The Ooh-Aah Moment in Ponyo




 On my second viewing of Ponyo last weekend, I was with a small group of parents and children of various ages.  They loved every moment, of course.  Their favorite moment was a bit of a surprise to me.  It's this moment, when Ponyo and Sosuke wake up to the flood at their front door, stick their heads under the water, and see the large prehistoric fish.  That scrolling shot of the dinosaur fish earned Ooh's and Aah's from everyone.

I was very pleasantly surprised by that.  I would have expected the spectacular tsunami sequence to get the biggest applause.  Yet here is a quiet, meditative moment, a moment where nothing of any consequence happens.  We dip our heads underwater, and we take in the sights of a strange, alien world.  This moment - and its reaction - give me hope for the future.  This proves that these children have not been completely corrupted by endless waves of Hollywood explosions and Disney Channel Barbie Doll pop stars.  Awe and Wonder still hold power.  Humanity may not be finished quite yet.

4 comments:

Geoff N said...

Ponyo took in another 2.4M, only a 32.3% drop, not bad at all.

http://boxofficemojo.com/weekend/chart/

10M is still a possibility, so is surpassing Spirited Away.

Daniel Thomas MacInnes said...

I saw the weekend predictions earlier today. Ponyo actually held her ground. Inglorious Basterds was the only movie to affect the per-screen numbers differently from last week.

Ponyo is now projected to have over $8 million total come Monday. It now appears that Spirited Away's $10 million record will be broken.

Also, it should be noted that all the higher-grossing anime films are toy commercials - Pokeman and Digimon. For real anime movies, Miyazaki dominates. It's a very tiny pie in America, but we have to take our victories any way we can.

returnofthesmith said...

Well it looks like the poor B.O. performance in America has taken away the confidence of Aussie cinemas. This weekend's session times were just released and Ponyo is getting shafted in my home town of South Australia. Our major arthouse chain "Palce-nova" which have shown every previous Ghibli film are not showing Ponyo, which means no Japenese language version showing in SA! To top that the only other 2 screens showing it are awful. TTP shows 16:9 aspect films in the wrong size so the top and bottom of the screen are cut off, and Marion is showing it in their smallest screen. To top it all off they are only showing it in the mornings for 2 sessions a day!

I am really depressed about this, i went from thinking i would be seeing it in perfect quality on SA's biggest screen, to this crap.

Daniel Thomas MacInnes said...

I do hope Australians won't be disappointed about America's performance. I did verify that one of the main theater chains in Australia will have Ponyo in Japanese with subtitles.

If you're having problems with movies being seen properly, in the correct aspect ratio or with proper lighting, that is an issue with the theater itself and its management. You need to tell them your concerns and ask them - politely! - to fix the problems. You'd be surprised how many theater operaters have no clue how to work the equipment. But you're paying good money, and you should demand your money's worth.

Chin up! Good luck!

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