Genre(s): Coming of Age, Adventure, Drama, Fantasy
Age-Appropriateness: 8+ (Some frightening scenes)
Episodes: One 1 hr. 40 min. movie
TheAwersome Rating: 8.4 / 10 (Simple but Magical)
Premise: In a quiet corner of the city, four-year-old Kun Oota has lived a spoiled life as an only child with his parents and the family dog, Yukko. But when his new baby sister Mirai is brought home, his simple life is thrown upside-down; suddenly, it isn’t all about him anymore. Despite his tantrums and nagging, Mirai is seemingly now the subject of all his parents’ love. To help him adapt to this drastic change, Kun is taken on an extraordinary journey through time, meeting his family’s past, present, and future selves, as he learns not only what it means to be a part of a family, but also what it means to be an older brother.
TheAwersome’s Thoughts: I love having my expectations exceeded and that certainly happened here. I wasn’t expecting something with the premise of “4 year old kid throws tantrums because he’s jealous of his baby sister” to move me to tears but here we are. Mirai has a lot of beautiful aspects, and while we usually talk about the animation and music (which rightfully deserve their praise) what stood out to me was the simplicity. And it takes a lot of finesse to make the simple interesting, let alone magical. It takes finesse to present two young struggling parents with near-constant scenes of chaos and still come away marveling at the joy that a family can be.
TLDR: A family-focused movie that feels like a modern, Japanese “Coco” but with much lower stress.
“Mirai” translates to “future,” which makes a lot of sense for the story.
Mirai was nominated for the 2019 Oscars as Best Animated Movie.
You’ll likely enjoy this if you enjoyed:
- The magic and human connection elements of Your Name
- The magic and coming of age of Ghibli movies