforehand in order to be fully invested with these characters and understand some key moments from the movie.
Overall it's an okay anime movie, but you have to watch the series first. The movie is really long but if you're a fan of Haruhi you can probably handle it.