Review #19- Your Lie In April

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Welcome everyone to another RishRaff Anime Review! We will be covering today the dramatic anime Your Lie In April. As always, beware of minor SPOILERS in the review, but I hope you will enjoy the read nonetheless! 

Now, without further ado, let us begin the review!

Summary: Kousei Arima was a genius pianist until his mother’s sudden death took away his ability to play. Each day was dull for Kousei. But, then he meets a violinist named Kaori Miyazono who has an eccentric playing style. His monotonus life was about to change forever. -Crunchyroll

Plot: 7/10

The plot of Your Lie In April is fairly straight forward, making it easy to follow for even new anime fans. It does a good job at showing Kousei’s progression, alongside other character interactions. However, the plot is not extremely extravagant, and suffers from heavy predictability. This cause the plot to lose a lot of momentum, and causes the show to drag at some points. The problem is only further exasperated by the slow pacing of the show. Additionally, the show keeps a narrow focus, leaving the plot, and even subplots, with little variety and feeling repetitive.

Characters: 9/10

Your Lie In April does an excellent job in diversifying character personalities and relationships, with each one expressing their own uniqueness. The growth of each character is clearly visible, as the plot primarily focuses on Kousei’s development. The only really weakness in characters is the weakness of the main protagonist, Kousei. Despite being the lead character, he does very little to drive the plot. He does not offer any strong characteristics upon his introduction, and his passiveness that forces other characters to push him adds to the drag in the plot. Despite this, the characters are all fun and easy for viewers to interact and become attached to.

Animation: 10/10

The animation of Your Lie In April is absolutely incredible. It is some of my favorite animation style of any anime I have seen, being very colorful and imaginative. It is also highly detailed, even showing the reflections of player’s hands in the polished wood of the piano. Honestly, the animation is what kept me going through the series.

Soundtrack: 10/10

As a show focused on music almost exclusively, the soundtrack is spectacular. The classical music fits quite well with the atmosphere of the anime, as does the rest of the soundtrack.

Themes: 9/10

This anime highly pushes themes of risk and perseverance, as these are the two things that highly define Kaori, the main female lead. She repeatedly takes risks, often as a result of her never giving up. These themes can be underwhelming though, due to Kousei’s presence sucking away some of the strengths Kaori expresses with his submissive attitude. They present the advantages of taking risks in an almost negative light, as the story is told from Kousei’s view. Your Lie In April does show very well the variety of takes one can have in art, and just approaching life in general. It makes it clear that there is no “right” way to do things, something that aligns with the risk themes as well. The slow pacing and predictability drag on the drama and romance in the show, decreasing the effectiveness to which these elements could have been utilized.

Final Score: 9/10

Final Grade: A

B-Ro’s Take

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso was an anime that I did not think I would enjoy all that much. I have to say right off the bat the classical music was not my thing. I am not saying that the music was not done well, I am simply say that it is not for everyone. One thing that this show did extremely well with was the characters. I found myself able to connect to several characters even though I not into music that much. They weren’t the two dimensional characters that I would expect from an anime that focused so much one thing. A problem that I did have with this show was how predictable it was. I found myself guessing what would happen episodes in advanced. This also made it hard for me to feel sad when I should have, the show just seemed to give too much warning for anything that would be sad. It would get to the point that I would just be glad the sad moment would happen because the hinted to it so much. Other than that it was a great anime and I would give it an 8 out of 10. I would recommend this to classical music fans, this anime is perfect for them! – B-Ro

LowKev’s Take

Your Lie in April. I know I tend to be quite positive in my reviews, giving shows more credit than they probably deserve. However, please do not take my words about this show lightly just because of this. Your Lie in April is beautiful. Truly beautiful. In its 22 episodes, it managed to leave a huge impression on me and become a story I hope I never forget. It’s my second favorite anime behind Angel Beats, but it will always be the one that touched my heart the most. Let me start with the characters. I was surprised to find that they have a lot of depth. Kaori’s presence in particular was awesome (especially when she quotes Peanuts!!!), and brings a lot of the awesome humor and, well, “color” to the show. Kousei, on the other hand, is a character you can’t help but root for and learn more about as he develops. All of the characters in this show are extremely memorable, and I found myself relating to them a lot. This anime’s definitely for musicians, diving into themes that any musician will relate to. I was worried that it would focus too much on technical ability being the key (i.e. “I have to play perfectly to be the best!”), but was happy to find that the show does the opposite. It focuses much more on the meaning behind each note of music. It looks at the importance to play with a purpose, such as to emotionally reach people or to make something beautiful. These themes are very inspirational, especially to musicians. The soundtrack is amazing beyond words, with perfect openings and closings, stunning performances, and background music that manages to be just as memorable as the rest of it. April is also visually beautiful. The animation and music together collide in such a way that I was often left in awe while watching (with chills and even tears). There is a lot of symbolism and visual metaphor in the show, with one of my favorites being the visual representation of Kousei’s inability to play piano on stage. I won’t say it’s a perfect show though. For starters, lot of people probably won’t like the melodrama. It’s also not for people who aren’t fans of animes with heavy emotional weight (it’s really a tearjerker). A side plot involving the character Nagi comes into play at around the halfway point of the show and seems like somewhat of a diversion from the main plot. Though I like the subplot, and feel it does fit in with the big picture of the show’s themes, I will admit that it does come into play very suddenly. April as a whole really gets the viewer invested, and leads to an ending that hit me emotionally like no anime before or since has. Even if you guess what happens, the delivery is so incredible and beautiful that you will still feel the emotional weight. I was blown away by the ending, and couldn’t be happier that I gave April a shot. I almost feel that I’ll never be able to put to words just how special this anime is to me. It really connected with me, and already can’t wait to experience it again.

“I met the girl under the full-bloomed cherry blossoms, and my fate had begun to change.”

Final Comments: Your Lie in April makes use of its beautiful animation and soundtrack to enhance the show to great effect. However, numerous flaws in the plot, such as predictability, inhibit the impact the show may have on the viewer.

Thank you for reading! Before you go, be sure to give us a like and a follow, and check us out on Twitter and FaceBook. Our next review shall be Plastic Memories.

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