Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Boku-tachi wa Mada Shiranai

Title:Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Boku-tachi wa Mada Shiranai
We still don't know the name of the flower we saw that day (literal translation)
あの日見た花の名前を僕達はまだ知らない。 (Japanese)
Keywords: , , , , ,
Notables: Animation - A1 Pictures
KONDOU Takayuki
R1 License - NIS America
SAKURAI Takahiro
Six childhood friends grew apart in high school. One of them is Jintan, now a shut-in. He gets a request to fulfill a wish for Menma, the only one of their friends to have stayed the same over the years. In order to grant her wish, he will have to find and reunite their old friends.
(Summary Courtesy of Anime News Network)

Airing for 11 episodes.
Started airing on April 14, 2011
Animated by A-1 Pictures

See series film sequel: AnoHana Movie.
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Buy 9 8 8 8 9 9 Ggultra2764 [series:1066#1552]
Ano Hana proved to be a solid watch for me throughout the Spring 2011 anime season. Focused around a circle of six friends who drifted apart and are still shook up from the loss of one of them as children, Ano Hana is focused on the five coming to terms with Menma's loss when she appears as a spirit in an older form visible only to Jinta for a specific purpose. The series succeeds well at fleshing out the characters among the group as it explores the insecurities of the characters through their interactions and revelations over the events leading up to Menma's loss. They almost seem as if they are real people as the five are flawed in their behavior and actions as a result of Menma's loss such as Jinta unwilling to open up to others and jealousy over romantic feelings between several in the group. However, their characters improve as they reconcile with one another and try to help Menma fulfill her wish throughout the series. Even at only 11 episodes, the pacing of Ano Hana is smooth enough to allow the developments faced by the characters to progress naturally.

The visual and aural presentation to Ano Hana does well at complementing the down-to-earth mood that the series gives off. Visuals to the series are clean with a good amount of detail and bright colors put into their design. The scenery to this series is gorgeous and vast, especially with forest scenes as Jinta and his friends quite often hang around in a forest shack that they used as kids for a clubhouse. While the series doesn't have notable highlights of animation, characters and anything within an environment still moved fluid enough where I couldn't notice any shortcuts used. The soundtrack to the series consists of mellow and low-key musical selections to complement the everyday situations and developments faced by the characters and tracks that sound dramatic to compliment tensions and sad moments faced by the group.

Overall, Ano Hana made for quite a solid anime drama with good pacing, enough fleshing out of the central characters and a visual/ aural presentation that effectively conveyed the story it wanted to tell with its characters. I would definitely consider it one of the best titles I've seen for 2011 thus far.

Last updated Thursday, June 23 2011. Created Thursday, June 23 2011.
Unevaluated Stretch [series:1066#628]
(One episode watched):

OK, there's a guy who can somehow see a 'vision' of a girl who died long ago; he complains of 'stress' and 'trauma'; he has become distanced from his former friends...

Nope, sorry, but somehow this show cannot summon one iota of interest or curiousity out of me. I've seen this kiss of death several times this season: new shows which have clearly required a good deal of effort and technical expertise to bring them to completion, yet it is obvious within the first five minutes that inexplicably they have absolutely nothing to them that I find entertaining. They are not even worth the time that is needed to watch them, much less money. The main characters of Ano Hana are annoying. Menma is a dimwitted, helium-voiced girl while Jintan is unfriendly and can only complain. "Nobody gives a damn about me" he says--and he is exactly right. Why should I give a damn about such a gruff, dull, and soul-less character? If I haven't even recognized the existence of a credible personality, don't expect me to like or care about you. And Menma has a fingernails-on-chalkboard effect on me. I quickly grew impatient for this show to end, but hung on through one episode just in case an intriguing revelation would take place at the end. It didn't, and I think it is safe to say that there is no point in watching any more of Ano Hana--not unless somebody is willing to pay me to do so.

Last updated Sunday, April 24 2011. Created Sunday, April 24 2011.

Other Sites
Official Japanese AnoHana Web Site

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