The screening of Hayao Miyazaki’s Ponyo on a Cliff by the Sea at the Venice Film Festival has provided reviewers from Hollywood’s top trade publications (Variety and The Hollywood Reporter) as well as from Time Magazine with a chance to preview the anime maestro’s latest work, and they were not disappointed. The Reporter’s Deborah Young found the film “a work of great fantasy and charm that will delight children ages 3 to 100,” and concluded, “Excellent commercial prospects loom.”
Variety’s Ronnie Scheib waxed poetic about the film’s “magic limpidity, teeming with imaginative transports that owe nothing to CGI. Effortlessly shuttling between sea, land and sky, this Little Mermaid-ish tale dives deep into the collective unconscious of
Both trade reviewers rave about the quality and efficacy of the film’s traditional 2-D cel animation and note how successful Ponyo has been in Japan where it has topped the box office charts for six straight weeks and earned over $115 million, performance that, among Miyazaki's works, trails only Spirited Away, the all-time Japanese box office champ, in theatrical earnings.
Time Magazine’s Richard Corliss, who also saw the film at