5 must-watch Studio Ghibli movies: ‘Spirited Away’, ‘Grave of the Fireflies’ and more

June 08, 2024

These Studio Ghibli films have made us laugh, cry, and smile throughout the years

After shaping our childhoods since 1985, Studio Ghibli was recognised at the 77th Cannes Film Festival by receiving an honourary Palme d’Or. “Forty years ago, Hayao Miyazaki, Isao Takahata and I established Studio Ghibli with the desire to bring high-level, high-quality animation to children and adults of all ages. Today, our films are watched by people all over the world, and many visitors come to the Ghibli Museum, Mitaka and Ghibli Park to experience the world of our films for themselves. We have truly come a long way for Studio Ghibli to become such a big organisation,” says Toshio Suzuki, co-founder of Studio Ghibli.

Spirited Away

Spirited Away: Studio Ghibli
Kaonashi (Photo Credit: Studio Ghibli)

Spirited Away is the series that propelled Studio Ghibli’s international recognition. The plot follows topics like light, magic, mystery, and monsters. It showcases how the natural world interacts with the supernatural world. It is also considered one of Hayao Miyazaki’s best works. The heartfelt narration and stellar visuals of Studio Ghibli intertwined with the storyline made this series a true masterpiece.

Spirited Away is the story of 10-year-old Chihiro, who crosses realms to the world of gods and monsters while moving to a new neighborhood. Left alone in the new world after her parents become pigs, Chihiro must find a way out before the spirit realm consumes her.

Grave of the Fireflies

Grave of the Fireflies: Studio Ghibli
Seita and Setsuko (Photo Credit: Studio Ghibli)

Grave of the Fireflies is based on Akiyuki Nosaka’s semi-autobiographical short story. An anti-war film, this production is one of Studio Ghibli’s crowned gems. Grave of the Fireflies follows the story of two boys who struggle to survive in the aftermath of Japan’s surrender in World War 2. This tear-jerking story captures the unadulterated innocence of the young children, loss, devastation, and hope. An eye-opening call for peace, Studio Ghibli did a beautiful job animating the movie. They also ensured that the tale echoed the real-life tragedy behind the story.

My Neighbor Totoro

Totoro (Photo Credit: Studio Ghibli)

My Neighbor Totoro is about two young girls who become friends with the spirit monsters near their new home. This Hayao Miyazaki classic is a sweet trip into childhood. The sequences featuring a warm summer afternoon and a studded ensemble cast boosted the movie’s appeal. It perfectly captured the innocence, hope, and joys of being a kid.

Howl’s Moving Castle

Howl's Moving Castle: Studio Ghibli
Sophie and Howl (Photo Credit: Studio Ghibli)

This movie is adapted from the novel of the same name by British author Diana Wynne Jones. Howl’s Moving Castle follows Sophie’s journey after she befriends a wizard named Howl who lives in a magical castle. However, the story takes a turn when a jealous witch curses her with old age. Howl must now do everything he can to save his friend before it is too late! Howl’s Moving Castle is another example of Miyazaki’s animation skills and ability to interpret characters for dynamic storytelling.

Kiki’s Delivery Service

Kiki (Photo Credit: Studio Ghibli)

Kiki’s Delivery Service follows the story of Kiki, a young witch apprenticing her snarky cat Jiji. The movie is adapted from a children’s novel of the same name. It traces prominent themes complemented by Hayao Miyazaki’s animation and Studio Ghibli aesthetic.

Credit: Comingsoon.net

Review : 4.1/15
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