“The Girl Who Leapt through Time” is a wonderful and charming Japanese animated movie which tells the story of a schoolgirl named Makoto who has the ability to make jumps to her recent past and change important events in her life. It shows the causes and consequences of those time jumps and how they affect her as a person.
Makoto is a common Japanese schoolgirl who lives with her parents and younger sister. She’s very clumsy though she thinks otherwise and always hangs around with a couple guys named Kosuke and Chiaki and plays baseball with them at the school grounds.
The story starts when one day, after almost arriving late for school, Makoto’s teacher arrives to the classroom with a surprise exam which she fails miserably. She’s then assigned to take the tests to the teachers’ room but there, she finds a room with tons of laboratory things and falls down to the ground, where she touches some kind of stone which make her have some kind of weird visions.
After school, she remembers her mom asked her to deliver some fruit to an aunt who works in a museum so she goes riding her bike, but during the ride, her bicycle’s brakes fail and she crashes into some railroads just before the trains are about the pass, but just when she’s about to die in the accident, she wakes up again in the middle of the street a few seconds earlier.
Makoto then finds out about her ability to make jumps to the short-term past and starts using them for almost anything, from repeating an hour of karaoke with her two friends to helping Kosuke get together with a shy girl from the classroom.
The animation and drawings in the film are incredibly good, the character designs looks slightly more real than the common anime style which make for a very welcome change of how things look. The environments are simply beautiful, there are classrooms, streets, rivers, gardens and all of them full of pretty details and tons of things happening on them at the same time. The art is top notch in this movie.
The voice acting is very good as well, there are no common anime clichés to the voices, like the typical annoying female or male with no feelings. All the characters sound like common people and fit completely into the story and the events happening at the moment in the movie.
Same with the ambient sounds, there are always a lot of things making sounds and giving life to the backgrounds. Insects, traffic, people talking, things falling down, water, etc. Everything feels alive, realistic and beautiful. The music is amazing as well. Most of the songs are slow Japanese-themed ballad which fit perfectly with the story and events. Especially the song in the ending credits which is very beautiful.
I recommend this movie to everyone. It’s a very charming and interesting story with a perfect pace that all kinds of public will like. The art style is extremely pretty, especially the backgrounds. It has a great voice acting and narrative and the music is very beautiful. When compared to most anime OVAs, The girl who leapt through time is much better and you can see the effort of the creators to make everything fit perfectly into an amazing Japanese animation film.