Each Monday, film fan and champion of the downtrodden Jordan Sims picks out an overlooked gem or unfairly maligned masterpiece – and gives them the spotlight they so dearly deserve.
This week, it’s the turn of incredible 1988 animated World War II movie Grave Of The Fireflies. Here are five reasons why it’s an underrated classic.
1. It topples Disney
Based on IMDb’s Highest Rated animated films list, Grave of the Fireflies comes third – beating many of Disney and Pixar’s most popular films, including: Finding Nemo, Monsters Inc and the atrocity that is Frozen.
2. Its animators are hard as nails
Isao Takahata, one of the animators on the film, actually experienced World War II first hand. After surviving bomb-blasts, animating a 90 minute film should have been a piece of cake. Even more of a piece of cake than writing the lyrics to Frozen.
3. It’s a big deal in Japan
Such a big deal in fact, that the film has launched several products from its popularity. It’s twin picture, My Neighbour Totoro, achieved classic status after their double release, and even scene-authentic tinned fruit has been on sale in Japan since the film came out. Has Frozen ever launched a range of tinned fruit? I think not Elsa. I think not.
4. It has a very simple (but effective) soundtrack
The film’s soundtrack features one song (the beautiful ‘Home Sweet Home’, performed by Amelita Galli-Curci), but the desolate nature of the music leaves the audience with a real sense of foreboding throughout the picture – a constant subliminal reminder that the characters we are watching are alone. Frozen has a couple of catchy songs that 8-year-olds can sing in high pitched voices at birthday parties.
5. It’s the saddest film out there
We were all sad when Mufasa died. We were all sad when Andy gave his toys to the little girl. We all know what it’s like to feel sad at a movie – but you do not know true sadness until you have seen this film. A brother fights to keep his sibling alive in Japan circa 1945, and if you don’t shed a tear at any point, you are made of stone. Also, Frozen sucks.
More underrated classics:
- The Adventures of Tintin
- The Invention Of Lying
- The Room
- The Money Pit
- Starship Troopers
Share this on Twitter: