Japanese animated film “When Marnie Was There” coming to the Loft

STARTS FRIDAY, JUNE 12 at the Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway Blvd. Tucson

This film will be screened in both English subtitled and English dubbed versions.

Based on the novel by Joan G. Robinson, When Marnie Was There is the newest animated feature from Studio Ghibli, and the second feature film by Hiromasa Yonebayashi, the director of The Secret World of Arrietty.

Sent from her foster home in the city one summer to a sleepy town by the sea in Hokkaido, Anna dreams her days away among the marshes. She believes she’s outside the invisible magic circle to which most people belong – and shuts herself off from everyone around her, wearing her “ordinary face”. Anna never expected to meet a friend like Marnie, who does not judge Anna for being just what she is. But no sooner has Anna learned the loveliness of friendship than she begins to wonder about her newfound friend. Featuring the vocal talents of Hailee Steinfeld, Kiernan Shipka, Kathy Bates, Ellen Burstyn, Geena Davis, Catherine O’Hara, John C. Reilly, Raini Rodriguez and Vanessa Williams. (Dir. by Hiromasa Yonebayashi, 2014, Japan, in Japanese with subtitles/in English, 103 mins., Rated PG)


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Carolyn Classen
Carolyn Sugiyama Classen, a life long Democrat, was born & raised in the State of Hawaii, was a Legislative Aide for U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye on Capitol Hill, and practiced law for a while. In Tucson she worked as a tribal staff attorney for the Pascua Yaqui Tribe and later was the Interim Executive Director of the now defunct Domestic Violence Commission. In 2008 she became a “My Tucson” guest columnist for the Tucson Citizen newspaper, then continued blogging for Tucsoncitizen.com for over four and a half years. Her blogsite was entitled “Carolyn’s Community” about community events and some political news, until Gannett Publishing shut down the site on January 31, 2014. She started with Blog for Arizona on Feb. 11, 2014. Part time she has been sitting as a Hearing Officer in Pima County Consolidated Justice Courts Small Claims Division since April, 2005. She is married to University of Arizona Distinguished Professor Albrecht Classen, a native of Germany. They have one son, who lives in Seattle, WA with his wife and daughter. She is also the Editor of the Southern Arizona Japanese Cultural Coalition website, www.southernazjapan.org (since Jan. 2013).


  1. Heartwarming & haunting, beautifully animated film about a lonely, sickly foster child Anna who goes to live with relatives in the country for the summer, and meets another lonely girl (a wealthy only child who lives in a mansion near the marshes). This Marnie is like an imaginary friend, maybe a ghost — but altogether mysterious to Anna, who also suffers from self-esteem problems as a 12 year old. The animation is terrific — even to raindrops falling on the characters and hair blowing in the wind. Find out who Marnie is by seeing this film, still playing at the Loft. A touching story of love, friendship, and families.

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