The Secret World of Arrietty Movie Review

Heather —  February 16, 2012

Rated G, Opens in theaters Feb. 17!

In this animated adventure, Arrietty is an adorable, teeny, courageous 14-year-old “Borrower” living with her mother and father under the floorboards of a quiet home. A sweet and solid family life is portrayed as the borrowers go about their miniature daily lives. Adventure ensues when 12-year-old Shawn is sent to stay in the home and sees the mythical Arrietty, changing her life and perhaps his own, forever.

I entered the theater on a snowy D.C. morning, yet, as the film began, I felt transported to a warm Summer day. The hues and lighting of the scenes and the detail in the characters are so marvelous!  And that was just the beginning of the magic of the film. The exquisite animation and tender storyline make for a truly uplifting movie experience.

I did expect a lot from the film.

I love the 1903 book, “The Borrowers” and I have enjoyed many other films from Studio Gibli. Who isn’t awed by the delicate animation by screenwriter and filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki, in such films as “Ponyo” and “Spirited Away” and one of my favorites, “Totoro”?

Miyazaki first noticed “The Borrowers” 40 years ago. At the time he wished to make a movie version, but the timing was not yet right. Yet, Miyazaki revisited his idea, and in 2010, “The Secret World of Arrietty” was released in Japan, becoming the highest grossing film at the box office that year. The film was directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi and produced by Toshio Suzuki.

Today, the timing seems perfect, as the film echos with themes of the fragility of our ecosystem and the need to be brave and resourceful.

The English language version of “The Secret World of Arrietty” brings some delightful talent to the animated film, with a voice cast of Bridgit Mendler, Amy Poehler, Carol Burnett, Will Arnett, David Henrie, and Moises Arias. I particularly enjoyed Will Arnett, as the firm but softhearted father of Arrietty.

I really recommend this family friendly movie. Our whole family was delighted with it, from the six-year-old to the 17-year-old…to me. In fact, the theater was packed with young children for this screening, yet they were all so quiet! I think they really were in awe of the movie. There was some clapping, but no fussing!

See more, visit Disney.com/Arrietty and ‘Like’ The Secret World of Arrietty on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/#!/SecretWorldofArrietty

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Heather

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Blogging about parenting, green living, education.

5 responses to The Secret World of Arrietty Movie Review

  1. awesome review if i had not seen it already i would go ASAP

  2. Thank you so much for reviewing this movie! We love “The Borrowers”! I am so happy that you have given us a thumbs up to see it! We don’t usually watch movies so hearing about this is a blessing to our family!

    • Thank you, Karen:) Yes, I had no reservations about this film (as I often do!) I loved how Arrietty’s father was portrayed as smart and soft spoken. I wish the Mom had been portrayed as tougher, but she was good hearted–played by Amy Poehler, so very “vocal” 🙂 There is a reference to divorce and illness, but I think suitable for children, definitely. It didn’t skirt around those issues, but did not dwell on them, either. Overall, fantastic movie!

  3. Would you mind sharing with me how you get to do movie reviews? Are you getting free screenings or just going to see them and writing about them. My email is kbalman@gmail.com. I’ve am a huge movie buff and have been wanting to start doing more reviews for movies on my blog. Thanks

  4. Sounds like a great movie! We enjoyed the book and it sounds like something my daughter would enjoy seeing! Thanks for reviewing!
    Stopping by from the Crew