Japanese anime is a love or hate genre, and without a doubt, the trend continues with this movie.
Based on Mary Norton’s well-loved novel The Borrowers, this film tells the story of a tiny adventurous girl (Arrietty) living in the walls of a house with her parents. Everything changes for the tiny family when a young boy moves in and discovers them.
Bridgit Mendler captured the adventurous spirit and energy of Arrietty’s character beautifully in her voiceover. Regrettably, that’s where the praise ends for the voice acting, which was some of the worst I have ever come across. More often than not, the actors drained the life from the otherwise beautiful scenes.
It is difficult to place the blame on the poor dialogue – Was it the English translation or the original Japanese script? Maybe someone who has watched both versions can chime in, but most of the dialogue in this release seemed fit for a low-budget after school special.
For fans of the movie, Disney’s Blu Ray + DVD combo features a stunning video and audio presentation of the film. The colour palette is beautiful and both the English and original Japanese DTS MA tracks are of the highest qualities.
Unfortunately, the special features do not match the above mentioned standards. The additional features include the entire Original Japanese Storyboards, “Arrietty’s Song” Cécile Corbel Music Video, Original Japanese Trailers & TV Spots, “Summertime” Bridgit Mendler Music Video, and The Making of “Summertime”. Other than the storyboards (which become boring after a few minutes), these features feel lame and tacked on for the sack of including something. Nothing in the feature set gives any insight into the making of this movie. Shame on Disney and Studio Ghibli.
Bottom Line: If you’re a fan of the film, you’ll be able to enjoy the feature in the comfort of your home in high quality. However, there is nothing else to enjoy beyond that.
Movie Grade C
Blu Ray/DVD Grade B+
Runtime: 95 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1