A Letter to Momo and Summer Wars can be considered two very influential animated Japanese films, both of which have received multiple awards and nominations, including the Japan Academy in 2010 for Summer Wars and a nomination for the Japan Academy in 2013 for A Letter to Momo. Both Films deal heavily with the genres of family, drama, and comedy, although A Letter to Momo leans more into the supernatural genre and Summer Wars Leans more toward action and a nice touch of romance. Both movies are incredibly heartwarming, very thrilling at times, and you can find great messages from either movie; Family can come in all shapes and sizes, and that you should never give up on yourself or those around you.
The main character of A Letter to Momo is Momo Miyaura, a junior high student, who is up-rooted from her life in Tokyo to live with her great aunt and uncle on a small island after the accidental death of her father. Clutching to an unfinished letter from her father that only reads “Dear Momo”. Momo goes through the film feeling regret towards the death of her father, as they had gotten into a fight the last time she saw him and she told him that she thought he was selfish and that she hoped he didn’t come back. Along with regret, she feels loneliness and some isolation from having no friends in the new town she is in, as well as the fact that her mother starts attending nursing classes on the mainland every day after they move in, leaving Momo to stay by herself on the island. Then there are the main characters of Summer Wars, first being Kenji Kaso, a 17 year old high school student math genius who had been first place runner up to represent Japan in the math Olympics. Kenji had been working a summer job doing...
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...ich would cause massive damage wherever it would land. Although the plots are different, they both share very similar themes in the way drama, loss of loved ones, acceptance of death of loved ones, as well as finding family in unlikely places.
In the end Momo, Kenji, and Natsuki find happiness and can even be considered stronger people than they were before thanks to the help of newfound friends and family. Momo doesn’t give up and faces a typhoon in order to get medical attention for her mother, Kenji pushes Natsuki’s family to not give up, even in their grief and possible demise, and Nastuki scores a win against Love Machine that probably saved millions of lives, including her families lives. While the stories and characters were different they all ended with this; family is incredibly important and the belief to never give up on yourself or the people around you.
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