Whisper of the Heart (1995)

Whisper of the Heart (1995) Poster

Japanese title: 耳をすませば 
(Mimi o Sumaseba)

Comments on Movie: Whisper of the Heart (1995)
"This urban film cuts deep into an aspiring artist's innermost doubts. It's also about what Kondō knew well: apprenticeship, patient dedication to craft and nurturing friendship with other artists." - Brian Gibson, Vue Weekly.

"Sweet and well-observed, Whisper of the Heart is about self-discovery and little else." - Marty Mapes, Movie Habit.

"Like its characters, the film's horizons expand further as it progresses, creating an all-encompassing portrait of childhood dreams & the sacrifices we make to commit to them." - Christopher Runyon, Movie Mezzanine.

"The film's such a perfectly delightful little rom-com that it pretty much ruins all other romantic comedies for me." - Noel Vera, Critics After Dark.

"It doesn't at all feel dated, though how well it will age remains to be seen." - Aaron Wallace, DVDDizzy.com.

"Beautiful nostalgic and realistic depictions of Japanese lives and dreams. If you watch this, you may be able learn something invaluable from all of the characters." Rosalyn Lim.

Anime Drama Family Romance 2D Animation Animated Feature Rosalyn's Favorite

Whisper of the Heart (1995) Trailer

Whisper of the Heart (1995) at a glance
Whisper of the Heart (1995) is a drama film. This film is the late Yoshifumi Kondō's directorial debut and it is written by Hayao Miyazaki based on the manga of the same name by Aoi Hiiragi. The film follows the story of 14 years old Shizuku who loves reading and writing.

Whisper of the Heart (1995) Synopsis
A chance encounter with a mysterious cat sends Shizuku Tsukishima, a quiet schoolgirl, on a quest for her true talent. Challenged by Seiji Amasawa, a boy determined to follow his dreams, and enchanted by The Baron, a magical cat figurine who helps her listen to the whispers of her heart, Shizuku embarks on curious adventures beyond the boundaries of her imagination.
Movie Review: Whisper of the Heart (1995)

Ordinary Japanese household.

Excellent art direction from Studio Ghibli's works as usual, the film as a whole is not that fancy as it is more of a beautiful nostalgic and realistic depictions of Japanese lives and dreams; until the young girl entered a charming antique shop filled with exquisite collector's items which is much more than fancy as that place generously reveals and supplies to people's fantasies.

The fairy who lived as a sheep.

Sets in and around the busy bustling cities of Japan, Whisper of the Heart (1995) is not extremely touching but it's sweet and inspiring. It is certainly not what we would expect and this film is actually critical. Surely, it is about the start of a love story between two book lovers who are both fighting for their own dreams but it also deals with conflicts, uncertainty, loneliness, depression and so on.

The Baron and Baroness.

What I have wrote may make it look sad but this film is actually a happy film. It is really an inspiring movie and if you watch this, you may be able learn something invaluable from all of the characters.

Classic library checkout cards.

PS. This film is so relatable to me that it's scaring me when I watch it. Whisper of the Heart (1995) is now one of my top favorite. It certainly caught me by surprise and I did not expect this film would make it into my top favorite. Strange but I guess I am also in the right mood, it inspires me to move forward even more!

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 walk alone and pursue their dreams may be inspired and find this film relatable. Romantics, artists and book lovers also may find themselves liking this film as well as inspired.

PS. Another great classic from Studio Ghibli! There are also plenty of homage paid to previous Studio Ghibli films in this one!

Details of the movie
Director: Yoshifumi Kondō
Producer: Toshio Suzuki
Story: Aoi Hiiragi
Screenplay: Hayao Miyazaki
Cinematography: Atsushi Okui
Music: Yuji Nomi
Studio: Studio Ghibli
Starring: Yōko Honna, Issei Takahashi, Takashi Tachibana, Shigeru Muroi, Shigeru Tsuyuguchi, Keiju Kobayashi
Full Credit: [IMDb]
Distributor: Toho, Disney, Madman Entertainment
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese, English
Genre: Drama Family Music Romance
Running time: 111 mins
Budget: Not sure.
Box office: USD 18,000,000 est.

Official website(s)

The Cat Returns (2002)
Studio Ghibli
Rosalyn's Favorite
Rosalyn's Animated Movie Marathon

Whisper of the Heart (1995) Behind the Scenes

Favorite Movie Character
Once you found your gem, you have to polish them. It takes a lot of hard work.

Although I loved most of the characters in this film, my favorite one is Shiro Nishi. He is the grandfather of Seiji and I think he is the wisest man in this film! 

Shiro Nishi owns an antique shop which he has collected or fixed plenty of awesome stuffs. He also plays musical instruments and is also quite nice, open-minded and encouraging; he supports Seiji so much that he helped him to convince his parents to let him pursue his violin-making dreams and he also shares and allows Shizuku to use the Baron in her story!

Whisper of the Heart (1995) Movie Quotes
These are from the English dub and typed with my iphone ><
  1. You got a plastic bag just for a carton of milk?
  2. You can say you don't need it.
  3. I don't think they should computerise it, Dad. Cards catalogues are much better.
  4. That's amazing, this guy check out these books before I did.
  5. Shizuku, for heaven's sake get up. I am leaving.
  6. Today's gonna be great.
  7. Hi yapi, can't you bark any louder than that?
  8. Can you open the library for me please?
  9. I decided to read over twenty books during the summer vacation and the city library doesn't have the book I want.
  10. Do you know how many freckles I have now?
  11. My hometown, down concrete road.
  12. Do you think about boys?
  13. How embarrassing, I ran off like a little girl.
  14. What do you mean hey? You are going to the library already. Or you want me to go instead? Then you can clean the toilet, bathroom and the entryway. Then you go to the grocery store. Fold the laundry, make the beds and make the dinner. How does that sound?
  15. It's mail, stupid.
  16. Hey there cat, you all alone? 
  17. See something interesting?
  18. Oh, the silent treatment.
  19. No way, she came all the way just to tease that dog?
  20. It was found in an abandoned castle, all covered with rust.
  21. It's a fairy.
  22. She is now but she will soon turn back into a sheep.
  23. They are always apart. He is king of the dwarves that lives on the ground while she is cursed to live as a sheep. Only when the clock strikes twelve she is a fairy. So the king appears at that moment just to catch a glimpse of the girl she fell in love with.
  24. I was having an extraordinary day like I was living in a fairy tale. Then a jerk talk to me for two seconds and ruined everything.
  25. First day of the semester and it has to rain. 
  26. Stop complaining, at least you are going to school because you wanted to. Study hard.
  27. If it's him, it's not a fairy tale. It's a horror story.
  28. The look of your face shows that your heart suffers every beat.
  29. Master of writing, we shall make fun of you no more. Please grace us with your words.
  30. Phone call, can't you hear anything?
  31. What did I do?
  32. I don't speak girl code, why don't you spill it out for me?
  33. Yuko is my best friend and that's the way it's gonna stay.
  34. You are not very nice aren't you cat? Neither am I.
  35. He doesn't belong to anybody. He just wander around and live in a bunch of houses. 
  36. I know it's not yours and you don't eat like a pig.
  37. You carved everything by yourself?
  38. I can't believe you can make something like this, it's like magic. 
  39. You made a violin pop out of a wood.
  40. My ultimate goal in life to be a world class violin maker. 
  41. If you really want to be good, you have to be trained in Cremona Italy.
  42. I know what I wanna do, but I don't know if I get to do it. I fight about it with my parents everyday. Even if I get to go, it doesn't mean I'll be any good at it. I'll just have to do my best and find out.
  43. Shizuku, turn off your lamp. You left it on all night last night.
  44. When did you know, what to do with your life?
  45. This formula is going to be on tomorrow's test, class. So make sure you know it.
  46. Hey Shizuku, you got a visitor. It's a guy.
  47. I was excited that I wanted you to be the first to know.
  48. Even if my parents gave in, there's a catch.
  49. The city is really old and everyone there thinks violin making is respectable.
  50. You know, I noticed you long time ago. I first spotted you reading in a library. I walked past you hundreds of times and you haven't notice me right? I even sat down in a chair right next to you a couple of times. 
  51. Quit pushing, can't see.
  52. I am having a fight with my father, I am not talking to him.
  53. Doesn't mean you haven't decide what to do after your junior high school, it doesn't mean you are not good enough for him.
  54. Muta rans off again. Where did he keep going?
  55. Listen to the voice of the forest and the wind that blows from the far clusters of stars.
  56. No one should expect perfection when they are first starting out.
  57. When you become an artist, you are like that rock. You are in a raw, natural state with hidden gems inside. You have to dig down deep and find the emerald studs the way inside you. And that's just the beginning. 
  58. Once you found your gem, you have to polish them. It takes a lot of hard work. 
  59. Oh, and here's the tricky part. Look at the crack at the geo. You see that big green crystal there? You could spend years polishing that and it wouldn't be worth much at all. The smaller crystals are much more valuable and there are maybe some deeper inside that we can't see which are even more precious.
  60. It's bad to get old. You keep rambling. I'll shut up now.
  61. I'll write that story and you'll be the first to read it.
  62. For the man who made us, gave us the ability to love.
  63. I can't seem to stop writing for some reason.
  64. I was thinking about my story, there is so much to write and I can't find enough time.
  65. I don't feel like eating.
  66. What dreams you are going after? You just go around reading books.
  67. We can't help you unless you tell us what's going on. What could you be doing that you can't tell your mother and father about?
  68. You work so hard in the library. Whatever you are doing, I know it's important to you and I truly respect that. 
  69. Honey, why don't we let Shizuku do what she thinks she's best? Not everyone needs to follow the same path.
  70. Alright Shizuku, go ahead and do whatever your heart tells you but it's never easy when you do things differently from everyone else. If things doesn't go well, you only have yourself to blame. 
  71. And I want you to eat meals with us no matter how busy you get.
  72. That's right, we like to see you once in a while.
  73. By the way, I am moving out the room next Sunday. You'll have the room yourself. 
  74. I could but you put so much into this, shouldn't I take my time and read this carefully?
  75. You should be very proud for all your hardwork. You dug inside your soul and found some real gems. Next, you need to polish it. Which will also take a lot of work.
  76. There is no need to be upset, just a little bit of patience.
  77. I was captivated by its expression. It was so sad and mysterious so I begged the owner of the cafe let me buy the Baron. But he refuses to sell it to me, he said the Baron had a female companion who was away for repairs, that two of them made such a beautiful couple he didn't think it is right to separate them. So I told them as soon as the Baroness is repaired, I buy them both. 
  78. I never saw Louise or the Baroness again.
  79. What was a memory to me had gained a new life thanks to your story. 
  80. That geo is suits you better than me. I want you to have it. Promise me you will polish your story well. 
  81. I am so not believing this is a dream. Who cares, this is a great dream.
  82. I decided that I was going to ride up the steep hill carrying you with me.
  83. I don't want to be a burden for you. If I am going with you, I am going to help you.
  84. With all this mist, it looks like an ocean.
  85. You are the one who inspires me.
  86. I realised I need a lot more schooling so I don't mind what it takes to get into a good high school.
  87. I promise I will be a professional violin maker and you can be a professional writer.
  88. It's corny but it's okay, you are a violin maker, not a writer.
  89. I am glad that I push myself, I know myself a little bit better now. 


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