Cert 12A 130mins Stars 3
Find a quiet place in the corner of your heart for this gentle Japanese animation.
Melancholy and reflective in tone, the script encourages us to consider the effect of conflict on the least privileged in society and is full of stealthy anti-war rhetoric.
With the war kept at arms length for much of the time, there is an emphasis on the wonder of the natural world and the simple pleasures of drawing and cooking.
Naive, uneducated and impoverished, young Suzo is married off in haste at the outbreak of the Second World War.
She leaves her family in Hiroshima and moves to a farm above a military port, where her husband works as a lowly clerk.
The filmmakers respect our knowledge of the horrors which lie in Suzo’s future, and by focussing on the details of her day by day drudgery, they create a heavy cloud of tension which looms over the film.