Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea

12 Days of Anime 2020: Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea

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Yo! Sirius here.

I just finished watching the first half of the 12 Days of Anime 2020. Now, for the seventh day, I will be talking about Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea. This Ghibli film is new to me. I have never heard of this before.

I chose to watch this because I had heard The Anime Man mentioning this movie was a good Ghibli film. I got curious that’s why it’s here now. As I have no idea about the story and had only seen the movie poster, I don’t have any expectations for this. This is going to be fun.


A goldfish sneaks away from home and floats off on the back of a jellyfish. After getting stuck in a glass jar, she drifts to the shore where she is freed by Sousuke, a five-year-old boy who lives with his mother Lisa in a house by the sea while his father Koichi works on a fishing boat. After healing a cut on Sousuke’s finger by licking it, the goldfish is named Ponyo by her new friend.

Unknown to Sousuke, Ponyo already has a name and a family. Her father Fujimoto, a sorcerer who forsook his humanity to live underwater, searches frantically for his daughter Brunhilde. When found and captured, Ponyo rejects her birth name and declares that she wants to become a human. Using the power received from Sousuke’s blood, she grows arms and legs and escapes to the surface once more. But the magic released into the ocean causes an imbalance in nature, causing the Moon to start falling out of orbit and the tides to grow dangerously stronger. Reunited with Ponyo, Sousuke must pass an ancient test to restore order in the world and let his companion live on as a human. (MAL)


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Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea was an experience. An entertaining one.

After watching the likes of Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away, & Howl’s Moving Castle, I didn’t expect I would watch something of the likes of Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea. This is like, a definite movie for kids, and not for me.

This movie had a cute premise, in some ways, similar to the fairytale, A Little Mermaid, but with a twist. It’s kind of hard to believe this was made by Hayao Miyazaki. Damn.

The story is not bad, it’s just a bit too easy, cringy (on some level), and shallow. I couldn’t count how many times I said cute because the visuals and animation were amazing. In other words, the story was almost on the borderline of non-existent as my focus was on the visuals.

Speaking of visuals, the art for this movie is so good. Water had never looked this good. I mean, if we consider the date of this, the animation of the water is so good. The character designs are also really good. Both Ponyo and Sousuke are so cute, I just wanted to squeeze their cheeks. They are that cute.

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Speaking of overload of cuteness, I mentioned before on my blog how much I love cute and moe. But this movie is clearly not for me. I’m not the targeted demographic. Compared to Kiki’s Delivery Service, which was also seemed to be targeting kids, that one had a relatable moral lesson and message compared to Ponyo.

Another thing I noticed too is that this movie was released last 2008. The moe-boom happened around that time. Is there a correlation between the two? Maybe. Still the cuteness of this did bring a smile to my face but it would have been better if the story was solid too.

No hate for this movie. It’s really cute, just not for me.

I might just end my review here. To be honest, I don’t have anything else to say about this movie other than how much this movie was so cute.

This has been Will Sirius and thanks for reading.

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