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The Rat who is made of Stainless Steel

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Film Review: Only Yesterday (1991)
Only Yesterday (1991). Based on the manga by Hotaru Okamoto and Yuko Tone, and directed by Isao Takahata. Initially set in Tokyo during 1982, the story centres around Taeko, a 27-year old woman that has never married. She decides to take a visit to the countryside to see family, and during the trip has various flashbacks to her difficult life as a 10-year old. Only Yesterday was a hard watch on two counts: a rather slow and meandering story, and a fairly long runtime of almost 2 hours. The story centres around various encounters that Taeko had as a child, both with her family and at school. I could empathise somewhat with her character, as she didn't fit in well at home or at school, and therefore was somewhat alienated. Aside from the story, the animation is top notch and gorgeous in places, with backdrops of rural Japan. The film has a sweet ending at least, which for me at least made up somewhat for the rather tortuous rest of the film. Those who enjoy this type of slow drawn out story will enjoy, as long as they have no issue with animation and subtitles. 2/5 (Poor)