Music accompanies the path of the human metronome, the prodigious pianist Kousei Arima. But after the passing of his mother, Saki Arima, Kousei falls into a downward spiral, rendering him unable to hear the sound of his own piano.
Two years later, Kousei still avoids the piano, leaving behind his admirers and rivals, and lives a colorless life alongside his friends Tsubaki Sawabe and Ryouta Watari. However, everything changes when he meets a beautiful violinist, Kaori Miyazono, who stirs up his world and sets him on a journey to face music again.
Based on the manga series of the same name, Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso approaches the story of Kousei’s recovery as he discovers that music is more than playing each note perfectly, and a single melody can bring in the fresh spring air of April.
Note: This isn’t a proper review and more of me analyzing why I liked this so much.
Your Lie In April is an anime that has tragedy written over its name.
I didn’t need to watch the anime to know the end, I instinctively knew by the description and name(Well, the actual lie wasn’t unexpected but a different one) alone. Combined that with how many people praised it, I wasn’t sure if I would finish it crying or absolutely bored.
I know every variation of this story, I’ve seen it in every medium so many times. A gloomy guy, and a bubbly energetic girl who forces her way into his life. I know this plot, I know how it ends.
Then what was so different?
Because this was never about the end. This was never about the tragedy that loomed over the happy times the first episode presented us with. This was about the characters.
This is about Kousei Arima, those people whose world he changed and the person who changed his world in turn. For Arima, before he met Kaori, life had been pretty much meaningless. The music which he couldn’t give up, the abuse he endured from his mother, his love, hate and guilt towards his mother.
Arima was a person who merely existed.
Then he meets Kaori Miyazano, a person whose clock is ticking. She’s desperate to leave a mark. Unlike Arima, she can’t merely exist, she doesn’t have enough time. Arima sees that, and so she sparkles in his eyes.
This story of how Kousei meets Kaori, and her presence helps him change and the was it is presented is what makes Your Lie In April work.
Also, it’s normal in the melodramatic genre, but the character thoughts are played out like a letter to someone, something I really liked and probably why I felt like crying at some point. It did the job of portraying how much Arima wanted his feelings to reach her, but couldn’t say them himself.
I would say the first half of the anime was really well done, especially in episode eleven where all Kousei’s growth culminates into something wonderful, but after that it feels like the anime went on just so it could reach the end.
Now, I have some complain about Watari getting less character development than the side characters, and Tsubaki having a realization that really doesn’t add anything to the overall story other than create complication. On the other hand, the side characters were all wonderful, and had some solid reasons and emotions for their actions.
But my biggest complain is the pacing. A show like this can’t have very fast pacing, since it needs time so you can intake the feel of it, but even then the pacing was too slow.
On that note, the beautiful bright colour palette helps highlight the character emotions, and the background music really adds to that.
I wouldn’t say portraying emotions through music and how it changes for each person is any different, but that’s probably because I have watched a lot of anime with music genre. Someone who hasn’t will probably find it quite thrilling.
Whether you cry or not, You Lie In April deserves a watch. It might lack in some department, but it still knows how to touch one’s heart.