* DisownedAdaptation: Le Guin's response to the film can be found [[http://www.ursulakleguin.com/GedoSenkiResponse.html here]]. In a nutshell, she thought the film suffered in comparison to her own novels and that is was overly violent and [[{{Anvilicious}} preachy]], and that the characters are too white (which is a serious issue for Le Guin), but that the movie was merely dissatisfying rather than outright bad. Given Le Guin's [[DisownedAdaptation vehemently negative opinions]] of all prior attempts at adapting her work to other media this can be interpreted as getting off lightly.
* RealitySubtext: One could make an argument that Arren's [[TheHerosJourney journey's]] echoes Goro Miyazaki's career. A son kills his [[Creator/HayaoMiyazaki beloved father the king]] for [[OedipusComplex Oediptic reasons]] and [[TakeUpMySword takes his sword]] Only to find he is incapable of using it and unable to escape the shadows, until he fully accepts his own fears and weaknesses, [[Anime/FromUpOnPoppyHill after which he improves.]]
* WhatCouldHaveBeen: Hayao Miyazaki offered to adapt the book in the early '90s, but Ursula K. [=LeGuinn=], not being familiar with his work, turned him down. By the time she watched his films and became convinced he could do justice to the book, he had retired and she had to settle for his son.

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