Directed by Naoko Yamada (K- on! – The Movie) and produced by Kyoto Animation, ‘A Silent Voice’ (Koe no Katachi) is a powerful movie which follows the path to redemption of Shoya Ishida (voiced by Miyu Irono).
Back in middle school, Ishida would frequently bully her new hearing-impaired classmate Shoko Nishimiya (voiced by Saori Hayami) until she eventually moved schools. After the incident, Ishida is ostracised by his circle of friends and labelled as a bully, leaving him deeply depressed.
Now, years later, Ishida, a lonely High School student, makes his way to find Nishimiya to make up for his actions, causing a stir in a newly-found group of friends and family.
‘A Silent Voice’ is an excellent film that explores the harsh reality of adolescence. School-bullying, friendship, depression and its impact on friends and family are the main topics. The hard scenes are not sugar-coated making this film a knockout from the start.
The film has a strong narrative and good pace, and genuinely shows the perspective from the bully’s side and not just the victim’s.
The animation, made by Kyoto Animation (Clannad, K-On!) is sensational with gorgeous backgrounds and landscapes, pretty much exactly like the real locations as seen in the extras. The score is subtle and blends everything together perfectly, however the song ‘My Generation’ used in the opening theme feels a little out of place.
‘A Silent Voice’ is another fantastic animated film like Makoto Shinkai’s ‘Your Name’, a must watch for anime lovers and general public.