In a fictional place where using the imagination is banned, a boy saves a fish, which surprises everyone by turning into a mermaid. The boy is arrested for imagining this "nonsense", and is robbed of his imagination as punishment.
Story: The story is hard to explain. It's pretty much about a young boy who loves to daydream, and one day, he sees a fish on the beach. He picks up the fish and puts it into a little hole filled with sea water. Somehow, a hand comes out of the hole (this is the boy's imagination). The boy accepts the mermaid's request, and then the adventure begins. This involves the boy playing the flute for the mermaid and jumping from clam to clam trying to catch the mermaid (I guess you could put it as an underwater game of tag).
Sooner of later, the boy stops playing with the mermaid, and takes the mermaid home. The boy shows his parents the mermaid he has found, but they see a fish instead of a mermaid. Eventually, the boy shows the deputy this, and they throw him in jail because in their city, imagination is actually banned. The boy tries to tell them that it's a mermaid, but all the people see is a fish. Okay, I need to stop because I've just told you half of the movie. I really enjoyed the story. It is very unique from other anime I've seen.
Art: Wow, the art was very well done, seeing how this was made in 1964. People say that they are only just stick figures, but to me the characters are very detailed stick figures. Viewers might be confused or disgusted that the mermaid's breasts are shown throughout Ningyo, but to me it's beautiful how they did it. I'm not a pervert or anything, but the characters are very detailed. I actually prefer the art from Ningyo over other current anime. And this was made in 1964!
Sound: It's hard to give a high grade for a movie without any dialogue, but the score from Ningyo was outstanding. It fits perfectly, from the adventures of the sea with a Little Mermaid-type of music, and the parts with the protagonist in jail with paranoia-drive, type of music. I wish there was a file of the score, because this would go straight into my iPod.
Character: Okay, seeing how there's barely any characters introduced in Ningyo, it's hard to give a high rating for it. I did think the main character was interesting, and I did enjoy his adventures with him and the mermaid, but if there were more characters that had time in Ningyo, I bet I would have given Ningyo a perfect 10. I did enjoy the main protagonist, but I can't put a high rating just because of one character.
Overall, I really enjoyed Ningyo, and I highly recommend it. It would have been a perfect 10 if more characters had time into Ningyo, and if there was some dialogue (even though I like that the movie was silent)."