Grave of the Fireflies -------- My Personal Reactions

1582 WordsDec 14, 20047 Pages
Yet again this is another war movie. But unlike so many American blockbusters that treat brave soldiers as heroes (such as Pearl Harbor, We were soldiers, Windtalkers, etc.), this one addresses war's brutal impact on innocent civilians, especially children. With the war on Iraq now undergoing, this point has all the more relevance. Under the same American bombing, innocent Iraqi children are now suffering just as much as Seita and Setsuko in this movie have suffered, and even more, for the Iraqi people and land have long known the horrors of poverty, hunger and dictatorship. This essay, with at the beginning a brief summary and an elaboration of three classic scenes in the movie, is going to present to you the three dimensions of the…show more content…
In a scene where Setsuko cries violently for her Aunt not to take her mother's kimonos and sell them for food, the screen pans slowly and deliberately out of view of the main characters, where the orange glow of Seita's ghost appears. He covers his ears and cringes at his sister's tears, almost crying himself, but can do nothing to stop them. Even the few heart warming scenes in the movie are interrupted by the truth of what the brother and sister face. There is a scene about a half hour into the movie where Seita takes Setsuko to the beach for the first time. It is a beautiful display of sibling love, and flashbacks of warm memories from their family enter the story. They are all too brief, however, as Setsuko soon discovers a dead body from the war wrapped in straw. Seita tells her the man is asleep, and they do not go to the beach again. Another disquieting scene is of Seita's ghost watching himself carry his sleepy sister on his back, about to enter his Aunt's house for the first time. He watches, knowing full well what will come of it, but unable to stop it. Indeed, as Roger Ebert, the famous critic for Chicago Sun-times, wrote in his review essay of the movie, one of Grave of the Fireflies' greatest gifts is its patience; shots are held so we can think about them, characters are glimpsed in private moments, and atmosphere and nature are given time to establish themselves. The movie does not try to create

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