True Love Only Exists In Makoto Shinkai Anime

Disclaimer: I couldn’t really find a way to talk about this movie in a clinical manner because of how it personally affected me, this may be one of the most personal articles I have ever written. I hope you enjoy it regardless.

Amazing BG Art

I recently managed to grab together the guts to watch Makoto Shinkai’s (5 cm per Second, A place Promised in Our Days) new film The Garden of Words. I had been avoiding watching it due to the fact that his movies tend to pack a serious emotional punch, almost like they are made specifically to personally torment me.

Anyway, I finally managed to see it today and just as expected I really enjoyed it. Its a 45 minute long short film about a 15 year old high schooler who aspires to be a shoe maker and a 27 year old high school teacher who is having work related problems.

The two meet at a pavilion in a park or garden on rainy mornings and slowly begin to interact and get closer to each other with each passing day. Despite what the title says, there are very few lines of dialogue in this film which is something I highly appreciate because the visual and music are more than enough to convey the message to the viewers.


See The Garden of Words is a typical bitter-sweet romance story, the signature of Makoto Shinkai works and I love it for that. Just like his first ever work , Voices of a Distant Star which he amazingly did entirely on his own, The Garden of Words is about long distance relationships. I have somehow been unfortunate in my love life, 2 of the 3 relationships I’ve been in have been long distance, and I think that is why I respond so well to Makoto Shinkai works.

The Nostalgic and dream like aura his anime have work extremely well to convey the feeling of incomprehensible loneliness and longing one feels when they are in a long distance relationship or have found themselves in unrequited love. Its not exactly gloomy its somewhat comforting yet gloomy at the same time which is exactly how all of Makoto Shinkai’s romance films feel.

I have noticed that this is also a major complaint for most anime fans who “don’t get” his loyal supporters. I believe in order to really enjoy Makoto Shinkai’s films one must allow themselves to be immersed in this gloomy, lonely yet comforting world he is building, one must be able to be emotionally manipulated by the almost cryptic dialogue in his films. That or they just have to experience what it’s like to be in a long distance relationship or bitter-sweet relationship at least once.

Most of Shinkai’s anime don’t have peachy perfect endings, which are unfortunately how most of these relationships end up anyway, but somehow they still leave you with a sense of hope. “Maybe true love does exist out there”, “maybe they can get together if they really work harder at it.” All these are thoughts that Shinkai leaves lingering in his viewer’s minds as the credits roll on each of his beautifully animated films.

bitter-sweet endings

In the end, The Garden of Words is one of the most immaculately drawn and beautifully animated anime I have ever seen and its content is something any romance fan should see. It struck a chord in me that hasn’t really been touched since 5 cm per second and Toradora!

~ by kiddtic on June 25, 2013.

19 Responses to “True Love Only Exists In Makoto Shinkai Anime”

  1. The Garden of Words was definitely a masterpiece. I think the main message here is that it’s better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all, but the way it is delivered was so immaculate and purposeful that it’s hard not to appreciate it.

    I wrote a really long post about how Shinkai delivered this story but I had to stop because it was getting too long. Even with that post, I didn’t even scratch the surface on what Shinkai was conveying.

  2. I re-watched it again today… started crying in the first few minutes because of the music.

  3. This is so sweet. I was excited to see it back when the trailer came out (I have a copy: It is such a touching story; thank you for making a personal post about it.

  4. […] I wrote about The Garden of Words earlier this year as well so check that out if you must. […]

  5. have you watched 12 cm per second its a really anime of the same genre. I highly recommend it. One of the few animated movies that had a long lasting impact on me. You can visit my blog and let me know what you think. Peace. From the Philippines

  6. I’m new to anime. Thank you for this review. Now I have another film to try. Your review drew me so I can’t not watch it now.

    • Youre Welcome Heather, Im glad you liked the review. I hope you enjoy the movie even more im sure you will. Tell me what you think after seeing it

      • I just finished watching it. I really liked it. The music, the rain, the all over general tone all played beautifully together. As the credits started to roll I wondered what would come next for both characters…why didn’t he send her the shoes instead of leaving them on the bench…when he was older would he try to find her? Then I got lost on the credit music and all thoughts stopped. Would care to suggest another?

        • The music and art was great wasnt it? I like the questions that it leaves us with, keeps you thinking about the characters long after youre done with the film.

          Try Patema Inverted now im sure you will like that one as well

          • The movie was difficult to follow in the beginning, especially with subtitles lol however, once it got moving it, I was hooked. Imagine my surprise at the end when I had my aha! Moment and realized Patema was not the inverted but rather Age was. Again the music was captivating. Next up? LoL

            • Haha yeah the twist was great. Ill recommend a family film now one of my favourites that I even wrote about, Wolf Children.

              • I’m not sure if I should be mad at you for not forewarning me to have kleenex handy or if I should be singing your praises for a great pick. This is by far my favorite one so far. Ok, hit me with another and what are your thoughts on miyazaki films?

                • Yeah Wolf Children hit me right in the feels too hehe. Im so glad you loved it its one of my favourites too. I love Miyazaki he’s one of the best. I just dont talk about his stuff much coz I assume most people have seen his movies.

                  Okay next movie you should see I’ll switch it up a bit an action/drama called Sword of the Stranger. I watched it with my Mom and she liked it more than I did.

                  • Hello Kidd! I lost your site until recently. I watched Sword of the Stranger. I liked it but it is more gory than I usually prefer. Would you care to continue my anime education? I’m sure you have already seen this but I truly enjoyed Up on Poppy Hill. If you haven’t seen it, give it a shot. I am ready for your next suggestion 😄

  7. You should really watch his new movie, I had a love hate relationship with him after this one lol :’) He really took us for a ride with how he set it up

Well said but my Opinion Is...

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