And yet, Arima’s vision of his mother doesn’t seem to be marred by stereotypical teenage angst. Flashbacks depict her personality as being more than one-note and as such she is viewed by her son from uniquely human light. Respect, adoration, resentment, obligation – it’s all there in Arima’s mind.
Arima’s half-hearted, melancholy monologues are nicely juxtaposed by drawn out scenes of Miyazono trumpeting her vibrant, passionate melodies. It’s refreshing that neither lead character is so cartoonishly embellished that they feel like caricatures as well. Arima has friends and he’s evidently able to find enjoyment in his mundane life; he’s simply jaded in his current state. Arima “uses” the piano but purely for the sake of transcribing; his passion for playing it has all but withered.
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