#32: Whisper of the Heart

Whisper of the Heart Poster

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What We’ve Been Watching / Reading (00:00):

  • Grant embarks on a quest to slay yet another Shonen giant.  This time diving head first into the One Piece manga.  You can find his chapter by chapter reaction thread on twitter right here.
  • Zen has a few things to say about the long awaited release of the first translated Lodoss novel, Record of Lodoss War: The Grey Witch.
  • Finally, Heat has a few “mysteries” for us to solve.

Review (57:57):

We review Studio Ghibli’s Whisper of the Heart (1995), a quiet, thoroughly charming portrait of adolescence with universal resonance directed by the late, great Yoshifumi Kondo.  Tune in for the full review!

Twitter Questions (2:12:42)


If you have questions or comments about the show, please feel free to shoot us an Email or leave a comment below.

Thanks for listening!

3 thoughts on “#32: Whisper of the Heart”

  1. As I was listening to this today and Heat and you guys were discussing the structure of the film. I also came across this article written in regards to the Japanese story telling structure of kishotenketsu which I think fits this film.

    While the article is written in response to the current Digimon movie series, it doesn’t deal too much on that and is mostly focused on explaining this style of Japanese story telling. Just sharing cause I thought you guys might find it interesting with all the structure discussion that went on this episode.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hey, thanks for the read, EggMath! That article was pretty illuminating. I actually never learned about Kisotenketsu in film school, but now that I have a general idea about it I can think of probably half a dozen Asian films that likely follow that structure.

      In the case of Whisper of the Heart, in particular, I guess it seems like it follows the Kisotenketsu structure outlined in that article, however, I don’t think it’s necessarily as coy about its themes as the structure template suggests most stories should be. I don’t think the film flat-out yells that it’s a story about growing up and finding your true passions in life, but it also doesn’t seem like that theme is even remotely a mystery. Also I might be completely wrong here, but I still think Whisper uses a two-act structure rather than the four-act structure of Kisotenketsu. Again, might be completely wrong about that and as I said in the podcast I’ll need to view it again and really keep an eye out for pacing/structure.

      It’s fascinating to think about this Eastern style of emphasis on story structure that doesn’t necessarily have any direct conflict. I think there have been at least two instances on this podcast where I’ve faulted a film for not having a strong antagonistic force to drive its plot forward. As the article states, that’s likely because as a Westerner I’ve been conditioned to expect such structure in pretty much every form of media I’ve been exposed to.

      I’d like to read up on Kisotenketsu a little more and maybe do a segment about it on the podcast in the near future. I think we could all benefit from having a better understanding of the narrative lens these filmmakers would like us to experience their stories through.

      Again, thanks a ton for that insightful article, EggMath, and thanks for listening to us ramble for hours about movies we love.

      Liked by 1 person

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