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Patema Inverted(サカサマのパテマ)

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Japan · 2013
1h 38m
Director Yasuhiro Yoshiura
Starring Yukiyo Fujii, Masayuki Katou, Takaya Hashi
Genre Animation, Adventure, Drama, Fantasy, Science Fiction

In an underground world where tunnels extend everywhere, even though they live in dark and confined spaces, people wear protective clothes and lead quiet and enjoyable lives. Patema, a princess in her underground village, loves to explore the tunnels. Her favorite place is a "danger zone" that her village prohibits people from entering. Even though she's scolded, Patema's curiosity can't be held back. No one ever explained what the supposed danger was. On her usual trip to the "danger zone," Patema faces unexpected events. When hidden secrets come to light, the story begins to unfold.

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What are people saying?

What are critics saying?


The Guardian by

The animation is intricate and beautiful but the narrative is clunky and heavy-handed in places.

63 by Brian Tallerico

Yoshiura’s film resonates with the fantastic visions that we’ve come to hope for in the best Japanese animation. When the flat character design, two-dimensional villains, and unengaging narrative counter-act that, it falls flat. Like its two lead characters, it is of two worlds.


The Hollywood Reporter by Frank Scheck

At once a touching adolescent love story and a visually evocative portrait of society torn apart by literally competing forces, Patema Inverted is an uncommonly ambitious animated effort that beautfully illustrates the need for both physical and emotional connections in a topsy-turvy world.


The New York Times by Jeannette Catsoulis

The music is lovely, and the animation is soft and imaginatively detailed. Patema and Age may not know what’s upside down or right-way up, but their director is never in any doubt.


Total Film by Kevin Harley

From the texture of the underground havens to the idea that our leads have to – literally – cling to each other lest gravity tears them apart, it’s a wonder of detail and ingenuity.


New York Post by Kyle Smith

The film by Yasuhiro Yoshiura suffers from many of the same flaws as other anime features — a plodding pace, broad humor, a bland heroine and snarly, one-dimensional villains.


Village Voice by Sherilyn Connelly

Yoshiura keeps the story fairly linear, while playing with perspective and composing many stunning, vertiginous images that consider the different possibilities of being at war with gravity.

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