Fantasy Light: Our Review of ‘A Whisker Away’ on Netflix

Fantasy Light: Our Review of ‘A Whisker Away’ on Netflix

There’s truly nothing more mysterious then love…

Now on Netflix, A Whisker Away is a delightful fantasy romp in the grand tradition of other Japanese anime that really boils down how awkward and confusing those first pangs of love can truly be.

Miyo Sasaki, nicknamed “Muge” meaning “infinitely mysterious,” has a bright personality and is full of energy at school and at home. She is also secretly in love with her classmate Kento Hinode. Miyo tries repeatedly to get Kento’s attention, but he takes no notice of her. She realizes that the only way to get close to him is to transform into a cat, but at some point, the boundary between herself and the cat becomes ambiguous, and she is forced to give up her life as a human.

From directors Jun’ichi Satô and Tomotaka Shibayama; A Whisker Away captures the essence of some of the best that we’ve seen in the genre, managing to be heartfelt, earnest and more than a little bit gonzo.

Pulling from things like Spirited Away & Sailor Moon, there is an undeniable joie de vivre about this film that makes it such a brilliant little entry for a platform like Netflix so that audiences who may not be familiar with that Studio Ghibli style can see what makes those films so lovely.

Its eye popping yet also wholly relatable on an emotional level as we see these characters struggle with their current emotions and jump into these fantasy sideways adventures in order to be able to cope with them as the team on this film makes this all something that you can’t look away from…even when you can’t quite believe what you are seeing.

These films makes these very real issues that Young Adult’s can grapple with not just fun, but incredibly compelling as it effortlessly transitions its characters from the angst of navigating social situations at school to journeying through a world of cats when the characters make their ultimate realizations that while not perfect, life will be hell of a lot better just as they are.

On top of all that, the film actually does capture the spirit of a cat as it plays both oddly loyal and accurately aloof really making for a narrative that while serious for the characters at hand really does play lighter than air from top to bottom.  It’s got quality voice performances that make us care about these characters and embrace the overall journey that they are on.

While A Whisker Away is hardly a game changer in the realm of Japanese anime, it really is a light and fun affair that audience of all ages can get swept away in.  It’s just a perfectly breezy way to kill a couple of hours on Netflix.

This post was written by
David Voigt is a Toronto based writer with a problem and a passion for the moving image and all things cinema. Having moved from production to the critical side of the aisle for well over 10 years now at outlets like Examiner.com, Criticize This, Dork Shelf (Now That Shelf), to.Night Newspaper he’s been all across his city, the country and the continent in search of all the news and reviews that are fit to print from the world of cinema.
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