During the fervently nationalist months leading up to World War II, a rebellious teenager is transferred to a new primary school in a small Inland Sea town. He vies with the school’s reigning bully, who takes a romantic interest in his older stepsister.
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Mischievous and often extremely amusing, this is one of my favourite Obayashi films. I happened upon the black and white version and it looked sublime. Vaguely reminiscent of an early Ozu comedy with great comic performances from the young cast. The wacky humour might grate for some, but I found it worked very well for the most part and made the final tragic scenes that much more poignant. A gentle up yours to WW2.