Gake no ue no Ponyo (崖の上のポニョ)

Directed by Hayao Miyazaki
Written by Hayao Miyazaki
Voice acting: Yuria Nara, Hiroki Doi, Tomoko Yamaguchi, George Tokoro, Kazushige Nagashima, Yuki Amami
Release year: 2008
IMDB Rating: 8.0

When a goldfish stranded off the shore of small fishing town, a little boy named Sosuke rescued it and named the goldfish Ponyo. He made a promise to protect Ponyo forever of which made Ponyo fell in love with Sosuke. Accidently, Ponyo came in contact with Sosuke’s blood, and this later enabled her to transform her into a human. Sosuke lost Ponyo for a while when Fujimoto who apparently is Ponyo’s father, took her back into the ocean. Despite her father’s attempt to keep Ponyo in his underwater castle, Ponyo managed to escape and with the help of her sisters went out to find Sosuke. This however, created a great imbalance and threatened the very survival of earth.

Gake no ue no Ponyo (or Ponyo of the Top of the Cliff) from Hayao Miyazaki may not be as good as Spirited Away nor the 2004 Howl’s Moving Castle, but it still impressive enough to captivate the audience throughout the course of the film. As usual, the environmental issue was raised and this time regarding how humans have been polluting the ocean. The plot is simple and light but very much enjoyable. The visuals were great as usual and the voice acting by the seiyus were also impressive (sorry to Disney, but I always prefer to watch Japanese version rather than the dubbed version of any anime movies). Finally, at the end of the movie, the audience will surely enjoy the theme song performed by Fujioka Fujimaki and Nozomi Ohashi (NOT the version performed by Frankie Jonas and Noah Cyrus).

In Japan, Ponyo won the 8th annual Tokyo Anime Awards, including Anime of the year and the Best domestic feature. Hayao Miyazaki himself won the best director and best original story. Additionally, Noboru Yoshida won the best art direction for this movie. As from me, I award the movie the rating of 8.0 out of 10.0 for its beautiful animation, captivating plot, excellent voice acting and great theme song. Oh and you don’t have to be a child to love this movie.
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