Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Arrietty (2010)

Directed by Hiromasa 'Maro' Yonebayashi


I saw this on Saturday. My friend Jos was down from Auckland and wanted to hang out. I thought maybe he liked studio Ghibli films so I asked if he wanted to come. He did. Also my friends Matt and Hollan came too. The roads were really busy and so was the mall. We got to the movies and I was kind of frustrated with everything, mainly just trying to navigate my way around. I had a hot chocolate though and a cheese scone warmed up with butter and sweet chilli sauce. I felt good about that. 

We were about 2mins late for the film but we didn't miss much. Arrietty had just been playing in the garden and brought a bay leaf home for her mother. She was also 'spotted' by the boy who lived in the house she lived in. Sorry if that doesn't make sense. Arrietty is based on the Borrowers books by Mary Norton. So there you go. This film was different to the film The Borrowers though because it didn't have John Goodman or Tom Felton in it. 

I enjoyed this film a lot. There were heaps of children in the audience. I thought that maybe they would freak out because as with other Studio Ghibli films there are surreal, adult elements. But there wasn't any of that. I think I didn't like this film as much as I liked say, Princess Mononoke for that reason. My favourite parts of that movie were the freaky/magical boar scenes.  

 These films always seem to have the scary old lady. This was no exception. This lady's name was Haru. She was the maid of the house and wanted to exterminate the 'little people'. I couldn't quite understand why she actually didn't like them, I thought that if there were little people in my house I would want to take care of them. I mean, we had mice recently and although we (not me) got rid of them I still thought they were cute. Haru had this massive wrinkly face and huge mouth and she got a lot of close ups with crazy eyes. She was actually more funny than scary I think. More of a comedic character. She like, fainted and stuff and got lots of frights and over dramatic when she was tricked by Sho, the sick boy/protagonist. I think I found Haru more charming in a way than evil and I'd say the children in the audience did too. They laughed at her a lot, however my flatmates went to this the next day and said the kids in the audience were really scared. 


Sho was cool. I felt sorry for him because he was dying and his parents didn't spend any time with him. He had a cool cat though. The cat was clearly on his side and wanted to make him happy. Because Sho had a heart condition he was pretty much bed ridden except for when he ran after Arrietty. The film didn't have much suspense in it except for the bit where he is running and running and he has to go fast to see her before she sails away and he is clutching his chest and panting heavily and you think he might fall over but he doesn't. He seemed like a really calm guy and read a lot of books outside in the sun with his cat. It made me want to do that. 

The most amazing thing about this film was the animation. It was super colourful and I dunno, just dreamy. I find it funny how when the protagonist runs somewhere or climbs something they trip over or slip up or something. Seems like it would be a 'big deal' or 'narrative altering' thing in any other film but in these (s.g.) they just keep running/climbing. It's really endearing to me.

This was nice. It wasn't really amazing or anything. But would be a really good film to take a kid to. Depending on their reading ability. I think the best way to watch it would definitely be in Japanese with subtitles. Watching the dubbed English seems dumb to me. 

After the film we got powerade because everyone was hungover (except for me).

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