Technical Issue!

AsperJosh has suffered a heavy impact. Every picture on every post before the Africa one has been lost due to an album online becoming corrupted.
I have almost every picture stored across 2 laptops and will slowly begin to re-upload them to my posts over a long period of time!
I will be starting from latest posts and work backwards to re-upload the pictures.
Thank you for understanding!
Joshua :'(

UPDATE - Fixed Posts

2015 posts fixed so far:
- Tough Mudder 2015 - MCM Expo 2012 + Past Experiences - Telling People, I Have Aspergers - 5CPS - Marvel Phase Three - Attack On Titan - MCM Oct 2015 - Interstellar - Star Wars VII - Star Wars Original Trilogy - Star Wars Prequel Trilogy - Star Wars Battlefront - The Fault In Our Stars - Chronicle - Evans Night Out + Winter Wonderland 2015 -

2014 posts fixed so far:
- A Year's Progression At The Gym - 5CPS - The Land Before Time - X-Men Premier - X-Men DOFP - Halloween 2015 - Online Dating - Macbook Pro -

House MD, 3 Years Driving currently in progress.
More to be mended

Friday, 14 October 2016

Your Lie In April (Anime Review)

After his mother's passing, a Piano prodigy is losing the will to play. But after meeting a hyperactive, free-spirited and positive violinist one day, does his life turn around. Will he slowly reawaken that gift? Will he get dragged back onto the stage? Just how can she turn his monotone world back into colour?
Get ready for a cute romance anime with a touching classical soundtrack, this is Your Lie In April! (Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso)
Kousei Arima - Voiced by:"Natsuki Hanae" (Japanese) and "Max Mittelman" (English) is a piano prodigy who was destined for greatness. But at 11 years old, he was traumatised by the loss of his strict piano teaching mother. Everything was lost including his will to play. But one day in April, he heard someone playing music. He met a beautiful girl Kaori Miyazono - Voiced by: "Risa Taneda" (Japanese) and "Erica Lindbeck" (English) who was waiting for an arranged date with one of Kousei's friends. He knew he'd lost his chance already, but he'd met someone who is yet to turn his life around, bring out that gift within him again and conquer his inner demons. She's innovation while he's perfection, the Spring to his Winter!

The story was unbelievably cute and heart warming and full of sympathy and empathy. We get to see just how serious and strict becoming the best in Music can really be behind the scenes. Some teachers have different teaching methods, some are warm-hearted and encouraging whilst others are scolding and strict which can affect the student's behaviour and aura.
But it's also quite colourful and beautiful to see how someone can help lift somebody up from their pit of despair and set them back on the path that they were destined for, again. It's also intriguing but also sad to see how 2 people who are meant for each other end up being divided as friends if only more because things just didn't turn out the way that they could have been.

I was going to post this up in April next year to tie in to the plot and name of the title, but that would just delay the hype I've been feeling over the last 2 weeks of watching this on Netflix. I'd seen a picture of the 4 main characters laying together on MyAnimeList a few times and heard emotional but positive reviews over the internet, so I knew I had to get round to this one sometime.
When I brought it up to Lewis one night over Facebook, he mentioned how he started the anime a while ago but hasn't gotten round to finishing it. I'm gonna kick him hard when I next see him (if he hasn't seen it by December, I need someone to talk to about it and it's right up our alley of Anime's that we usually like and talk about together).

The animation is stunning and really beautiful just like the detail in 5CPS and just as emotional as Clannad. The colours were gleaming with brightness and the characters showed a huge range of emotions throughout. I noticed that they seemed to blush a lot in a peach colour which is different to many Anime's I've seen but it sorta adds that realistic touch of how humans blush easily or when our cheeks get warm from words or being with others, right?
There were so many tears weeping and flooding during the series which came down like their tear ducts were like water theme park slides, they weren't dripping, they were flooding down cheeks during the heart-breaking, heart-warming, honest and inspiring moments and confessions from everyone.
I felt dazzled seeing an ocean of stars up in the night sky. It was beautiful to see such detail and also envious since I wish we had a sky like that instead of pitch black darkness with little star light thanks to street lights and light pollution.

I was immersing myself in the words, quotes and poetry that the characters were imagining (especially Kousei's). I haven't been moved by words or dug deep into philosophical sentences since Clannad and Neon Genesis Evangelion. It all sounded like poetry or beautiful confessions of love, empathy, the future, darkness, pain, sorrow, happiness, inspiration, self-esteem etc. I must sound like I'm over-reading it all, but I think you too will understand where I'm coming from if you choose to watch the anime for yourself.

When Kousei sank to the bottom of a dark ocean during his breakdowns, it was astonishing and quite haunting to see how terrified and lost he really was when everyone else was sitting their surprised by his performances, not knowing that he's suffering in his own head. To see himself as well as many characters in the series, all reminisce about the good times and ambitions being passionately stated and the struggles and heart-breaks being echoed in misery and sorrow within their minds.

It was really gut wrenching to see Kousei actually suffer so much in his life, beginning from such a young age. To see all the cold hearted memories, criticisms and judgement from strangers and his mother really open your eyes as to how good your quality of life really is compared to others. Their was even a moment in the last couple episodes where a cat that he met earlier got hit by a car and he rushed to the vets to try and save it but to no success. The haunting bloodstains on his hands and tears streaming down his face made me weep in fear and empathy as to just how precious my 2 cats are to me. When I finished the series yesterday, I went upstairs and stroked them both for 5 minutes and hugged them and kissed them so much, that moment haunted me and made me love my boys even harder.
I'm just as clueless as Kousei when it comes to what love is, but I admired and adored his precious moments with 2 girls (one he couldn't be with and the other who secretly wanted him throughout the series, Tsubaki Sawabe Voiced by: "Ayane Sakura" (Japanese) and "Erica Mendez" (English).
I was wondering a lot as to what my life would have been like if I had a school life like that (had I of gone to a mixed secondary school). But life isn't as relatable as a fictional story and I think realities version would be a huge gap in relations and lifestyle.
But on the bright side, there are plenty of comedy arguments and violent outbursts of encouragement and frustration when he messes up or gets on Tsubaki or Kaori's bad side ha. He did have his own words to fight back with but it was funny to see them bicker whilst others either watched in silence like it was a show or just weren't surprised by the situation like it's the norm. Don't worry, it may sound depressing but the Anime does have comedy and adorable moments throughout to make you smile and aww at just how cute the two of them are (like Asuna and Kirito in Sword Art Online).

Seeing the whole music theme as the medium for expression and talent, did make me wonder if I could ever be a musician? I did fail back at School and couldn't ever ready the score sheets and understand the notes symbols and how to perform them either. But in a way, I do have a musical instrument since I do own Link's Ocarina Of Time that I bought off SongbirdOcarinas a few years ago. I play it now and then and enjoy being the character (I hope to cosplay him someday).
Anyway, I do wonder the idea of someday trying to learn from a pianist or maybe self-teach someday in my life since it is a unique gift to be able to play but I wouldn't become under that much pressure as Kousei. I can't learn or attempt to at the moment with so much going on in my life right now and the lack of money (let alone space) to even consider purchasing a Piano at all. Who knows? Maybe someday I will give it a go...

The video above just has a few pieces since the actual soundtrack by Masaru Yokoyama is hard to find or get online, but I do find that (3:07) "Yuujin A-kun wo Watashi no Bansousha ni Ninmeishimasu" the main themeis a truly magnificent uplifting piece that recurs in the most important moments. The same can be said for (9:20) "Again". (16:20) "Kousei wa Tensi da yo!" is a pleasant and ambient track to play if you were just chilling peacefully without a care in the world, I feel. (18:28) "Otouto Mitai na Sonzai" is another gentle track which just feels elegant and entrancing and helps put your mind at ease with gentle piano keys and electronic ambient like sounds.

The music is very classical with Piano melodies of sadness and uplifting build ups to show the drama off superbly. It's different yet similar to Clannad's soundtrack which was along the same wavelength but featured more instruments and styles. The Anime is mainly about music and features performances from some of history's greatest composers including ChopinBeethoven etc in the episodes (they are amazing but not really my kind of piano melodies that grab my attention).

The first 11 episodes intro Hikaru Nana by Goose House is great with a spring like melody introducing us to the series. Showing our 4 main characters in their school life. I loved the moments where they stand on top of the ocean whilst performing (like the ending) which is a dream for me to stand upon (if only).
I also enjoyed listening to the ending song Kirameki by Wacci which was just so good that I hardly ever stay to watch anime credits if I'm honest. I liked the camera angle slowly rotating around the glittering sceneries that Kaori was embracing and feeling all around as if living is more than a blessing.

The 2nd last 11 episodes intro Nanairo Symphony by Coala Mode continues the same peaceful and happy theme of showing all our characters present and past memory teasers. The sceneries are stunning but don't let the opening intro fool you!
The ending song Orange by 7 takes a turn for the worse as Kaori lays in the ocean with tears flowing as the sunsets. This is starting to aware of us of something more personal and sad that she's hiding. And the whole sinking down a rainbow tube is interesting but it does show how fast time is moving (metaphorically speaking).

The film was full of loving and admirable scentences/ quotes that I was trying to relate to in some ways.
I felt a small connection to Kousei like I did with Tomoya in Clannad AfterStory because of the hopelessness that they were stuck in and needed epiphanies to help them see things better.
 "Mozart said "Go on a Journey" I have no idea what lies ahead. But... I've taken my first steps. We're still in the middle of our journey. I'm a musician just like you. So I'll keep going." - Kousei
" Is it because it's a pool? Is it because the moon's out? Maybe, just maybe... the light can reach even the bottom of a dark ocean." - Kousei
"You know, I'm not always going to be around to help you." (Charlie Brown) - Kaori 
 "Isn't it funny how how the most unforgettable scenes can be so trivial? - Kousei
This page has more if you want to see what I mean or want spoilers.

I can't help but feel that Kousei kinda got the "middle finger" ending but on the other hand, I was stunned by the mind-blowing outcome and conclusion to the series. It was told through a letter which was a cute touch to learn the hidden truth behind everything as I was weeping badly. It was ingenious but also frustrating to see how difficult everything was when I feel that it could have been avoided if some people were a little more honest or direct. You can't give in to despair when things end because "you're never alone" and now you have a path, a future which is what really matters. And you can't ever try to forget the memories, no matter what.
The ending may not be what you'd expect or it might but in it's own unique way, it can give you hope to cling onto what life you have and to live for someone else!

If you love a romance story and don't mind listening to classical music, then this Anime is for you! I loved it and was laughing, smiling, crying, frowning and cheering along with the characters as the story progressed. It will leave you with butterflies in your stomach but a story like this is only as amazing as how it affects you and makes you share the same emotions as the characters as if you were there or are themselves.
Be sure to watch it on Netflix if you are interested!

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