Atop a hill overlooking a seaside port sits a boarding house named Coquelicot Manor. Since the building is run by her family, Umi Matsuzaki carries out many of the duties involved in managing the small establishment, such as preparing meals for her fellow boarders. When she isn't at home, she is a student at the local high school—one that is currently dealing with a small crisis.
In anticipation of the upcoming Olympic Games, a beloved old clubhouse is set to be demolished to make way for a modern building. As a result, a large part of the student body has banded together, working tirelessly to prevent this from happening. Umi finds herself helping the newspaper club to spread information about this cause where she befriends Shun Kazama, whom she gradually begins to fall in love with. But Shun is an orphan who doesn't know much about his origins, and when the two begin searching for clues to the boy's past, they discover that they may have a lot more in common than either of them could have thought.
From Up On Poppy Hill ( Coquelicot-zaka kara) : A Tale of Young Love and Historic Preservation
From Up On Poppy Hill (Coquelicot-zaka kara) marks yet another spellbinding masterpiece from the renowned Studio Ghibli that beautifully underpins the delicate romantic story of two high school students against the backdrop of a rapidly transforming Japan in the 1960s. Umi, the elder sister in a quasi-orphans family, raises signal flags everyday as a silent tribute to her ship-captain father who was lost at sea, from the foot of Poppy Hill, catching the eye of Shun, an ambitious school newspaper editor.
As Umi and Shun work together to save their school’s dilapidated clubhouse from being demolished in the run-up to the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, hints of a shared past begin to emerge. Unravel the intricate web of relationships present as you take a front seat to their blossoming romance, strewn with elements of familial bonds, history, and growing up, set to the beautifully animated backdrop that is Ghibli’s trademark.
Our story gently leads us to the intersection of Umi and Shun’s lives amidst a dramatic upheaval of tradition and incessant march of progress. The narrative is skillfully weaved in a harmonic cliché-free manner, taking us through waves of gentle romance, nuanced character development alongside a consistent and emotionally loaded plotline.
Each character, from our charming protagonists to the minor supporting roles, confidently holds their own. Umi’s strong, nurturing spirit resonates with palpable charm, while Shun’s determined fervor keeps you riveted. Their blooming relationship, filled with confusion, tension and tender moments of young love, can make even the most hardened viewer’s heart flutter.
Animation and Music
Studio Ghibli’s impeccable attention to detail stands evident in each scene. The intricate rendering of the Yokohama Port and the stunningly rustic clubhouse along with the everyday life representation is breathtaking. Coupled with a hauntingly beautiful score by Satoshi Takebe, From Up On Poppy Hill hits every sensory note with precision.
From Up On Poppy Hill is undoubtedly a must-see for any anime fan out there. Its graceful weave of romance, nostalgia, and a slice of historical flavor are a treat for eyes and hearts alike. This animated film pays tribute to Japan’s past while quietly rooting for its future, making it a timeless piece of art that touches individuals across ages and cultures.
Whether you decide to rent, buy or stream it, this classic is worth every second of your time. So, sit back and get ready to embark on an unforgettable journey to the Poppy Hill, a quaint little place that transcends time to tell a tale of friendship, love, and the sensational pull of the past.
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