anime · film reviews

Howl’s Moving Castle

Hello, dear readers!

This is a review I was planning to post back in February, but then I got super busy. So, without further ado, here’s my review of Miyazaki’s Howl’s Moving Castle.

Once again, I am amazed by Miyazaki’s ability to tell a story. Not only does he write well, he creates fresh new characters that are wonderfully delightful.

Sophie is an endearing 18-year-old woman who suddenly ends up cursed by the Witch of the Isles. Now forced to live as a 90-something woman, Sophie’s youthful attitude changes slightly to accommodate for her curse of old age.

While I’m loath to go into more detail, I can say this: I’m deeply saddened by Miyazaki’s retirement. He possesses such insight when it comes to developing characters, pulling his viewers into a new world, and has a way with evoking emotions that I’ve found lacking in hard-core action movies.

The hand-drawn animation is beautiful. In this film, we see mountains, a prairie-like setting. Howl’s bedroom, which our main character Sophie visits when he is recovering, is filled with rich attention to detail.

Even the magic system in this film is speculative, left up to the viewer to guess how the magic and those who wield it use it, or where it comes from.

For those of you who don’t watch anime, I highly suggest you should at least try this film, or anything that Miyazaki has done. His films are of a high quality, not quantity, and are as close to perfection I’ve ever seen in storytelling. His creativity, and environmentalist themes, in his films are something we all need to see.

Meghan

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