A Silent Voice (Koe no Katachi) - Anime Review - Anime Jinsei

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A Silent Voice (Koe no Katachi) - Anime Review

Ishida Shouya and Nishimiya Shouko of A Silent Voice (Koe no Katachi)

Having read the manga, I went to see this movie not expecting much tears to bawl out of my eyes knowing the complexity of emotions I had experienced with the manga.

I was wrong.

Prepare yourself for an emotional roller coaster while the movie plays with your weakening heart as the movie progresses.


A Silent Voice (Koe no Katachi) is a heartbreaking film but full of hope on redeeming oneself from past mistakes and seeking forgiveness for the people who committed them. It is something we can all understand and learn from.

Nishimiya Shouko of A Silent Voice (Koe no Katachi)

The story begins with a young girl, Nishimiya Shouko, who transfers into a class and presents herself in pieces of paper she wrote before entering the classroom. Written on the paper was, "I am deaf." Out of boredom, Ishida Shouya and some of his friends bully her while she spent time at school.

The bullying became too severe that it got to a point where she had to be transferred to another school. Shouya takes the brunt and is blamed by his classmates for everything that was done to her. He is then ostracized by everyone in the class and had to suffer the fate of getting bullied like what he did with Shouko. 

Several years later, the two met again. Regretting his past actions, Shouya tries to make friends with her in the hope of trying to reconcile.

Ishida Shouya and Nishimiya Shouko of A Silent Voice (Koe no Katachi) during class

One of the main strengths of this film is that it does not rely on a love story to tell an emotional story. The plot may seem simple, however, I feel that there is outstanding attention to character development. There is consistency in the characters, making their actions relatable, presented in a realistic manner. 

An ample amount of time was given to meet the main characters and how they live life before everything happened. Unfortunately, the remaining characters were pretty much unexplored.

The art was done by Kyoto Animation and has one of the most vibrant and fluid animations one could get. Compared to Tamako Love Story, the quality is almost the same, if not better. The high-quality animation is retained throughout the entire movie.

The voice acting was top-notch and sounded very familiar to everyday Japanese life.

The ending song "Koi wo Shita no wa" sung by Aiko was amazing.

A Silent Voice (Koe no Katachi)

The film tried to stay true to the manga as best as it could and in the essential elements to convey the original message that the manga had, they succeeded. Unfortunately, following the path, they had to drop a lot of side content. The film was still able to deliver the core of the manga.

Some viewers had a problem with what they saw as a plot of emotional manipulation that stereotyped emotions and disabilities and thought it gave them a superficial view. Some got offended by how deaf people and suicidal people are presented by the movie but I think the film aims to entertain just like any other media. 

Expecting a two-hour (+10 minutes) movie of such density in content and plot to execute such a theme with flawless precision is a bit too much of an ask. But anyone is free to think of it that way.


Overall, its breathtaking story takes your attention from the very beginning. A Silent Voice (Koe no Katachi) is very well done and a movie worth checking out.

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