Watch From Up on Poppy Hill
- 1 hr 35 min
"From Up on Poppy Hill" takes us back to the early 1960s, where the youth of Japan, still reeling from the effects of World War II, are looking forward to an even brighter future. The story focuses on Umi, a high school girl who lives in a boarding house overlooking Yokohama Bay, and is responsible for raising her younger siblings while her mother studies abroad. To help support her family, Umi raises flags every morning as a message to the passing ships in the bay, in honor of her father, who died in the Korean War. One day, she meets a handsome, charismatic boy named Shun, who is also raising flags at the school. It's not long before the two teenagers are drawn to each other, and they begin to spend more time together. As Umi and Shun get to know each other, they begin to uncover a shared history between their families, and the mystery surrounding their past becomes a major plot point in the movie. Meanwhile, the school's clubhouse, which has a history of its own, is scheduled for demolition, and Umi and Shun work together to try to save it. The movie is a heartwarming tale of young love, family, and the resilience of the human spirit in the face of adversity. The film's vivid animation and beautiful soundtrack capture the nostalgic feel of the 1960s, and the story is filled with well-drawn and relatable characters. One of the movie's main themes is the conflict between tradition and modernity. The societal changes happening in Japan during the 1960s are reflected in the conflict between Umi's desire to preserve her family's traditions, and Shun's interest in the modern and unknown. This theme is played out in the clash between the students and the adults around them, who are hesitant to embrace change. "From Up on Poppy Hill" was directed by Goro Miyazaki, the son of legendary Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki. The film was produced by Studio Ghibli, the Japanese animation studio responsible for beloved films like "Spirited Away," "Princess Mononoke," and "My Neighbor Totoro." The film's hand-drawn animation style is classic Studio Ghibli, with intricate attention to detail and gorgeous sweeping landscapes. The voice acting is also top-notch, with Sarah Bolger bringing a genuine sweetness to the role of Umi, and Anton Yelchin delivering a charming and laid-back performance as Shun. Chris Noth also shines as Umi's father-figure, who runs the boarding house where she lives. Overall, "From Up on Poppy Hill" is a beautiful, nostalgic film that captures the essence of a changing Japan through the eyes of two young people who are just discovering their place in the world. The story is charming and heartwarming, and the animation is a true work of art. Fans of Studio Ghibli and anime in general will be delighted by this film, and anyone who loves a good coming-of-age story will find plenty to enjoy as well.