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2 items from 2013

From Up on Poppy Hill – review

1 August 2013 4:00 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Adapted by Hayao Miyazaki, directed by his son, Goro, this is minor but very enjoyable Ghibli

The latest Studio Ghibli animation – adapted by Hayao Miyazaki from a comic by Tetsurô Sayama, and directed by Miyazaki's son, Goro – might usefully play as the restorative half of a double-bill with the recently revived Grave of the Fireflies: it's a light, breezy 1960s-set coming-of-age tale that strives to convey something of how Japan rebuilt itself after the traumas of the second world war. The high-school romance between fatherless heroine Umi and student journalist Shun derives equally from the photo-roman and the history books; the pair's inquiries into their shared, complicated past stand for those of the entire nation. Miyazaki Jr's quietist approach leaves it looking like minor Ghibli, and will likely limit any appeal to younger viewers – there's no magic or monsters. But it nevertheless arrives with the vast reserves of patience, »

- Mike McCahill

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From Up on Poppy Hill review: gentle as a seaside breeze

1 August 2013 6:38 AM, PDT | | See recent FlickFilosopher news »

Joyously warm and gentle… though perhaps too gentle to be entirely satisfying. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

I have not read the source material

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

I keep waiting for another rapturous fantasy like Spirited Away or My Neighbor Tortoro from Studio Ghibli, and I keep not finding it. I didn’t find it, either, in Ghibli’s latest, From Up on Poppy Hill, a historical teen romance from director Goro Miyazaki. Based on the manga by Tetsurô Sayama and Chizuru Takahashi and adapted by Hayao Miyazaki (Goro’s dad) and Keiko Niwa, and winner of the Japanese Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, this is the tale of high-schooler Umi Matsuzaki (the voice of Sarah Bolger [The Spiderwick Chronicles] in the English-language version) in 1963 Yokohama, who is kept very busy not only with her demanding schoolwork but also »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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2013 | 2011

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