Every once in a while, the stars align and Japan manages to send one of its animated movies over to America to play in our theaters. More often than not, it’s a Studio Ghibli film, but this should come as no surprise since Studio Ghibli is awesome and pretty much everyone hails them as the Japanese version of Disney.

Just recently I learned that the studio’s latest work, From Up on Poppy Hill, will also be making it abroad. But how does it stack up to what we’ve come to expect from Studio Ghibli? How is Hayao Miyazaki’s son, Goro, handling being a director? Is it a good thing that these movies make it outside Japan? Let’s find out.

From Up on Poppy Hill

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Set in Japan of the 1960s, Poppy Hill tells the story of a high school girl living in a boarding house. She meets a guy from the school’s newspaper club and they decide to renovate the school’s clubhouse to prevent it from being torn down. That’s the big story, but there’s also some family confusion as well as some goofy romance going on, but I don’t want to spoil anything.

Overall, the story is pretty bland and totally unexciting. I know the whole theme is supposed to be about knowing what to hold onto from the past and what to let go of and how to move forward and blah blah blah whatever, but you don’t need a whole hour and a half to get that message across. This movie made me sleepy.

Anyway, I thought this movie was terrible. I’m sorry. It was just so incredibly slow and boring. I didn’t identify with any of the characters and I just couldn’t make myself really care about anything that was going on. The animation was fine, and I enjoyed the music, but I think I would have enjoyed the music a lot more if they made Imaginary Flying Machines covers for all of the tracks.

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I think I’ve decided what I’m going to blame this movie being bad on. Hayao Miyazaki’s son, Goro. While Hayao was involved in this film’s screenplay, Goro was the director. Goro directed one other film so far, Tales from Earthsea, and even Hayao thought that movie was terrible. Well, probably. Here’s a quote from on the matter.

Instead of retiring his name on a high note, director Hayao Miyazaki passed the torch to his son, Goro, who has stepped up with all the competency of a child conducting a board meeting at “bring your developmentally challenged son to work” day.

Now, I didn’t see Tales from Earthsea, but that’s because I heard how bad it was so I had no desire to watch it. It got a 42% on 42%! Hayao’s “worst” movie got 82%! Yeesh.

Goro, Goro, Goro…

GoroI sincerely hope that Goro and crew get their act together. I can’t say exactly how much of this all is Goro’s fault, but whatever the deal is, I hope they get it sorted sooner than later. Especially if they’re sending these films over to America. They should be sending the cream of the crop, stuff like Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away! Y’know, the good stuff!

I mean, we’ve written about Studio Ghibli and Hayao Miyazaki before, and I’ve had nothing but good things to say about them. Some films were better than others, but even the ones I didn’t really enjoy I could understand why others might like them. From Up on Poppy Hill is not one of those movies. I can’t even imagine the pain I would experience from watching Tales from Earthsea, both physical and emotional.

miyazaki“What is that son of mine doing? He’ll never be as good as me! Oh ho ho~”

Let’s just hope that Goro is finding his footing. Poppy Hill might be better than Earthsea, but not by much. Maybe Hayao will smack him around a bit and knock some sense into the boy. The last thing we want is Goro tarnishing the Miyazaki name, and so far he’s heading down that dark and dreary road.

Is it Good that Poppy Hill is Coming to America?

poppy1Well, it’s good but it’s also bad. Poppy Hill is being brought over by a group called GKIDS internationally and StudioCanal in the UK. I think this also says a lot about the quality of the film.

The good Studio Ghibli films that made it abroad that people remember (Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, Ponyo) were all distributed by Disney. Disney made the mistake of picking up Tales from Earthsea and by the looks of it, they learned their lesson. Apparently Disney didn’t want anything to do with Poppy Hill. After seeing the movie myself, I do not blame them at all.

The good thing about this being released internationally is that I think it’s always good when Japan gets some international acclaim and people have a chance to experience these movies that they might not have otherwise been able to. Especially when it comes on the big screen because that’s an experience you just cannot recreate at home.

poppy2“Here, eat this to get rid of the bad taste Poppy Hill left in your mouth.”

However, this movie is so bad that it’s not going to get people excited to bring other movies by Goro/Ghibli out for the world to see. But I mean, hey, I’m just one guy – maybe everyone else will love the movie. Great. But I really doubt it.

And for those brave souls interested, here’s where Poppy Hill is going to be released initially in America.

March 15

  • New York – FC Center
  • New York – Film Society of Lincoln Center

March 22

  • Los Angeles – The Landmark

March 29

  • Chicago – Landmark’s Century Centre Cinema
  • San Francisco – Embarcadero Center Cinema
  • Palo Alto – CineArts @ Palo Alto Square
  • Berkeley – Shattuck Cinemas
  • Boston – Kendall Square Cinema
  • Seattle – Harvard Exit Theatre
  • Minneapolis – Uptown Theater
  • San Diego – Landmark’s Hillcrest Cinemas
  • Long Island – Cinema Arts Centre

So tell me, have you seen Tales from Earthsea or From Up on Poppy Hill? Do you want to? What do you think about how Goro is handling things? Share your thoughts in the comments!

  • simplyshiny

    I wasn’t too big of a fan of Poppy Hill either, I didn’t think it was TERRIBLE per se, but it didn’t have that….magical feeling…that most Studio Ghibli films have. I haven’t seen Tales from Earthsea yet, but I think I have it on my computer….


    “Gib-lee” or “Jib-lee”?

  • amu

    I didn’t like From Up on Poppy Hill too! And I only watched Earthsea because I just had to watch ALL the ghibli movies. It was even worse than Poppy Hill, trust me. But the animation and illustration are as brilliant as always though. Studio Ghibli is really getting worse with each movie. Arietty was pretty bad, too in my opinion.

  • Time

    I have an unrelated request, review IMABI please.

  • Paladin341

    John, I thought the same thing. I was excited to see it was a Studio Ghibli film and Miyazaki’s name attached to it, but I ended up disappointed like you did and some of the commenters here as well.

    I couldn’t connect with any of the characters and the ending left a stale taste in my mouth. There was no conflict with the movie and therefore no conflict resolution. It was more of a bland slice of life than anything. Some kind argue that is more towards realism, but I think it could be better. Maybe I’m missing some underlying themes, but I’d like to think not.

  • 13xforever

    ジブリ as in 株式会社スタジオジブリ

  • Kerensa

    I saw From Up on Poppy Hill and I didn’t think that it was that bad. I mean there was a dynamic they introduced into the movie between the two characters fairly early on that kind of messed with my mind. It was cleared up at the end, which was nice–but it certainly messed with me the majority of the movie and I felt angry and bitter because of the little “twist” they pulled.

    It was an okay movie, but it certainly doesn’t hold a candle to some of the other films that have been made by Ghibli.

  • 13xforever

    I don’t know, I liked this film. Maybe it wasn’t the best one, but it still conveyed the spirit of the era and the story was fine (as a canvas, not as a center piece of the film)

  • simplyshiny

    Jib-lee. or jib-bu-re, technically…

  • Brandy Kratz

    I saw Tales from Earthsea and was not impressed. It was sort of boring and a bit confusing. The artwork was great but that was the only thing it had going for it. It’s just a shame that everytime we get an anime movie it doesn’t live up to the hype. Hayao needs to come out of retirement.

  • Brandy Kratz

    If you have the Starz channels on cable you might be able to catch it. Starz likes to throw it on every so often.

  • 2nihon

    I tried really, really hard to watch ‘Tales from Earthsea’. I gave it about an hour and kept asking myself, like little Fred Savage from ‘The Princess Bride’, ‘when’s it going to get good?’ It never did, so I put off the rest of it until later, and ‘later’ never came.

  • Braxton Catherwood

    I couldn’t stand Poppy Hill either! I know someone who does, but I honestly can’t figure out why anyone would. I remember literally saying out loud, ‘Wow, I hate this movie.’ Here was my contribution to a discussion about it on Facebook:

    It’s beautifully animated, so no markdowns for Studio Ghibli, but I have very little patience or sympathy for any of the characters created by Goro Miyazaki and was constantly asking myself, ‘Why am I still watching this? Oh right. Ghibli.’

    I just don’t think Goro has the same ability to develop and flesh out his characters and give them depth and complexity like his father. With Poppy Hill, you end up with characters who have very singular mindsets and don’t show enough traits to be likable or believable. Or he zeroes in on one trait of theirs and beats you over the head with it.

  • Braxton Catherwood

    Jib-lee, or ‘Sutajio Jiburi’

  • Musouka

    I didn’t get to see “Tales from Earthsea” because everybody said it was so bad and the story didn’t interest me. If I can remember correctly, Miyazaki was not happy about his son’s first foray into the directing world.

    I have decided to see “From Up on Poppy Hill” because I liked the theme and setting. I didn’t expect much but I was pleasantly surprised. Yeah, it is different from other Studio Ghibli films and the story is not all that special but I enjoyed the whole package and the spirit of the film. I even watched it twice!

    In any case, I cannot wait for the Takahata/Miyazaki combo this coming summer… this is going to be a blast for sure!

  • Alexa VanDemark

    Personally, I loved this film and it’s definitely up there with my favorite Studio Ghibli movies. (Tales from Earthsea, on the other hand, left me more confused than I’ve ever been and it was a waste of an hour and a half) I think it certainly takes a particular taste to enjoy From Up on Poppy Hill, but I love it, my Japanese friends like it, it’s just not Spirited Away (but not all movies can be).

  • Sérgio Moço

    I, for one, really enjoyed both films… Crazy.

  • Jonsu

    Personally, I liked it. The music was beautiful, the art and animation was too – of course none of the fantastical kinds of scenes we seen in Howl’s Moving Castle or Spirited Away, but they’d be totally out of place here. It reminded me of Whisper of the Heart, in that it’s quite slow and almost pointless in parts, but that style’s not uncommon in Japanese cinema and personally I’m quite fond of it. It’s nice to experience movies that aren’t constant action and drama, that are just quiet, slice-of-life stories.

    Also I’m confused. Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke, and many other Ghibli films have been brought to cinemas in the US (and internationally)…so I’m really not sure what your point is there. Should those who don’t like a movie decide whether it gets brought oversees?

    Considering how well From Up on Poppy Hill did in Japan (it was received well by Japanese audiences and critics alike, won Animation of the Year at both the Japanese Academy Awards and the Tokyo Anime Award, and has earned a healthy 3.5 rating on IMDB), there doesn’t really seem to be any reason not to bring it to the US. It’s fine that many people don’t like it, but you can’t argue with facts: a lot of people actually do like it.

  • elizabethhoney


  • 古戸ヱリカ

    Gee-hib-lee. That way, it’s guaranteed you’re pronouncing it wrong.

  • Josh

    I saw this not too long ago and thought it was kind of bland, but not terrible – like Earthsea. Tales from Earthsea was just a confusing, disconnected mess to be honest. I read the entire Earthsea novel series before seeing the movie and even then, the movie’s plot was just… not logical. It’s like they never once stopped to tell the viewer why anything was happening. Then again, having read the books and knowing it wasn’t a direct transfer to screen, all the background knowledge probably just confused me even more while watching. Blah.

  • paula malone

    On one hand it’s great that the less supernatural films are getting a wider release. On the other hand, despite loving Spirited Away, totoro and Mononoke (okay, a bit long winded), a lot of Ghiblifilms are very similar to this one, and not terribly exciting on the whole. nice to watch, but that’s just because i’ll watch anything japanese. So is this such a big surprise?

    The worst one of the lot has to be Ponyo. I wouldn’t watch that again. I’m not sure i finished it first time around.

  • jason

    not as good as his fathers films- but it was still good.

    it was very shoujo, which is probably why you didnt care for it

  • Jace

    Tales from Earthsea is not bad at all! If you like Studio Ghibli you should ignore all the stigma and check it out for yourself. It was definitely more exciting than Arietty, Nausicaa, and some other Ghibli films.

  • 田辺先生

    Hey, the PACE of Japanese movies has traditionally been… well… a bit slow. And the subject matter has often seemed a bit off, as in NO resolution, no feeling of an ending. However this is a beloved style and it does grow on you! Miyazaki is a patient guy…. we’ll hope his son improves soon.

  • legendofleo

    I saw Earthsea and was shocked at how bad it was. Especially having read the first two books, and finding almost no parallels whatsoever.

  • Jesse Cadd

    Wow…I guess you are entitled to your opinion, but I quite disagree. I thought Poppy Hill was delightful and it didn’t bore me in the least. I was very encouraged by Goro’s second outing (Earthsea was terrible, I agree, especially if you are familiar with the source material) and am hopeful that this bodes well for the future of Ghibli.

  • Jesse Cadd

    Ji-bu-li. I pronounced it with a hard G for years before seeing it written in katakana for the first time.

  • sweeny

    I saw Tales From Earthsea. I was…. horrified. There were a few gorgeous moments but SPOILER it was based on books 3 and 4 – book 4 which should have Never Been Written.

  • sweeny

    yeah! I hated Ponyo – her character jusy annoyed me. A LOT.

  • sweeny

    it based on books 3 and 4 – bad, BAD move in my opinion.

  • Megan Julia Pangan

    Aww, I liked the Earthsea and Poppy Hill and Whispers of the Heart, they were all quite slow I know, but as a fan of Ghibli, I’ve learned to expect that with these less than bigger productions. And I think I can appreciate these films more, despite being slow-paced because I am a fan. But I can totally get how these films are more or less “one-fers” as I refer to them, and don’t have the re-watchability such as Howl’s or Princess Mononoke.

  • Alex Napoli

    As someone who’s finishing up my college degree in Japanese history, with a focus on postwar Japan, I have to say I have a vested interest in this movie and I’m pretty excited to see it. I don’t mind if it’s not as ‘magical’ as other Ghibli films, I really loved Sakamichi no Apollon, which I think had some similar content.

  • Britt Olinder-Stevens

    I think I would like this film enough to want to watch it. I’ll post again after I’ve seen it, though I suspect it will be fair to middlin’. I did see Tales From Earth Sea and it isn’t any Howl’s or even a Kiki’s, which wasn’t amazing. Ponyo wasn’t very good either, but at least there was a lot of supernatural-environmental things going on. To tell you the truth, I’ve been underwhelmed by Hayao before, and Goro in turn. But the quality of the films are usually above board anyway. There’s a lot of crap out there and even the worst of Ghibli is in the top 30% in terms of the aggregate value of animation, story, theme, message and character. And Ghibli’s best is arguably anime’s best (if you don’t restrict by genre). I liked your review, John.

  • Britt Olinder-Stevens

    Ha! Onerfers. Works perfectly. It also seems they’re meant for a different audience. They’re so nostalgic. It’s as though they’re written in tribute to a bygone era or time of life, if not written in tribute to a specific person. But without knowing, this could easily be about Goro’s emotional attachment to his own memories of childhood, or at least the emotional backdrop.

  • foozlesprite

    Earthsea was pretty dang bad. I read the books after seeing it, and they filled in a lot of plot gaps and ‘huh?’ moments for me, so it might be better if you’ve read them first. I’ll watch Poppy Hill, and I’ll probably enjoy it more because it seems like it’s not as plot based, so there aren’t as many opportunities to screw up the plot.

  • Nope

    The Secret World of Arrietty was a Ghibli film, wasn’t it? I thought that movie was JUST. AWFUL.

  • Jessica May

    ‘Just recently I learned that the studio’s latest work, From Up on Poppy Hill, will also be making it abroad.’

    Actually it was released in France in Januray 2012, so it already made it abroad! And apparently, here it was distributed by Disney France (dixit
    I haven’t seen it so can’t say how good (or bad) it was, but viewers and the press seem to have liked it overall (the main criticisms seem to concern the plot and the lack of magic), and the number of entries doesn’t seem all that bad…
    I was just amused by the differences between here and in the US^^

  • extrarice

    I think that we can sometimes forget that Studio Ghibli doesn’t always do supernatural/fantasy films like Mononoke Hime, Spirited Away, Totoro, etc. They also do very personal stories, slice-of-life stories, stories of starting to understand life and love, and stories about nostalgia one feels when growing up: Only Yesterday, Ocean Waves, Whisper of the Heart, Grave of the Fireflies, and so on. Just because a movie doesn’t have mountains of elements from the supernatural/spiritual realm or lots of action doesn’t mean the movie is bad.
    Watching the trailer, I can see that this film is definitely in the camp of Whisper of the Heart, Ocean Waves, and so on. Not necessarily everyone’s cup of tea, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad movie. Personally, I’m looking forward to it.

  • David Andrade

    John linked a death metal article in this, I somehow am not surprised he wouldn’t like this kind of movie. As for Tales of Earthsea, I was surprised at first to hear it got bad scores, but then I realized rotten tomatoes is American. It seems like if our movies here don’t have over exaggerated action, more drama than a high school or homosexuality, no one likes it. I loved Earthsea, and I can’t wait to watch this as well.

  • Jtf

    The reason why Earthsea wasn’t as great was because it was Goro’s first project in animation–ever. If I remember correctly, it was said that Toshio Suzuki persuaded him out of architecture in order to help accomplish Earthsea. A very big role for someone who knew little about animation!

    But in the end, it was pretty good for an amateur. Not amazing, but good enough.

  • Meh

    Totally agree with you on the comparison to Whisper of the Heart (one of my favs!) and being all ‘slice-of-life’, but From Up on Poppy Hill lacked the charm that Whisper of the Heart has. Like John said, it’s hard to connect with the characters. While Studio Ghibli flims are often filled with fantasy and action, I believe they are so successful and enjoyable because there’s just something so captivating about the characters. In fact, I agree with almost everything John says, the animation is gorgeous and the music is lovely. Somehow though, the characters just don’t capture the hearts of the audience (um… at least they didn’t capture mine) and I think that it does come down to the directing job by Goro. Just missing that lil sumthin’ sumthin’ in my opinion which unfortunately made From Up on Poppy Hill very ‘meh’ for me.

  • DefJuk

    Tales from Earthsea was great. I get it though, people will hate on things other people love because you can’t please everybody, that’s just common sense. It’s like how I hate things like Avatar, the pope and nazis but other people proper bum them.

  • Lindsey

    I personally am not a fan of Studio Ghibli. I know I’m in the minority, but there it is. That being said, I very much enjoyed Umi ga Kikoeru (Ocean Waves), precisely for the reason that it was a departure from the usual Ghibli film. There were no fantastical creatures or the same uninspired female characters that always pepper a Ghibli release. This was a quietly subtle and beautifully told story, with much more charm and heart than something like Princess Mononoke or even Spirited Away. So yes, I’m actually very much looking forward to Poppy Hill!

  • Brian Hague

    I’d love to like it, however since It’s not anywhere near me, kinda hard to tell…

  • Captain Raccoon Whitly

    Personally, I thought this article reeked of arrogance. I’ll ignore your review, that’s very much opinion based, but I have three questions for you:

    1. How is this a sign that Goro Miyazaki is ruining Studio Ghibli? I never thought the studio was perfect anyway, so what gives?

    2. Shouldn’t we be praising effort, as opposed to trashing it? Especially when the director is still young and has lots of room to improve?

    3. Have you ever thought that GKids taking over the license was because of Disney’s agreement with Studio Ghibli’s parent company expiring, NOT because of wanting to disassociate with the director?

    Honestly, you make a lot of presumptuous claims here. Yes, Goro isn’t his father. Yes, I’m sure this movie is no masterpiece. But no, this isn’t a sign of anything awful. I’ve heard of great directors starting off in a much worse position than Miyazaki Jr., as everyone has to start somewhere. If anything, this is just proof that you’re an unfair jerk.

    Also, plenty of people like sh*t, so don’t go making claims about who’d like this movie either.

    Overall, 1.5/5 for this article. 2 for the review, -.5 deducted for your unfounded rant…

  • Hashi

    Ooo, are we rating things? I’d say ☎/♣ for your comment. ☃ for the questions, with -◎ deducted on a technicality.

  • Oblivion Island

    Great news!

    By the way, as a fan of Studio Ghibli, I think you may like Oblivion Island!

  • Anonymous

    Your review is terrible. This movie was absolutely fantastic. 死ね。

  • EskimoJo

    I have watched WotH at least 3 times. I absolutely love it, but then again, I like slice of life anime.

  • EskimoJo

    The animation wasn’t the issue though. The story simply made little sense. Yet, I still enjoyed it! Lol!

  • Caitlin

    To be honest, I’m not sure if I’ll like the movie or not, but I really didn’t like this review. There were barely any pros and cons, no reasons why you couldn’t identify with the characters (which seems to be the main reason you hated it) or anything like that. It seemed like hero worship of Miyazaki and a trashing of his son. Plus, you didn’t talk about how well it went over in Japan (quite well, it seems), and explain why it might not go over well in America even with its popularity in Japan. Not to try to insult you or anything, but this review was something I’d expect out of a friend, not out of someone doing a more or less formal review of a movie. Next time maybe something with a little more explanation would go over better? Best of luck!

  • Josh Leitzel

    Really? That was the most unprofessional review I’ve ever read. All you do is compare Goro to his father the entire time. No one will ever be as good as Hayao, just get over it already. You expected something out of this movie that couldn’t be attained, adventure, fantasy, and maybe a bit of action. That’s not what “slice of life movies” are like. You want Imaginary Flying Machine’s loud and unsettling tracks to be in the film? They’re very well done but they wouldn’t fit a Studio Ghibli film at all. Then you complain about the story being boring and the characters not being relatable, and you go on to blame Goro for that? Hayao was the one who wrote it, if anybody should be blamed here it’s him.

    So you say you refuse to watch Earthsea because of it’s Rotten Tomatoes rating? Are you incapable of forming your own opinion on movies and have to rely on a website that has no connection whatsoever to your personal opinions to help you out? Hayao didn’t say he thought it was bad, he said it “was made honestly, it was good.” Get your facts straight. On another note, From Up on Poppy Hill currently has an 83% on Rotten Tomatoes, so if you’re going to judge a film by that website’s rating then you should have liked this film. And if you disagree and say that that doesn’t reflect your own opinions then why did you let the RT rating for Earthsea reflect them? So by critical standards apparently Poppy Hill is better than Miyazaki’s worst (but still great) movie. That’s a great achievement anyway you look at it. Goro obviously improved vastly upon Earthsea.

    Now I have to comment on the things you said about Disney. Disney didn’t refuse to pick this film up because it was bad, it was because of how it supposedly wouldn’t appeal to mainstream audiences like Arrietty and Ponyo did because of it’s plot being so ingrained in Japanese history and culture. Disney may not even pick up their next two films either. Not because they will be bad (I hope you don’t make that mistake again), but because they’re set in Japanese history and one is based off of a very Japanese folktale. Disney doesn’t roll with films like that. They do want to make money on the films after all. I’m sure if this was marketable they would have loved to distribute it.

    “But I mean, hey, I’m just one guy – maybe everyone else will love the movie. Great. But I really doubt it.”
    It’s ironic because almost everyone else actually does love the movie. So I guess you are alone in your thoughts.

  • Josh Leitzel

    That’s top 5 Ghibli for me. Beautiful score, great characters, mature themes dealing with death and extinction. And its got a 94% on Rotten Tomatoes.

  • Josh Leitzel

    ಠ_ಠ Arrietty? Bad?

    Many people would disagree with you.

  • Common Sense

    Just saying, he has, “feeder of dinosaurs,” as a title…

  • Eduardo

    Wow you’re a big time hater, what in the world makes you think Hayao would ever say anything like that, or, ‘smack around’ his son? Have you not seen any of his films? What makes you think Hayao would have that type of personality? And seriously, bagging on a movie you haven’t even seen yet just because of hate ratings? Your credibility here is 0%, meanwhile 100% bias and completely opinionated. Tales of EarthSea was beautiful, could of used a bit of work direction wise, but seriously you’re terrible for Media, go get smacked up by your father, prick.

  • Neeka

    I haven’t seen it yet but I’m betting the voice acting is a whole lot better than the Disney/american voice acting in both Ponyo and Arriety. terrible choices, I cant bare to sit and watch the american dubbed versions. I think I’ll watch the UK version from now on. So i don’t think Disney not choosing this movie is a bad thing but a good one because personally I’m a big fan of Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki’s films but after watching some of the american dubbed ones i was slightly turned off from watching any of the newer movies. If I hadn’t seen his older movies like Howl’s moving castle or Spirited Away i would have never liked Studio Ghibli.

  • gvktyulh

    I actually loved tales of earthsea. i loved the characters and the plot. Even if the message was a little cheesy that didn’t ruin it for m at all. it was just another beautifully animated film with adventure and intrigue.i would recommend it. and i will definitely see poppy hill.

  • Helen Kirifides

    Hey, I like this Imaginary Flying Machines stuff. It’s pretty good. They should do the real theme songs to animes if they haven’t already (they probably have). ^__^

  • foxibiri

    Wow, I wasn’t going to watch this movie because you gave it such a bad review, but I’m glad I watched it, because as always Ghibli did a wonderful job and it was a really sweet…

  • RiEA

    I really liked Tales from Earthsea! You should at least give it a try! Many people like Nausica Valley of the Wind but I really don’t like that movie. I think it’s boring. I guess it all just comes down to personal taste. My ultimate favs from Studio Ghibli are Kiki’s delivery service, Spirited Away, Porco Rosso, & The Cat Returns. I watched Poppy Hill last night. I thought it was a nice and sweet film. It was of course different from the regular Studio Ghibli films but I think that is what stood out for me. It was more of a mature theme compared to the other films. I think that is why Disney didn’t take part in this movie. Disney’s main audience are Children and this movie wasn’t really a kids movie. They wouldn’t even understand it. I wasn’t bored at all throughout the film and it had some cute funny moments. I really wanted them to end up together, but when I found out they were siblings, it really made me feel bad for them! I got really into it b/c I wanted to know the secret behind their father and if they would ever get together or just stick to being friends. Overall, I really liked it and I don’t care what people say about it, I thought it was a great movie! :)

  • Guest

    Although it wasn’t a fast paced movie like Spirited Away, I still found it enjoyable. Ghibli/Miyazaki Movie’s tend to vary in speed some are fast like Spirited Away mentioned previously, some are in the middle like Howl’s Moving Castle and some are slow like this one. It’s a movie which you need to watch in a calm mind and not expect any action or much adventure but a story which is unravels itself more and more.
    The scenery didn’t have the usual energy that Ghibli/Miyazaki Movies have, it went for a more realistic look and story. I found it interesting that the story took place in post WWII Japan and the underlying tone of the effects of the war were seen in the story like with Umi and Shun’s fathers and in the background like when they visit Tokyo and you see construction work in one scene. However the focus wasn’t completely on the war and the after effects but the characters moving on from the war while keeping something from the past.

    I’ll admit it wasn’t as good as Spirited Away but it was great in it’s own way.

  • Felix Nelson

    Although it wasn’t a fast paced movie like Spirited Away, I still found it enjoyable. Ghibli/Miyazaki Movie’s tend to vary in speed some are fast like Spirited Away mentioned previously, some are in the middle like Howl’s Moving Castle and some are slow like this one. It’s a movie which you need to watch in a calm mind and not expect any action or much adventure but a story which is unravels itself more and more.
    The scenery didn’t have the usual energy that Ghibli/Miyazaki Movies have, it went for a more realistic look and story. I found it interesting that the story took place in post WWII Japan and the underlying tone of the effects of the war were seen in the story like with Umi and Shun’s fathers and in the background like when they visit Tokyo and you see construction work in one scene. However the focus wasn’t completely on the war and the after effects but the characters moving on from the war while keeping something from the past.

    I’ll admit it wasn’t as good as Spirited Away but it was great in it’s own way. However I’m more excited for DBZ: Battle Of Gods!