ABC Film Challenge – Animation – S – Spirited Away (2001) Movie Rob’s Pick


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“Once you do something, you never forget. Even if you can’t remember. ” – Zeniba

Number of Times Seen – 1 (18 Aug 2020)

Brief Synopsis – A young girl is accidentally transported to the spirit word and must find a way back home before it’s too late.

My Take on it – I have never been the biggest fan of animated films from Studio Ghibli and have actually avoided watching this film for years because I usually find the movies to be far too strange for my taste.

This month’s theme gave me the opportunity to finally see if my intuition was right or wrong.

I can sorta understand why so many people would rave over this film, but I wasn’t drawn into it enough to really care about the story or characters.

The way things are presented are in a very strange and crazy way and it is reminiscent of an Alice in Wonderland kind of story but even more abstract in so many ways.

This film is visually stunning, but the story rambled on and didn’t really go anywhere which was disappointing for me.

The look and feel of this film is on par with the uniqueness of the rest of the films from Studio Ghibli and from an animation standpoint, things are great.

The characters are drawn in very strange ways and that made the story even harder to are about due to he abstractness of it all.

This movie was able to win an Oscar for Best Animated movie in a year with 4 pretty weak films alongside it in the category and I can understand why this film would be able to beat the competition even if I wasn’t really able to connect with things here.

Bottom Line – Really strange and crazy fairy tale-esque kind of story that is visually stunning but has a far too abstract story line. This film goes along with the rest of the Studio Ghibli fare with the way that the look and feel seem quite unique from an animation standpoint.  The characters are all drawn in very strange ways and that took away much of the wonderment from the storyline. This movie somehow won an Oscar for Best Animated film and I’m a bit surprised that the rest of the nominees were quite weak that year.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – In order to animate the scene where Chihiro force feeds Haku the medicine in his dragon form, Hayao Miyazaki had his animators study a dog’s mouth as they fed it treats while a veterinarian held its lower jaw. (From IMDB)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (5/10)

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