Neko no Ongaeshi

Title:Neko no Ongaeshi
The Cat Returns
猫の恩返し (Japanese)
Keywords: , , , ,
Notables: Animation - Studio Ghibli
R1 License - Disney
Haru is your typical young girl. Can't wake up in the morning, is always late, in love with a boy who has another girlfriend. One day on the way home she sees a small blue cat carrying a small box. The cat drops the box in front of a moving truck and nearly gets run over. Haru runs in and saves the cat. The cat stands up, bows, and leaves. That night the Cat King shows up and promises her many treasures for saving his son. Cat tail plants, cat nip, mice in her locker and a special present, to marry the Prince! Can Haru stop this before she herself gets married and becomes a cat? Only with a few friends, Toto the bird, Muta the fat cat and his buddy, the Baron from Whisper of the Heart!.

Haru must get to the cat kingdom, convince the king to let her go before it is too late!

R1 By Disney featuring the voices of Cary Elwes, Anne Hathaway, Peter Boyle and Elliot Gould.

4min Music/Movie Trailer - YouTube Video
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Rent 9 9 8 7 7 Ggultra2764 [series:1304#1552]
The first half of The Cat Returns was fun stuff until its second half ruined things for me. The first half creates a slow build-up of Haru's normal life and how it goes topsy-turvy when the cats of the Cat Kingdom start to get involved in her life. Haru behaves like a normal teenage girl would from trying to get to school on time to having disappointment over the boy she likes having a girlfriend. When Haru saves the cat prince, things start getting fun with this movie starting with the attempts from the cats to show their gratitude for her which had me chuckling quite a bit from her school getting a mess load of lacrosse sticks to Haru's locker being loaded with mice. The Count from Whisper of the Heart and Muta even made for some interesting and fun characters in terms of personality. The plot itself is quite simple to follow since it's a children's movie, so it is quite easy to get into. Visuals were of the usual great quality that Ghibli has though they are noticeably not as vast and richly detailed as other Ghibli works like Spirited Away and Howl's Moving Castle.

Unfortunately, the movie starts to show its problems during the second half when the limited movie time leads things to start feeling rushed giving little time to explore the Cat Kingdom and certain elements of the story like Haru's slow transformation into a cat. Some characters were even a bit on the shallow side such as the Cat King and his servants. The movie's attempts to even make a lesson from Haru's problems were lackluster at most since this "lesson" was put to the back burner for the most part since the movie doesn't explore her character too greatly.

The Cat Returns will be good entertainment for kids to check out thanks to the antics of the cats, which can also be worthwhile for older viewers. But this movie does a poor job of trying to make itself a coming-of-age story with Haru's adventure in the Cat Kingdom.

Last updated Friday, July 10 2009. Created Friday, July 10 2009.
Buy 8 10 10 6 10 manganime [series:1304#1633]
Highly enjoyable movie- possibly my favourite Miyazaki film. In my view it's a more under-rated one of his.

Last updated Monday, March 13 2006. Created Monday, March 13 2006.
Buy Forbin [series:1304#1573]
Anime Types
DramaLowJust an adventure
ComedyLowMostly Incidental
ActionLowOne or 2 sword fights
SciFiLowSome Magic but not much
EcchiNoneTypical Miyazaki
I liked this too, another Miyazaki checked off on my list! It's very good, I liked it more than Howls, but still it doesn't exceed my 2 favorite.

When you watch it, the background of the Crossroads Mall the signs say 'Crossloads' but when it is animated the signs say 'Crossroads' go figure!

Last updated Monday, January 23 2006. Created Monday, January 23 2006.

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