Parent reviews for Grave of the Fireflies

Common Sense says

Japanimation WWII tragedy the saddest. Cartoon. Ever.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 7 reviews

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 35 reviews
Adult Written bywhiskeytango September 29, 2011

This the best war movie ever made. I don't mean that in the usual way.

This is not a happy film at all. But it's one that children absolutely must see. The beauty of Grave of the Fireflies is that it drives home the human cost of seemingly far-away wars. This is a film about the ones left behind, and it's the saddest and loveliest anti-war message I've yet to see. It's a story of people like everyone, just children, doing the things that children do in response to wartime poverty and parents stolen from them and society turning its back. I saw this for the first time when I was twelve. I wish that every child could see it then, and could have parents that discussed the movie with them. Grave of the Fireflies is not light fare, but it is exactly the sort of fare that children understand viscerally and can relate to. This is a very important movie, and when my children are old enough, I will watch it with them and talk about the implications. That is the highest compliment I can give a film. This one deserves it.

This title contains:

Positive messages
Parent Written byRob S. August 18, 2017

Very powerful & very sad movie

You need to be emotionally prepared to experience this movie set in wartime Japan. You don't watch it, you experience it. It is incredibly good in that it makes you re-appreciate and re-evaluate everything about life and family, but it is beyond sad. I actually felt traumatized after this movie and I'm a grown man, but that's what makes it so powerful.
Parent of a 1, 3, 5, and 5 year old Written byAndrea_L May 30, 2015

Yes, it is sad.

Grave of the Fireflies is quite possibly the saddest animated film ever created. Isao Takahata, the producer, has done a wonderful job of painting the life of the Japanese during WWII. However, it is a very real picture of what happens during war. The movie is based on the book of the same title, by Akiyuki Nosaka, a man who lived the war. To produce the movie Isao read the book and interviewed the author to help bring the movie to life and find the true intentions of the author. Isao's intentions for Seita were to show a young spoiled boy who is thrust into a situation where he needs to grow up quickly or he will become "worse off" than other children. He planned for Seita and Setsuko try and survive the war not by dealing with their issues, but by creating their own fantasy world where nothing could harm them. Unfortunately, reality caught up with them. It is a wonderful movie that shows how making good choices and taking responsibility can make a huge impact in one's life. A note on the violence: This is a war movie. Yes, it is animated but is still very much a war-time film. Please, exercise caution when showing this movie to young adults or children.

This title contains:

Positive messages
Positive role models
Violence & scariness
Adult Written byAnnoyedteenguy May 16, 2010

I cried on the inside the whole time.

isao takahata just like hayao miyazaki is pure genius. This movie is soo good and soo sad. Seitas entire immediate family dies over the course of the movie and then he does, which is forshadowed in the begining. this is a story of how he and his sister try to survive post WWII, and is a work of art. i rented it on vhs from Hollywood video, a long time ago but will be getting it on dvd with 17 of studio ghiblis movies. A masterpeice all the way

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Positive messages
Parent of an infant year old Written byHolly R. November 21, 2017

There's sadder anime but this is in the top 5 saddest

There's sadder anime series/movies but this is definitely in the top 5 along with Clannad and The Dog of Flanders anime movie to name a few. Definitely a must see along with the others I mentioned and definitely the best drama Ghibli has to offer (and there's lots of drama).
Parent Written byAmy L. August 24, 2017

A must see!

This was a great movie. For anyone who would like their kids to know about war---the reality of war and how horrible it is, this movie delivers. We were all crying by the end.

This title contains:

Positive messages
Educator Written byGoruchDiogenes June 4, 2017

Not quite the saddest.

Check out Barefoot Gen. Also, the non-animated Sansho Dayu.