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'The Secret World of Arrietty': Will Japan's Pixar Have Its Big U.S. Hit?
The Atlantic ^ | February 17, 2012 | Ian Buckwalter

Posted on 02/17/2012 6:55:56 AM PST by C19fan

As the projectors warm up in U.S. theaters today, 1300 of them are being prepped to pass the latest animated release from Japanese animation powerhouse Studio Ghibli through their lenses. While that's fewer than half the number of screens that will host each of this week's other two wide releases (Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance and This Means War), it's a significant number: Disney, the company responsible for distributing Ghibli releases in the United States, has never opened one of the Studio Ghibli's films on nearly as many screens. While past titles like Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke have been blockbusters overseas, they've been modestly successful limited releases here. With The Secret World of Arrietty, Disney appears confident this is the film that will break Studio Ghibli's distinctive style of animation beyond its niche audience.

(Excerpt) Read more at theatlantic.com ...


TOPICS: TV/Movies
KEYWORDS: anime; arrietty; miyazaki; pizar
The quality of Studio Ghibli's work puts American animation studios to shame with the possible exception of Pizar. Hopefully all the kids who like anime and manga will come out.
1 posted on 02/17/2012 6:56:02 AM PST by C19fan
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To: C19fan

It’s great visually,but the story a bit slow.


2 posted on 02/17/2012 7:02:56 AM PST by Dr. Ursus
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To: Dr. Ursus

That seems to be the trait of Ghibli movies but more time to take in the gorgeous animation, :).


3 posted on 02/17/2012 7:04:05 AM PST by C19fan
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To: C19fan

Good point.The animation is beautiful,but the story may be a little slow for the kiddies.


4 posted on 02/17/2012 7:08:07 AM PST by Dr. Ursus
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To: C19fan
That seems to be the trait of Ghibli movies but more time to take in the gorgeous animation, :).

Animation? that just gets in way of the scenery.


5 posted on 02/17/2012 7:12:16 AM PST by Oztrich Boy (Society is well governed when the people obey the magistrates, and the magistrates obey the law)
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To: C19fan

Miyazaki’s movie power died with Princess Mononoke (Mononoke-hime). I wish for the days of Laputa, Nausicca, or any of his oldies. Just not Graveyard of the Fireflies - that movie is pure emotional torture.

I couldn’t watch Howl’s, Ponyo, or any of his new stuff. He’s still bitter that his son stole Earthsea.


6 posted on 02/17/2012 7:12:39 AM PST by struggle (http://killthegovernment.wordpress.com/)
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To: C19fan

I am of the age where, when I saw the preview, my first thought was “Where’s Chim Chim and Spritle?”


7 posted on 02/17/2012 7:13:38 AM PST by Mygirlsmom (Disgusted with it all.)
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8 posted on 02/17/2012 7:24:17 AM PST by deoetdoctrinae (Gun-free zones are playgrounds for felons)
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To: C19fan

I think you mean Pixar. Yes. Wonderful. My favorites are Spirited Away and Howl’s Moving Castle. Princess is a bit too intense for me but maybe that’s because my partner in watching the movies is my granddaughter. She’s 11 now but we started watching these movies when she was two. I also like Ponyo, especially the scenes where the world and its oceans returns to the earlier time period I can’t remember. Ponyo is also sort of a dig at the environmentalist wackos.


9 posted on 02/17/2012 7:35:33 AM PST by Mercat
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To: Dr. Ursus

What I really appreciate about films of this type is that they replace the real actor with animation. Imagine a world where celebrities who are paid millions to play pretend, and their uninformed ignorant foreign and domestic policy opinions are fewer and fewer. I wouldn’t mind actors if everyone understood they are simply another example of the smelly human.


10 posted on 02/17/2012 7:40:55 AM PST by AD from SpringBay (We deserve the government we allow.)
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To: struggle

Sad for you. Maybe you need to watch Spirited Away, Ponyo, and Howl’s Moving Castle with a child. I’ve watched all of these multiple times and each time I see something new to love. I’ve also watch them in Japanese. My granddaughter prefers Ponyo in Japanese with English sub-titles. I want to own Howl’s in Japanese too since i find some of the American voices annoying. Mononoke - some of the voices are annoying too. The graphic violence and stupid politic message keep me from loving it. Nausicca is long and tedious and if its the one I’m thinking of, also pushing a environazi message.


11 posted on 02/17/2012 7:42:48 AM PST by Mercat
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To: struggle

I like Princess Mononoke (I just kind of ignored the envirowhacko message), although I really didn’t understand the ending.

The Japanese are some talented but bizarre storytellers.


12 posted on 02/17/2012 7:46:02 AM PST by Future Snake Eater (Don't stop. Keep moving!)
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To: Mercat

The amateur palentologist in me went crazy with that scene. ;)


13 posted on 02/17/2012 7:50:34 AM PST by C19fan
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To: C19fan

Looks like the same folks who did Howl’s Moving Castle. Even my wife likes that one.


14 posted on 02/17/2012 7:53:21 AM PST by Dead Corpse (Steampunk- Yesterday's Tomorrow, Today)
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To: Mercat

Well, my wife’s Japanese and we all speak Japanese at home. Spirited Away was just ok and was kind of the decline side of Miyazaki in my opinion. My kids agree with me as they like the real rare oldies that have never been released in the US like Ponpoko.

I saw Mononoke-hime in the theaters in Japan in 1997 or so and it was awesome. Nausicca is long but the non-Disney release is longer and way better. As to enviro-nazi messages, Miyazaki is always pushing them, though I don’t really think the Nausicca is environmental as much as anti-weapons of mass destruction. Watch his first anime though, Future Boy Conan, it’s all environazi.


15 posted on 02/17/2012 8:48:27 AM PST by struggle (http://killthegovernment.wordpress.com/)
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To: struggle; Mercat
I saw Mononoke-hime in the theaters in Japan in 1997 or so and it was awesome. Nausicca is long but the non-Disney release is longer and way better. As to enviro-nazi messages, Miyazaki is always pushing them, though I don’t really think the Nausicca is environmental as much as anti-weapons of mass destruction. Watch his first anime though, Future Boy Conan, it’s all environazi.

The Disney release is the long version. There had been a previous release by New World films in the 80s which cut everything fron the story which wasn't death and violence, which created a misleading storyline and a even more misleading poster


Can you spot the only character on the poster who actually appeared in the movie?
Yes it's Princess Zandra, in the upper right.

Miyazaki was somewhat miffed by this version, and when Disney wanted to release it, he said "No cuts" - every frame had to be retained.

Ironically by this time he had actually abandoned the environazi message of the cut scenes which had so impressed the WWF back in 84, and as the story developed in the manga it turned out the the whole backstory as presented in the anime (blue clad messiah prophesised to lead humanity to a naturally healed Earth) was a lie.

THE END OF NAUSICAA by Marc Hairston WARNING link contains spoilers to the manga)

Marc: I'll go fast. Rush, rush! Now that you've seen the movie, I want to tell you a bit about how the manga ends. I won't go all the way to the very end, I don't want this to be a complete spoiler, but I want to show you how Miyazaki worked out some of the themes and conflicts. As you know, you've only read the first quarter of the whole story. It took him almost 14 years to write the whole thing. And over the period, the story changed as Miyazaki himself changed. He started out as a leftist as young man (well before he started working on Nausicaa), a Marxist, someone who believed that, with the proper social conditions, humanity could achieve a perfectly peaceful and just society. Some of that idealism was still in him when he started the manga. But his opinions changed overthis time. Ironically, given the current war in Kosovo [remember this lecture was done just after the NATO attack began in March 1999], one of the major influences on him was watching the old Yugoslavian republic, which had supposedly transcended the racial and ethnic hatreds, descend back into sectarian fighting as the country disintegrated. So the story in the manga took on a darker and more morally ambiguous tone.

And that's a massive understatement - basically whatever Nausicaa decides to do will result in genocide. "probably shouldn't have said that." < /Hagrid>

And it's the view of a imperfect world, with the works of mankind being as natural as "unspoiled nature" that is behind Miyazaki's later works like Mononoke, Spirited Away, & Ponyo.

That said Miyazaki's demand that the original Nausicca be uncut is artistically correct. It's still his masterpiece, with all the features that cahracterize his work present.

16 posted on 02/17/2012 9:55:31 AM PST by Oztrich Boy (Society is well governed when the people obey the magistrates, and the magistrates obey the law)
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To: struggle

Pom Poko was released in English here in the US in August of 2005. We rented and watched it from our local library after the release. BTW: Pom Poko IS Miyazaki’s story, but the actual film was directed by Isao Takahata - which is why some wouldn’t know it was a Miyazaki film (he’s listed as the author of the story and a Producer on the film).


17 posted on 02/17/2012 9:57:48 AM PST by LibertyRocks
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To: struggle

Grave of the Fireflies isn’t a Miyazaki film. Grave of the Fireflies was written by Akiyuki Nosaka, and the film was directed by Isao Takahata. When the movie was first released in Japan it was paired with a Miyazaki film - My neighbor Totoro - so perhaps that’s where the confusion comes from? :)


18 posted on 02/17/2012 10:16:31 AM PST by LibertyRocks
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To: LibertyRocks

>>Pom Poko was released in English here in the US in August of 2005. We rented and watched it from our local library after the release. BTW: Pom Poko IS Miyazaki’s story, but the actual film was directed by Isao Takahata - which is why some wouldn’t know it was a Miyazaki film (he’s listed as the author of the story and a Producer on the film).

Wow, I had no idea. We showed it to our daughter before it was released in America, so I had no idea they eventually released it here. I wonder what they did with all the tanuki testicles, lol.

I’d encourage y’all to try and find a copy of Future Boy Conan (Mirai Shonen Conan). It’s a 30-40 episode long tv series that is really Miyazaki’s best work. His Lupin III was great too, as was Totoro. Every time I watch Totoro it takes me back to my old place in Arashiyama.


19 posted on 02/17/2012 10:23:13 AM PST by struggle (http://killthegovernment.wordpress.com/)
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To: LibertyRocks

>>Grave of the Fireflies isn’t a Miyazaki film.

You’re right, I just assumed that if it’s produced by Miyazaki, it’s his work at least indirectly.


20 posted on 02/17/2012 10:27:58 AM PST by struggle (http://killthegovernment.wordpress.com/)
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To: LibertyRocks

PS - I wouldn’t know ANY of these things, or even be remotely familiar with them if it weren’t for my children. They loved all kinds of Japanimation and related subjects due to Sailor Moon, Card Captors, Digimon, Pokemon, etc... (you get the point, LOL). 3 of my 4 daughters are artists, so I’ve been surrounded by anime and manga for over a decade now!

I definitely appreciate the more unique and artistically beautiful films like Miyazaki and Takahata’s films, but my knowledge is pretty limited to those. :)


21 posted on 02/17/2012 10:46:50 AM PST by LibertyRocks
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To: C19fan

One of my favorites was “Only Yesterday”. Very emotional ending...


22 posted on 02/17/2012 10:47:33 AM PST by mozarky2 (Ya never stand so tall as when ya stoop to stomp a statist!)
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To: struggle

I’ll pass along the titles to my daughters - I’m sure they’ll greatly appreciate the suggestions! They will also be jealous that you’ve lived in Japan! :)


23 posted on 02/17/2012 10:49:43 AM PST by LibertyRocks
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To: LibertyRocks

Yeah, but when beer costs @$2 a can and a head of lettuce is @$4, there’s not much to love about Japan, lol.


24 posted on 02/17/2012 11:50:45 AM PST by struggle (http://killthegovernment.wordpress.com/)
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To: LibertyRocks

Some real other rare and good anime that I like are “Planetes,” “Ashita no Joe,” “Patlabor,” any of the old Rumiko Takahashi like “Urusei Yatsura,” and any of the old anime is really great like “Touch” and “Yawara” and such.

Great stuff.


25 posted on 02/17/2012 11:56:15 AM PST by struggle (http://killthegovernment.wordpress.com/)
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To: Oztrich Boy

The manga is one of my favourite comic series of all time. Fantastic story telling and the art looks like he chained himself to a desk for 20 hours a day, just fantastic.

If anyone only knows Nausicaa from the movie they should check out the comic, it expands that world radically in scope, especially plot and characterization. One of my favourite depictions of a truly good person in Nausicaa, as well as all the characters that get some form of redemption.

Freegards


26 posted on 02/17/2012 12:02:43 PM PST by Ransomed
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To: struggle; Slings and Arrows

I love Totoro. Somehow I always forget that one. The cat bus is genius.


27 posted on 02/17/2012 12:08:49 PM PST by Mercat
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