Hayao Miyazaki's Ponyo is more than just a love story

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Ponyo When it comes to anime, no one does it better than Japan’s Hayao Miyazaki (Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle). Miyazaki’s latest, Ponyo, which opens areawide on Friday, is another exquisite film. The plot surrounds a young boy named Sosuke (Frankie Jonas) who discovers what he thinks is a talking goldfish. He brings it home and christens it Ponyo (Noah Cyrus). But Ponyo isn’t a goldfish. Rather, she’s a sea creature whose father Fujimoto (Liam Neeson) and mother Gran Mammare (Cate Blanchett) live underwater. While the film’s love story follows the trajectory of most mermaid films in that Ponyo wants to become human so she can spend her life with Sosuke, in Miyazaki’s hands, it becomes a mystical fairytale, especially after Sosuke’s world becomes engulfed by water and he must take a toy boat out in search of his mother (Tina Fey). And the film's not just a love story, either. It's as much about the ocean and the environment as it is about a fish that falls in love with a boy. ***

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