Roger Ebert wrote a detailed and insightful review of the film. The film takes the #1 spot on many "Best of Anime" lists. It deserves it.
Due to uploading considerations, I edited the film into 5 parts. Each part is between 15 anad 20 minutes long, and is a big file, between 75 and 100 mg. I wanted to preserve the film quality so it could be viewed at larger sizes. The files in the post are embedded and should open fairly easily. At the end of the post, I attached the 5 parts as wmv files so they can be downloaded onto your computer and viewed without an internet connection. Also, you could throw the parts back into Windows Movie Maker and combine into one long film again, but it's also nice to have the breaks where you can take a few minutes with your class and talk about the history (Japan WWII), the storyline, emotions, etc. I wouldn't show this film to students under 11 years old- I might be off by a year one way or another, make sure you watch it yourself first : ).
Also, the film is based on a semi-autobiographical novel by Akiyuki Nosaka. I'd love to read the novel in English and see if it would make a good unit for advanced EFL classes, but the book is hard to come by in English. The only hint I got was to try University Libraries for copies of Japan Quarterly 25.4 (Oct-Dec 1978): 445-63. It is translated by James Abrams, if anyone finds a copy please let me know.
Shoot, the wmv files aren't downloading like a pdf file... it takes forever to upload them, so if someone could steer me in the right direction as to how to put up the files so others can easily download, I'd appreciate it. BUT, clicking on the wmv files is a NICE way to view the film... and just as quick as using the video player on this page... should be great for online viewing with a class... I hope you enjoy, it took me all weekend to mess with this :D
I remember this film sitting on the minicule Animatino section of our local blockbuster when I was a kid. I have heard it is depressing as heck and after going to the Hiroshima peace museum I have not been in a big hurry to watch it.
The dubbing seems quite good - I was worried. I"m going to watch at length over the weekend.
Thanks for the hard work but one question -- why can't I go full screen? Did you enable this on the site where you took this player from? Otherwise, I"ll just embed in wmp, the files you put up there.....or you can get the code online. I can't stand watching at any length, something so small - my quirk :)
It is sad... in essence, you are watching two people starve, but it is also haunting and beautiful and has some sweet moments of legitimate tenderness. I did not feel like my emotions were being manipulated by the film. Funny to say about anime, but the film seemed genuine to me. I'm glad I didn't miss it.
Sh*t David, all the time I spent downloading, converting, uploading these huge files, just so it could be watched fullscreen! I'll have to go back and see where I made the mistake, but for now, it plays quite nicely if you double click the files I uploaded- a bigger version on a simple black background w/out distractions.