I have never felt more justified in my love for Only Yesterday than seeing all this new found praise for it. Been singing its praises to everyone I meet for the past 7 years.
I think it acts as a wonderful homage to older Japanese cinema as well. It's gentle pace and quiet observations are remarkably evocative of the likes of Ozu, and is something that grows in appreciation over time. It has some wonderful visual flourishes to boot, the entire scene between Taeko and Hirota in the lane after the baseball game is pure cinema.
Takahata has such an incredible catalogue of work. To think how distinct his features are from one another, and most if not all are pinnacles of their style.