Into the Forest of Firefly Lights - “It’s okay if you forget me”
This one is a short movie, it lasts 45 minutes but the quality of the film is much better than other longer productions. I can confidently say right now that this story can be as touching as the one in Your Name. These 2 are certainly the best dramatic/romantic Japanese animated movies I have seen along with the classic Grave of the Fireflies although this one is not romantic only dramatic.
The story begins with a little girl that gets lost in the woods. She is unable to find a way out and starts to cry inconsolably when a guy wearing an animal mask suddenly appears and offers his help. When the girl realizes he is safe to trust and that she will be able to leave the woods, she runs towards him to hug him but he quickly avoids any touch.
He explains that he is a spirit from the woods, and that if he is ever touched by a human he will disappear forever. In the beginning, the girl after hearing this begins to act silly trying to touch him but he always manages to avoid this. They became trusted friends and from that day she decides to always return to the woods to play with her spirit friend.
When the summer comes to an end, she informs the spirit she won't be able to return until next year. So this reunion becomes a yearly tradition each summer. As the years begin to pass, their friendship becomes stronger, they really like spending time with each other, and once the girl is a teen and older enough she begins to reflect on their friendship and how her spirit friend never grows old. She realizes she will eventually be older than him.
This tale was incredibly well written, and it was touching at times. Deep feelings between the 2 of them will spontaneously arise and emotional conflicts will naturally follow. She is a human and he is a spirit. We will also learn some important background information about this spirit fellow that will help the viewers understand him better.
I was expecting that ending but I thought the story would arrive at that point in a different way. It was an amazing experience nonetheless, really top-notch and I hope movies/stories like this one continue to be produced.
If you enjoy emotionally intense animated movies like the ones I mention at the beginning of the article, make sure to give this one a watch. It is totally worth it and I enjoyed pretty much everything about this flick.
- Very original and touching story. The best of Japanese anime right there.
- Beautiful animation and excellent writing.
- In the beginning, the female character's childishness can be a bit annoying. She quickly grows older and the movie gets much better and even touching.
More information: https://www.themoviedb.org/movie/92321-hotarubi-no-mori-e
In numbers: 8.5/10