Anime Review: Grave of the Fireflies

Genre: Historical/Drama

Studio/Creator: Ghibli/Isao Takahata & Hayao Miyazaki

Running Time: 1 hour, 28 minutes

Distributor: Sentai Filmworks

Suggested Age: 13+

My Rating: 10/10

Summary: This is the story of Seita and his sister Setsuna, who are orphaned as a result of the air raids during World War II.  The movie tells of the failure of their struggle for survival.

Review: I really love this movie in spite of its sadness.  The story is beautifully told, with some very nice detail on the humans.  I like that the story presents war in all its ugliness, without sugar-coating anything.  Although I feel children should watch this movie, as it will present a good opportunity for discussion of the horrors of war, I feel discretion should be practiced.  This is actually a beautiful story, and if you can stomach the graphic, but necessary, depiction of starvation and suffering, you might be able to appreciate this movie.

Sub/Dub: Skip the dub. The sub is much better, especially since the VA’s portraying Seita and Setsuna are exactly the same age as the characters.  To me, this adds authenticity to the performance.

Music/Score: Very good and sets the tone well.

Violence: (7/10)–Near the beginning, we see the children’s mother’s corpse. There are also some intense bombings.

Language: (0/10)

Sexuality: (0/10)

Nudity: (1/10)–There is a scene where Seita is bathing Setsuna.

Related Media: This is based on the book by Akujuki Nosaka and is actually inspired by his own experiences.

  1. #1 by sweetpea616 on March 31, 2012 - 2:37 am

    This is definitely a beautiful, touching story.

    That being said, how about saying something about the family issues, and how that is a mixed blessing for the two kids? There also needs to be something else about the morality that appears in the movie (the brother stealing, the greed shown by the relatives, the indifference by the townspeople).

  2. #2 by aghammer99 on March 29, 2013 - 3:23 pm

    Beautiful movie and recommended to watch… once. How could you stand it twice.. so sad.

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