Piel, a 7 or 8 year old boy, is alone on the desert planet Perdide, only survivor of an attack by giant hornets. Calling for help, Piel's father's friend Jaffar keeps contact with the kid ... See full summary »
With the help of government-issued pamphlets, an elderly British couple build a shelter and prepare for an impending nuclear attack, unaware that times and the nature of war have changed ... See full summary »
Wang Fo, the greatest master of medieval China, aided by his assistant who has given up everything to follow him, desperately seeks aesthetic perfection. A day comes when he thinks he has ... See full summary »
An enthusiastic filmmaker thinks he's come up with a totally original idea: animation set to classical music! When he is informed that some American named "Prisney" (or something) has ... See full summary »
On the night of a cat village's Festival of the Stars, a kitten and his friend go on an celestial journey on a magical space locomotive. On that trip, they have various stops where they meet strange sights, even more unusual fellow passengers and learn some lessons of life on their trip to the terminus of the Galactic Railroad. Written by
Kenneth Chisholm <email@example.com>
The wireless operator picks up fragments of a cryptic message which is later discovered to be parts of "Nearer, My God, To Thee" (Hymn #306). The express later picks up three people from a shipwreck closely resembling that of the Titanic. That hymn was one of the last the ship's band played as passengers filled the lifeboats. It is uncertain in what hymnal it is listed as #306; however, there were 306 bodies recovered from the disaster by the cable ship MacKay-Bennett. See more »
Kenji Miyazawa's Night on the Galactic Express (1985)
Night on the Galactic Railroad isn't your traditional family film. It deals with some incredibly deep themes, as well as having a slow meditative pace. We follow a young cat (changed from human in the original book) called Giovanni. Giovanni has no time for himself. His father is away, his mother is sick, and when he isn't at school he has to work. One evening the family's delivery of milk never comes, so Giovanni goes to get it. He rests on top of a hill before being confronted by a train. He gets on and finds his friend Campenella. From there the duo encounter a number of passengers each with a strange story to tell. This film is certainly all about the metaphysical. Each story strengthens the themes of religion and sacrifice. It gets highly emotional at times. The imagery is often surreal but always memorable. The animation is calm in both colours and movement. This film is presented in chapters, which I think may be a better way to digest it. It's something no country but Japan would try, and the ending is so powerful it really does make the journey worth it. Mature and thoughtful, if sometimes a little slow.
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