Studio Ghibli: These Are Your Best Movies


The popularity of Walt Disney, DreamWorks, BlueSky and Illumination have led to believe that animated giants are exclusive to the American union. This would be true were it not for Studio Ghibli. ANDl eastern titan that with his films he has stood up for the rest of the world and that he has defended the artisanal methods of the traditional technique.

Much of his success lies in the creative genius of Hayao Miyazaki, cataloged by many as the Japanese Walt Disney, and whose work has been characterized by the use of Japanese fantasy for the exploration of political, social or environmental issues that afflict the entire world.

Ghibli’s future looks uncertain given the situation of Miyazaki, who still wanders between retirement and return. Not even these doubts have prevented the audience from continuing to place the studio’s work among the greatest jewels of world animation.

What are the best Studio Ghibli movies? Here we tell you:

10. The wind rises (Dir. Hayao Miyazaki, 2013)

The wind rises It is usually classified as the most controversial film in all of Hayao Miyazaki’s work. In the beginning, because few understood that an eternal pacifist adapted the life of Jiro Horikoshi. He designed the aircraft used by the Japanese army during World War II. Add to that his abrupt use of realism after a career characterized by magic. Finally because it marked, at least briefly, their farewell. None of this prevents The wind rises Rise among Studio Ghibli’s top achievements, not only for its technical perfection, but for its message that honors the geniuses of mankind and exempts them from all blame for the misuse of their technology.

9. The red turtle (Dir. Michael Dudok de Wit, 2016)

Some purists believe that The red turtle It should not be classified as an authentic Studio Ghibli film, both because of the Wild Bunch co-production, the Dutch direction Michael Dudok de Wit and the fact that only six Japanese animators contributed to its making. However, we must not forget that the project arose after a request from Hayao Miyazaki himself. Additionally, it was produced and supervised by Studio Ghibli President Toshio Suzuki. The result is an exquisite hybrid that combines the best elements of Japanese and European animation. This is how he tells the story of a man stranded on a desert island whose survival changes after meeting a red turtle. The film lacks dialogue, but its images are enough to convey a strong message of peace and friendship even in times of crisis.

Read on: Studio Ghibli: These are their best films.

8. Ponyo and the little mermaid’s secret (Dir. Hayao Miyazaki, 2008)

Princess mononoke, Spirited Away and Howl’s Moving Castle marked the highest point in Hayao Miyazaki’s career, so many questioned his return to purely children’s cinema with Ponyo, about a boy who establishes a tender relationship with a magical sea creature.

The director put to rest any doubts with a story that, although it was digestible for the little ones, was also characterized by its enormous depth by adopting elements from classic works such as The little Mermaid by Hans Christian Anderson and The Ring of the Nibelung by Richard Wagner.

To this we add its artistic qualities, by forgetting about CGI to become one of the last films made completely with traditional techniques. This represented a huge challenge. But the filmmaker justified his decision to the Daily News after explaining that “the world will be able to turn to high technology. But I would like Studio Ghibli to be like a wooden ship that sails on sails. Sure we can sink. I don’t know if we are strong enough. ” In the end, the genius of animation was, well Ponyo it became one of the biggest critical and financial successes in the entire history of the studio.

7. Kiki: Home deliveries (Dir. Hayao Miyazaki, 1989)

The film tells the story of a young witch who takes advantage of her flying abilities to become a messenger. This allows you to get ahead in your new independent life. On the paper, Kiki it can look like a much simpler movie than other Ghibli works. This is not entirely true, as the protagonist represents the transition from childhood to adulthood. She is an isolated character, who tries to be strong when she is full of emotional doubts and who must learn the values ​​of her new age. However, the character’s metaphors are much more complex. Some consider that the sorceress is also a reflection of a highly traditional Japanese society that often refuses to embrace other customs. This makes their absolute access difficult in an increasingly global world.

Read on: Studio Ghibli: These are their best films.

6. Howl’s Moving Castle (Dir. Hayao Miyazaki, 2004)

studio ghibli

Spirited Away opened the magic of Ghibli to the whole world and focused attention on the upcoming studio premiere: Howl’s Moving Castle.

The film – inspired by the novel by Diana Wynne Jones – tells the story of Sophie. She is a young woman turned into an old woman by a witch. Thus he will call on the support of a sorcerer in the hope of returning to his normal state. But the character needs to be saved from his own demons.

Perhaps this film did not match the successes of its predecessor, but this does not prevent it from being one of the great jewels of the study. Much of its charm lies in the use of symbolism for each of its characters. The castle represents Howl himself, Calcifer the burning desires of the heart and Sophie the experience gained with adulthood. Special mention for history, since its realization in the middle of the war between the United States and Iraq endowed it with an intense anti-war message, where Hayao Miyazaki directly criticizes the personality of those who promote these evils. Despite this, the filmmaker also maintains his hopes and concludes that even the most tyrannical people are capable of change for the common good.

You may also like: Hayao Miyazaki: These are your best films.

5. My neighbor totoro (Dir. Hayao Miyazaki, 1988)

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Studio Ghibli never had much confidence in My neighbor totoro and he was even ready for a financial stumble that he tried to avoid with the double screening of a more mature film like The fireflies’s grave. In the end, the creature did not fail during its premiere, but it did not have a great acceptance among the public either. The situation changes when the Totoro figure is put up for sale. Japanese audiences were captured by his sympathy. Thus, he became an immediate reference for the study and was placed among the most popular characters in world animation. This is a fair outcome for the most personal film in Hayao Miyazaki’s filmography. The story follows two girls who move to the countryside to be close to their sick mother, unaware that there they will meet a magical creature that will help them in their sorrows.

Read on: Studio Ghibli: These are their best films.

Four. Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (Dir. Hayao Miyazaki, 1984)

studio ghibli

Maybe Nausicaä It was not made by Ghibli, but fans embrace it as such for being the work of Hayao Miyazaki – not only in the direction, but based on his homonymous manga – and because its success motivated the creation of the studio the following year. The film takes place in a post-apocalyptic world, where Princess Nausicaä must find a way to avoid a conflict that could lead to the use of an ancient weapon and mark the end of the entire planet.

An extremely powerful film that aims to convey a message of peace by criticizing the increasingly dangerous war technology. To this must be added its strong environmental burden, because beyond the decadent universe in which it takes place, one of the races involved in the conflict is made up of giant mutant insects that are considered dangerous and mercilessly attacked. The end result makes Nausicaä considered one of the best movies of all time.

3. The fireflies’s grave (Dir. Isao Takahata, 1988)

studio ghibli

Perhaps Hayao Miyazaki is Ghibli’s greatest reference, but this does not make him his only creative genius, being The fireflies’s grave the best example of it. The director and co-founder of the studio, Isao Takahata, takes advantage of the autobiographical tale of Akiyuki Nosaka to make one of the most heartbreaking works in the entire history of animated cinema, about a young Japanese man who tries to protect his younger sister from famine, the diseases and other horrors that arose after the culmination of the Second World War. Although many have applauded his pacifist message, the filmmaker has reiterated that his first intention was never to criticize the war, but the isolationism of some sectors of society, caused on many occasions by indifference towards the misfortune of others.

Read on: Studio Ghibli: These are their best films.

2. Princess mononoke (Dir. Hayao Miyazaki, 1997)

studio ghibli

Princess mononoke has been considered for years as the greatest achievement in Hayao Miyazaki’s career. The plot fuses ancient history and old legends of the eastern country to address a double message of environmentalism and pacifism. After all, the film centers on a battle between a mining community and the usurped gods of the forest. Although it sounds like recurring themes in the studio’s filmography, its richness lies in the way in which both are transmitted, since it is a story without well-defined heroes or villains and where each party fights for a better lifestyle in the changing world . These kinds of conflicts force the emergence of unlikely heroes who, against all odds, are the only ones capable of achieving real change.

1. Spirited Away (Dir. Hayao Miyazaki, 2001)

studio ghibli

My neighbor totoro endorsed Ghibli among Japanese audiences, but Spirited Away it marked its consolidation in the world. The story – which has been compared to Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz– follows a girl who must enter the spirit world to rescue her parents, who were transformed into pigs by an oriental witch.

The film has been acclaimed for its tributes to Japanese culture with all kinds of fascinating characters, but also for taking advantage of their mythology to build a unique coming of age. These qualities did not go unnoticed by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which recognized it with the Oscar for Best Animated Film over much higher-grossing films such as Lilo & Stitch or The ice Age. These factors were fundamental for Spirited Away popularize anime around the world, give new life to the traditional technique and rank among the greatest animated jewels of all time.

You may also like: Anime recommendation: Why should you watch Spirited Away from Studio Ghibli?

The entry Studio Ghibli: These Are Your Best Movies was first published on Cinema PREMIERE.



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