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My Neighbor Totoro (1988)


Plot: Two young girls, Satsuke and her younger sister Mei move from the busy cities to the country side with their father to be closer to their mother, who is in hospital. A couple days after moving, Mei goes off exploring into the neighboring forest after noticing two pecular strange looking animals. The animals end up leading her deep into the forest, she ends falling into the den of a giant woodland creature known as a Totoro.

The Totoro’s (which are Forest Spirits and big fuzzy ones at that) begin to show up at random times for their new friends and manages to help their family through some tough periods.

Review: Miyazaji still amazes me with this wonderful movie. This film would be a perfect movie for children, it has all these lovable characters and wonderful soundtrack.

This obviosuly doesn’t have any violence or blood in it which you see in Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke. This movie is more of a fantasy, family drama. The first half of the movie is very fantasy revolved, but in the later half the film turns more serious and touching, I loved it.

The film also managed to explain something to me, when Satsuke and her family moved into the house they were chasing black soot, their neighbour explains to them that these are ‘soot spirits’. The soot spirits are also notable in Spirited Away as Kamaiji’s servents, oh and they stole Chikiro’s shoes. But one of the characters from this movie explain that they are ‘Soot Spirits’, which now makes a little more sense, alot easier to describe rather than ‘black soot with eyes’.

Final Thoughts, a lovely touching film which is suitable for children as well as adults.

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