The son of a sailor, 5-year old Sosuke lives a quiet life on an oceanside cliff with his mother Lisa. One fateful day, he finds a beautiful goldfish trapped in a bottle on the beach and upon rescuing her, names her Ponyo. But she is no ordinary goldfish. The daughter of a masterful wizard and a sea goddess, Ponyo uses her father's magic to transform herself into a young girl and quickly falls in love with Sosuke, but the use of such powerful sorcery causes a dangerous imbalance in the world. As the moon steadily draws nearer to the earth and Ponyo's father sends the ocean's mighty waves to find his daughter, the two children embark on an adventure of a lifetime to save the world and fulfill Ponyo's dreams of becoming human.
|Release Date||:||July 19, 2008|
|Production Company||:||Studio Ghibli, The Yomiuri Shimbun, Hakuhodo DY Media Partners, Mitsubishi, Lawson, Taikei Office, Asahi Soft Drinks Company|
|Casts||:||Yuria Nara, Hiroki Doi, George Tokoro, Tomoko Yamaguchi, Yuki Amami, Kazushige Nagashima, Akiko Yano, Shinichi Hatori, Tokie Hidari, Eimi Hiraoka, Rumi Hiiragi, Tomoko Naraoka, Nozomi Ôhashi, Kazuko Yoshiyuki|
|Plot Keywords||:||mother, fish, cliff, father, mermaid, princess, anime|
While Hayao Miyazaki's movies have always been hit-or-miss with me with regards to story, they are unequivocally gorgeous to the eye, with characters of simple animation against a backdrop of artistic images. Ponyo sticks to that formula, with a lead character so adorable I want a plush doll of her and scenery so pretty it wouldn't look out of place framed up as a picture on a wall.
The story, on the other hand, I didn't enjoy quite as much as his last two wide-releases, Spirited Away and Howl's Moving Castle. It was just a tad too juvenile, coming across as more for kids and leaving adults to just enjoy the animation.
I was also disappointed that the score done by Joe Hisaishi, who also the scores for the above-mentioned two movies, wasn't nearly as memorable this time around. While I can't quite recall Howl's score now, I still remember it being one of the most beautiful I had ever heard. Ditto Spirited's - though I only remember it being very complementary to the movie. Maybe it's because Ponyo is more juvenile fare that the score isn't quite as haunting. In any case, this movie is still a must-watch for fans of anime or Miyazaki.