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Arrietty the Borrower (2010)

Arrietty the Borrower (2010)


Starring the voices of

Mirai Shida

Ryunosuke Kamiki

Shinobu Otake

Keiko Takeshita

Directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi

Arrietty is a nice emotional ride of a movie with every setting crafted to pull at your emotional stings and deliver a plot that will have you invested in the well-being of all the characters involved. Arrietty is Studio Ghibli adaption of the Mary Norton 1950s – early 1980s book series called The Borrowers. The first take I had of this book series is the 1997 British-American live-action comedy adaptation named The Borrowers which was not as fantastic as this. Here with the well crafted arm of Hayao Miyazaki this screenplay to which this fantasy animation is based is one which I believe many should see, not so much comedy, but it is suited well for adult viewing. Another magnificent thing about this movie is the weight the musical score added to the drama.

The movie takes us to a world of little people known as The Borrowers. We specifically see the life of a family of borrowers, three people father, mother and daughter Arrietty. Arrietty will be fourteen soon and it was time she went on her first borrowing adventure.

Borrowers go into the home of humans and in their words borrow their stuff, like food and other things they could carry. Since they are relatively the size of a human thumb, the things they take in the case of food is of little significant.

The home these three live soon had an additional human occupant, a young sick boy named Shō. He is very observant and regardless of how much Arrietty and her father tried to be careful and avoid being detected he saw them. Soon the curiousness of Arrietty got the better of her, against the advise of her parents to stay away from humans she went to go find Shō. He visit to his almost led to her death, but they became friends and we learn more about him, and also about her.

The plot then revolves around their weird friendship and the survival of the family who fear that they could be the last of their race left.

This is one of those animations by Studio Ghibli that Miyazaki had a hand in the production (here he wrote the screenplay) but did not direct. The movie was directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi and this is his debut directorial work, one of which I will say was a fantastic job. The musical score was done by Cécile Corbel a French musician and her inclusion marked the first time a non-Japanese composer worked with the studio.

The movie was both a critical and commercial success.


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