If you are at all interested in animated movies, chances are that you have heard of the well renowned Studio Ghibli. It’s a Japanese animation studio that has focused heavily on producing movies ever since its inception in June of 1985. It has produced many well received movies, 15 of which are the highest grossing films in Japan!
With results like that, there is no doubt that the movies produced by Ghibli are remarkable. But what makes movies like "Spirited Away" and "Howl's Moving Castle" so pleasurable for viewers to watch? As someone who has little knowledge of the movie world outside of the animated realms of Ghibli, I have provided you a few reasons why I believe these movies are as outstanding as ratings would lead you to believe.
1. The Characters
The characters of these movies are all unique and have their own little quirks that make us fall in love with them, growing attached to them throughout the progression of each movie. Until "Howl's Moving Castle," I never would have guessed that one of my favorite characters would be Calcifer, a magical talking flame.
2. The Worlds
The realms of these movies are incredibly intricate and detailed, giving nothing but the best. They vary from the fantastical world of "Spirited Away" revolving around a somewhat illusory bathhouse, to the more realistic setting of "The Wind Rises" that gives viewers a look at World War II era Japan through the eyes of protagonist Jiro Horikoshi, an aspiring aircraft designer.
3. The Art
Art styles do not differ much from these movies, other than becoming cleaner and crisper as time goes on. Ghibli films are hand drawn, which gives a different appeal than what audiences who are accustomed to CGI would be used to. The art has a more welcoming and homie vibe to it.
4. The Music
The scores of Ghibli music—many created by Japanese composer Joe Hisaishi—gives viewers something beautiful to listen to while watching their pieces of artwork as it plays on the screen. It assists the films in leaving an even longer lasting impression.
5. The Stories
The stories told by Ghibli films are what keep the viewers coming. They tell tales that audiences young and old can appreciate, expressing ideals that we can take with us. Whether it be the light-hearted tale of "Kiki's Delivery Service" or the dark and tragic "Grave of the Fireflies," there is a movie that appeals to everyone.