• Born Enemies... Sworn friends.

  • A little goat, Mei, wanders into a dark mountain cabin, seeking shelter from a storm. There he finds a fellow refugee. Huddled together through the night, fighting off terrible colds, the companions can neither see nor smell each other, but there's nothing to keep them from talking. Over the course of the night, the strangers become friends and they promise to meet each other again, using the password, "Stormy Night." The following day, whom should meet Mei for a picnic but... a wolf! Despite the odds, to say nothing of the wolf's weakness for tender young goats, Gav and Mei really do like each other. Gentle Gav and innocent Mei become a regular twosome, meeting for long walks as their wonderful, secret friendship deepens and grows. But their secret isn't safe for long. Soon Mei's flock and Gav's pack have found the friends out and forbidden their alliance, pressuring the devoted companions to spy on each other's kind. Desperate to save their friendship Mei and Gav meet during another terrible storm and wander to the edge of a churning river where they mourn the loss of their secret. Together they decide to swim to the far shore, hoping for a reunion far from the pressures of a world in which they can only live as enemies. They leap freely into the churning waters. When they survive the crossing they set off over a mountain in search of "an emerald forest" where wolf and goat can live side by side. But now Gav's pack is on the hunt. Gilo, the leader of the pack, tracks the pair obsessively. Gilo once lost an ear to a goat and harbors a bitter grudge against Mei. To Gilo, Gav is an unredeemed traitor. As Gav and Mei travel, Gav is careful to satisfy his hunger away from Mei's eyes. But one day Mei finds him tainted with fresh blood. Overcome with involuntary horror, he rejects Gav. In the end, it seems native instincts must prevail... Gav and Mei grow desperate, but they press on. As the travelers reach the summit, they encounter a terrible blizzard. Overcome with hunger and exhaustion, they look at each other and Mei says to Gav, "You can always eat me, you know." Gav struggles to control his impulse to do just that. Suddenly, he hears his pack approaching. Gav hides Mei in a cave and walks back out to face his fellow wolves. Suddenly, there's a massive avalanche. The following morning, Mei kicks his way out of the cave and through the deep snow. In the aftermath of the storm and avalanche, the mountain is carpeted in white. But beyond the snow, he finally sees the "emerald forest." He stands on the verge of the Promised Land. But no matter how often and hard he calls, there is no sign of Gav...
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    Trust... What does it really mean?
    "Stormy Night" is based on Yuichi Kimura's extraordinary best-selling picture books, which has won loyal followers from kindergarteners to grandparents. Gisaburo Sugii, whose major credits include "Night on the Milky Way Railroad" and "Touch," directs this animated film.

    Gav and Mei, a wolf and a goat, meet by chance, developing a friendship that transcends the natural enmity between predator and prey. Gav is tormented by his literally "wolfish" instincts and Mei only compounds his troubles. Mei's flock and Gav's pack hover in the background poised to tear the two apart. The unique appeal of this story lies in its radical purity, which reveals the thin line separating trust from strife, in all relationships, whether they are familial, friendly, romantic, social or international. Yet it also dares to imagine a means of reaching beyond the inherent contradictions and complexities to reach true understanding. This visually stunning film maintains the feel of classic Japanese animation, but incorporates 3DCG to enrich the animal characters with vivid detail. The result is an unusually warm and rich atmosphere. Japanese animation can take us far beyond robots and violence to explore the meaning of trust, friendship and love... "Stormy Night" is an emotionally powerful adventure animation, inspired by a positive, gentle worldview. The film has a universal appeal for audiences of all ages.

    Gisaburo SUGII
    Gisaburo Sugii, one of Japan's top directors of animation, began his career at Toei Animation and soon moved to the newly-established Mushi Production in 1962. He illustrated and directed many episodes of Japan's first animated TV series, "Astroboy." He went on to work on the long-length feature animation "Gokuu no Daiboken" (1964), then he moved to Group TAC and worked on his feature movies "Night on the Milky Way Railroad" (1985), "Touch" (1986), and TV series of "Captain Tsubasa" (2001).
    TITLE : Stormy Night DATA : 35mm / color/ 1:1.85 / 110min.
    DIRECTOR : Gisaburo SUGII
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