Review | Drifting Home
“Drifting Home is a poignant coming of age adventure with a lot of heart and vivid visuals.”
Drifting Home is Hiroyasu Ishida’s latest anime feature film. For the second time, Netflix is handling the release internationally while it is getting a cinema release in Japan. In recent years, Studio Colorido has proven to be a rising star among Japanese anime studios. They may have not made many films but each of them has been a resounding success. So, is this another success for Studio Colorido?
The film focuses on Kosuke and Natsume, two kids who were longtime friends but whom relationship is strained since the passing of Kosuke’s grandfather. Both used to live the same apartment complex that is now set to be demolished. Before its destruction, Kosuke and his friend try to find the supposedly ghost who resides there. They end up finding Natsume who is here to protect the actual ghost. From there, the whole building is sent drifting on the sea with all the characters. It is the start of a magical adventure.
Like in Penguin Highway and A Whisker Away (two previous works from the same studio), Drifting Home uses fantasy elements to tell a coming of age story with a powerful emotional core. These elements are never what drives the story but they are in the background and help telling it. Without fantasy, it would just be a normal drama. Which in itself would already be great. Though, using these fantasy elements help these stories getting a wider audience. So people who are not usually into drama can definitely enjoy these films.
Moreover, this story explores many important themes like grief, family and friendship. These themes are addressed in a poignant and inspiring way. It doesn’t shy away from big tear jerking moments while not being overdramatic. This is a 2-hour roller coaster that makes you laugh, cheer and cry. Undoubtedly, Drifting Home is another success for Studio Colorido. Indeed, it hits all the right notes. This studio has made powerful coming of age adventures in the style of Studio Ghibli’s films. And honestly, if there is one studio who could succeed Ghibli, it is Studio Colorido.
When you have seen the previous work from this studio, you know exactly what to expect. Drifting Home is indeed a visual wonder. It really transports you into this world of abandoned drifting buildings. From little details on the buildings to the skies and not to mention the food, everything is absolutely fabulous.
Umitaro Abe who had composed the score for Penguin Highway returns for Drifting Home. Once again, he has composed a beautiful score that perfectly accompany the story. Plus, Zutomayo has two funky songs used for the lighter moments.
Drifting Home is a poignant coming of age adventure with a lot of heart and vivid visuals. This is another success for Studio Colorido.
Drifting Home is streaming on Netflix right now!
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Collectables Editor at Future Of The Force.
Star Wars and Marvel specialist, anime expert