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Parents' Guide to

Millennium Actress

By Charles Cassady Jr., Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Arty Japanese animated drama has complex plot, violence.

Movie PG 2002 87 minutes
Millennium Actress Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 12+

Really great movie, but I wouldn't call it a family movie

The thing is that it's likely rated PG in the US because it's not "edgy" enough for a PG-13 or R, but at the same time, it's hard to exactly call this a "family film" either. I think 12 is a fair rating since your child would probably have to be mature enough for some of the themes tackled (and I at least agree that yeah the plot would be a bit confusing for most kids to understand plus even when it's not, I'm not sure how many kids will be SUPER engaged in it) and also the fact that the first half of the movie is set during World War II so they'd probably have to have a reasonable amount of critical thinking skills to see historical events from other countries' perspectives (although I guess even though the film is meant for entertainment purposes, the movie unintentionally could give your kids a brief crash course into Japanese history).. ...with that said though what on Earth is OP's problem with Chiyoko?! Like maybe not the best role model, but I think y'all are reaching in how it's gonna teach kids to have unrealistic expectations of romance ESPECIALLY if you've actually seen the ending where even she admits she's in love with more with the journey than the destination. But that last part is more of a personal disagreement.
age 9+

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (2 ):

It would be hard to imagine how to successfully realize the movie's dazzling premise outside of animation. There are three timelines, one spanning a thousand years (and extending into the space-travel future), the other Japan's last hundred years or so, and finally the arc of Chiyoko's own 20th-century life -- or reincarnations of several lives. Or re-enactments for the film-studio cameras. Or all of the above. Yes, it helps to have a knowledge of Japanese history, culture, and cinema (even a Godzilla lookalike cameos), but even without noticing the recurring lotus-flower or crane visuals, MILLENNIUM ACTRESS works beautifully as arty drama and a bittersweet, if rather rosy, picture of obsessive first love.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: September 14, 2002
  • On DVD or streaming: October 28, 2003
  • Cast: Miyoko Shoji , Regina Reagan
  • Director: Satoshi Kon
  • Studio: DreamWorks
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Topics: History
  • Run time: 87 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG
  • MPAA explanation: thematic elements, violence and brief mild language
  • Last updated: February 17, 2023

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