Nobunaga ShimazakighostJapanese
Summer Ghost
Medium: film
Year: 2021
Director: loundraw
Writer: Hirotaka Adachi
Actor: Chiaki Kobayashi, Daisuke Takahashi, Gen Sato, Kazumasa Nakamura, loundraw, Miyuki Sahaku, Miyuri Shimabukuro, Nobunaga Shimazaki, Noriaki Kanze, Rina Kawaei, Takako Honda, Yuki Tanaka
Keywords: anime, ghost
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 39 minutes
Website category: Anime 2021
Review date: 22 November 2023
Summer Ghost
It's interesting, unusual and sometimes... well, it's not disturbing, but I was wondering if it would go there.
There's a Summer Ghost who might appear if you're close to death. She herself might have committed suicide. Three friends meet up and go looking for her.
Using fireworks, they find her. ("They say that fireworks are meant to calm the souls of the dead.") She's friendly. Her name's Akane and she's willing to answer questions.
The potentially disturbing bit is what's going to happen to the living. Tomoya's mother wants him to study for his exams and not to have a life. She might get her wish. Ryou has gloomy conversations with doctors. Aoi's being bullied at school and likes standing on the edge of a high roof. What's more, there's an appeal in talking to Akane and seeing her point of view. She's friendly, she's pretty and she can help you fly. The film's ultimately talking about suicide (although not exclusively since not all teenage deaths fall into that category) and it's not a million miles away from making suicide look attractive.
"It's because you're dead inside. It's not good for you."
"Do I want to hear that from a ghost?"
Ultimately, though, the film's clever and thoughtful about its subject matter. Akane's looking for something. Our heroes might be able to help. Tomoya might be jealous of her, but she's capable of realising that and talking to him about it. "I hope you haven't started thinking death might not be so bad." There will be a death choice, but the important conversations have been had beforehand. Not everyone here will survive to the closing credits, but that's okay. The way it's done feels right and this is an interesting film.