I LOVED the film #suzume. Privileged to attend a private screening, every person in the fell in love with director Makoto Shinkai. He said so many wise and endearing things in his hour on stage. But it was when he made this statement that I became enraptured: “The most important jobs, people shouldn’t see.”
Shinkai was inspired to create this film after the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. What an incredibly creative expression and meaningful piece of work to ensure that people wouldn’t forget the disaster and its impact on the country.
As we listened to Shinkai speak at the Ted Mann Theater, his whimsy, thoughtfulness and compassion washed over us in waves. Of course, the fact that he brought the adorable three-legged stool on stage made us all “awww” in unison!
The power (and importance) of creativity
And then he remembered wondering, “Is creating animation really a necessity at times like this?” referring to the 2011 earthquake. In response to Shinkai’s self-reflection, the director created this gorgeous film. Now I admit, I’m not really an animé fan. But this film was a massive success and I understand why; it landed as the fourth-highest-grossing anime film of all time! That’s because in addition to the gorgeous animation, there are a number of impactful messages embedded in the film.
The most important jobs, people shouldn’t see.
Samuel Johnson once said, “The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good.” Isn’t this so true? Often it’s when we do our best work, that no one’s around. “Dude, no one saw that high jump?!” Or we do something good for someone and there’s no witness in sight. Do we look around, seeing if anyone noticed our good deed? Or do we remember that the most important jobs, people may not see?
Now that I’ve had the honor of hearing Shinkai share, I must go back and watch the film again. Undoubtedly, his voice is going to come right through that little chair!
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