Another great film from Hayao Miyazaki!
(Possible Spoiler Alert)
Yesterday, I had the pleasure of seeing the latest film from Studio Ghibli. Ponyo was creative, imaginative, and visually stunning. As with all of Miyazaki's films the layouts were amazing. I particularly loved the house on the cliff that Sosuke lived in. One of my favorite things was to watch how they animated Sosuke. The detail that really made him feel like a little kid. I especially like the shot were he has to duck under what appears to be a bamboo fence to get to his school. All of the work with the ocean was beautiful, it made my hand hurt just thinking of animating all of those waves and tiny bubbles. One of the most breath taking scenes was when Ponyo was running on giant fish that were like ocean waves to catch Sosuke.
As an animator with a preference to create hand drawn animation, this was most exciting for me to see. I can't remember the last time I went to the theater to see a hand drawn animated film. (except for the animated scenes in Enchanted) It got me even more excited for The Princess and the Frog. Not to mention the fact that Toy Story 1 and 2 are being rereleased in 3D for a few weeks this fall. It is shaping up to be a good year for animation and animation fans.
Probably my favorite thing about Ponyo and all of Miyazaki's films for that matter is it's imaginative plot. Throughout my studies in the animation field I have been told time and time again that when you are putting together a story for animation think if it can be told in live action. Because if the film can be easily made in live action then what is the point of telling it in animation. Well, I would not even want to think of how to pull a film like Ponyo off in live action. It's flowing movement and magical ambiance show us animation at its finest.
Unfortunately, there weren't too many people in the theater. In my opinion, this was due to the fact that there was very little advertisement for the film. The first time I saw anything on TV for Ponyo was on the day before it hit theaters at around two in the morning. You would think the Disney channel could replace one of the hundreds of Hanna Montana ads with a little something for Ponyo. But, all in all I had a great time and thanks go out to Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli. I can't wait for your next film.