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Lu Over the Wall

Directed by Masaaki Yuasa
Japan, Animated, 2017, 112 mins., in Japanese w/ English subtitles

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018 at 12:00 p.m.
(Program concludes no later than 2pm)

Northwest Film Center’s Whitsell Auditorium, 1219 SW Park Ave.


Themes & Subjects: Coming of Age, Animated Film, Japanese Folklore

Synopsis: Winner of the top prize at this year’s Annecy Animation Film Festival, Lu Over the Wall is a visually ravishing take on the classic fairy tale of the little mermaid who falls in love with mankind. Quiet Kai lives in a small fishing town with his superstitious grandfather. The old man warns him of the dangers of the Merfolk, whom he and the townspeople believe lure people to their deaths. When confronted by bullies, Kai is helped by the fun-loving mermaid Lu. With a local seafood company posing a threat to the town and its inhabitants hostile towards the Mer people, Lu, Kai and his friends must join together to ensure both communities survive.


Resources for teachers:

Article about Mermaids in Japanese folklore.

Official film website (in Japanese).

Scientific American article “Challenges Facing Japan’s Marine Fisheries.”



The Northwest Film Center recognizes and honors the Indigenous peoples of this region on whose ancestral lands the museum now stands. These include the Willamette Tumwater, Clackamas, Kathlemet, Molalla, Multnomah and Watlala Chinook Peoples and the Tualatin Kalapuya who today are part of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, and many other Native communities who made their homes along the Columbia River. We also want to recognize that Portland today is a community of many diverse Native peoples who continue to live and work here. We respectfully acknowledge and honor all Indigenous communities—past, present, future—and are grateful for their ongoing and vibrant presence.