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Grave of the Fireflies (Remastered Edition) [Blu-ray]
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Grave of the Fireflies [Blu-ray]
Isao Takahata's powerful antiwar film has been praised by critics wherever it has been screened around the world. When their mother is killed in the firebombing of Tokyo near the end of World War II, teenage Seita and his little sister Setsuko are left on their own: their father is away, serving in the Imperial Navy. The two children initially stay with an aunt, but she has little affection for them and resents the time and money they require. The two children set up housekeeping in a cave by a stream, but their meager resources are quickly exhausted, and Seita is reduced to stealing to feed his sister. Despite his efforts, she succumbs to malnutrition. Seita painfully makes his way back to the crowded city, where he quietly dies in a crowded railway station. The strength of the film lies in Takahata's evenhanded portrayal of the characters. A sympathetic doctor, the greedy aunt, the disinterested cousins all know there is little they can do for Seita and Setsuko. Their resources, like their country's, are already overtaxed: anything they spare endangers their own survival. As in Barefoot Gen, no mention is made of Japan's role in the war as an aggressor; but the depiction of the needless suffering endured by its victims transcends national and ideological boundaries. Takahata's extraordinary film suggests a flower on the grave of countless children who, like Seika and Setsuko, died needlessly in wars they neither fought nor understood. (Unrated: suitable for ages 12 and older, violence, emotionally intense material) --Charles Solomon
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In the last months of World War II an American fire bomb raid destroys the port city of Kobe, where almost all of the buildings are made of wood. Seita (Tsutomu Tatsumi/J. Robert Spencer) is a 14-year old boy who survives along with his 4-year old sister Setsuko (Ayano Shiraishi/Rhoda Chrosite). They were separated from their mother during the raid, which spares them from her fate. Their father is a navy officer serving in the Imperial Navy at sea, and the two kids go off to live with an aunt. With both his school and the war factory where we worked gone, Seita does not know what to do. So he tries to take care of his sister. But his aunt constantly berates him and after trading his mother's kimonos for race, Seita decides to take Setsuko and live in a couple of caves dug for bomb shelters. For a while their live remains idyllic, but then there is nothing left to trade for food, and no food to be bought for money. Seita has to steal food to survive and Setsuko is getting weaker and weaker from hunger.Read more ›
"Grave of the Fireflies" is the sad tale, based on the semi-autographical book "Hotaru no Haka" by NOSAKA Akiyuki, which tells of the author's experiences during the aftermath of World War II, in which he lost his little sister to malnutrition, for which he blamed himself.
In "Grave of the Fireflies," 14 year old Seita and his 4 year old sister Setsuko lose their mother after the Allied forces bomb their village. Their father is in the Navy and at sea, and hasn't been heard from in a long while. Without going through the entire plot, suffice it to say that the story is a moving and frightening look back at the lives of two young children who should never have to face such horrors at their tender ages. The tone and mood of this heartwrenching piece is set from the very first scene, when Seita utters the fateful words "September 21st, 1945. That's the day that I died."
Before watching "Grave of the Fireflies" I'd heard that it'd been referred to by many, like movie reviewer Roger Ebert, as one of the greatest war films made, and after watching it, I have to agree.Read more ›
For those who felt nothing, or disgusted, or even slept through the movie, it probably means that the society around you has lost its compassion and there is a high probability that you live alone, rarely talk to the neighbours, wake up at six and go to work at nine and lunch at twelve and back to home at seven. For someone NOT to cry watching this, truly you have lost your soul to the cold society.
I did not read any reviews beforehand save for the one that's on the box, and I was slightly surprised when the movie started with a voice announcing that he died, and showing the main character's corpse. Normally this would turn off any viewer, but what comes after intrigues me, and ultimately, crushed what remained inside me that I claimed to be compassion - and later rebuilt another. This movie is not sweet, it is not happy. Even when the brother and sister go around gathering fireflies to light their bomb shelter, it was not sweet. It was saddening; nowadays when you have no other lighting option you'd just go around a store and grab some candles and pay for it. These young souls had to gather fireflies, which in my personal experience are hard to catch.
And isn't it just like what they are experiencing? Something that they needed the most but it is so hard to catch or achieve, and when they did, it only lasted for a while.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Visually stunning. A story that leaves an impression upon your heart.Published 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
My son bought this on Amazon. It was the sweetest, but saddest movie I have ever watched. What an incredibly well written and beautifully animated movie!Published 14 months ago by Julie Turcotte
a second world war movie like no other...couldn't stop thinking about it for days after.Published 15 months ago by Meegan