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Your Name review: Gender swap tale stirs imagination

By Damon Smith

Published 18/11/2016

A still from Your Name
A still from Your Name

Schoolgirl Mitsuha (voiced by Mone Kamishiraishi) lives in the mountain town of Itomori with her grandmother Hitoha (Etsuko Ichihara) and younger sister, Yotsuha (Kanon Tani). The girls' father is mayor Toshiki (Masaki Terasoma) and they honour the gods by performing religious ceremonies in flowing robes at the family's Shinto temple, which cruel classmates watch with pitying sneers.

Mitsuha yearns to escape her backwater life for the thrum of the city. She gets her wish when she is magically transported into the gangly frame of Tokyo schoolboy Taki (Ryunosuke Kamiki), who works part-time as a waiter and has a crush on fellow server Ms Okudera (Masami Nagasawa). Taki is simultaneously transported into Mitsuha's body and relies on her friends Tessie (Ryo Narita) and Sayaka (Aoi Yuki) to blend in.

In their gender-swapped guises, the teenagers experience each other's worlds through inquisitive eyes. As Mitsuha and Taki criss-cross back and forth, seemingly never destined to meet, they leave notes on each other's mobile phones to keep track of their out-of-body exploits.

Four stars

Belfast Telegraph

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