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I quite like the Ghibli films and bought this for my nephew. Having sat down and watching this, it is fair to say that this isn't quite the visual treat of the other films from this studio and the attention to detail in the drawing that usually marks their films is curiously absent.
Ghibli have an ability to produce films whilst are works of art and that are also surprisingly profound. They all seem to have a moral in the tale and if they have a failing, I suppose there is a cultural things where some elements can appear quite cruel or incorporate a level of violence that contrasts with the slapstick humour of say Tom & Jerry. There was one moment in this film where a host of unfatisfactory entertainers are thrown out of the window of a tower which did seem a bit alarming. this reservation aside, the story isn't bad and it did pass an agreable hour and a half. However, if you are a newcomer to the charms of Ghibli, this is probably one to explore later with "Whispers of the heart" (the film from which the Baron character in this effort first appeared) probably a first call along with "Kiki's delivery service" - perhaps the best of the bunch.
To be honest, I started watching this with high hopes, given that Whisper of the Heart is one of my favourite movies ever. That and the general praise the movie gets gave me pretty high expectations for what the film would be like. However, while an enjoyable romp, this film doesn't hold a candle to its predecessor. The animation is far more simple, the story is clearly aimed at a younger audience and is sort of loosely held together, and many of the characters are a bit on the undeveloped side. Even the Baron himself largely comes across as a stereotypical dashing figure, but with little depth beyond that. Haru's character comes across well though, and she does manage to carry most of the movie that way, as does the sniping between Muta and Toto.
All that said, I did find myself constantly distracted during the early parts of the film by Haru's enormous ears. It's rare for a Ghibli production to have such unrealistic designs for their human characters.
Je n'ai pas encore vu le film, vu que c'est un cadeau que j'offre lol Mais je suis déçue de la jaquette, qui n'est pas celle mise en visualisation, collection ghibli que je recherchais. Le dvd est néanmoins joli, et j'espère que ça fera plaisir, je suis impatiente de le regarder (marathon ghibli découverte)
Plot-wise, it's a simple and enjoyable story. Eh, could have done a bit better. Weird to hear Anne Hathaway in an anime film but her voice was suitable. Now Cary Elwes 😍😍😍 he was perfect for the role. Product wise, 0 out of 5. I ordered new. I got used. The case, despite being wrapped in plastic, had a piece of the edge chipped off as seen in photo. There were other signs of wear: surface was compressed, edges were scratched, and the cover art had ripples. I checked the discs themselves. They tried their best to cover it up but there signs it was played before: a bit of smears and ring marks at the center. I knew the sale was too good to be true.
The Cat Returns is a film produced by Studio Ghibli and directed by Hiroyuki Morita. When The Cat Returns was released on DVD in the United States, it was released as a two-disc set. The first disc contains the film and some special features.
The first bonus feature on the disc is a roughly nine minute long documentary titled, "Behind the Microphone." During the documentary, you see some of the voice actors recording the English dialogue for the dub version of the film. There are also interviews with some of the English dub actors (Anne Hathaway, Cary Elwes, Peter Boyle, Elliott Gould, Andy Richter, and Tim Curry). It's a decent documentary for what it is.
Next is a thirty-four minute feature titled, "The Making of The Cat Returns." This was originally produced for a Japanese audience. However, instead of putting English subtitles onto the piece, English voices are dubbed over the entire production. Over the course of the piece, you learn about how The Cat Returns came to be, there are interviews with the director and some of the crew, and you learn about the voice acting and the music for the film. Personally, I think this feature would have been stronger if the Japanese audio had not been dubbed over and having English subtitles on the feature instead.
The next feature on the disc are the Japanese trailers and television spots for The Cat Returns. There is Japanese audio, but no English subtitles. This extra runs for four and a half minutes, and includes six promotional spots. The spots are in one continuous piece; there is no way to select which ones you want to see. The final menu option in the special features menu allows you to register the DVD.
All that is on the second disc of The Cat Returns is a storyboard version of the film; basically, it's the movie, expect it only utilizes storyboards and none of the actual animation. To be honest, I don't understand the point or the appeal of seeing the complete film with storyboards instead of animation. I think the DVD release would have been stronger if it had just been one disc, and had only had perhaps some brief storyboard-to-animation comparisons for some of the scenes. I think that putting in the second DVD is a waste.
The animation and storytelling in The Cat Returns makes the film a very enjoyable viewing experience. While this film shares some similar ideas with Catnapped!, I felt that The Cat Returns was the stronger of the two films. The writing and storytelling were much stronger in The Cat Returns, and the concepts were executed much better in this film. The Cat Returns is also a good film for a family viewing experience.
If you are a fan of Studio Ghibli's films, then you should see The Cat Returns. Even with the unnecessary second disc, and the few minor complaints about the bonus features on disc one, this is a DVD that should be in the collection of any anime fan.