Here’s all that you should know in order to truly feel the essence of this time-traveling, body-switching movie.
Several fragments of a comet fall through the sky. Most of them won’t meet Earth, but one breaks off and falls directly towards the town of Itomori. Soon, all will die. The parents, the children, the teachers, the politicians, the businessmen will all be no more. And Mitsuha Miyamizu will be one of them.
During these opening moments of Your Name (Kimi no Na wa), we don’t feel like Mitsuha is going to die. All we know is that Mitsuha and Taki Tachibana, despite unknown to each other and being way too far from one another, have somehow bonded over this celestial event that has captivated Japan. Together, they recite these opening lines:
“Once in a while when I wake up, I find myself crying. The dream I must have had I can never recall. But the sensation that I’ve lost something lingers for a long time after I wake up. I’m always searching for something, for someone. This feeling has possessed me I think from that day when the stars came falling. It was almost as if a scene from a dream. Nothing more, nothing less than a beautiful view.”
Your Name Comets
All of a sudden, Your Name opens with a cryptic, ambiguous scene—a trend that is meant to remain here. Despite its charm, success, and visceral power, Your Name has a very confusing and mysterious story that’s difficult to comprehend, that has left many thinking if it’s a mess of a movie that doesn’t work.
There are a HUGE amount of things that need explanation in this convoluted story of this movie. But before we dive deep into the explanation of the plot of Your Name, let’s remember that opening quote from Mitsuha and Taki and what it represents. As it is only the understanding of the movie’s intentions that will help shape how we make sense of its complicated parts.
What is Your Name/Kimi No Na Wa About?
Your Name has a narrative that is meant to wrap you up in its mind-trapping elements. Originally, you want to pick apart every story development and plot hole to check the rigidity of the story’s foundation. If a moment goes out of the movie’s logical structure? It strikes something into your brain. You concentrate on plot details, like how the Red String of Fate functions, or how Mitsuha’s and Taki’s realities could possibly collide when they live three years apart, or how drinking kuchikamizake connects the two teenagers.
Ultimately, you could become so enraptured with what all those elements represent on a rational level that we forget the emotional core.
And the main insight into what Your Name is related to? That quote from the beginning of the movie. Right off the bat, we’re introduced to two people who feel connected to a third person…but don’t know who that person is. There’s an emptiness both Taki and Mitsuha feel. They know something is missing, they don’t feel complete. They are, in that quote, reciting their wish to find their better half.
To Find Love
Mitsuha and Taki’s comments on what they feel when those comets fall through the sky isn’t specific, or logical, or definite—it’s ambiguous, and cryptic, and enigmatic. Love isn’t something meant to be explained, but a feeling. And Your Name treats that feeling as an ethereal one. Love is not enforced by space or time, but instead by the individuals who are inextricably together no matter where they are.
We believe this is an important mindset to hold moving further into a plot explanation of the movie. Because while all of the confusing plot elements of Your Name can be explained, we think they seem more powerful and gain more meaning when we can relate those explanations to Mitsuha and Taki’s desire to find love—a feeling we can all empathize with.
A Short Summary of Your Name/Kimi No Na Wa
A lot of confusion people have with Your Name is because of its structure. As Mitsuha exists three years behind Taki, and because the movie ambiguously jumps between those time periods, the story doesn’t move in chronological order. Many times it can feel like Your Name is leaving out information on purpose to trip you up.
But we assure you, all of the details are there. And the movie’s plot can be much better understood if we lay out all of its main components sequentially.
The rest of the article will go into much more detail on each part of the timeline.
Your Name Movie Timeline
1. The First Comet Strikes
Hundreds of years ago, a comet collided with Earth and formed the lake that Itomori now rests upon.
2. Mitsuha’s Mother Dies
After the demise of Mitsuha and Yotsuha’s mother, their father becomes detached from them and engrossed with politics. Their grandmother parents and nurtures them.
3. Mitsuha Performs the Kuchikamizake Ritual
Mitsuha and Yotsuha perform a ritual and make kuchikamizake, which they offer to their god at a shrine. She wants to be a handsome Tokyo boy.
4. Mitsuha’s Body Switch
Mitsuha randomly wakes up as Taki, who lives three years ahead of time. This switch continues on random days for a number of weeks.
5. Mitsuha Finds Taki
Mitsuha tracks Taki’s location in Tokyo. Before being pushed out of the train, she manages to throw her red yarn bracelet to him.
6. The Comet Strikes Again
A part of another passing comet meets Itomori. Taki watches from afar, while Mitsuha is killed.
7. Taki’s Body Switch
Taki now randomly wakes up in Mitsuha’s body in another timeline three years before she dies.
8. Taki Learns About Itomori
Taki decides to search for Mitsuha. He finds out that she was from Itomori, which was ruined by the comet three years earlier.
9. Taki Visits the Shrine
Taki visits the shrine he remembers from his time in Mitsuha’s body. He drinks the kuchikamizake. He then travels back in time and wakes up in Mitsuha’s body on the day the comet is set to strike Itomori.
10. Taki Tries to Save Mitsuha
Taki takes help from Mitsuha’s friends to get everyone out of Itomori before the comet strikes.
11. Taki and Mitsuha Meet
At “tasogare-doki”, a time of day when different worlds blur together, Taki and Mitsuha convert back to their bodies and meet at the shrine. Taki gives Mitsuha her red yarn bracelet back, developing their connection.
12. Mitsuha Saves Itomori
Mitsuha goes back to Itomori and saves almost everybody.
13. Taki and Mitsuha Forget
Because Mitsuha never lost his life, she and Taki now exist in present day. But because Taki gave Mitsuha back her red yarn, they don’t remember one another.
14. Years Pass
As the years pass, both Taki and Mitsuha can’t avoid the feeling that something (or someone) is missing from their lives.
15. Taki and Mitsuha Find Each Other
Taki and Mitsuha strike one another on the train. They feel connected and follow each other. Finally, they meet, and ibtroduce themselves.
Kimi No Na Wa / Your Name Ending Explained
Your Name ending shows a leap of 8 years after the comet strike. Meaning, 8 years have passed for Mitsuha since she’s met Taki. 5 years have gone for Taki since he’s last met Mitsuha. Mitsuha has passed out from school and has eventually found a job in Tokyo. Taki too has graduated and is looking for work. These are the beginning scenes of Kimi No Na Wa.
Overall the years, Taki and Mitsuha have this desire that they are looking for something or someone. Though they can’t recall any of their switch moments, they sense a connection. This is shown by the “I love you” that Taki writes on Mitsuha’s hands. In their final moment together, Taki confesses his feelings to Mitsuha and not just his name. Also, Mitsuha wears the thread which Taki has kept for 3 years and during their switches.
The presence of the thread and their mutual feeling for one another leaves them in a state of a subliminal search for each other. We see Taki and Mitsuha crossing each other through several moments in Tokyo. Taki even goes to a diner where Teshi and Sayaka are eating. Seems like the two of them are now together and live in Tokyo. Taki has blur memories of their names but the two leave the diner. Okudera comes to meet Taki. She’s now married. The two of them talk and mention that they don’t have many memories from the day they went to Itomori. She wishes him good luck and leaves.
Taki and Mitsuha finally find each other from their respective trains. They keep running here and there looking for each other and finally find one another. On the stairs, they continue to walk without speaking. After all, both are finding it odd to randomly talk to a stranger they’ve never been with. The Your Name ending scene sees Taki breaking the ice by asking Mitsuha if they’ve met before. She replies by agreeing to the same thought. Their connection starts again, they shed a tear, they ask for each other’s names – “Kimi no na (namae) wa?” and the film comes to an end.
Do Taki and Mitsuha Appear in Weathering With You?
Caution! Don’t read further if you want to refrain from any spoilers for ‘Weathering With You’
So, do they appear? Yes, they do. Taki Tachibana and Mitsuha Miyamizu have their roles in Makoto Shinkai’s newest film, ‘ Weathering with You‘ (2020).
If that’s all you are interested in knowing, I suggest you turn away from this post. But, if you want to increase your blocks of knowledge, do read further.
You might be confused as to why they make cameo appearances in this film. When you see them, it is not a span of three seconds of them passing by, in fact, they actually have semi-essential roles to the story.
But your question might be: In what capacity are they in this film?
Teshi and Sayaka make a short appearance, just sufficient for them to make a side comment, and then they wave goodbye to the screen. They are in similar attires to the ones they are wearing at the end of ‘Your Name’ when they are in the coffee shop.
Mitsuha has a role related to an object that Hodaka gets for Hina. With some aid from Nagi-senpai, he makes a decision to buy Hina a ring for her birthday, leading him to a store that Mitsuha is working at. She helps him in the purchase of the ring, and we get to see her name tag that says “Miyamizu” clear as day. The red cord bracelet that she gave Taki is still on her wrist.
Taki has a better-glorified cameo. When they start taking work for the new “Sunshine girl business”, one of their clients is Taki’s grandmother. They go to the Tachibana household, where we see Taki having a conversation with the main characters. Not only does he provide some insight to Hodaka, but more essentially, he is wearing a very peculiar shirt.
The collar of the shirt has the same shade of green that his school uniform has in ‘Your Name’, indicating towards the fact that Taki might still be a student when ‘Weathering With You’ takes place.
For viewers eager to watch this movie, here’s something that might trigger some dopamine. A message in the movie has confirmed that ‘Weathering With You’ arrives in 2021.