Miss Hokusai (Sarusuberi: Miss Hokusai)

Critics Consensus

Miss Hokusai illuminates the life and creative legacy of its brilliant subject with a beautifully animated biopic whose absorbing visuals are matched by its narrative grace.



Total Count: 56


Audience Score

User Ratings: 938
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Movie Info

From award-winning director Keiichi Hara (Colorful) and Japanese powerhouse Production I.G (creators of Ghost in the Shell) comes a remarkable story of the daughter behind one of history's most famous artists. As all of Edo flocks to see the work of the revered painter Hokusai, his daughter O-Ei toils diligently inside his studio. Her masterful portraits, dragons and erotic sketches- sold under the name of her father- are coveted by upper crust Lords and journeyman print makers alike. Shy and reserved in public, in the studio O-Ei is as brash and uninhibited as her father, smoking a pipe while sketching drawings that would make contemporary Japanese ladies blush. But despite this fiercely independent spirit, O-Ei struggles under the domineering influence of her father and is ridiculed for lacking the life experience that she is attempting to portray in her art. Miss Hokusai's bustling Edo (present day Tokyo) is filled with yokai spirits, dragons, and conniving tradesmen, while O-Ei's relationships with her demanding father and blind younger sister provide a powerful emotional underpinning to this sumptuously-animated coming-of-age tale.

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Yutaka Matsushige
as Katsushika Hokusai
Gaku Hamada
as Ikeda Zenjirô
Michitaka Tsutsui
as Iwakubo Hatsugorô
Kumiko Aso
as Sayogoromo
Kengo Kora
as Utagawa Kuninao
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Critic Reviews for Miss Hokusai (Sarusuberi: Miss Hokusai)

All Critics (56) | Top Critics (17)

  • The art here is rawer and more idiosyncratic than some other anime, and there is a pleasing matter-of-factness about fleshy matters - drinking, sex, sickness - even as the more abstract question of art's practice and power is under consideration.

    Nov 11, 2016 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • The animation is superb, with fine attention to period detail, and director Keiichi Hara's use of modern music - some of it rock-infused - is apt accompaniment to a story of a young woman who lives life boldly by refusing to bend to cultural norms.

    Oct 28, 2016 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • This plush anime version of Hinako Sugiura's original manga tells a tale in a poetic, episodic fashion.

    Oct 28, 2016 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • Although it's lovely to look at, the movie is disjointed and is told through a seemingly random collection of vignettes, some of which are more memorable than others.

    Oct 27, 2016 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • The spell "Miss Hokusai" casts is a powerful one that lingers long after the lights go up in the theater.

    Oct 24, 2016 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • There are meditations on mortality, art, relationships, love, fear, sexuality and spirituality in this sumptuous-looking film. They cohere into a portrait of a young woman as complex as any big screen character can be.

    Oct 21, 2016 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…

    Tom Long

    Detroit News
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Miss Hokusai (Sarusuberi: Miss Hokusai)

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