I am no better than an ostrich with her head in the sand when it comes to knowing about current movies. Fortunately my husband is more of an attentive hawk. Our family visits the movie theater maybe twice a year. And when we do, it had better be good.
Last week, my husband surprised us with a movie on a school night (trying to make up for going to a conference in Florida without us I think). He wouldn’t tell us what we were going to see, and I couldn’t think of any kid movies that were currently out (surprised?). The Secret World of Arrietty was definitely worth our time and money and since we went on $1 popcorn night, that was an added bonus.
This Japanese animated film is beautiful. Through colors, music, and details, it is clear the producers view story telling as an art, not as pure entertainment. (When was the last time you saw animation that felt like art?) The movie, inspired by the children’s book The Borrowers, tells the story of a tiny (think bug-sized) family who live carefully in our full-sized world.
And here’s the best part if you have girls. The main character is a 14-year-old girl (but the movie isn’t a girly movie). She is brave, adventurous, smart and real. She isn’t looking for a boyfriend, trying to get into the in-crowd, or rude to her parents. Her parents are not shallow, neglectful, or mean. Rather they are caring, patient and kind–struggling with letting Arrietty have more independence. There is so much in this film to love–partly because it sharply contrasts with the typical characters and plot lines in most kids’ movies.
I cannot think of a single thing that will make even the most conservative parent grimace in this film–it’s G rating is accurate. My only hesitation in recommending it to everyone: the movie can be slow and I wonder how well it would hold the attention of a child under six.
Go, enjoy this one with the whole family. We will definitely be watching it again someday….