based on the events during ww2 in japan, the story centered at seita and his little sister setsuko in their struggle for survival. they lost their mother in a air bombing while their father was away in the navy (there is no news on his whereabout). later, they stayed with their aunts, and you will witness that war could turns kindness into harsh and often cruel gesture.
when things grew more uncomfortable, seita decides to leave the house along with setsuko. they decide to live inside some abandoned mine, surely freedom of living felt good for a while. but with limited food and cold shelter, soon they would meet their ruthless fate.
beside the good theme and great animation. this movie also packs great characterization, seita character was full with the tenacity, idealism, pride for his country and love for his sister. while setsuko is truly lovable. you will notice some great moments, when the kids play at the beach or when seita catches firefles to light the shelter. also some scenes where silence echoed the animation perfectly.
you know at the very beginning that both of them died. but along the movie, you just can’t help to hope that they would have different destiny. a chance to live and perhaps, happiness in the end.
when the ending credit rolls there is a long silence. and it broke when my wife said “why can’t he just swallow his pride and stay with her aunt? then perhaps his sister would have a better chance of survival…” a regret for the character bleak destiny is underlining her statement.
i wish that too darling. but one thing for sure. i learnt few lesson watching this movie, and i am sure if you have got the chance to watch it. you would learn the lesson as well.
all in all, this movie is utterly poignant. drains you out emotionally as well. but to put it all in words. i have to say that this movie is “beautifully moving”
The story is based on the semi-autobiographic novel by the same name, whose author, Nosaka, lost his sister due to malnutrition in 1945 wartime Japan. He blamed himself for her death and wrote the story so as to make amends to her and help him accept the tragedy.