Saturday, August 13, 2005

I Will Admit To Crying At A Cartoon..

When you think of cartoon movies you think of bright colours, big eyes, anthropomorphic objects that speak with amusing accents, franchising, and maybe a little singing and dancing.

What you don't expect is film's first spoken line to be, "In 1946, on the 20th of October, I died."

That line was delivered dead-pan by the ghost of a 14 year old boy. He'd just died of malnutrition whilst slumped against a pillar in a train station. The ghost of the boy then exited the station to join the ghost of his four year old sister waiting outside, also once dead of malnutrition. The film then continues on to recount their story. That is, the story of two children as they starve to death.

There are a few minutes of light relief at the beginning while the children are with their mother. The sun shines, the children laugh, the weather is fair and the washing is out to dry. This idyllic imagery is soon disturbed though, due to total destruction of the city by fire bombing.

While the city and the city's people burn, the children are separated from the mother. Soon after the city turns to blackened ashe, the boy returns to his local school turned medical shelter. He finds his mother's body, wrapped in blood-stained bandages, maggots infesting her dead flesh, piercing screams of pain echoing through the corridors.

This is not all to say images of happiness were entirely absent from the film. Before succumbing to malnutrition, the little girl is a delightfully energetic, fun-filled character. Pulling faces at her older bother, playing games, experiencing the world around her with an innocent, bright-eyed wonder.

Indeed her playful frolicking is only marginally off-set by one's knowledge of her imminent death.

The film was recommended to me by a female friend. Said it's one of her favorites the depressing cow.

I will admit to crying at a cartoon to get a woman to sleep with me!


At 7:12 AM, Anonymous Richard S. said...

Real film!

If anyone needs a good, depressing film for those times when a bottle of spirits just doesn't quite do it;

Grave of the Fireflies

At 11:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


What is it with girls fighting?



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