Still have not seen a film that is more sad than this one. It's almost unbearable. Too sad to see with dry eyes. I cried buckets worth of salty tears. Should be shown to War Generals and Governments all around the world. If not for unnecessary pain and suffering at least for small children, you aggressive people. At least for children. We're all children. Don't kill us off. This is an absolute masterpiece. Hats off.
Originally released on a double bill with Miyazaki's gorgeously cute My Neighbor Totoro, you could not wish for a greater contrast than this harrowing story in which orphaned siblings struggle to survive alone in the last months of World War II. Takahata illuminates this masterpiece with moments of sheer beauty but on the whole it is brutal and unbearably poignant; in fact, I'm not sure I could sit through it again..
Despite being anime, this movie is the most emotionally investing and moving of war film that I've ever seen. No movie has ever truly made me cry harder until I saw this. The unflinchingly true depiction of war from the perspective of the innocents has never been more pronounced in film until this film. As hard as it is to watch, everyone in the world must see it. What it has to say is too important to ignore.
The saddest war movie I've ever seen, made especially sad by the strength, resilience, and joie de vire our protagonists demonstrate.
The best non-Miyazaki Studio Ghibli movie; and ranks right up with the best that Miyazaki made.
Highest rated film among the MUBIers I follow, and it's not hard to see why. One awful death refracted through the modern history of a nation, the ethics of familial love and the physical intimacies of existence that children know best. More honest about its combination of sentiment and gravity than Sirk, Borzage or Spielberg, and more ruthless too. The last shot is as expansively poetic as any I've ever seen.