I didn’t start crying until the final frame of “The Boy and the Heron.” It was just a line of text, the final name in the film’s credit roll, that brought unexpected tears to my eyes: “Written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki.”
To get the chance to see one more film by a director whose oeuvre has had such an impact on my moviegoing life and career — a decade after the release of what was supposed to be his final film — was like finishing off a box of chocolates only to discover a secret compartment with more treats inside.
I first encountered Hayao Miyazaki in 1999, when “Princess Mononoke” was released in the United States. At age 13, sitting next to my father in a theater in Denver, Colorado, I was transported to a world beyond my imagination. I didn’t know animation could do that, and I’m still amazed it can.