Tokyo Godfathers

2003

Tokyo Godfathers

Critics Consensus

Beautiful and substantive, Tokyo Godfathers adds a moving -- and somewhat unconventional -- entry to the animated Christmas canon.

90%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 69

91%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 13,852
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Movie Info

Japanese filmmaker Satoshi Kon directs his third anime feature with the holiday film Tokyo Godfathers. The story takes place in Shinjuku, Tokyo, on Christmas Eve. Middle-aged has-been Gin, aging transvestite Hana, and teenage runaway Miyuki are three homeless friends who have formed a kind of makeshift family structure. Their bond is tested when they find an abandoned baby while searching for food in a garbage dump. They have no choice but to care for the infant themselves. The group travels throughout the city, searching for the baby's parents and coping with their personal reactions to the situation. Tokyo Godfathers premiered at the Big Apple Anime Fest in 2003. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, Rovi

Cast

Hiroya Ishimaru
as Old Homeless Man
Yuusaku Yara
as Miyuki's Father
Kyoko Terase
as Sachiko
Mamiko Noto
as Kiyoko/Gin's Daughter
Mitsuhiro Ogata
as Hidenari Ugaki
Chiyako Shibahara
as Eriko Kawasaki
Kazuaki Ito
as Akiko Takeguchi
Atsuko Ito
as Akiko Takeguchi
Atsuko Yuya
as Nobuyuki Furuta
Jun Horikawa
as Toshitaka Shimizu
Masato Harada
as Youto Kazama
View All

Critic Reviews for Tokyo Godfathers

All Critics (69) | Top Critics (24) | Fresh (62) | Rotten (7)

  • In one sense the plot involves returning stolen goods to a thief, but Tokyo Godfathers is really about longing -- for family, for children, for parents and for the lost past.

    Dec 9, 2013
  • No amount of shoehorned-in razzle-dazzle can keep this forced fable from feeling like a shadow of Kon's early work.

    Dec 9, 2013 | Full Review…

    Tasha Robinson

    AV Club
    Top Critic
  • Japanese animator Satoshi Kon has a striking sense of composition, but I'm more impressed by his storytelling skills.

    Feb 17, 2012 | Full Review…
  • Takes anime to a whole new level.

    Sep 7, 2008 | Full Review…

    Ken Eisner

    Variety
    Top Critic
  • One of the most moving, enjoyable and wholly unconventional Christmas stories to come along in a long time.

    Mar 25, 2004 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…
  • Demonstrates an idiosyncratic human touch. Kon is unafraid of the unseemly and unsightly.

    Feb 27, 2004 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Tokyo Godfathers

  • Apr 06, 2014
    Constantly surprising.
    Marcus W Super Reviewer
  • Oct 15, 2012
    It's a cute, and surprisingly good Japanese animated film about 3 hobos came across a baby and had to take care of it by themselves. All three of the hobos had different personalities and background which makes taking care of the baby challenging, but it's a film about friendship, miracles and ultimately Christmas. Definitely worth watching.
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer
  • Jun 07, 2012
    Damn fine movie, pretty much almost like Tsotsi in that these characters are looking for some sort of redemption for their past mistakes and they do through taking care of this baby. The problem in Tsotsi was that there was no real character progression, the guy went from being bad to good just because it was written in the script that way. At least this movie has better progression in that you get why they're doing what they're doing and why it's important to them. But there's also part of me that was slightly disappointed by this movie. Not that it's ever bad at any point, but it isn't as good as I thought it was going to be. There's just something missing here that would've taken it to the next level. Not sure what it was, maybe I wasn't as attached to the characters as the movie expected me to be, though they were very likable and funny however, also I think the movie ends as it's starting to peak. Perhaps it's just me, but as I mentioned there was something lacking. The animation is excellent however, no surprise there. And as mentioned the characters are very entertaining and there's a sense of family between them. Very good movie overall.
    Jesse O Super Reviewer
  • Apr 25, 2011
    Heartwarming and fun.
    August S Super Reviewer

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