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Rosalyn Lim 林惠美

The Cat Returns (2002) at a glance

The Cat Return (2002) is an animated family comedy film about the unexpected adventure of a young girl who got involved with the cat kingdom. Directed by Hiroyuki Morita, it is a spin-off of Whisper of the Heart (1995) by the late director Yoshifumi Kondō.

Update: Read All Studio Ghibli Movie Review Here!

The Cat Returns (2002) Trailer

The Cat Returns (2002) Synopsis

Haru, a schoolgirl bored by her ordinary routine, saves the life of an unusual cat, and suddenly her world is transformed beyond anything she ever imagined. The Cat King rewards her good deed with a flurry of presents, including a very shocking proposal of marriage to his son!

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The Cat Returns (2002) Review

The Cat Returns (2002) can be adorable but to me, it is a huge disappointment. The concept is precious and amusing but the overall quality of the film made me think; is this really Studio Ghibli's production? The ridiculous and amateurish visuals make it looks like experimental cartoon from decades ago which it's not. It is too far from what I expected least from a spin-off of one of my favorite animated feature and from one of the world's most renowned studio.

Haru saved Prince Lune.
Haru saved Prince Lune.

However, this film does have some adorable and eccentric cats which can be an enjoyable watch for feline lovers like me but still, I can't say that I truly enjoy or even like this film. In fact, I am appalled to watch this. Most of the time, everything seems to be unpleasant, perhaps the art is not as beautiful or the storyline is not meaningful as the other films. Thankfully it's a pretty short film with a sweet ending.

PS. Haru is voiced by Anne Hathaway in English!

Who will like this?

If you like cat fantasy, this is one of the cat fantasy out there... you will be able to watch plenty of cats standing and walking on two legs.

PS. Check out all my Studio Ghibli movie reviews that are available on Moviepilot! Stay tune for more animated features!

Other Movie Reviews (from the same studio)

Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1984)
Castle in the Sky (1986)
Grave of the Fireflies (1988)
My Neighbor Totoro (1988)
Kiki's Delivery Service (1989)
Only Yesterday (1991)
Porco Rosso (1992)
Pom Poko (1994)
Whisper of the Heart (1995)
Princess Mononoke (1997)
My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999)
Spirited Away (2001)
Howl's Moving Castle (2004)
Tales from Earthsea (2006)
Ponyo (2008)
The Secret World of Arrietty (2010)
From Up on Poppy Hill (2011)
The Wind Rises (2013)
The Tale of Princess Kaguya (2013)
When Marnie Was There (2014)

Details of the movie

Director: Hiroyuki Morita
Producer: Toshio Suzuki, Nozomu Takahashi
Story: Aoi Hiiragi
Screenplay: Reiko Yoshida
Cinematography: Kentaro Takahashi
Music: Yuji Nomi
Studio: Studio Ghibli
Starring: Chizuru Ikewaki, Yoshihiko Hakamada, Tetsu Watanabe, Yosuke Saito, Aki Maeda, Tetsurō Tamba
Full Credit: [IMDb]
Distributor: Toho, Disney
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese, English
Genre: Adventure Comedy Family Fantasy
Running time: 75 mins
Budget: USD 20,000,000 est.
Box office: USD 53,918,847 est.

Official website(s)

Original post from Rosalyn's Blog.
This article is a part of Rosalyn's Animated Movie Marathon.
Rosalyn can be contacted via email and facebook.

The Cat Returns (2002) Poster


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