Ponyo is an animated movie with a lot of eye-popping animation. Its story and characters are filled with goodness. It’s one of those movies that you can watch on a bad day, or even when you don’t know what to do.
Gake no Ue no Ponyo
If you like anime with an ecological theme, then you should watch Gake no Ue no Ponyo. This Japanese animated series focuses on the health of the world’s oceans. Its opening sequence is very sobering, with mountains of trash and debris floating in the ocean. It also shows how a character, named Fujimoto, has spent his life trying to repair the damage that civilization has done to the oceans.
While there are some problems with the plot and the characters, the art is gorgeous and the animation is amazing. The opening opera singer is absolutely magnificent, and the score is excellent. Unfortunately, the story tries to be too much like a Fantasia-esque musical and ends up being quite boring.
Hayao Miyazaki’s animation
This animated film retells the classic Hans Christian Andersen story of The Little Mermaid. Noah Cyrus voices the titular pony, who has a love life in which he risks everything to be with human boy Sosuke. This decision upsets nature and causes chaos. In order to fix his problems, Ponyo consults the Goddess of the Ocean, voiced by Cate Blanchett.
As an animated film, Ponyo uses stylization and exaggeration to convey the character’s mood and interactions with its human companion, Sosuke. The way Ponyo renders waves, for example, is clearly inspired by a Japanese woodblock print called The Great Wave of Kanagawa. The animation also conveys volumes and energy.
The English dub
The English dub of Ponyo is a re-imagining of the Japanese anime series. This new anime series tells the story of a goldfish princess who wishes to be human and encounters a human boy named Sosuke. Through Sosuke’s help, Ponyo becomes more human-like and breaks free from her kingdom of the ocean. Her journey to humanhood includes spilling magical elixirs from her fish tank.
The English dub of Ponyo is very well done. John Lasseter is in charge of supervising the dub, and the cast includes a few familiar faces. The cast includes actresses Melissa Mathison and the Jonas Brothers’ offspring, as well as Miley Cyrus’ sister Noah.