Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso (Your Lie in April) is considered one of the best anime series. With a beautiful soundtrack and memorable characters, Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso touched many anime lovers’ hearts. I had the honour of catching the live-action version of the story recently, and here’s my review of the film. Is it worth watching? Or is it not?

STORY – 9/10

The story of Shiatsu wa Kimi no Uso follows prodigious pianist Kousei Arima, who gave up playing piano after his mother passed away. Two years later, he meets a beautiful violinist Kaori Miyazono, in the month of April, who inspires him to face music again.

The movie stays true to the original story. It follows the story closely and only skipped a few side stories due to its shorter length. For instance, the movie completely skipped Kosei’s practice before his piano competition at the end, and didn’t introduce the character Aiza Nagi. Since it had to cramp so much into movie length, I am glad that the screenwriter chose to focus very much on the development between Kousei & Kaori.

ACTING – 6/10

The main characters are played by popular and promising actors from the new generation – Suzu Hirose as Kaori and Kento Yamazaki as Kosei. I admit that I am quite a fan of Yamazaki, as I enjoyed his performance Orange and Wolf Girl and Black Prince. But I’m not so familiar with Suzu Hirose. Not to be biased,

Yamasaki’s performance as Kosei had been mostly convincing. He does look the part and feel the part in everything except one thing – when he plays piano. The two actors had a 6-month course to play music convincingly. But when coupled with emotions they had to portray, I feel that it was too much for Yamazaki.

Hirose had a beautiful voice and really sounded like Kaori in real life. She’s pretty cute too. But her acting is sometimes over-exaggerated. Kaori may be lively, but we really can’t have the same level of liveliness in a live-action, especially when this film is more realistic than exaggerated.

VISUALS – 8/10

The film had a light pastel colour tone that feels very natural. Some shots were a little overexposed with a yellow tint. But all in all, it helps to provide a little dreamy feel to the film, that is very appropriate to the storyline.

It’s simple, yet beautiful. It’s drama-like, and yet it feels different from most other high-school dramas.

MUSIC – 7/10

If it’s a music film, it has to have great music, right? The film covered same pieces as the anime, which means good music. However, other than the performances, background music felt generic. This seems like a common downfall for Japanese films, especially those set in school. The background music always feel so generic, as though they all use music pieces from the same audio library.

Overall, I found the film pretty enjoyable and still very touching. The beautiful visuals and great performances (minus a few over-exaggerated acting) memorable. Whether you are a fan or not of the anime series, this is a movie that can be worth your time. For fans of the anime, it’s really touching to finally see your favourite scenes come to live in live-action.

Watch trailer: