Makoto Shinkai’s new blockbuster anime, Suzume No Tojimari, released in Japan on November 11, 2022. Fans living outside of Japan will have to wait until the international release in early 2023. However, since Japan Bound is on the ground we are here to give you our full rundown of the plot (if you want to spoil the film for yourself for some reason). If you don’t want to completely spoil the film, but want to learn more about it, check out our Suzume No Tojimari Review.
Table of Contents:
- Release Date
- Full Plot Overview
Suzume no Tojimari Release Date
Suzume no Tojimari (Suzume’s Door Locking) premiered in Japan on November 11th, 2022. There isn’t an official international release date yet, but it is scheduled for early 2023.
Suzume No Tojimari is set in many areas of Japan. The film starts in the countryside of Kyushu. Later, the protagonist makes her way to Ehime prefecture, Kobe City in Hyougo prefecture, Tokyo, and then finally Miyagi prefecture.
Suzume no Tojimari Full Plot Overview
Warning: MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD…obviously. I will try my best to write out the full plot of the film to the best of my memory.
The First Door
Suzume a high school second year has a weird dream where she sees a scene from her childhood, she’s in a snow-filled area with no one else around. She sees herself as a small child and she is hugging a chair and is all alone.
She wakes up and bikes to school where she passes a young man in his early twenties.
She stares at him because she finds him good looking and she feels like she’s seen him before. They pass each other and he stops her and asks her if she’s seen a door nearby. Of course, she doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Then he says “Is there an abandoned building or area nearby?” and she says there is an abandoned area around an old onsen nearby. He thanks her and walks away.
She bikes to school but stops and for some reason is compelled to go find him. She goes to the area she directed him to, but she doesn’t find him there. In the ruins of the old community, she enters what’s left of an old onsen. There is water pooled on the ground and she sees a door and doorframe in the middle of the onsen ruins.
It looks completely out of place, so she walks toward it and opens the door. On the other side, she sees a celestial star-filled night sky and a grassy hill. She walks through it but she ends up on the other side of the door frame in the onsen. It seems like she can see the other side of the door, but can’t walk into that world.
On the floor, she nearly trips over a weird stone statue. She picks it up and it looks like an ancient statue of a cat. Suddenly, the statue turns into a drenched white cat. Startled, she lets go and the cat runs away.
Freaked out, she runs away and goes to school, leaving the door open.
She gets back to school and her friends tease her for being late. During lunchtime, she looks out the classroom window and sees smoke in the mountains, she points it out to her friends saying there might be a fire. Her friends look out, but say they don’t see anything.
Suddenly all the students’ cellphones blare a siren, warning of an earthquake. It’s a common tone all Japanese are familiar with.
The earthquake isn’t very strong and passes by. Meanwhile, Suzume looks out the window again and the smoke has turned into a large pillar of smoke, taking the shape of a cylindrical tube. She stares at it in horror, but her friends say they still don’t see anything.
She frantically hurries back to the abandoned area and the smoke is getting larger and larger in the sky.
By the time she gets to the onsen, the smoke has taken the shape of a monster akin to the Stranger Things spider monster.
There, she sees that the red/black smoke is pouring out of the door she left open and the man she passed by that morning is trying his best to close it. The force is so strong that he’s thrown onto his back. Suzume goes to help him up and he tells her to run away, as it’s too dangerous.
The man runs to the door and tries to close it again. Instead of running away, Suzume throws herself against the door. The man chants some phrases/incantation and the key he wears around his neck starts to glow. Finally, the two shut the door and a magical lock appears. The man shoves his key into the lock and turns it. The smoke disappears and things are normal again.
The man’s arm is bleeding, as it seems he was cut during the commotion. Suzume takes him to her home and bandages him up, saying it’d be very hard to explain what happened at a hospital.
They introduce themselves and he explains that it’s his job to travel japan and find those turns and ‘return them’, or else the world will end. He says the doors appear in places that people have abandoned. It’s a job that’s been passed down in his family so he has no choice but to do it. Suddenly a cute white cat appears at Suzume’s window. She brings it food and water. Then, suddenly, it speaks and tells Suzume that it loves her. The cat looks at the man, Sota and says he’s in their way.
The cat, which they call “Daijin” (minister) in the rest of the film, turns Sota into Suzume’s childhood baby chair. As the chair, Sota can talk as normal and move the chair’s legs as if there were his own.
The cat runs away and the two chase it all the way onto a boat that is headed for Ehime. During the chase, people see a chair moving on its own chasing a runaway cat and the images blow up on social media. On the boat, the cat says he will open more and more gates around Japan and then jumps off the ferry onto a faster smaller boat.
Since they can’t chase him anymore, they decide to get something to eat on the boat. Suzume’s aunty (her guardian) asks where she is and Suzume lies saying she’s staying at a friend’s house for the night and not to worry. Her aunty is angry and tells her to come home asap.
On the boat, Suzume enjoys a cheap meal while Sota watches, as he can’t eat and doesn’t get hungry while he’s in chair form.
The Second Door
In the morning, Suzume looks at her phone and sees that photos of the cat have blown up on social media and they can use them to track where the cat is.
Sota tells Suzume to get on the next ferry home and that he can handle the rest on his own. Suzume declines and says people will get suspicious it’ll cause trouble if there is a walking chair moving around in public. He reluctantly agrees and accepts Suzume’s help.
The two start walking up a road along a mountain and Suzume hears a motorbike approaching from behind. She warns Sota and she picks him up as not to arouse suspicion. The motor bike seems to be delivering crates of oranges, and passes them by without noticing them. Suddenly, one of the crates of oranges comes lose and falls off the bike. The oranges roll down the mountain toward Suzume and Sota. Thinking fast, Sota jumps and grabs a plastic mesh lying on the ground and spreads it across the road. Suzume grabs the other end and the oranges fall smoothly into the mesh.
The driver, Chika Amabe, is a high school girl about the same age as Suzume. She thanks Suzume and asks why she’s here. Suzume says she’s chasing a runaway cat and she came from Kyushu. Surprised, Chika wants to know more. However, in the distance Sota sees the distinct smoke clouds of the Mimizu rising on a distant mountain.
Suzume abruptly ends the conversation and says she needs to go. She starts running toward the smoke. Realizing it’s way too far Sota says they’re never going to make it on foot. Suzume says she knows that but she has to try.
Chika comes speeding behind them on her bike and says she doesn’t understand what Suzume is doing here but knows she’s in hurry and will take her wherever she needs to go. Suzume points Chika in the direction of the smoke and when they arrive in the general area there are lots of road closure signs along a crumbling street. Do not enter signs line the road as well.
Suzume thanks Chika and before Chika can ask what they’re doing here, Suzume runs off with Sota in her hands.
Sota jumps and runs down the mountain toward an abandoned school building. Sota sees the Mimizu is come out of the abandoned school and tries his best to push the sliding door closed.
The wind blows his magic key necklace off his neck (well, his chair neck), and Sota realizes he can’t seal the doors on his own in his current body.
Suzume catches up and picks up the key on the floor. Sota says she needs to be the one to seal this door. He tells her to close her eyes and she’ll be able to hear and see the people who used to live here. She’ll be able to see their memories.
Suzume doesn’t fully understand, but she does as he asks and she closes her eyes. She starts to see a hazy image of students coming to the school and entering the door she is trying to shut. She hears them talking. The key starts glowing and finally, Sota and her are able to shut the door. The magic lock appears and she shoves the key into the lock and turns it.
The door is sealed and the two celebrate.
Suddenly, the cat appears and starts to admire Suzume’s efforts. Sota yells at the cat and asks him to turn him back into his normal body. Before the two can chase after the cat, Chika catches up to them, so Sota pretends to be a normal chair again and the cat runs off.
Chika offers Suzume a place to stay for the night and Suzume agrees.
It turns out Chika’s family owns a ryokan and they let Suzume stay in Chika’s room as a thank-you for saving the oranges and in exchange for helping out with the chores.
In her room, Suzume is on the phone with her aunt who is very angry and Suzume makes up some bad excuse about why she is in Ehime prefecture. She says she went on a mini-vacation on her own. Tamaki suspects she’s with a boy and asks Suzume if she’s really alone. Suzume says she’s alone and not to worry and she’ll be home soon! Tamaki is angry but Suzume ends the phone call abruptly.
She tells Sota she knows she’ll have hell to pay when she gets back but can’t worry about that right now. Chika calls Suzume telling her dinner is ready and she asks Sota if he’ll be ok on his own. He says he doesn’t get hungry in this body so she should go enjoy herself.
After dinner Chika and Suzume clean the onsen and Chika asks Suzume how old she is. Chika says she’s a 2nd year in highschool and Suzume says she’s the same! The two bond and Chika asks if she has a boyfriend to which Suzume denies.
Before bed the two chat more and Chika asks Suzume what she’s really doing all this way from her home. Suzume doesn’t know how to respond and Chika says it’s ok if it’s something she can’t talk about. She says she was thankful that Suzume came along. She hadn’t been to her old high school in awhile and seeing it again made her really nostalgic and remember all the good memories she had in that place. She says that whatever it is, it seems like it’s something important that Suzume has to do no matter what and she can relate to that.
Suzume is happy that Chika understands her and the two go to bed.
The Third Door
In the morning, Suzume sees on her phone that the cat has made it all the way to Kobe. She tries to wake up Sota, but he doesn’t move or say anything. Suzume tries to take the chance to kiss him, but then stops and wonders where his mouth even is on the chair. Suddenly, Sota wakes up and Suzume tells him the cat is in Kobe and they have to get going.
She thanks Chika and her family for all they’ve done and the two promise to keep in touch. Suzume and Sota try hitchhiking to get to Kobe but no one stops for them. A sudden downpour occurs and the two take refuge under a bus stop. The next bus won’t come for a long time so the two think about what they should do. At that moment, a good samaritan, Rumi Ninomiya, notices Suzume alone and stops her car. She tells Suzume to hop in, as a bus won’t be coming for a while. Suzume says she’s headed for Kobe and luckily the woman is going the same way.
In the back of the car are the woman’s two young children who eye Suzume’s bag and wonder why there’s a small chair in it.
On the way, they stop at McDonald’s for a snack and the two kids use Sota as a table and he shakes a bit when they put their food on him.
Rumi checks her phone and says she’s in trouble because her babysitter cancelled last minute and she has to work in a couple hours. She wonders where she can find a babysitter without any notice, and then looks at Suzume.
Next, we see Suzume getting worn out trying to keep the kids entertained. Meanwhile, Rumi is seen working in the floor below where she runs a Snack Bar for locals.
Seeing that Suzume is out of her element, Sota springs into action and starts acting like a robot chair. Suzume says it’s a robot toy chair and the kids take turns riding on Sota as he walks around the room. Suzume said she wants a turn next and Sota says that’s not allowed. The kids see that the chair can talk and to cover it up Suzume says it’s an advanced AI chair.
After the kids fall asleep, Suzume goes downstairs and Rumi asks for Suzume’s help as the bar is really busy. Suzume washes dishes and helps around the bar. After a while, she notices a cat at one of the booths and sees that it’s the Daijin. Suzume asks the hostess about it and the hostess acts as though he doesn’t see the cat at all. The cat sees Suzume and exits out the front door.
Suzume says she needs to step out for a minute and runs after the cat. She yells for Sota who jumps out the second-floor window. The two chase after the cat and see the familiar Mimizu smoke rising from an abandoned amusement park in the mountains.
Once they arrive, they see the source of the Mimizu is a door on one of the carts on an old ferris wheel. Sota says he’ll go after the cat while Suzume seals the door.
Suzume makes for the ferris wheel cart and starts pushing the door closed.
Meanwhile, Sota chases the cat and the two land near the amusement park generators. The cat does some magic and the generator powers up, causing the park to come to life. However, the ferris wheel also starts turning and Suzume struggles to stay on the outside of the cart as it rises into the air. She has to make sure not to fall off while pushing the door closed.
She closes her eyes and sees the memories of all the families and people that enjoyed the park and rode the ferris wheel. Then, she takes a step into the cart and she sees the scene she saw the first time she opened a door: a celestial night sky, a lush green hill, and what appears to be her as a child with her deceased mother. In a trance, she steps closer to the scene and calls out to her mother.
Sota finally catches up with the cat and has the cat pinned on the ground. At that moment, he sees that Suzume is in trouble. Suzume thinks she’s walking into a lush field, when in reality she has stepped into the ferris wheel cart and taking a step further will cause her to fall out of the cart on the other side.
Sota leaves the cat and runs toward the ferris wheel.
Suzume takes another step but her trance is broken when Sota calls out to her, he reaches out his chair leg toward her and she grabs it. He pulls her out of the cart and the two push the door closed. Suzume locks it and the two relax. The cat runs off again and the two of them decide to sit in the ferris wheel cart until it comes back down to the ground.
Suzume tells Sota what she saw on the other side.
When they get back to the snack bar, Rumi comes out and hugs Suzume saying she shouldn’t go out alone at this time of night.
Rumi, Suzume, and the hostess have dinner together. Suzume feels bad that Sota can’t eat, so she gets off the booth and sits on him. Rumi and the hostess laugh saying she looks like a cute child.
Before bed, Suzume sees she has 50 messages from Tamaki. She tells Tamaki that she’s in Kobe and not to worry. Tamaki decides she has to track Suzume down and bring her back on her own.
That night, Suzume lies down on the booth for bed and Sota tells her that he’s a 4th-year university student who wants to become a teacher. However, he missed the teacher’s exam because of the situation they were in. Suzume is surprised and the two chat until they both fall asleep. When Sota falls asleep that night, we see that his soul is falling further and further away from the real-world, likely because of what the cat has done to his body. When he falls asleep it’s like he sinks into a different world and he sits on a deserted beach on Suzume’s chair.
The next day, Rumi drops Suzume off at the train station. Suzume and Sota take the bullet train back to Tokyo, as Sota says he has books in his apartment he needs to see.
The Fourth Door
On the train, Suzume falls asleep and gets angry at Sota for not waking her up when they passed Mt.Fuji. She really wanted to see it.
When they get back to Tokyo, Sota guides her to his apartment in Ochanomizu. His place is above a Lawson convenience store. Beforehand, Sota called his landlady and said Suzume would be coming by to get his key. Suzume goes into the store and asks to see the landlady who gives her a key to Sota’s apartment, under the ruse that she is Sota’s sister.
In his apartment, Sota shows Suzume a book that explains the history of the Mimizu and the sealing stones that are used to seal the Mimizu away. The Mimizu are entities that bring calamity to the earth, such as earthquakes.
He said there is one stone in Kyushu (her hometown) and one in Tokyo. He explains that his family has always been tasked with sealing away the Mimizu when they appear.
After Sota is done explaining they think of their next plan of action when there is a knock at the door.
It is Sota’s friend, Serizawa. He appears to have a key to the apartment and barges in. Sota pretends to be a chair again and Suzume says she is Sota’s cousin. Serizawa says he’s looking for Sota and to contact him when Sota returns. Then, the earthquake warning blares on Serizawa and Suzume’s smartphone. Suzume looks outside and sees the Mimizu is incredibly close.
She grabs Sota and runs out of the apartment, leaving Serizawa behind.
The two of them run across a busy highway and see train tracks blow them. They see that the source is underground, below the train tracks. Sota notices that the Mimizu is different this time, more powerful somehow. By this time, the Mimizu has already grown very large, far larger than the ones they’ve encountered so far.
And because the source seems to be underground, it’ll be hard to find the door and close it in time. In desperation, Sota jumps into the Mimizu, leaving Suzume behind. Suzume runs to the other side of the busy highway and without hesitation she jumps off the bridge.
To the onlookers who can’t see the Mimizu, it appears as if she just jumped off a bridge to commit suicide. But at the last second, Sota reaches his chair leg out to her and she grabs it, causing her to soar high into the sky with him.
At one point, she let’s go of his hand to try to run to the center of the Mimizu, but she begins to fall. Sota jumps off and catches her. He tells her that she can’t ride or touch the Mimizu on her own and she needs to hold onto him or she’ll fall out of the sky.
Meanwhile, the Mimizu continues to grow larger into a huge spiral disc covering all of Tokyo. Then, the cat appears in the sky and tells them if the Mimizu falls, lots of people will die.
Suzume and Sota are at a loss for what to do, when the cat does something to Sota and his chair body begins to freeze over and get covered in ice.
Sota realizes he’s about to die and says he didn’t think this is where it would end, after he just met Suzume, he didn’t think his life would end here. With those as his final words, the chair becomes completely frozen in ice.
Suzume yells for Sota and the cat says there is no need to cry, as that is not Sota anymore, it has become the sealing stone that can seal this Mimizu away.
Suzume does not want to believe it, thinking that Sota will die if she uses him as the sealing stone.
The cat warns Suzume again that many people will die unless she uses it. The cat says again that she shouldn’t think of it as a person anymore. Wanting to save the millions of Tokyo residents, Suzume grabs Sota and jumps toward the center of the Mimizu. She slams Sota into it and seals the Mimizu away.
The impact causes her to pass out and the cat catches her and transforms its body into a soft cushion, protecting Suzume from the fall. Suzume’s clothes are torn and her shoes are gone, but she is otherwise unharmed.
When Suzume wakes she is underground in a strange cave-like area with shallow water. In that area, she sees a shrine-like gate. On the other side of the gate, she sees Sota in his chair form, covered in ice and shoved into the ground atop a hill. She calls out to him but he can’t hear her.
She runs to him but is unable to enter. The cat appears again and Suzume grabs him hard, asking him to turn Sota back. The cat says she’s hurting him and that he just wanted to play with her. The cat asks Suzume if she likes him and she raises him above her head (as if she’s going to slam him into the ground), she yells that she hates him. However, she stops and doesn’t slam him. She lets him go gently and after hearing that Suzume hates him, the cat’s demeanor changes completely and it loses the glint in its eyes. It doesn’t talk anymore, and when it walks away it appears as if it were any other ordinary cat.
Before closing the shrine gate and locking it, Suzume vows to rescue Sota.
Suzume finds the exit and ends up in a highway tunnel. She makes her way out and sneaks into the hospital that Sota’s uncle is currently admitted. When the coast is clear, she enters his room and explains the situation. The uncle says there is no way to save Sota and she should continue her life an forget everything she’s seen.
She presses on and says she has to save him. The uncle says that she could really die and asks her if she’s scared. She says that she is scared, but she’s even more scared of a world without Sota in it.
The uncle laughs and tells her that the only way to get him back is to go to the place that she sees on the other side of the gates. Determined, she knows where she has to go: to her childhood hometown in Miyagi.
Suzume No Tojimari: The Final Door
She goes back to Sota’s apartment and puts on her clean uniform and borrows Sota’s shoes. She makes her way to Ochanomizu station thinking about the best way to get to Miyagi. Coincidentally, Sota’s friend Serizawa is sitting in his car in front of the station and spots Suzume. He calls out to her and asks where Sota is. She says she doesn’t have time to talk and tries to get away, but he grabs her hand wanting more of an explanation.
Just then, Tamaki arrives and sees them. She misunderstands the situation and thinks Serizawa is some playboy that has been taking Suzume around all these places. She scolds him and he is understandably completely confused. Tamaki grabs her hand and tries to take her home, but she pushes Tamaki away and jumps in Serizawa’s car. She tells Serizawa to drive away, but Tamaki jumps in too.
As the three of them argue, they here a voice in the back seat that says “shut up”. They turn and see the cat staring back at them.
Seeing a cat talk snaps them out of their frenzy and Tamaki and Serizawa ask eachother if they really heard a cat speak. Suzume takes this chance to tell them that there’s a place she has to go no matter what immediately. Seeing the look on her face, Tamaki knows she can’t argue and reluctantly Tamaki and Serizawa agree to take her where she wants to go.
Suzume tells him the address and he realizes how far it is (Miyagi is like a 5-hour drive from Tokyo). Tamaki sees the address and realizes Suzume wants to go back to her childhood house where she used to live with her mother.
During the car ride, Suzume falls asleep and Tamaki tells Serizawa that she is Suzume’s aunt, not her mother. She says that Suzume’s mother died when she was young and Tamaki took her in.
She explains that one day Suzume ran away from the house looking for her mother and Tamaki found her in the snow holding the chair her mother made for her.
It starts raining and Serizawa tries to close the roof of the convertible car. However, the roof jams midway and the rain continues to pour into the car. They decide to stop at a rest stop to get out of the rain and get something to eat.
Serizawa and Tamaki head in to buy food, while Suzume stays in the car saying she isn’t hungry.
At the rest stop, Tamaki calls her friend and coworker and explains the situation. The friend says it’s dangerous to drive around with some guy neither of them know and that they should hop on a bus back home now. The friend searches the rest area and says there are tickets they can buy and get on the next bus back home.
Tamaki goes back to the car to try to persuade Suzume to go home, but Suzume rejects her quite forcefully. She says that she never asked Tamaki to come get her and that she should leave her alone.
Tamaki gets angry, and seemingly possessed by some devil, she says horrible things to Suzume. She says that she never asked to be the one to take care of her and that because she had to take in a young girl she was held back in her career and in her love life. She yells at Suzume asking her to give her all that time back.
Suzume realizes this isn’t her aunt and behind her she sees a large black cat with yellow glowing eyes. The cat seems to be possessing Tamaki. The Daijin white cat jumps up and hisses at the black cat. He lunges toward the black cat and attacks it. The black cat fights back and Tamaki is released from his possession. She falls to the ground.
Suzume gets out of the car and tries to get Tamaki to wake up. Tamaki wakes up, apologizes and runs into the rest stop. Serizawa asks her what is wrong and Tamaki starts crying. She says she just said some horrible things that she can’t take back.
The next day, we see them on the road again and the large black cat and white cat sit peacefully next to Suzume. They are cuddling together and the black cat licks the white cat clean.
On the way to Suzume’s home, the cat speaks again and Serizawa and Tamaki definitely hear it this time. This distracts Serizawa causing him to nearly hit an oncoming car. He swerves off the road and into a ditch. Everyone is ok, but the car is immobile.
Suzume asks how far they are and Serizawa says about 20km away. Suzume thanks him and says she’s continuing on foot. She runs off and the cats follow. Tamaki finds an old bike nearby and tells Serizawa she’s going too.
She catches up to Suzume and tells her to hop on, and the cats hop into the basket of the bike. Tamaki apologizes for what she said at the rest stop and says she didn’t mean it. She says she isn’t sure what’s going on but she knows it’s important. She asks what’s going on with the cats and Suzume said there are kind of like gods and Tamaki laughs as she peddles on.
They reach the ruins of Suzume’s old house and Suzume digs up a time capsule in the backyard. It has a notebook she used to doodle in and she says she remembers drawing the scene in her childhood that she sees on the other side of the gate. She believes it should tell her where the door is.
She turns the pages of the notebook and stops on March 11. The colorful notebook turns into a page of black on that date. She turns the pages and they’re all black after that. Flashbacks in her mind play of what happened that day. (the day all Japanese know as the biggest earthquake disaster in their lifetime). Suzume as a child asks people if they’ve seen her mother and they all reply with “I’m sorry, Suzume-chan”.
Finally, the last page of the notebook shows a star-filled night sky and Suzume next to a door.
She grabs the page and stares at it and runs off with the cats close behind.
Suzume stops in a grassy field and looks around but can’t seem to find anything. The white cat calls out to Suzume and they find a toppled-over door and frame.
She opens the door and sees the familiar scene of a star-filled night sky and prepares to jump through, when Tamaki catches up to them. Tamaki asks where she’s going and Suzume says she’s going to the one she loves. She jumps through and sees the largest Mimizu she’s ever seen. In the air, the black cat turns into a giant white tiger and starts to fight the Mimizu. Suzume and the white cat land in a devastated area. Ruins of houses are burning. There are boats on top of ruined houses, and crumbling buildings. These are the scenes of the aftermath of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that devastated Miyagi prefecture.
In the near distance, she sees a hill and Sota frozen on top of it. Suzume and the white cat run toward it, dodging falling buildings and jumping over fire.
They reach Sota and Suzume tries to pull her out but her hands begin to freeze as soon as she touches him. The cat warns her that if she removes him, they will be no sealing stone to keep the Mimizu in place and it’ll be released into the world again.
Suzume says she doesn’t care, and that she will become the sealing stone and take Sota’ place. The cat sees Suzume’s resolve, as she tries desperately to free Sota while her own arms begin to freeze over.
The cat jumps next to the chair and begins helping Suzume pull Sota free. The cat begins to freeze over too. Suzume is surprised to see the cat helping her and she realizes the cat may not be evil after all.
Suzume and the cat manage to pull Sota out and they all tumble down the hill. Sota is in his human form and they wake up looking at each other. Sota sees the large Mimizu and says they have to seal it. Suzume remembers the cat and sees him lying unconscious nearby. She runs over to the cat and picks it up, crying and asking if the cat is ok.
The cat seems to be dying and says there is no greater feeling than being in Suzume’s warm hands. Suzume blinks and the white cat becomes the cat-like statue that she pulled from the ground at the first gate she opened.
Suzume realizes that the cat was the sealing stone all along.
Suzume and Sota wait for the Mimizu to come near them and they jump onto it. Suzume seals the Mimizu away and the large white cat disappears too.
In the aftermath, they see a beautiful stellar sky, and a luscious green hill. Sota tells Suzume that he sees someone else here.
Suzume looks and sees herself as a little child, crying and looking for her mother. Suzume walks up to her childhood self and baby Suzume asks her if she’s seen her mother.
Baby Suzume says that her mother worked at a hospital so she was working when the tsunami and earthquake hit. She can’t find her but her mother must be worried sick about her. Baby Suzume is frantic and crying.
Suzume at first tries to calm her down, but can’t. Then she remembers the chair. She picks up the chair and gives it to her childhood self telling her that things are going to be okay. She says she knows what she’s going through but she’s going to be okay in the end.
Baby Suzume takes the chair and opens a door at the top of the hill. Before she walks through, she sees Suzume and Sota standing at the bottom of the hill.
Baby Suzume goes back through the gate and Tamaki finds her.
After that, present-time Suzume and Sota go back through their own gate. Suzume locks the door and instead of saying “I return you”, she says “Itekimasu” which literally means “I’m going”. But this is significant because this is the phrase that all Japanese say when they leave the house to go to work or go to school in the morning.
Suzume saying this symbolizes that she is moving forward and letting go of her past, as if saying bye to her mother, as if it were just any other day and she were going to school in the morning.
Suzume No Tojimari ends with Sota saying he needs to go and make sure there are no more gates, but that he’ll definitely visit her again.
Life returns to normal for all the characters and Suzume bikes to school in the morning. On the way to school, she sees Sota walking toward her.
Other Works by Shinkai:
5 Places to Watch Kimi No Na Wa Online (Your Name)