Princess Knight (1956) [Short]

Japan (MIFF 1995 , Buried Treasures - Osamu Tezuka)
Director: Osamu Tezuka

Acknowledged as the first anime for girls (and indirectly leading to some of the most mind-boggling gender-specific girls titles {shojo manga & anime} which have proliferated in Japan over the proceeding 30 years), Princess Knight is a truly confounding tale. Set in a lurid fantasy-Europe, which makes Disney's penchant for Bavarian castles seem restrained, this is the story of Sap­phire who cannot succeed to the throne of Goldland because she is a girl. Thus she parades as a boy, and smites one Franz Charm­ing when she redisguises herself as a blonde girl for a journey into Silverland. If this already doesn't already sound like one of the wild romantic scenarios from the female cross-dress­ing Takarazuka Revue, complications further arise because when Sapphire was born, a mis­chievous angel (Tink in the original; Choppy in the American) pushed the heart of a boy into her mouth-so she actually has the hearts of both sexes within her.

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