Anime Club

Grave of the Fireflies: Why Do They Die So Fast?


GENRE: Drama

DIRECTOR: Isao Takahata

WRITER: Isao Takahata

YEAR:  1988


Alright everybody, Anime club is back on. I finally was able to catch up on my anime list, and I decided to start with a classic. Grave of the Fireflies is one of the anime films that has been on top of many peoples’ top ten lists. I finally decided to give it a viewing, it took me all day as I kept getting interrupted but I was very satisfied.

Grave of the Fireflies is a 1988 Japanese animated drama film directed by Isao Takahata and animated by Studio Ghibli. The film is set post World War II Japan and follows teenager Seita and his younger sister Setsuko. After the United States bombs the city of Kobe, Seita and Setsuko’s mother dies amid the chaos. Seita and Setsuko are essentially orphaned, since their father is serving in the Imperial navy. After temporarily staying with a distant Aunt, they are thrown out due to shortening rations. They take shelter in an abandoned bomb shelter, and the film follows their final days before dying of starvation.

Grave of the Fireflies is one of the saddest films that I have ever viewed, and probably the saddest film I have reviewed on this site. There have been very few films that have made me feel such sadness and sympathy for these characters. Not since Adrien Brody’s The Jacket have I felt such films. Besides the absolute pathos shown in this film, I have to remark that the voice acting is spectacular, especially in the English dub. The film is also very beautiful and the ambiance is remarkable.

Honestly, this last paragraph is going to be incredibly short. There isn’t really anything I didn’t like about Grave of the Fireflies. Except, I hated the Aunt. I felt that she was justified, but I hated her still.


  • Sympathy, Emotions, and Pathos
  • Beautiful atmosphere, ambiance
  • Dramatic Tone
  • Overwhelming Sadness


  • Fuck their Aunt!

SCORES: 10 / 10

If you have any suggestions for films/TV/Games/Music for me to review, drop me a comment! Remember: Like Media In Review @ Follow Media in Review @

Brandon Stuhr

Who am I? Just some guy who decided to start writing on the Internet years ago and now operates his own brand and site. Owner/Operator of Modern Neon Media, I make all kinds of niche content to suit my interests at the time. DIY Enthusiast, Brewmaster extraordinaire, and avid freak for geek culture. Follow on my socials for a more "on" version of me.

0 thoughts on “Grave of the Fireflies: Why Do They Die So Fast?

  • Everyone hates on the aunt for mistreating Seita and Setsuko but to be honest, can you really blame her? They’re in the middle of a war, a terrible blitz with rationing and food scarce, family dying and everyone has to support each other by finding ways of bringing in a bigger salary. Seita wasn’t being very helpful at first and he promised to keep the household in a stable condition. I know he’s only 14 and too young for work but he didn’t offer or help that much and the aunt was really worried about her husband and her daughter and with two other kids on her doorstep that weren’t alert of the damage that was going on and urgent need of food and money, it was very pressurising for her. I agree she shouldn’t have been so harsh on them but her reaction was completely understandable. Great review otherwise! One of my all time favourite movies. ^^


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