Anime Club

The Place Promised In Our Early Days: What if the US Invaded Japan?

Hello everybody! For this week’s anime club we have The Place Promised in Our Early Days.


DIRECTOR: Makoto Shinkai


GENRE: Drama, anime

YEAR: 2004


The story takes place in a alternate postwar period, in 1996, where Japan is divided. Hokkaido is ruled by the “Union” while Honshu and other southern islands are under US authority. A tall tower was built on Hokkaido, which could even be seen from Tokyo. In the summer of 1996, three middle-school students make a promise that they’ll cross the border with a self-constructed plane and unravel the tower’s secret, but their project was abandoned after the girl, Sayuri Sawatari, became mysteriously ill and transferred to Tokyo. Years later on the brink of another war Hiroki Fujisawa finds out that Sayuri had been in coma since then, and he asks Takuya Shirakawa to help him finding a way to wake her up.

Alright, the first thing I want to point out is that I love The Place Promised in Our Early Days. I love the story (which takes place in an interesting alternate universe that could have been very real). The animation style is very beautiful, and it doesn’t look out of place with the story and the characters. I really enjoyed the structure of the story as it spans different periods in our characters lives, I feel that it would be weird if it only included one period. I also enjoyed the focus on childhood relationships, it helps establish the characters and make them appear more grounded.

While I love The Place Promised in Our Early Days, it is definitely far from being perfect. I did find myself at one point (when the film changes periods) that I found myself zoning out, but that was due to a little too much character development in a short amount of time. After it leaves the initial period (childhood) it gets somewhat hard to follow, as the characters try to reconnect with the friends they have lost. I do recommend watching this subtitled in English, as I have tried both subtitled and dubbed. The film sounds so much better in Japanese than it does in English.


  • Story structure.
  • Animation style.
  • Character relationships.
  • Plot


  • Can be confusing.
  • English dub actors.

SCORE: 7.7 / 10

If you have any suggestions for films/TV/Games/Music for me to review, drop me a comment! Remember: Like Media In Review @ Follow Media in Review @

Brandon Stuhr

Who am I? Just some guy who decided to start writing on the Internet years ago and now operates his own brand and site. Owner/Operator of Modern Neon Media, I make all kinds of niche content to suit my interests at the time. DIY Enthusiast, Brewmaster extraordinaire, and avid freak for geek culture. Follow on my socials for a more "on" version of me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *