Ponyo and Sosuke on a boat

Ponyo Movie Summary

by Mikayla Samonte

The Ghibli Movie Guide

Ponyo and Sosuke leaving Sosuke's house Souske signaling with a light Tiny Ponyo in a bubble Ponyo kisses Sosuke Ramen Bowl Ponyo running on the fish waves

Short History

Credits: The Ponyo Wiki Page
Ponyo on the Cliff was released by Toho on July 19, 2008, in theatres across Japan. It is Miyazaki's eighth film to be made under the studio, and his first feature-length film since Howl's Moving Castle released four years prior. It's a variation on "The Little Mermaid" taken into uncharted depths; the story of a magical goldfish who wills herself into becoming a human girl after she is befriended by a 5-year-old boy, Sosuke.

The Shortest Summary

Credits - The Ponyo Wiki

"The plot centers on a goldfish named Brunhilde and a boy named Sōsuke who renames her Ponyo. Fujimoto, a once-human wizard/scientist, lives underwater along with his daughter, Brunhilde, and her numerous smaller sisters. While she and her siblings are on an outing with their father, Brunhilde sneaks off and floats away on the back of a jellyfish. She drifts to the shore of a small fishing town in a glass jar where she is rescued by a five-year-old boy named Sōsuke. Shattering the jar open with a rock, Sōsuke cuts his finger in the process. Brunhilde licks his wound causing it to heal almost instantly.

Meanwhile, Fujimoto notices her absence and looks for her, believing she has been kidnapped. Distraught, Fujimoto searches frantically for his lost daughter but gets caught by all the waste in the ocean. Meanwhile, Sōsuke names Brunhilde Ponyo, puts her in a bucket and promises to protect her.

On the way home Lisa (Sōsuke's mother) tells him that while he did try to take care of Ponyo, having her live in a bucket was not a good idea. When they get home Sōsuke leaves the pail on the fence in case Ponyo comes back. Ponyo and Fujimoto have an argument, during which Ponyo refuses to let her father call her by her birth name. She declares her desire to be known as 'Ponyo' and to become human. Using her magic, she forces herself to grow leg- and arm-like appendages and start changing into a human, a power granted to her by the human blood she ingested when she licked Sōsuke's finger.

Ponyo, with the help of her sisters, breaks away from her father and inadvertently uses his magic to make herself fully human. The huge amount of magic that she releases into the ocean causes an imbalance in the world in the form of a huge storm/tsunami. Ponyo heads to Sōsuke's and Lisa allows her to stay at their house for the time being. Lisa, Sōsuke, and Ponyo wait out the storm at Sōsuke's house.

When the lights go out, Lisa heads outside and sees the rising tide has reached the road. Worried about the residents of the nursing home where she works, Lisa decides to leave and check up on seniors and tells Sōsuke to stay put.

Fujimoto soon comes to Sōsuke's house and shocked to discover that not only has Ponyo's magic gotten stronger, she is also fully human. Granmamare (Ponyo's mother) arrives at Fujimoto's submarine, he is very happy to see her again, she tells him that her ocean has gotten bigger. Granmamare declares that if Sōsuke can pass a test, Ponyo can live as a human and that the order of the world will be restored. A still-worried Fujimoto reminds her that if Sōsuke fails the test, Ponyo will turn into sea foam.

Sōsuke and Ponyo wake up to find that most of the land around the house has been covered by the ocean. Since it is impossible for Lisa to come home, the two children decide to find her. With the help of Ponyo's magic, they make Sōsuke's toy boat life-size and set out across the flooded town Along they way they see many fish and a family who knows Sōsuke and his family.Soon enough the whole town comes on boats and tells everyone to come to a nearby hotel for safety.

Meanwhile, Lisa and the residents of the nursing home, who are temporarily able to breath water because of Granmamare, are waiting excitedly below the surface for Ponyo and Sōsuke to arrive. Ponyo and Sōsuke head into a tunnel. Inside Ponyo reverts to being a fish due to overuse of her magical powers. They encounter Fujimoto, he tells Sōsuke that the residents, his mother, and Granmamare were waiting, but Sōsuke doesn't trust him. However, Fujimoto captures them and takes them down to the protected nursing home.

Sōsuke is reunited with Lisa and meets Granmamare, with whom Lisa has just had a long private conversation. Granmamare asks Sōsuke if he can love Ponyo whether she is a fish or human. Sōsuke replies that he "loves all the Ponyos." Granmamare then tells her daughter that if she chooses to become human once and for all, she will have to give up her magical powers. Ponyo agrees to this, so Granmamare encases her in a bubble and gives her to Sōsuke.The balance of nature is thus restored and the previously stranded ships head back to port. Ponyo then joyfully jumps high in the air and kisses Sōsuke, completing her transformation as a human."

Main Characters and Other Cool Quotes

Ponyo Sosuke

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