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The Monitor

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The Student News Site of Darnell-Cookman Middle-High School

The Monitor

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The Student News Site of Darnell-Cookman Middle-High School

The Monitor

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Has Marvel gone downhill?
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Mean Girls (2024)
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Movie Review: “The Boy and the Heron”

Hayao Miyazaki’s film will be cherished in Ghibli fans’ hearts
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There are multiple spectacular films from Studio Ghibli that just depict the raw aesthetics of Japanese animation films. It is intended to create an immersive animated environment that can be heartfelt and whimsical or tragic and depressing. Studio Ghibli has fans covered with some of the best anime of all time, including “Kiki’s Delivery Service,” “Spirited Away,” “My Neighbor Totoro,” “Princess Mononoke,” and many more. Hayao Miyazaki, the famous director, has been waiting to retire after directing several Studio Ghibli films for at least six decades, from 1963 to 2023. On December 8, 2023, Studio Ghibli produced a film that is Hayao Miyazaki’s final film, “The Boy and the Heron.”

Synopsis:

Mahito, a young 12-year-old boy, struggles to adjust to life in a new town after the death of his biological mother, Himi, who was murdered in a hospital fire in Tokyo during the Pacific War in 1943. Years later, Mahito’s father, Shoichi, remarries his late wife’s younger sister, Natsuko. They move into her residence in the countryside where they are accompanied by many old maids. Mahito is unconcerned with the affection of his new stepmother Natsuko. Mahito’s life was ordinary until a talking heron informs him that his mother is still alive. In search of her, he enters an abandoned tower, which transports him to another world with many twists and turns along the way.

In the other world, Mahito encounters Himi, his original mother but when she was a child, and his Great Uncle, the creator and ruler of the other world and responsible for keeping peace and balance. Himi tries to assist Mahito in his escape from the otherworld, but he refuses. His great-uncle tries to persuade Mahito to stay and inherit rulership over the world, but Mahito also refuses. Despite a lack of regard for his stepmother, Natsuko, he is willing to save her because of his father’s undying love for Natsuko.

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The Bottom Line:

The Boy and the Heron is a two-hour film requiring considerable patience. The first hour is likely a little too long, with several plot points repeated more than necessary before Mahito begins his adventure. Although the slow pacing improves with time as Mahito’s character matures from him accepting and conquering the difficulties of moving on from the PTSD he suffers in accepting the death of a loved one, his mother. The film is rewarded by passionate ending scenes and an aspiration for adulthood. I truly wished there was more screen time that developed the characters; I found it difficult to empathize with some of the characters. However, this film is entertaining since it contains some humor and action, as well as spectacular visuals and incredibly unique and distinctive designs and concepts. It’s about the meaning of life and death, as well as moving on even when bad things happen. It is important to constantly strive forward. Rating: 4/5 stars.

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    Justin :)Jan 25, 2024 at 12:49 pm

    AMAZING KAITLYNN DUONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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