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Anime: The Tale Of Princess Kaguya
The Tale Of Princess Kaguya
is a 2014 film from Studio Ghibli
directed by Isao Takahata
, based on the Japanese folk tale "The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter".
This film contains the following tropes:
- All Just a Dream: Kaguya goes through one after overhearing some highly unflattering comments by inebriated guests where she runs back to the village only to find everyone gone.
- Bittersweet Ending: Possibly Downer Ending, definitely Tear Jerker. Kaguya is taken back to the Moon, the celestial robe placed on her stripping her of all memory of everything she experienced. It is implied she has some sense of what she's lost, though, judging both by her story of the one who came before her, and her backwards glance at the Earth.
- Easy Amnesia: As easy as putting on a robe of forgetfulness.
- Gonk: One of the suitors is incredibly obese. Kaguya herself disguises herself to get rid of one of the suitors.
- Gorgeous Period Dress: And not-so-gorgeous, like blackened teeth and plucked eyebrows.
- Heroic BSOD: Kaguya goes through one when she hears one of the suitors killed himself while on his quest.
- Intangible Man: Kaguya somehow does this when the Emperor gets a little too close.
- It's All About Me: The Emperor is convinced that Kaguya refused five suitors so she could belong to him.
- Modest Royalty: Kaguya and her parents retain their peasant history even when they move to the capital. Kaguya becomes a Rebellious Princess (see below), her mother continues to work in the kitchen and garden, and her father keeps his oafishness despite being the most adamant to adopt royalty.
- No Periods, Period: Averted. Kaguya's menarche kicks off the chain of events that ends with her return to the moon.
- Overprotective Dad: Averted with Kaguya's father, who does indeed want the best for Kaguya, including the highest-ranking husband possible.
- Noblewoman's Laugh: Averted. While Sagami tells Kaguya that refined women do not laugh loudly, she doesn't give a demonstration.
- Rebellious Princess: Justified with the titular Kaguya, as she grew up in a hamlet surrounded by nature and friends, as well as allowed more freedom than when she became a princess.
- Shoot the Shaggy Dog: One of Kaguya's suitors compares her to a cowry shell kept warm in a swallow's nest; she responds by requesting that he bring such a thing to her in exchange for her hand. This is 'easily' the least exotic comparison made, and thus the least exotic demand, but he falls just after grabbing something from a nest, shouting out in triumph, tumbling to land face-first in a giant pot, lethally breaking his spine. His treasure ends up being a mundane bird's egg, with the chick inside chirping.
- Shout-Out: Kaguya's handmaiden dresses rather similarly to another Princess Kaguya...
- Soundtrack Dissonance: The Tear Jerker ending is set to very happy festival music.
- Stern Teacher: Sagami, though she admits that Kaguya performs better when not in her lessons.
- Trauma Conga Line: Kaguya's childhood is relatively happy. Once she's taken to the capital, however, things sour:
- She's immediately shut off from her childhood friends.
- Her teacher is demanding and has no tolerance for her lack of enthusiasm.
- Her first period is met with her father putting her on the marriage market.
- Suitors are immediately struck by her.
- She briefly sees one childhood friend in the street, which mainly makes him pause in shock and be thoroughly beaten.
- One suitor successfully plays to her interests, but is strongly implied to be manipulating her rather than being genuine.
- Another accidentally dies in an attempt to woo her (see Shoot the Shaggy Dog above).
- The Emperor concludes that she's shooting everyone else down because she's holding out for him, and when he embraces her from behind, she panics, and sets in motion her return to the Moon.
- In the end, she can do nothing to stop it; even under protest, as she recognizes both the good and the bad of Earth and clearly doesn't want to forget it, the celestial robe is placed on her anyway.
- Wonder Child: Kaguya is found dressed as a princess no more than a few inches tall, then turns into a fast-growing baby.
- You Can't Fight Fate: No one is able to resist Kaguya's return to the Moon.
- You Shall Not Pass: Kaguya's father enlists the entire household to shoot down the Moon delegation as they arrive. However, the arrows turn to flowers midair, and everyone falls asleep save Kaguya's parents.