Spirited Away (Japanese Movie 2001)


Ten-year-old Chihiro Ogino and her parents are traveling to their new home when her father takes a wrong turn. They unknowingly enter a magical world that Chihiro’s father insists on exploring. While Chihiro’s parents eat like pigs at an empty restaurant stall, Chihiro finds an exquisite bathhouse and meets a young boy named Haku who warns her to return across the river before sunset. However, Chihiro discovers too late that her parents have turned into pigs and she is unable to cross the flooded river, becoming trapped in the spirit world.

Excerpted from: Wikipedia

Words From Me:

This review has been long overdue. It’s been a couple of years since I’ve watched this movie on a whim with my boyfriend (now husband), back then we didn’t have anything else to watch and didn’t expect much from it. However since this was the first Studio Ghibli movie I’ve seen in my life, I was pretty much surprised at how good the animation was. I was actually smitten. For me, what made this movie appealing were all the elements: story, characters, music, setting and the cg. The colors in this movie were so vibrant that it made the drawings come to life.

The movie had a really weird story line with crazy characters of different kinds but that was to be expected because the setting was supposed to be in the “spirit world”. This isn’t the typical animation where it is limited for children’s enjoyment, this can also be enjoyed by adults and it has a lot of significance in real life situations.

Chihiro the spunky 10 year old main character may bring you back to a time wherein childhood innocence and naivety was a common thing, but it is an asset to be precise in relation to this movie. Spirited Away has a lot of things to convey, like how adults behave despite knowing better. In this reversal of roles, it’s up to a child to save her parents from the ultimate doom of being a pig forever. Being a pig in the setting signifies a lot of things: being gluttonous, good for nothing… in other words, a loss cause. A pig served in a platter to have a better purpose than being no good at all. If we put this in real life, we do have a lot of pig adults in the world and sometimes… it’s the children who has to bear the consequences.

One of my favorite characters here aside Chihiro is No-Face. The character is such an enigmatic thing since there’s no exact explanation in the movie as how it existed or what it is. It can do peculiar things too, like eat greedy characters, give gold and can become huge. One thing for certain though, No-Face wants affection and Chihiro is the only person who was able to do that, she treated it directly without any malice or ulterior motive.

I’m recommending this to those who enjoy animation and fantasy. It’s also best enjoyed with a pizza or pop-corn.


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