10 out of 10 people found this review helpful:
Based on the popular doujin and games of Ryukishi07/07th Expansion comes the popular series Higurashi no Naku Koro ni. It is a 26 episode mystery thriller anime with a special episode, second season and OVA.
One guy surrounded by 5 cute girls. It might look and sound like your typical harem anime but as the story progresses, the seemingly innocent and peaceful setting turns into a dark and gory mystery which will surely leave you confused even after only the first 4 episodes.
The story starts with 16 year old, Maebara Keiichi, whom just moved to the peaceful village of Hinamizawa. Since there aren't many students, all kids of different levels share the same classroom and because of that, Keiichi quickly bacame friends with girls near his age. Ryuugu Rena, the cute girl with a desire to take home any cute things she finds; Sonozaki Mion, the eldest in class and the tomboyish class president; Hojou Satoko, a cute little trap master and her best friend, Furude Rika who is at a young age is the shrine maiden and head of the Furude shrine.
All seemed well until Keiichi found out about the "Dam War" because of the dam construction which could have drowned the village and the "Mysterious Deaths" that came with it which happens at the villages "Watanagashi Festival". As Keiichi digs deeper into the mystery, the more we learn the shocking truth about Hinamizawa.
1st of all, the songs are good and catchy. The theme song which has the same title as the anime suits dark theme of the show. The art is also good and you won't have too much complaints. The characters are all lovable even with their scary side.
The story is also good but for those looking for romance, this anime doesn't have too much of it. The story centers on gore and mystery. The anime is cut into different chapter called "Question Arcs" which have same characters and theme but different ending. Each arc leaves off clues for you to piece together to solve the mystery of Hinamizawa and all of these are explained in the 2nd season so don't worry if you don't get them.
A bit of warning though, there are many disturbing scenes in Higurashi so don't watch if you can't take it but if your into animes with cute girls, a good story, mystery and gore then Higurashi no Naku Koro ni is a must try.
May contain some spoilers
I've recently been watching a lot of horror anime. Except that it isn't really horror because I truly believe that the Japanese could not make a properly scary horror anime at all. I laugh every time someone gets a little paper cut and blood shoots 20 meters. There's a lot of good creepy anime out there, sure, but they're not primarliy horror. I watched Higursashi when they cry a short while after finishing Corpse Party- Tortured Souls in which I had quite a lot of goosebumps but not from the actual horror itself but rather from what was not to be expected. Higurashi gave me something that I did not expect at all.
Higurashi when they cry is set in the fictional Hinamizawa in the 1980s (so when you notice that everyone doesn't have cellphones and instead uses those, frankly, brilliant rotary dial telephones, now you know.) where Maebara Keiichi has recently moved in. Things go swell in the little rural village of a few thousand residents and he begins to adapt to le country lifestyle. That is, until he finds the village's darkness. A strange string of murders happened starting a few years back that always occurred on the day of the town's yearly festival. Many of the town's residents have attributed this to the curse of the town's local deity- Oyashiro-sama. As the date of the next festival approaches, Keiichi is dragged into a dark world of conspiracies, fear and distrust - even to his own friends...
Nice premise, I must say. It has that creepy edge that promises a good mystery and in depth look into whatever the hell is going on. That was what I thought until the first arc ended. You see, Higurashi is divided into several arcs where roughly the same thing happens but in a different way and from different perspectives. The first few are called the "question arcs" which end with a lot of unexplained circumstances and the latter "Answer arcs" shed more light on the previous arcs so you can solidify and conclusions you, yourself made. Sound confusing? Same with me. The different arcs seem completely unrelated to each other at first and work out like the infamous Endless Eight arc of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya season 2. It is different from it in that, even if the primary setting is the same and all, events actually differ and the arcs can span as little as 2 episodes to as much as 6.
This makes the pacing shot to bits but one of the anime's biggest charms is that each following arc adds information to something we already know. The first few episodes give us a basic sketch of things and the latter arcs add more meat to it. This is a great idea considering the main mystery is actually really good if you follow it. It gives a sense of satisfaction when you manage to piece together the puzzle- which is basically trying to find out what the hell is going on with the village and searching for it's dark truths. The Watanagashi festival (or Cotton Drifting festival) is a key point shared among all arcs where things hit the fan quite messily. The characters are all part of this complex riddle- either being a part of it's core or just a curious bystander. This is exactly what Higurashi is- a mystery with some gore element. As such, there shouldn't be much of a horror genre as there is a psychological anime. And by psychological, I mean put-in-a-padded-cell type. Some of the torture scenes were really quite disturbing and could leave quite a scar on your memory (bet you can't help touching at your neck after watching this one particular scene involving a kitchen, some syringes and a knife).
The main characters are all unique. There's Maebara Keiichi- the fun and charismatic boy who has a dark past. Mion and Shion Sonozaki (the latter whom we meet in the second arc) who are twins and are both tough and independent ladies who love to have fun (they have different personalities at the least) and both have a dark past. Rena Ryugu is an air-headed and fun-loving girl girl who likes making friends who has a (very) dark past. Satoko Houjou is a young and energetic girl who likes to play pranks and set traps for people just for the heck of it and has a (very) dark past. Finally, there is Rika Furude- Satoko's best friend and the young, revered heir of the local shrine who is the most mature despite her age. She also has a dark pa- wait, she doesn't really. Anyways, all the characters are tied to the mystery in one way or another and the anime best brings out their characteristics by using the achronological way it presents the story. Through the different interactions of the characters, even if the same events happen, a different part of their character is introduced every time- made especially better as the story is told from different character's perspectives. This makes the characters surprisingly complex in the end as they end up quite literally tearing the guts out of each other and bashing people's heads in. Don't worry much, though, because they'll reappear in the next arc (probably to get their fingers nailed or something, though.) Fun, ho. (Actually, cut that "fun" part. There's no such thing a s "optimism" in this anime.)
One of the biggest drawbacks to this anime is that it is extremely confusing at times. I want to bet my salary that there is no-one who can fully understand what is going on without consulting the wiki or having played the original game prior. The story actually is fully set out and explained for you but you need quite a good memory to get things straight. So I wouldn't recommend this to those who don't want to think too much when watching an anime because here, when things start moving, they move quickly.
The animation is quite old-fashioned. It's from Studio Deen- a studio who loves doing these types of traditional animation (anime in 2006 was already starting to look really good). Roughly speaking- it's not so good. I would place emphasis on the fact that this anime was not made to be pretty (It should be of note that Hinamizawa is based on real-life village Shirakawa- a UNESCO world heritage site and is far neighbors with the town Hyouka was set in. And that was animated brilliantly)- it was made for people to think and engage with the complex storylines and character interactions. This little thing is easily overlooked once you realise how good things can get. The OSTs are wonderfully composed and match perfectly with the creepy mood of the anime. There are also really good dramatic pieces played when some really nasty stuff is being shown (stuff which can haunt you for weeks). They also use silences to install a sense of false peace and serves to emphasize the events unfolding more- if you know what I mean.
Overall, Higurashi when they cry is a very good and original take on the mystery genre. It has it's unique- but a little confusing- way of telling a story which ties everything nicely for the second and third season to start. It's many plot-twist will keep the viewer engaged and that OP is possibly the best thing you could ever hear. I fully recommend this anime to everyone. Just lean back and enjoy the thrill...
1 out of 2 people found this review helpful:
But I don't agree with it. Higurashi is quite a good anime. I personally love it's non-linear story-telling style and how you can see many different sides to each character.
Higurashi is a horror-mystery anime, revolving around a small town called Hinnamizawa, where strange things are happening. This series is told in scenarios that are seemingly unrelated, and slowly shed light on the events of the summer.
Let's start with the good parts. Higurashi has HORRIBLE art. Like, horrible. The cutsey moe style doesn't work with the dark tone at all. (I swear, I'm getting to the good part.)
However, it has some of the best uses of sound and lighting I have ever seen.
The animation is passable, I suppose. Some parts are extremely choppy and awkward. Higurashi, however, makes brilliant use of shadows and sound. They add so much more to the scarier scenes, and they even make the choppy animations seem so much smoother. I applaud you, Higurashi. *hands cookie*
Another good point is how Higurashi paces itself. This is an example of horror done well. Higurashi successfully manages to create a creepy atmosphere, you constantly feel like something is looming over the characters, waiting to strike. This anime particularly likes to throw in plots twists at you, as well.
The characters are pretty interesting. Cute girls with dark pasts killing each other? Fine by me. *brings out popcorn* They exude a certain air of mystery and often seem intimidating. At times, yes, I was indeed creeped out. I will say that this is one of the creepier series that I've watched.
Many seemingly innocent characters get brutally murdered in one arc, yet in the net arc, the positions are switched. God, I didn't know that cute little girls could be so sadistic...
Voice acting is pretty good, the VA's do a good job at capturing both the innocent and sadistic sides of their characters. Dub is pretty bad, but watch-able. Hell, I watched the entire thing dubbed.
Again. BGM is amazing. OP and ED are average, nice and catchy, but nothing that makes them stand out from the filthy masses. And I'm not horribly sound oriented anyways.
That being said, this show is extremely shallow. Higurashi is very good for a causal watch, but there is nothing exceptional about it. There is nothing beneath the surface. Brush aside the blood and gore, and what's left? I'm not horribly fond of shows that rely on graphic scenes to sustain the plot. The characters don't have much depth or development and I can't say I got attached to anyone.
But once again, it's not bad at all. I never said that. Don't get the wrong idea.
I really do like it. Higurashi is purely horror. It focuses on scaring you, and nothing else. And to it's credit, it managed to do so very, very well. However, I do think that Higurashi would be ruined if they tried to throw in something deep and thought-provoking. While I love it when animes do that, sometime's it's just not the right place to do so. Higurashi is one of those.
0 out of 1 people found this review helpful:
I loved this anime, to say the least. The beginning of it all is very interesting, it really pulled me in. I liked to be able to have a good introduction to all the characters. Of course, if I hadn't seen the opening credits, I would have thought this was shojou anime. Of course, it gets... brutal.
I thought the story line was amazingly creative, but it did get a bit confusing.
Spoiler Alert! Click to show or hide
With it constantly switching to past and present, I got a bit confused. It felt like the episodes were out of order.
Spoiler Alert! Click to show or hide
The killings, though, were very well thought out and quite creative.
Higurashi no Naku Koro ni
is a very good anime and I highly suggest it to anyone looking for an exciting new anime. This anime is strong on the horror/mystery side, its also a little bloody/gory, so if your not into that kind of stuff then this isn't an anime for you. Now then, onto the review. Higurashi doesn't work like most animes you may be familiar with. Every few episodes the storyline resets and takes a different path, kinda like different "arcs" for lack of a better term. Basically its like watching several different versions of the same anime,
Spoiler Alert! Click to show or hide
the first arc is only four episodes long,
but don't let something like that put you off, because the first arc was in my honest opinion, the best one, and I quickly became hooked on the series. The background of Higurashi is about this small close-nit town where they hold a festival every year. However, every year on the night of the festival someone dies. Every arc is pretty much wrapped around this background, but they all end different ways with different characters. Their isn't much of a pattern between the arcs except that the first episode is usually really light-hearted and extremely funny with little to no cause of suspicion. The second episode introduces/heightens the suspicion/suspense greatly, by this episode your likely thinking, "Holy crap this is creepy, what's going to happen now?" The third or so episode is where stuff starts happening, where the story is starting to get revealed little by little. Since the length of each arc is a little different, there isn't much of a trend in each one after this point. Anyway, Higurashi is an excellent anime, i highly suggest watching it, even if just for the first four episodes. ;3
When They Cry: Higurashi (More commonly known as "Higurashi No Naku Koro ni") is, without doubt, one of the best (if not THE best) psychological series I've seen. A perfect blend of horror (the death scenes come not only as a shock but full of gore for those who need to see the gruesome), terror (seeing characters you've grown attached to slowly descend into insanity is truely scary) and humour. The latter seems out of place, but it works perfectly; the calm and serene enviroment is perfectly shattered every time.
The only fault there is to this anime is that you need to remember every important scene or action throughout the series, on several occasions I became confused at events and had to rewatch parts to get the full experience. Nevertheless, this work pays off in not only this series but the sequel "Kai" which rounds the story of Higurashi well.
4 out of 5 people found this review helpful:
This Anime is based on a visual novel adaption from 7th expansion which first came out in comiket 62 august 10th 2002, and the squeal arcs where released up until 2006 comiket 70. There is a full English adaption out for this visual-novel from manga-gamer and as of now you can also get the first arc free on your Ipod/Iphone and Ipad via Itunes. Also you can download a free demo from manga gamer.com for the first arc. The link for the game/visual novel is provided below, if you wish to buy a full legal copy go here as well.
What an I say about this series That I do not like... If there is only one thing it's the animation done by "studio deen" and it's so obvious where it falls flat but the series as a whole with it's story telling, sense of mystery and horror elements kick all of that out the window so I can care less if the animation drops a bit here and there. Not once in the entire time that I was watching this was I bored, EVER, I genially cared about every single character that came along "even the main villain of the series".
This is one of the few series, That I can recommend to anyone that I personally and not feel weird about it.This series starts off with our male lead Keiichi Maebara who has moved to the country side with his parents in small town called Hinamizawa "usual set up for the typical harem anime and slice of life series but hell was I wrong..". The town or village that he moved to is in the rural country side so he is in for a bit of cultural shock as well, "Again I do realize this is cheap set up however it fits the series just perfectly.. thus adding more a sense of realism to the series".
Keiichi unlike most male leads adapts pretty quickly since he had a reason for wanting to leave his old home town but I will not spoil that for you. He makes friends with one of the main heroine's "Rena Ryugu", who has a fascination with cute things and quote "wants to take them home", since the town is so small everyone goes to the same school not matter what grade you are in so he is friends with mainly "females" but still it doesn't fall into the harem territory unless you want it to. Something called "Oyashirosama's curse" or the local deity there.
The so called curse has been for the past five years. It is where some one dies and some one disappears from existence, but why who is doing this and for what reason? It's not until kai the squeal series we learn who the real lead character and why the murders keep happening over and over in loop or rest in deusexmachina.. but that's no fun at all, watch the anime to see. The town it's self dipped in traditional Japanese culture all over the place, from the festival of departed souls to main head family and being ousted for what your family did even though your child, even with all of these barriers it is still so enjoyable to watch.
Hmm.. The main focus of the series "now if if you watched kai as well is the murders/mystery behind it.." but why is this happening?? What is the rational behind it?? Who is the person pulling the strings.. to kill over two-thousand people ? There is a another reason.. why does the story it's self (resets) every five to six episodes, but play out differently each time? For some this might be a bit of set off but for others it adds more to the mystery of the series. If you truly want to find out why this happening or why people descend in to madness and kill their best friends for so little reasons.. then this is up your ally.
This is in a true sense a good style of Japanese horror, even the creepy cicadas that "cry hence the name for the series". I will say this however it is not for the faint of heart or newcomers to anime, you will be lost with out a sense of some direction in Japanese customs/traditions. This is also not for the faint of heart either.. If you have a problem with gore or even "child abuse" ... yes it goes there in some arcs then avoid this series. However unlike many shows this has a an ending and doesn't leave much open. For the mystery genre more or less they established who done it, how they done it, and the most important WHY they done it. Well I could go on but there isn't any need, I will catch you all later and leave some feed-back will ya..
Age Rating 17+
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful:
Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, a great series. I don't have many bad things to say about this anme. The one thing that I might have to take down a star for is the animation. NO, it wasn't horrible, but it wasn't great at the same time. I think the creators of this anime spent more money on the music. In some ways i'm glad they spent more money on the music. The music for this series was breathtaking. Some were happy and cheerful, some were mysterious, and some just wanted to make me hide under my bed. Another high point for HIgurashi is the storyline! Yes it's confusing at first, but it amazes me on how deep it is. It comes at a more psychological angel. Yes this series has blood and gore, but some people think that's all higurashi is about.
Spoiler Alert! Click to show or hide
Take the scene where the chracter, Rena which i'll get into later, beats Ritsuko with a lead pipe. Yes, that was gore, but take a deeper look into Rena's past. Mabye there was a reason for killing this woman.
Look past the gore. Overall, the storyline was great. The last thing I hae to give it high point for is te characters. The characters of HIgurashi were built very well. Even the minor characters such a Tomitake and Ooishi were well built. First let's talk about Rena Ryuugu. They gave her an outstanding personality. She is always after things that normal people would call cute. Her catch phrase, Omochekiarii is very unique as well isn't it? She also waants to take everything home. But when you talk about the villages god, Oyashiro-sama, Rena's pesonality will change fom kawaii to just plain scary! Nexy we have our Main protagist, Keiichi. `A young boy that just moved the the village of Hinamizawa. He has the traits of a normal highschool boy! Thats what I like about Keiichi. A NORMAL character in an anime! Awesome! Keiichi is very loyal but he gets paranoid very easily... but he is always sticking up for his friends. That's what makes him an amazing character. Next we have Satoko. She is a young girl that's parents died in an "accident" when she was little. Satoko's brother Satoshi also went missing. Satoko is a bubbly girl who loves setting traps. Her laugh is annoying but hey! That's part of what makes Satoko great. Next we have little Rika-chama! The main character of the next season, Higurashi Kai. But fo now i'm reveiwing the first season. Rika is a young Miko, or Shrine Maiden. Her parents died when she was young as well so her and Satoko live together. Rika is very nice and her catch phrase is Nippah,~ and Mii~. Next up is Mion Sonozaki. Mion, a green haired teen who calls herself grandpa. She's abit of a tomboy but as you get into the season she has a girly side as well. Lastly we Shion Sonozaki. I don't particuarlly like Shion but hey, we have our own opinions. Shion, is Mion's twin sister. She is more girly than Mion. She also crushes big time on Satoko's brother Satoshi, which causes her to rampage.... Shion is a sly girl but I don't like her much. There are way more chacaters than this such as, Hanyuu, Takano, and Ire, but they show up more in the second season. Over all I give this series five out of five stars. The animation just needed a little touching up on though. In the long run, I recommend this anime to people 13 and up. Why? Because yes, it is bloody, but beautiful at the same time. Sayonara Minnasan!
3 out of 3 people found this review helpful:
Higurashi is full of complex, intruging stories, keeping you guessing through the whole series. the characters seem real with backrounds and traits of a real person. the music is very fitting, especially Main theme, often played in the backround, which has many different versions. this show is not for the weak of heart or the squemish, although the show starts out innocent, it soon turns into a total bloodshed. from Oyashiro-sama's curse and the mysterious deaths, to the importsnt history of characters like Shion Sonozaki, Rika Furude and Takano Miyo (which, as you can tell, is where my username comes from), there are no plot holes, no matter how complicated things get, they're all explained by the end of the show. i strongly suggest this anime for horror and mystery lovers.