My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999)

My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999) Poster
The Up and Downs of Life

Japanese title: ホーホケキョとなりの山田くん
(Hōhokekyo Tonari no Yamada-kun)

Comments on Movie: My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999)
"Endearing, charming, funny and heartfelt tale that features a very unique animation style. It is a feel good story, but more than anything it is a slice of life and a reminder of why the little moments are what make life so great." - Bill Thompson, Bill's Movie Emporium.

"Infectiously funny, sweet and beautiful, My Neighbors the Yamadas is a beautiful love letter to family. Its simplicity and elegance make it all the more wonderful and profound." - James Ewing, Cinema Sights.

"The film takes its cue from the cartoon strip, having no central narrative and consisting instead of a series of wryly amusing observations about family life, organised into titled chapters that are summarised by Haiku poems from the likes of Bashō, Santōka or Buson." - Slarek, Cine Outsider.

"Despite the inclusion of a few genuinely compelling sequences, My Neighbors the Yamadas essentially comes off as a series of short films haphazardly jammed together, and it seems entirely probable that the movie would be best served by a viewing in separate installments." - David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews

"Impressive artwork. This beautiful pastel colored film full of family gag is never shy to depict the antics of the characters and the daily crisis of family lives." - Rosalyn Lim.

Anime Comedy Family Isao Takahata 2D Animation Animated Feature  

My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999) Trailer

My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999) at a glance
My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999) is a slice of life comedy film by Isao Takahata. It is based on the yonkoma manga Nono-chan by Hisaichi Ishii which was originally serialized as My Neighbors the Yamadas. This film is the first of Studio Ghibli productions in the watercolor and comic strip style, done entirely in digital.

My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999) Synopsis
Takashi Yamada and his wacky wife Matsuko, who has no talent for housework, navigate their way through the ups and downs of work, marriage, and family life with a sharp-tongued grandmother who lives with them, a teenage son who wishes he had cooler parents, and a pesty daughter whose loud voice is unusual for someone so small. Even the family dog has issues!

21-in-1 Update: 

Movie Review: My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999)

The Yamada Family

My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999) follows the simple yet comical lives and adventures of the family of five; the characters are quite adorable and some of the vignettes are just so funny. This beautiful pastel colored film full of family gag is never shy to depict the antics of the characters and the daily crisis of family lives. The condition of the family may look difficult but it is not completely dysfunctional as they lived happily together.

Watercolor style movie.

The first thing that comes to my mind is that this film has an impressive artwork. Its visual style is not just different from most of the Studio Ghibli productions but most of the animated features produced around the world which makes it really unique. It's really amazing to watch how short and simple comic strips can turn into a feature film by a series of vignettes.

Nonoko as Kaguya-hime.

However, this film lacks a vital storyline that could connect all of the vignettes. As a whole, it may feel lengthy if it has moved to the ones that doesn't make you laugh or keeps you interested. Nonetheless, it is a recommended watch if you loved comedies, family-themed or slice of life films. Although most of the scenes are  usually amusing, they also come with important underlying messages for you to discover.

PS. What would happen if Nonoko meets Shinnosuke, say, kindergarten transfer? ;)

Movie Ratings
Will write a page regarding this and add this to all animated feature entries in the future.

Who will like this?
People who love comedy, family and slice of life films as well as aspiring comic or manga artists!

Details of the movie
Director: Isao Takahata
Producer: Seiichiro Ujiie, Takashi Shouji, Toshio Suzuki
Story: Hisaichi Ishii
Screenplay: Isao Takahata
Cinematography: Not sure.
Music: Akiko Yano
Studio: Studio Ghibli
Starring: Hayato Isobata, Masako Araki, Naomi Uno, Touru Masuoka
Full Credit: [IMDb]
Distributor: Toho, Disney
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese, English
Genre: Comedy Family
Running time: 104 mins
Budget: USD 20,500,000 est.
Box office: Not sure.

Official website(s)

Grave of the Fireflies (1988)
Only Yesterday (1991)
Pom Poko (1994)
The Tale of Princess Kaguya (2013)
Studio Ghibli
Rosalyn's Animated Movie Marathon

My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999) Behind the Scenes

Favorite Movie Character
Bother, there is a girl on the phone for you!

Sadly, Nonoko Yamada is only a minor character in this film but she is a good example of independent and adorable Japanese children. Nonoko is an elementary school girl but she is just so kawaii, no wonder she has her own manga serialized as Nono-chan! ♥

My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999) Movie Quotes
I am not proficient enough to translate the quotes accurately but here are some. Typed with iphone! ><
  1. This is the king (sun), this is the moon, this is the mountain and this is grandmother.
  2. No, I mean this bug.
  3. Quickly turn into a butterfly just like the flower okay?
  4. This is my mother and me, Nonoko.
  5. What should I make for dinner tonight?
  6. We ate curry last week and the day before yesterday. Tonight, it'll be curry okay!
  7. And then, here are my father and elder brother.
  8. What is the use of studying, father?
  9. Listen, Noboru. Studying is not about what is useful and what is not. The things you study that seems useless may turn out to be useful someday. In other words...
  10. I knew it, I still have to study.
  11. Don't be ridiculous. If we are not married, there will be no you and no Nonoko. Without the both of us, you wouldn't be here.
  12. You can't choose your parents.
  13. Who am I? Where do I come from?
  14. Where is this place? Who am I?
  15. I see. So there was a time when father and mother both were not married.
  16. Life they say have ups and downs.
  17. People say it is difficult and challenging to raise children today.
  18. Children make you appreciate your own parents.
  19. Without land, there won't be a house.
  20. Please listen to Noboru.
  21. Eventually, it'll be all mine.
  22. So what should you fear most on this lifelong voyage?
  23. Ah, she is not here.
  24. Where did we lose her?
  25. What terrible things?
  26. She's so cute, just like me.
  27. The PTA (Parents-Teachers Association) mantra. Do not talk to strangers.
  28. Are you lost?
  29. My father, mother, grandmother and brother all got lost.
  30. Is that so? There are a lot of missing parents recently.
  31. Confess!
  32. That four grownups neglected and abandoned a young girl.
  33. Joyful laughter breaks the silence of an autumn eve, Bashō.
  34. Buy it yourself please.
  35. Mother, money, money.
  36. Scissors, paper, rock!
  37. If it's gone, it's gone.
  38. That's 20 years of marriage for you.
  39. And when you go shopping, I need cigarettes.
  40. Now nobody can watch.
  41. This is more interesting.
  42. Kids these days.
  43. Our turn now!
  44. Don't mix rice into the soup!
  45. Pour soup in the rice instead!
  46. Freedom... I haven't got a clue.
  47. Oh, the first snow!
  48. A lone figure, back turned, receding into the mist, Santōka.
  49. A spring shower, dressed for rain, talking as they go, Buson.
  50. Oh, I knew it. The Black Hole.
  51. Don't cook what you don't know how to say.
  52. Nabemono is perfect for winter.
  53. Art is brief, life is long.
  54. Don't treat me like a child.
  55. No sign of death's approach, in the cicida's voices, Bashō.
  56. In a fire, it's the first five minutes that counts but in a test, it's the last five.
  57. Fleeting dreams, an octopus making its home in a trap, a summer moon, Bashō.
  58. Bother, there is a girl on the phone for you!
  59. The scent of plums, on a mountain path, suddenly dawn, Bashō.
  60. Turn towards me, I'm lonely too, the autumn disk, Bashō.
  61. This is my territory, no trespassing.
  62. Honesty is the best policy.
  63. It's the poor child's parents who suffer.
  64. Consider fighting for justice!
  65. It's the Kamen Masked Rider!
  66. How cruel, a grasshopper trapped, under a warrior's helmet, Bashō.
  67. Now that's suspicious.
  68. Acceptance is the only way out of totally unacceptable situations.
  69. Que sera sera, naru youni naru (Japanese Version)
  70. You are setting a terrible example in front of the children!
  71. I can't hear the TV!
  72. Be quiet! I decide!
  73. The ocean in spring, the gentle rolling of the waves, all day long, Buson.


Post a Comment

Socrates once said, "One should never do wrong in return, nor mistreat any man, no matter how one has been mistreated by him." ♡ Stay tune for more animated features!! ♡