Hal (2013)

Hal

This film is a combination of ‘Her’ and the Black Mirror episode ‘Be Right Back’ (Coincidentally, all three of these were released in 2013), wrapped together by beautiful and traditional Japanese animation. It’s quirky, charming, cute and has a pretty good story.

The film is short at exactly 1 hour, including credits, and I believe that works to it’s advantage as instead of meandering around the subject matter, the film just pulls you right into it, which is impressive as it doesn’t feel like anything is being left out, you get the full story of a bereaved woman and this robot that has been designed to look and sound exactly like her deceased boyfriend.

Emotions are strewn throughout the film and consistently keep it grounded to the main story, even the little side plot that is introduced gets wrapped up at the end. So no time is really wasted which while good also makes it feel kind of manufactured because throughout the film there is this warmth running throughout and then once you reach the ending, where all side characters come into play, it feels too convenient.

The film is enjoyable but it leaves nothing left for the imagination and is too on the nose, as previously stated, throughout the film it feels genuine, but then the need to introduce a side character, which then connects to the ending of the film just feels very artificial and soured me on the film.

It’s a charming watch, but don’t expect to be blown away and you won’t be disappointed.

6/10

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