Sunday, 3 August 2014

Most Memorable Studio Ghibli Movies

With the rumours of Studio Ghibli Closing down being cleared up as just them taking a "pause". I think it's time to take a Quick Look at the Most Memorable Studio Ghibli Movies. Many of us grew up with these movies, and hopefully many more people will still enjoy them for years to come. The Majority of the Movies listed below all had a deeper underlying message that is sometimes missed in the Anime of today.

1. Spirited Away

Synopsis : For the 10-year-old Chihiro and her family, a mysterious tunnel and haunted town located in everyday Japan lead to the Land of Spirits, inhabited by gods and monsters and ruled by the greedy witch Yubaaba. Chihiro's parents are transformed into pigs; to rescue them, she must surrender her name and serve in this world. Luckily she finds friends and allies, including the handsome but mysterious boy Haku. Initially sulky and listless, Chihiro (or Sen, as she is now called) finds inner strength and establishes an identity in this strange world. But can she win back her name and return home?
Genre : Fantasy, Magic, Mina, Parallel Universe
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Thoughts : Spirited Away was arguably One of Studio Ghibli's Greatest Movies ever made in their long existance. A touching Coming of Age tale filled with the typical Ghibli fantasy adventure story telling they were known for.

2. Princess Mononoke
Synopsis : While fighting to save his village from the attack of a demon-god Ashitaka comes in contact with it and is inflicted with a deadly curse. In his search for a cure he is forced to leave his village forever and journey to the forest inhabited by animal gods. There he finds himself in the middle of a war between the forest gods and a village led by lady Eboshi.
Genre : Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Mina, Samurai
Thoughts : When I first watched Princess Mononoke I was a bit freaked out. But this was at a very young age. I later watched it again and finally I could appreciate it for the masterpiece it was.

3. Kiki`s Delivery Service
Synopsis : Kiki is thirteen years old, right at the age when a young witch in training is supposed to travel to another city and strike out for herself. It is a real test of responsibility and independence, and if Kiki can handle it for a year, she will be ready to undergo the rest of her education.

So, with only a little money, her pet cat/confidante Jiji, and her mother's broom, Kiki makes her way to a big city by the sea, where witches have not been seen for years and the demand for them is not exactly significant. Being resourceful, Kiki starts the kind of business most suitable for a witch who can fly on a broom: an airborne package delivery service. As her fledgling business becomes more and more successful, she meets various friends who each teach her about independence, inspiration, and what to do on days when both seem to vanish.
Genre : Adventure, Comedy, Coming of Age, Daily Life, Fantasy, Magic, Mina, Novel, Romance
Thoughts : I fell in love with this movie after watching it for the first time about 10 years ago. And I never get tired of watching it over and over again. If you haven't seen this heartwarming movie yet. Watch it!

4. Howl`s Moving Castle
Synopsis :  Sophie Hatter, the eldest of three, is apprenticed to make hats for the people of Ingary, a place where spells, magic cloaks, and seven-league boots exist. She and all the young girls are warned to stay inside or be taken by Howl, the evil wizard whose black castle can be seen moving through the hills. After an encounter with a witch and with a spell cast on her to make her an old woman, Sophie goes to seek adventure. She heads towards Howl's moving castle where she will encounter things she had never imagined.
Genre : Air Force, Demons, Fantasy, Magic, Mina, Novel, Romance
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Thoughts : A Ghibli Movies list wouldn't be complete withough Howl's Moving Castle, a magical story of a seemingly normal girl being swept up in something far bigger than herself. A Hit even with non-anime lovers.

5. Grave of the Fireflies
Synopsis : In the latter part of World War II, Seita and his sister Setsuko, orphaned when their mother is killed in the firebombing of Tokyo, are left to survive on their own in what remains of civilian life in Japan. The unfortunate siblings do their best to survive in the Japanese countryside, battling hunger, prejudice, and pride in their own quiet, personal battle.
Genre : Angst, Historical, Mina, Novel, Tragedy, Violence, World War II
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Thoughts : Not for the Weak of Heart, Grave of the Fireflies is easily one of the most Depressing Anime Movies out there. And it did a great job of bringing the feelings of despair and utter sadness caused by War to the viewer. If there was a bucketlist of Sad Things To Watch this would be right up there with the best of them.

And that concludes my list of the Most Memorable Studio Ghibli Movies. I've seen almost all the Ghibli movies out there. I'm still missing a few, namely The Wind Rises and their final release. I for one am sad to see this great studio closing down. The last time the Anime Industry had such a big loss was with the death of Satoshi Kon in 2010. What Ghibli movies were your favourites?

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