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If people outside Japan have heard of Chichibu, a rustic, mountainous city about two hours northwest of Tokyo, it’s probably thanks to director Tatsuyuki Nagai, screenwriter Mari Okada and character designer Masayoshi Tanaka. The trio put Chichibu on the map by making it the setting for their hit 2011 coming-of-age anime series “Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day.” Fans of that series scrambled to the otherwise quiet city, giving it a second life as an anime tourism hotspot.

The three creatives followed up “Anohana” with another Chichibu-set story of youth in 2015 with the theatrical “The Anthem of the Heart.” They’ve done it yet again with “Her Blue Sky,” but it’s obvious the idea’s creative returns are increasingly diminishing. What’s the opposite of “third time’s the charm”?

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