Grave of the Fireflies – FLNWO #20

by | Oct 21, 2014 | Film, Literature & The New World Order | 2 comments

On this edition of Film, Literature and the New World Order James and Broc West of discuss Grave of the Fireflies, the 1988 animated film from Studio Ghibli that just may be the greatest war movie ever made. Break out the tissues and prepare for some tears as we hash out the psychological scars this film leaves and examine the movie as a work of art, as an anti-war movie, as a moral tale, and as a stark reminder of how the victors write the history books.

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Roger Ebert on Grave of the Fireflies

Anime Abandon: Grave of the Fireflies

The Fog of War – Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara

Childs – “Mariana”

Last month’s episode and comments: Contagion – FLNWO #19

Next month: Tora, Tora, Tora!


  1. Thank you so much James for picking this film for FLNWO! This is not only my favorite animes but one of my favorite movies of all time. I must confess that I have not re-watched the movie since the first time I saw it. I just could not bring myself to go through the emotional pain that it caused me the first time. Few movies have moved me to completely breakdown and sob the way Grave of the Fireflies did.

    I have come to interpret Seita’s decision to leave his Aunt’s house as his complete rejection of reality, and his vain attempt to remove himself from the reality of war going on around him. The fact that this leads to his sister’s death and ultimately his only makes this film more beautifully tragic. Again this movie explores the intricacies of the destructive nature of war in a way that no other film has. Thanks again James and Broc for an excellent FLNWO. And I do hope you pick another anime at some point.

  2. Thank you for this review James. I just watched this film after watching Hayao Miyazaki’s new film “The Boy and the Heron”.

    Both are extremely sad but have very powerful anti war messages. I am glad that Studio Ghibli makes such great movies. Very rare to find wholesome, educational, entertaining, and spiritual films these days.

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