- by Yasuhiro Yoshiura
- short film (25 min)
In fact, every person is living in his or her own world and this is also the case in Akio’s class. His world contains of anime talk with his friends which is a wonderful place for him. However, he always wonders how Marina Juri’s world, a girl in his class, looks like. She is always smiling and seems to be quite popular among other classmates. One day, Akio enters her world and finds out that it is not as shiny as he has thought.
The short anime movie has a creative storyline: the fact that everyone lives in their own world, what would happened if you enter someone else’s world? The sharing of same worlds bring friends together such as Akio and his best friends.
One can say that the main topic is individuality. As already mentioned, everyone lives in their own world meaning that everyone is different. Indeed, the movie perfectly shows how Marina Juri was criticized as a young girl for being ‘different’ because of her strange dreams about a song she wanted everyone to know about. Then, she was forced to fit into the norms of the society and to live a life she does not want to. So she becomes someone she never wants to be: a normal high school student as everyone else. On the other side, Akio is different as the other students. He likes to play the piano and to make music and that is what makes him standing out of the rest of his classmates. In fact, the “standing out of the rest” is what connects both characters.
The emotions of the students are well depicted. Juri suffers a lot from the inside but hides it with a everyday smile. She is fascinated by a particular song in her dreams but she is scared to get bullied if she would relieve this to her friends. Her classmates might think she is crazy because she talks about a song from her dream. People are easily judged by everything. For example, Akio and his friends are seen as freaks because they talk about anime and manga everyday. Not only negative feelings are presented in the anime movie, but also positive emotions such as love. Akio is in love with Juri but he is too shy talking to her.
Moreover, ‘Harmonie’ shows a good character development of the two main characters (Juri and Akio.) It is really fascinating to see such a development in a short animated film. Not only the character development is fascinating but also the message the movie carries: the suppressing of individual creativity and dreams. Both protagonists have a passion for music and composition of songs. However, Juri never follows her dreams because she was forced to fit into the norms. (Spoiler Alert: One can say that the doll in her dreams is a representation of Juri as being a doll of the society.) Another message which is represented in the movie is that you never know what sufferings people are hiding behind an everyday smile, so be careful and think before you judge someone too easily.
To conclude, one can say that the movie shows that everybody is unique but shares similar interests with others. One of the main messages is to never give up on your dreams. Many emotions were included and even background stories were present which is a positive aspect of a 25 minutes movie. The ending seems to be open which means that there is no real ending. The audience is invited to make their own interpretation. Even though the movie consists of many emotions, it is a bit boring and slightly confusing.