The Night is Short, Walk on Girl (2017) | Director: Masaaki Yuasa | Screenwriter: Makoto Ueda | Cast: Gen Hoshino, Kana Hanazawa | 93 minutes
Some of you might have had a day where you did a lot of things and a lot of things happened, and when you finally got the chance to rest your body on your bed after everything was over, you asked yourself: “What have I been doing?”
That might be similar to how I felt when the credits for The Night is Short, Walk on Girl finished rolling. What the hell just happened? So many things happened in the movie it was whimsical and borderline overwhelming.
Still, I will try to summarize the plot for you: it’s about a girl who went around Kyoto at night. Sounds simple, but the girl did not only go around; after knowing about the existence of Fake Denki Bran — a mysterious alcohol — from a perverted old man she met in the bar, the girl had an interest in trying it, with her being an avid lover of alcohol. (She also had one bottomless pit of a stomach. She never got drunk.) The girl met the con man who made Fake Denki Bran; she then challenged the con man for a drink off on his three-story train. Once the challenge was over, she saw a pamphlet for the Evening Used Book Market. All of a sudden, the memories of her favorite book from her childhood emerged. She then charged to the said market, and there she met the God of Used Book Market. The god gave one thought-provoking lecture about books then proceeded to ask the girl for help; he wanted to cancel an auction for a collection of rare books. Not long after, a theater troupe built a stage and acted a scene of a drama, then dismantled the stage and left. Later it was revealed that the theater troupe held guerrilla theater performances.
You might think that the plot is just the girl enjoying her abnormally long night. Which is not entirely wrong, but there is one other character that helped building the story: the upperclassman. The upperclassman, while the girl was enjoying the night with her newfound mates, tried so hard (in a way) to win the girl’s heart with his mission in which he would meet the girl “by chance” as often as possible. He then tried to obtain the girl’s childhood favorite book by all means, even tried to steal a kiss from the girl on the guerrilla theater stage.
I personally found the characters in The Night is Short, Walk on Girl quirky and likable. Each has their own strong points and flaws, unique and gimmicky in a way that it makes them quirky. (I can assure you that they are not “quirky” quirky.) The girl was passionate and these things happen probably because of her carefree nature. From all characters, I think the upperclassman is the most relatable one. He had his insecurities that lead him to make bad decisions and end up in unfavorable situations. Although I dislike him for his stalkery behavior, I pitied (and could relate to) him at some points because of his insecurities.
In spite of having a lot of things happened, the movie didn’t fail to keep me glued to my seat. It was tight, fast-paced, and compelling enough to make me stay still and watch the movie until the very end. The romance was not the sweet-as-honey type; it was sweet because it was described as an ideal, happy ending.
The animation was also beautiful; it played with a lot of colors and beautifully stylistic. I never felt any scene’s animation was out of sync or didn’t go well with the other scenes. Before I forget to mention, the music they used to build the atmosphere was perfectly placed. It was never overwhelming or not enough; just right.
All in all, The Night is Short, Walk on Girl is a great movie for you to watch during the nights you feel underwhelmed. It was a wild, fun ride, with its each second being enjoyable. Romance might not be its strongest point, but how they enjoy the Kyoto nightlife to the fullest is to die for.
Writer: Dihan Puspa
Editor: Della Meydi