Mary and the Witch's Flower (Blu-ray + Digital Copy) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version) Blu-ray Region A
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YesAsia Editorial Description
Bumbling young girl Mary has just moved into a new home in the country. One day, she sees a strange cat and follows it into the woods. There, she comes upon the Witch's Flower, a special plant that blooms once every seven years, and a little broomstick that transports her to Endor College, a school of witchcraft!
|Product Title:||Mary and the Witch's Flower (Blu-ray + Digital Copy) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version) 瑪莉與魔女之花 (Blu-ray) (附digital copy) (英文字幕) (日本版) 玛莉与魔女之花 (Blu-ray) (附digital copy) (英文字幕) (日本版) メアリと魔女の花 (Blu-ray) (デジタルコピー付き) (日本版) Mary and the Witch's Flower (Blu-ray + Digital Copy) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)|
|Also known as:||瑪麗與魔女之花 玛丽与魔女之花|
|Artist Name(s):||Amami Yuki | Kohinata Fumiyo | Kamiki Ryunosuke | Mitsushima Hikari | Sugisaki Hana 天海祐希 | 小日向文世 | 神木隆之介 | 滿島光 | Sugisaki Hana 天海佑希 | 小日向文世 | 神木隆之介 | 满岛光 | Sugisaki Hana 天海祐希 | 小日向文世 | 神木隆之介 | 満島ひかり | 杉咲花 Amami Yuki | Kohinata Fumiyo | Kamiki Ryunosuke | Mitsushima Hikari | Sugisaki Hana|
|Director:||Yonebayashi Hiromasa 米林宏昌 米林宏昌 米林宏昌 Yonebayashi Hiromasa|
|Blu-ray Region Code:||A - Americas (North, Central and South except French Guiana), Korea, Japan, South East Asia (including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) What is it?|
|Publisher Product Code:||VWBS-6600|
|Country of Origin:||Japan|
|Shipment Unit:||1 What is it?|
|YesAsia Catalog No.:||1063863762|
杉咲花 / 神木隆之介
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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features
Editor's Pick of "Mary and the Witch's Flower (Blu-ray + Digital Copy) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)"
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July 27, 2018
After Studio Ghibli shuttered its filmmaking arm in 2014, veteran producer Nishimura Yoshiaki founded the new animation house Studio Ponoc with the help of other key Ghibli alumni, most notably Yonebayashi Hiromasa. In its thirty-year history, besides Miyazaki Hayao and Takahata Isao, Studio Ghibli has only had two other in-house directors with more than one feature film credit: Yonebayashi and Miyazaki Goro. As the rare Miyazaki protégé to gain directing reins, Yonebayashi seemed to be Studio Ghibli's future when he stepped out with The Borrower Arrietty in 2010.
Though Nishimura and Yonebayashi are no longer with Studio Ghibli, they have brought the themes and aesthetics that they spent years creating to their new venture. Studio Ponoc's inaugural feature film Mary and the Witch's Flower is undeniably evocative of Ghibli both visually and thematically. Based on British writer Mary Stewart's The Little Broomstick, the film follows a young and inquisitive redhead who moves to the countryside to live with a relative. She discovers a magical flower that grants her temporary powers and a broomstick that whisks her away to a wizarding academy in the skies run by a menacing headmistress and a bonkers inventor.
Though it's tempting to compare this Ghibli-like story of a young witch transported to another world to Miyazaki classics like Kiki's Delivery Service and Spirited Away, the fairer point of comparison is to Yonebayashi's own previous Ghibli efforts, which also had young heroines, old-timey countryside settings and British story sources. Mary and the Witch's Flower could use more character development, and it doesn't conjure as much fantastical magic as one would hope, but there's still plenty of imagination and adventure to be found in the family-friendly, briskly paced story. Though not as charming as The Borrower Arrietty, Mary and the Witch's Flower is easily more accessible and enjoyable than When Marnie Was There.
Many animated films get likened to Ghibli works because the legendary studio has profoundly influenced the industry for so many years. That comparison can be a burden, but for Mary and the Witch's Flower, it is an acknowledgment of the filmmakers' creative roots and a feeling of relief that, even as the reopened Ghibli's future production direction remains uncertain, at least Studio Ponoc will help carry on the tradition of magical stories and beautiful hand-drawn animation.