Your Lie in April

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54603 cr points
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38 / M / SF
Posted 12/17/14 , edited 12/17/14
by Koda89

What if you were a child prodigy unmatched by your peers, only to suddenly lose your talent? For Your Lie in April's protagonist, Kousei Arima, this isn't a hypothetical question, it is his reality. Kousei is a prodigal son whose mother was a talented, but terminally ill, piano player. Seeing in Kousei great potential as a pianist, and knowing her days were limited, she began a strict training regimen with Kousei that made him better than everyone around him, but it was never good enough for her. For you see, she would routinely beat Kousei with her cane for even the smallest mistake he made. Eventually she succumbs to her illness, but instead of mourning her recent death like people normally would do, Kousei plays in a piano competition. It is during his performance in this competition that he has a nervous breakdown and claims that he can't hear his own piano playing.

Fast forward two years later and Kousei's world is turned upside down by an energetic violinist named Kaori Miyazono. Kaori knows about Kousei's fall from grace and wants to help him return to playing the piano. While her primary goal is to eventually get Kousei to play in solo competitions, she eases him back into music competitions by making him her accompanist during a violin competition.

Despite a bit of a rocky performance during her violin competition, Kaori is able to successfully convince Kousei to enter a solo piano competition. It is during this competition that we see that Kousei himself was a great influence on those he often competed against prior to his meltdown. This is especially true for two pianists in particular; Takeshi Aiza, who made it his personal goal to surpass Kousei no matter what cost, and Emi Igawa, who decided to become a pianist in the first place after seeing Kousei perform when the two of them were children. But despite all that, there is one thing Kousei still can't shake, the specter of his abusive mother.

First things first, Your Lie in April is an absolutely beautiful series visually. It may not be detailed to an insane degree or anything like that, but when the characters are performing on stage, it is a sight to behold, especially when they get into a zone. Needless to say the gorgeous visuals are topped by the show's soundtrack, which features several amazingly executed renditions of famous classical pieces from composers such as Chopin. I was especially stunned by the music that played during performances from Aiza, Emi, and Kousei. This is definitely a series that needs to be heard.

Next I just have to talk about the characters. I love several of the members of Your Lie in April's cast, but the two that really stand out to me are Kaori and Emi. The way these two ladies conduct themselves is something that needs to be seen. Kaori's energetic and free-spirited nature makes her a joy to be around, and I could practically feel the heat from Emi's fiery passion through my TV screen. That being said, not all the characters are great or likeable. Chief among them is Kousei's mother. It is extremely rare for me to legitimately hate a fictional character, but I hate his mother. I loathe her with every fiber of my being, primarily because of how she would beat Kousei. And I'm not even talking like spanking and stuff, she would often leave him bloodied and bruised. She more or less flat out abused him and it is a wonder why he was never taken away from her.

Another thing that should be pointed out is that Your Lie in April has a slight tendency to repeat specific plot details again and again, such as Kousei's life under the tyranny of his mother, or his inability to hear his piano playing. However, despite this the show is able to bring it together into great payoffs time and again. So if you ever feel like the show is getting repetitive, please hold out for just a bit longer before quitting on the series.

Ultimately, Your Lie in April is a beautiful show, both visually and musically. I'm sure the manga is great in and of itself, but I just can't imagine experiencing Your Lie in April in a static and soundless way. This has the makings of being something truly special, and I can't wait to see what happens. If you would like to see if Your Lie in April is your kind of show, please check it out here on Crunchyroll.
240 cr points
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26 / F
Posted 12/26/14 , edited 12/27/14
TOO MANY SPOILERS ;__; i read this from the link in my email and i didn't know they performed together. i thought it was just a small review. sad times... after reading this review i watched episode 1 and they still haven't performed together! how far have i been spoiled?
35963 cr points
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31 / M / Oklahoma City, OK
Posted 12/27/14 , edited 12/27/14

Aliyah-chan wrote:

TOO MANY SPOILERS ;__; i read this from the link in my email and i didn't know they performed together. i thought it was just a small review. sad times... after reading this review i watched episode 1 and they still haven't performed together! how far have i been spoiled?

Sorry for the slight spoilers(in my defense, they are shown playing together right in the OP ), but there just isn't much to talk about story wise until Kousei starts playing again, which isn't until episode 4. The first 3 episodes essentially are just for setting up the character traits of the main cast with very little story progression.

Also, this is a two-cour show, so the first cour as a whole is really nothing more than set up. I'm not even sure we've reached the real meat of the story yet and we are 11 episodes into the show so far.
5487 cr points
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84 / M
Posted 12/29/14 , edited 12/30/14
After a long lapse away from anime, getting back into it with this one was a special treat on several levels. It hit me on a personal level as I was a child prodigy, though my mother was not as bad as Kousei's. A 'Hollywood mother' who's planned out your life on her terms is no blessing, however.

From the opening ep, the colouration and style overwhelmed me; then there's the playing, the sound and also the look, and I don't care how it's done.

I'm up to ep 10 (started watching on AnimeLab before I came here) and oh, that was painful. as it stirred old memories.

AS far as I'm concerned, Your Lie in April is as good as it gets.
8016 cr points
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52 / M / pennsyvnia
Posted 12/31/14 , edited 1/1/15
spoil alert is that violin girl dieing or something
2099 cr points
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19 / M / California, USA
Posted 1/4/15 , edited 1/5/15
When things go from manga to anime, it often isn't as strong. But that's only my opinion. They bring out parts of the story and shorten it.
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