I'm finally getting back into my backlog of overdue anime. My first move was to watch the final episodes of Ef-A Tale of Memories.
What is it?
It's kind of hard to pinpoint a genre. If I had to name it, I would call it a fantasy-drama romance with some philosophical tendencies. The story chronicles two separate stories. One about a young manga writer/high-school student who is caught in a love triangle with a childhood friend with a onii-chan complex and a qwirky delinquant with some deep-seeded issues. The second story revolves around a high-school student who falls for a girl that can't remember anything that happened 12 hours ago, and thus, kind of makes their coming together somewhat of a challenge. It kind of reminded of the premise of the mediocre romantic comedy 50 First Dates starring Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, except it wasn't funny. Oh wait...they are the same!
What's good about it?
My intro is a little misleading in that the story is not as formulaic as I make it seem. The characters are relatively deep and the plot is pretty engaging. The ending(last third of the series or so), so often a weak-point in anime, is the strength of this title. Despite it being a tad predictable, it was mostly satisfying, which is what's most important. Besides that, animation is great, the shooting is creative and the character designs are pleasant.
What's bad about it?
This anime isn't very original. It's a style very reminiscent of other series, like AIR. The philosophical parts, though short, were boring.
If you can dismiss the fact that Ef isn't reinventing the wheel, it's viewing experience is generally quite enjoyable. It being somewhat forgettable doesn't mean you should skip over it. It remains a well-produced product that keeps you engaged until the end.