Isao Takahata, Studio Ghibli's second best-known filmmaker and co-founder, adapts Akiyuki Nosaka's short story of the same name to great effect, using animation to create a film that emphasizes the horrors of war better than most live-action films. [21 Jun 2016]
This is my favorite anime of all time. It is a terribly sad true story of 2 children's attempt to survive in a post war Japan. It shows the Japanese citizens' experiences in this conflict, which unfortunately has been largely ignored by the history books in the West.
What an amazing film! Very rarely have I been moved this much by an animated film. Watership Down yes, Bambi yes, Secret of NIMH yes, Beauty and the Beast yes, Land Before Time yes, but Grave of the Fireflies is in a different league. A film that is once seen and never forgotten, a film that is beautiful, haunting and emotionally devastating. It is slow moving perhaps and "depressing" but it is very poignant as well. I find it very difficult to fight back tears at the film's end. The animation is amazingly detailed, the backgrounds and characters are drawn with such care and you just marvel at the detail that goes into it. The music is both haunting and melancholic and one of the main reasons why the film is as it is. The story is harrowing, as it details Seita and Setsuko's hopelessness. The characters are easy to relate, Setsuko isn't precocious or obnoxious, instead she is quite cute, and Seita shows real love for his sister as well as being a strong protagonist. There are many memorable sequences, but one that springs to mind is the one with the nocturnal fireflies, which is something of true melancholic beauty. Overall, a masterpiece, pure and simple. 10/10 Bethany Cox