A devastating and honest drama about the casualties of war and their victims. It is made even more powerful by the fact that it is animated and have such likeable characters. It is probably the most depressing and sad film I have seen and it pushes straight into my gut and rips out my heartstrings at the same time. It will leave a lasting impact on me.
This anime hits you from your deepest feelings. Extreme difficulties of being a war children, being instantly an adult to protect their loved ones and people's behaviour to others in war times... If you have a little brother or sister, I think this anime will destroy your heart more than the others. Takahata didn't avoid from showing the reality in most brutal way. Absolutely perfect.
A relentlessly bleak story of a young orphaned boy desperately trying to take care of himself and his young sister during WWII. The relationship between the two siblings is undoubtedly beautiful and touching but the tale is unsatisfying to me. The tragedy of children orphaned by war is vast but the story has little to say about that beyond "this is really sad". Which it surely is, but I wanted more. It gets a B-.