Feature Play: Orange (2015 film)

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In perhaps one of the most interesting and well thought out ideas in manga, anime, or film in a while, we have the Japanese film Orange. This movie is not only full of serious, beautifully rendered scenes and musical arrangements, but it is also in the same vein as Fruit Basket with its metaphorical, heart wrenching ideals.

The movie “Orange” is based on the Ichigo Takano manga series of the same name. The themes it follows are that of love, friendship, commitment, regret, and the tragedy that these things can bring to one’s life. We are introduced to the character Naho Takamiya who is a sophomore in high school.

While heading to school in spring, she comes across an envelope that for some weird reason is inside her school bag. The letter inside is addressed to her and we find out pretty quickly that the person who sent it to her is her from ten years into the future.

She’s shocked and a bit confused (who wouldn’t be if they found such a letter in their bag?). Sadly, she doesn’t have time to really take a look at it as she’s already late for class. The events that happen in school that day end up being what she’d written about to herself in the letter, which is that a student named Kakeru Naruse transferred to her class and that she’d fall in love with him.

The letter however wasn’t just to inform her of her crush, but as a way for her to warn herself of an accident that was going to happen to help her try and prevent it.

It sounds a little confusing, but it’s really not that confusing. If anything, it is very thought provoking.

Right off the bat, we have characters that are in high school, but we also get a glimpse of these same characters ten years into the future. These moments are transitional and many of us have the question of “what if I could talk to my former self, and could try to change things, what would I do?”

On top of this, it’s painful when you think about the people you have lost between those years, your first love, best friend, or group of friends. But we also think about things like the loss of innocence.

How many times do we wish you could go back to when things felt more innocent, happier? Orange takes all of these ideas and questions and answers them in their own way.

Afterward, what’s left is a ripe, juicy concept ready for the picking. There isn’t much more we can say without spoiling the viewer experience. So head out and watch “Orange” you can catch the anime version on Crunchyroll right now!