7.3/10
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Neko no ongaeshi (2002)

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1:42 | Trailer

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After helping a cat, a 17-year-old girl finds herself involuntarily engaged to a cat prince in a magical world where her only hope of freedom lies with a dapper cat statuette come to life.

Director:

Hiroyuki Morita

Writers:

Aoi Hiiragi (comic "Neko no Danshaku, Baron"), Reiko Yoshida (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Chizuru Ikewaki Chizuru Ikewaki ... Haru (voice)
Yoshihiko Hakamada ... Baron (voice)
Aki Maeda ... Yuki (voice)
Takayuki Yamada ... Lune (voice)
Hitomi Satô Hitomi Satô ... Hiromi (voice)
Kenta Satoi Kenta Satoi ... Natori (voice)
Mari Hamada ... Natoru (voice)
Tetsu Watanabe ... Muta (voice)
Yôsuke Saitô Yôsuke Saitô ... Toto (voice)
Kumiko Okae Kumiko Okae ... Haru's Mother (voice)
Tetsurô Tanba ... Cat King (voice)
Yô Ôizumi ... Additional Voices (voice)
Yoko Honna Yoko Honna ... Chika (voice) (as Youko Honna)
Ken Yasuda ... Additional Voices (voice)
Anne Hathaway ... Haru (voice)
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Storyline

A teenage girl rescues a mysterious cat from traffic and soon finds herself the unwelcome recipient of gifts and favors from the King of the Cats, who also wants her to marry his son, Prince Lune. With the assistance of a fat, grouchy real cat and a an elegant cat statuette come to life (both characters featured in Studio Ghibli's earlier anime "Whisper of the Heart"), the girl visits the Cat Kingdom and narrowly escapes again. Written by castipiani

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Believe in magic... Discover the secret of another land. See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese | English

Release Date:

19 July 2002 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

O Reino dos Gatos See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS-ES | Dolby Digital EX

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While every other cat in both the human world and the Cat Kingdom has paws, the Baron has human -shaped hands, covered in gloves and sporting long fingers and visible thumbs. He is also noticeably smaller in the human world, about two -third the size of an average cat. These attributes mirror those seen on the Baron figurine in Whisper of the Heart. See more »

Goofs

In the very first scene of the movie, there is no mailbox in front of the Baron's house. When Haru arrives at the cat bureau, there is a mailbox in front of the house. See more »

Quotes

Haru: [Haru sits down on a lawn chair in a cafe, and a squishing/meowing noise is heard. She shrieks and jumps up] A cat... a FAT cat!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The credits have a series of still images from the film. The last image before the film fades is Haru feeding the small white kitten on the pavement. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Japanese version begins with a text prologue; the English-dubbed version replaces this with a voice-over from the Baron (similar to how the opening of was handled). See more »

Connections

Featured in JesuOtaku Anime Reviews: The Cat Returns (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Kaze Ni Naru
Written by Ayano Tsuji
Performed by Ayano Tsuji
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Another gem by Studio Ghibli
20 May 2006 | by cosmic_questSee all my reviews

'The Cat Returns' is yet another treat produced by Studio Ghibli, the company which brought us masterpieces such as 'My Neighbour Totoro' and 'Spirited Away'.

The story of this film is much simpler than previous Studio Ghibli productions/epics with a typical modern teenage girl Haru as the heroine. When walking home from school one afternoon, Haru rescues a cat from being ran-over by a lorry only to discover she is responsible for saving the life of Prince Lune, the heir apparent to the Cat Kingdom. Lune's father, the King of Cats, promptly decides the best way to repay such a favour is for Haru to marry his son. Naturally, our heroine is horrified at the prospect and must seek protection from enigmatic Baron, founder of the Cat Bureau, for help before she is carted off to the Cat Kingdom by the very determined cats.

As a cat-lover, I found this film utterly adorable. The scene where the cats from Cat Kingdom descend on Haru's street in the middle of the night was had a very wondrous aura to it and the scene where the cats try to make Haru laugh at her feast was hilarious. The characters, as always, are solid from the refreshingly normal teen-aged Haru to the grumpy Muta to the suave Baron (even though he's an animated cat, the charisma of the character will leave many females empathising with Haru's little crush on him!).

Although the plot of 'The Cat Returns' is a simple affair so it will easily appeal to young children, there is much humour in the film that will keep older kids and adults amused. Also, those who love cats can't help but fall in love with the many feline characters we come across in the film. Now, I'm off to track down 'Whisper of the Heart', which is a 1995 Studio Ghibli film that features the character of Baron.


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