Animated family films are at their best when the main story is saying something more. Think about all the films Pixar has made in recent years. Is Wall-E just about a robot cleaning a planet? Is Up really just about a flying house? Of course not. These stories are used to teach us all some of life’s valuable lessons.

Other films use their stories to push agendas and ideologies. Michael Moore’s documentaries immediately come to mind. But no matter what the filmmaker’s intention with a movie is, the great thing about film is that we can all read whatever we want into it.

So when Lou Dobbs came on Fox News recently and suggested that The Secret World of Arrietty and The Lorax were liberal attempts to indoctrinate America’s youth into advocating the Occupy movement and enviromental issues, he has every right to say that. And we have every right to laugh at his insinuations. Check out the clip below. Read More »

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In 2010 Studio Ghibli released a film in Japan based on Mary Norton‘s young adult fantasy novel The Borrowers. Next month, Disney is finally releasing the film in the US, with a voice cast that includes Bridgit Mendler, Amy Poehler, Carol Burnett, Will Arnett, David Henrie, and Moises Arias.

The story features a family of tiny people who live in the hidden corners of human habitations, and who are perpetually trying to avoid discovery by humans. After the break we’ve got an exclusive clip from the film, that shows what happens when the efforts to avoid human discovery fail. Read More »

We’ve seen a few trailers for Studio Ghibli‘s 2010 film, known in some territories as The Borrower Arrietty, and in the US as The Secret World of Arrietty. But we haven’t seen much from the film that features English-language dialogue. Not that it really matters with a Studio Ghibli film, as the animation is pretty enough to carry us through a trailer in Japanese.

Now Disney has released the first trailer for the US release of The Secret World of Arrietty. It looks like a good version of Mary Norton‘s young adult fantasy novel The Borrowers. This one is directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi and written by Hayao Miyazaki and Keiko Niwa. See the trailer, featuring the voices of Bridgit Mendler, Amy Poehler, Carol Burnett, Will Arnett, David Henrie, and Moises Arias, below. Read More »

In the two and a half decades since its inception, Studio Ghibli has consistently put out some of the most beloved classics of animation — from Castle in the Sky and My Neighbor Totoro in the ’80s to more recent projects like Ponyo. So the recent announcement of not one, but two new projects, from studio co-founders Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata, is exciting news indeed. The report of a new film by Takahata (Grave of the Fireflies) is especially intriguing since it’ll be his first feature since 1999′s My Neighbors the Yamadas. Read more after the jump.

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