I think most of us lost, at least once in our lifetime, some things in our own house, without having a clue where they disappeared, as if they had just vanished away without a trace.
Well, this is pretty much the case in Arrietty‘s world, only that this time, to the missing of these things is given a quite valid explanation: they are taken away and reused by the tiny people, the so called “borrowers”, that usually live under the floor and from time to time, come up to recharge with things that they need and think people won’t miss that much.
But what happens when people see them? What happens in the life of these tiny people, when their existence is uncovered?
Usually their first rule is simple: move away as fast as you can, packing only the things you can carry, as people are strange creatures that can only harm you, once they discovered you.
This is what the 14 years old Arrietty was taught by her parents and this is also her first instinct when she is firstly seen by a human boy.
But beyond any teachings she ever knew, this frightening encounter at first, slowly starts to change her perspective over things, as she begins having small conversations with the boy.
The only great difference between the two of them seems to be their height, but once they start talking and take this chance of knowing each other, they also start seeing the similarities when it comes to their fears, their loves, their hopes and expectations.
But there also comes a little twist.
I think that beyond the physical presence of those wonderful characters he created, what Hiromasa Yonebayashi, the film’s director, wanted to do, was playing a bit of magic into the apparently ordinary things in our daily lives by giving this charming meaning to a very common happening, like losing very small objects in our own homes.
And this is not even the whole meaning of it: what goes even deeper is this magic power of imagination, that becomes real once you actually start believing. It involves fears, it involves sharing feelings, it involves trying to do your best, even though you might not always know if that’s the best thing to do.
It involves going beyond what you were once taught to believe about the world outside, and start making your own believes through your very own experience.
So, you might give it a chance, at least from time to time, to believe in the existence of tiny people, or the other way around, break the habit of what you’ve been taught to fear and experience this fear till the end of it.