Anna is being sent to the countryside to live with her relatives to cure her Asthma using the clean air. The emotionally distant girl is mesmerized by an abandoned mansion overlooking the marshes & starts developing a friendship with little Marnie from the mansion only to realize later that Marnie is visible only to her.
Running Time:
103 min
Release date:
19 July 2014
Directed by:
Hiromasa Yonebayashi
Produced by:
Yoshiaki Nishimura
Toshio Suzuki
Written by:
Masashi Andō
Hiromasa Yonebayashi
Keiko Niwa
Based on:
When Marnie Was There by
Joan G. Robinson
Sara Takatsuki
Kasumi Arimura
Hana Sugisaki
Hitomi Kuroki
Ryoko Moriyama
Nanako Matsushima
Susumu Terajima
Toshie Negishi
Music by:
Takatsugu Muramatsu
Shot by:
Atsushi Okuo
Editing by:
Rie Matsubara
Distributed by:

What’s Hot

  • The core story which transcends generations is interesting and keeps you hooked for the most part. The quest to know the link between the present and the past is clouded brilliantly by surrealistic situations.
  • The fact that the protagonist is an artist has proved advantageous for the film as it relies on the magnificence of the scenery to capture the audience. Anna & Marnie are angelic making their combination sequences the highlight of the film. Also, the characterization of the good natured relatives from the countryside who take Anna, is heartwarming.
  • As with any Studio Ghibli film, music is of prime importance and Takatsugu Muramatsu’s score complements the visuals wonderfully well. Even though the surreal moments are on the low side for a film from Studio Ghibli, the music plays a vital part in attracting the audience towards them.

What’s Not

  • The true essence of what made Studio Ghibli universally liked seems to be missing. In spite of being a pathos-led subject, there are very less number of heartwarming elements in the film compared to even their last release The Tale of the Princess Kaguya. This leads to us not being able to totally invest in the film until probably the third act which reveals the suspense.




Verdict Stamp

‘When Marnie Was There’ has a fabulous story & fantastic visuals backed by a pleasing background score, however the meandering screenplay and heavy, emotional dialogues makes this film not fall in the league of Studio Ghibli’s best.