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Archive for June, 2015

The Cat Returns

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So I finally sat down to watch this one. I must confess, I have been avoiding it. I love Whisper of the Heart so much, it was hard to believe anything could live up to that movie, especially with a different director.

And it doesn’t.is a deep

But that is because it is a different kind of movie.

In Whisper of the Heart, we see Shizuku’s dreams and imaginations, but in the real world the Barron is only a figurine that inspires her. In The Cat Returns, the kingdom of cats does intrude on the normal, everyday world Haru inhabits. And the Barron is indeed real – which is a good thing, since Haru needs all the help he can offer to escape the clutches of the King of Cats who wants to marry her off to his son in gratitude for saving said son.

The art is serviceable, though not as spectacular as some Studio Ghibli movies. Still, the Barron’s home and the Kingdom of Cats are quite amazing. As for the story itself, as I said, this is a different kind of story. I still think Whisper of the Heart is a deeper story, but Haru is a great heroine who gains a spine by the end of the movie, and it is wonderful to see her interacting with the Barron. I was delighted from beginning to end.

So is this the very best of the Studio Ghibli movies? No. But it is a most worthy entry, and if you enjoy Studio Ghibli you will not regret seeing this one.

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So in the most recent volume we have one smaller story, one larger story, and one side story. In the smaller story, Natsume has to mediate between two Yokai who are competing for their master’s attention. However, not all is as it seems. In the larger story, Natori asks Natsume for help. It seems an old exorcist recently died, and his non-magical family want to sell the house. However, they realize there may be magical items left of a dangerous nature, so they are letting any exorcists who want to try and find the old exorcist study. Neither Natori or Natsume like the idea of the Matoba clan getting their hands on whatever the old exorcist has, so Natsume agrees to team up with Natori. Of course it is more complicated than that, and by the end Natsume makes a decision and acts on it – a decision which could have major repercussions. The side story is from the point of view of a girl who accidentally gets involved with a Youkai and who Natsume helps.

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