Ajyal Film Festival 2023

All Films

Garden of Words (Koto no ha no niwa)

Closing Night

للترجمة العربية اضغط على

Makoto Shinkai / Feature Narrative / Japan / 2013 / 46 min / Colour / HDCAM
In Japanese / Arabic, English subtitles
Interests: Animation
Qatar Premiere


Special Screening - Focus on Anime

‘Garden of Words’ is as elegant, metaphorical and introspective as the tanka poem that frames it, with the evocative rainy season of Japan’s Kantō region providing a poetic backdrop for a chance encounter between a dreamy teenager and an emotionally wounded woman.
Whenever it rains, a 15-year-old student who dreams of becoming a shoe designer plays truant in favour of sketching in a garden, where he one day meets a mysterious woman.

Older than he, she seems no wiser, and like him is adrift in the world. Despite their difference in age, they strike up an unusual relationship, which evolves with each random rainy-day meeting in the same garden until she comes to represent “the very secrets of the world” in the mind of the youth. As the rainy season comes to a close, there are many things left unsaid – and what began as a subtle, almost abstract series of encounters eventually reaches a melodramatic finale.

With its beautiful animation (take note of a photorealistic rendition of Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden), and its supremely accurate sound design, this is a marvellous example of the stunning cinematic qualities of contemporary Japanese anime. The film won the Satoshi Kon Award for Achievement in Animation at Montreal’s Fantasia International Film Festival.

Official Film Website

About the Directors

Often referred to as the ‘new Miyazaki’, Makoto Shinkai is one of the most distinguished voices of modern anime. Born in Nagano, Japan, he studied Japanese literature at university. His ‘Voices of a Distant Star’ (2002) won a number of awards in Japan and attracted much attention. His feature films include ‘The Place Promised in Our Early Days’ (2004), ‘5 Centimetres per Second’ (2007) – which were highly successful and brought him a wider audience in Japan and worldwide – and ‘Children who Chase Lost Voices’ (2011).


Makoto Shinkai
Makoto Shinkai
Noritaka Kawaguchi
Makoto Shinkai
Daisuke Kashiwa
Sales Company
CoMix Wave Films Inc.
Production Company
CoMix Wave Films Inc.
Miyu Irino, Kana Hanazawa, Fumi Hirano

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