Makoto Shinkai is my most favorite anime director/animator. He doesn't make the most flashiest or most dramatic animes; if anything, they're the shiniest! If Yoshitoshi ABe (Haibane Renmei, Serial Experiments Lain, TEXHNOLYZE, Niea_7 ) is a master of making the extraordinary feel mundane, Makoto Shinkai is the master of making the mundane a visual treat of light, shadow, and color. His first full feature film, The Place Promised in Our Early Days (Kumo no Mukou, Yakusoku no Basho was the Japanese title), was a flawed masterpiece in many viewers eyes, including mine. It was a film that had affected me more than any other. Shinkai's next film, Byousoku 5 Centimeter, which I had mentioned in an earlier weblog entry, is shaping up to be another visual masterpiece, while returning to his element as a short-story/visual poetry master like with his earlier work with Voices of a Distant Star (Hoshi no Koe), She and Her Cat (Kanojo to Kanojo no neko), and Other Worlds (Tooi Sekai).