The film follows a young 17-year-old high school girl named Suzu. Suzu’s mother has passed away, and she feels sad and lost inside with each day that passes. While attending school, Suzu feels like a nobody and notices those who are more popular and successful than her. Suzu loves to write music in her spare time, but, unfortunately, she cannot sing due to a strong fear that consumes her. Being able to sing her heart out is one of her biggest desires.
Suzu discovers an online world that is getting a lot of attention, including from her classmates at school. Intrigued, she downloads and enters the world known as “U”. U is an alternate reality that allows users to create a new avatar with a new look that is created from within. No one knows who Suzu is in this world due to her new appearance. Suzu decides to give herself a new name in the world, and U allows her to start a new life. Soon, she learns that she can sing beautifully with strength and confidence in this world. The people of U name Suzu “Belle”, and Belle becomes an internet sensation, unlike anything the world had ever seen before. While the world of U is pleasing and perfect for Suzu, she soon discovers an Avatar that threatens the entire world of U. A Dragon-like creature lurks in this world- powerful and unstoppable- but who is this person in the real world?
Belle is best described as an Anime film filled with drama, fantasy and a wonderful mystery. It’s unlike anything I’ve ever seen in an Anime film before. The level of detail, colour and creativity is breathtakingly glorious. The film begins with a wonderful musical number and shows us the exciting, colourful world of U. Honestly, this film, with its opening alone, immediately hooked me.
The film’s plot is also great, and I feel many audiences (young or old) will find the themes relatable. Topics include family, love, tragedy and characters wanting to be something else or something better is touching in itself. The pacing is excellent, and it only becomes more fun and engaging with the introduction of the mysterious dragon-like figure. The film reveals at multiple times surprised me, and I found they were entirely unpredictable. Watching Suzu attempt to figure out who on Earth would have a dragon-like personality within their own heart is also a mystery that I was eager to know about.
Concerning the visuals, this is something else, and I loved the experience with this film. The detailed animation is astonishing and downright amazing. Many shots have moments that feel real and life-like. The world of U is exciting and filled with many moments that are incredible to experience. The soundtrack is worthy of high praise. The musical score is highly fitting with positive lyrics, catchy beats, and heartfelt instrumental numbers. I found myself getting goosebumps multiple times based on the score alone. It’s a soundtrack that I certainly will seek out and add to my music collection.
Overall, I had a wonderful and unexpected experience with this film. It’s tremendous and filled with drama, mystery, and a heartfelt story that I’ll never forget. The animation and visual creativity are breathtaking, and everything on screen right from the start is astonishing. I loved the mystery, which raised my excitement and investment to a top level. The soundtrack is beautiful, which only gave me goosebumps while viewing. Belle is a next level cinematic masterpiece.