Adapted from a novel of the same name by Hiro Arikawa, The Travelling Cat Chronicles tells the story of a young man named Satoru Miyawaki (Sota Fukushi) and his cat Nana.
Due to circumstances beyond his control, Satoru has no choice but to give his cat away. Together they go on a road trip across Japan to visit his old friends as he attempts to find a new home for her.
During their travels, Satoru’s past is revealed through flashbacks that cleverly weave the various backstories together. Nana eventually finds out why Satoru is insistent on finding her a new home even though he is clearly unwilling to be separated from her. She decides to take matters into her own paws as she is “determined to be Satoru’s cat till the [very] end”.
Fukushi does a brilliant job of playing Satoru, who faces the bad hand life dealt him with optimism and a quiet sense of dignity. The real show-stealer however, is Nana, narrated by Takahata Mitsuki. Takahata brings personality to the character with the charming cynicism of a pampered pet.
Told through both the human and animal’s perspective, this is a tender yet uplifting film that gently reminds the audience the keys to a well-lived life are positivity and acceptance.
Fans of cats, animals, and stories that tug at the heartstrings will love this bittersweet film.