Theatrical Release: August 14, 2009
DVD Release: June 1, 2010


From the Academy Award-winning director and world-renowned Japanese animation legend Hayao Miyazaki comes ‘Ponyo,’ a story inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale ‘The Little Mermaid.’ Already a box-office success in Japan, the story of a young and overeager goldfish named Ponyo (voiced by Noah Cyrus) and her quest to become human features an outstanding roster of voice talent, including Cate Blanchett, Matt Damon, Tina Fey, Frankie Jonas, Cloris Leachman, Liam Neeson, Lily Tomlin and Betty White.

Dove Review

In this day and age we have gotten use to the 3-D animation. This is more like the original cartoons many years ago. With a star cast of voices, the fantasy magical world of the sea comes to life. This is where Ponyo, a little gold fish, longs to become human after she was saved by a small boy.

Although this movie has many topics to discuss, one must always remember that it is animation and a fantasy of one person’s imagination. Created for the young children, it is charming and has some great issues to talk to them about. Children of any age can learn about the environment, being responsible, taking care of others, and it is okay to follow your dreams. Parents can also learn a few things from this movie, that sometimes we struggle to protect our children when they are looking at their future differently than what we may want for them.

As this is a Japanese animation film, I must warn that this movie has included things that some may not agree with, such as the Goddess of Mercy of the Sea, a comment about how the storm has returned the balance of life and life begins again and also it includes magic. But overall it is a cute and charming movie for children and adults alike.

We award “Ponyo” the Dove “Family-Approved” Seal for all ages.

Content Description

Faith: None
Integrity: None
Sex: None
Language: None
Violence: Parents argue and mother throws things; mother drives fast in car; terrible storm that puts humans into danger on land and on boats.
Drugs: Lisa (Sosuke's mother) opens what may be assumed a beer can and it foams over; Fujimoto (Ponyo's father) has an elixir stored away that gives the power to the sea.
Nudity: None
Other: The goldfish must give up magic to become human; comment made about the “Balance of Life” being restored


Company: Disney
Director: Hayao Miyazaki
Producer: Steve Alpert
Genre: Animated
Runtime: 101 min.
Reviewer: Donna Rolfe