Drifting Home is the new anime film streaming in Netflix. It may be a fantasy film, but it still hits you right in the feels. The emotions and struggles the characters experience throughout the film felt real. The fantasy mostly lies on the setting the circumstances the characters were in. Which is why some audiences may wonder: what exactly happened in the film? Why were they in the middle of nowhere all of a sudden?
In this article, we wanted to shed light on what have happened to clear your confusion!
Noppo Is Responsible For It Unconsciously
Noppo is the mysterious kid the group had encountered when they were stranded. But as the film progresses, we got clues and answers on who and what he could be. Noppo is actually an extraordinary being connected to the apartment. He unconsciously transported the group to the middle of the ocean.
Noppo loved Kousuke and Natsume’s friendship and memories spent in his apartment. He was distraught when the two left the apartment as it was set for demolition. He was also intent on fixing Kousuke and Natsume’s ruined relationship given that he talks to the both of them throughout the film.
In the first scenes, Kousuke and Natsume’s argument worsened which caused Natsume to almost fall from the apartment building. This is the part where they got transported to the ocean. Kousuke and Natsume’s fight affected Noppo to the point that he unconsciously caused them to be stranded. So that Kousuke and Natsume will stay together and work on their relationship; and Noppo gets to be with them a little longer.
The Land of Demolished Infrastructures
There is no official name for the dimension the group transported in, but it is a different reality. It is a place for demolished and abandoned infrastructures. Their only remnants are the memories made and left behind by humans. Eventually they will succumb to the bubbles in the bottom of the sea. The bubbles are the source of decay and nothingness.
This is the place the group got transported into. It is a very unpredictable world, as it showed Japan to the group from the distance – which made everyone assume that they are finally going home. The ocean can also be perilous, and it is eventually filling up the apartment the group was staying.
It also threatened to drown the characters a lot of times, especially at the end. It only became peaceful when they stumbled upon the island where Noppo is going to reside.
Symbolical Meaning: Grief
The group’s adventure into the realm of demolished infrastructures is symbolical. It is the representation of the grieving process. This was seen throughout the film, most especially with Kousuke and Natsume as they cope with the loss of Grandpa Yasuji.
At first, the group was in denial that they were in a real place. Natsume firmly believed it to be dream at first. Kousuke seemed to be the only one who is angry, and insisted that it was not a dream. Even here, it shows that different people process pain and loss differently.
The anger is the most prominent in the film. Kousuke and Reina expressed anger about the situation many times. They would often put the blame on Natsume and Noppo. This can also be a reflection of how young they all were. When you’re young, you don’t know how to handle your emotions well and you just lash out.
The bargaining can be seen in an emotional scene between Kousuke and Natsume. Natsume finally opened up to Kousuke of her pain of losing Grandpa Yasuji. She wished she had not barged in Kousuke’s family. In that way, Kousuke would have been able to say goodbye to Grandpa Yasuji and spend more time with him.
Kousuke, on the other hand, believed that if only he had been there for Natsume, she would not have been in pain. She would not have resorted to clinging on to the abandoned apartment too many times.
The depression is most apparent to Natsume. Every time her cheerful mask falls off, she is always overthinking. She kept on saying that she could not let go of a lot of things. She puts the blame on herself of the group’s current predicament. She would isolate herself with her ruminating thoughts. It is also worth noting that she does not want to let go of Noppo. Noppo is the representation of the past Natsume is still clinging to.
Eventually, the acceptance arrived at the end. It is when Noppo used his power to return them all back home. Natsume finally came to terms with letting go of Noppo. This is the part where Natsume and Kousuke made peace with their pain, and bade goodbye.
It is interesting to note that when Natsume returned to get Noppo, the ocean became even more dangerous. Natsume almost disappeared and we almost thought she will never be seen again. The rain is relentless, and Natsume almost did not make it back home. The past is still holding her back, and if she still continues to stay in it, she will never move forward.
Noppo is not always the source of negativity. He helped Kousuke and Natsume a lot of times, and even saved them from the bubbles of decay. It indicated that pain and the past can help you move forward. Acknowledging the pain helps you with coming to terms with your grief.
The dangers they have encountered throughout the journey is the representation of navigating through grief. It is not easy, with relapses present along the way. The process can also be long depending on the person’s capacity. It takes time and courage to reach the place of peace – to reach home.
Read More: The Apartment in Drifting Home Explained