The mythological tale of a young warrior who leaves his remote village to search for a remedy for his supernatural injury. He subsequently becomes involved in the struggle between encroaching civilization and the beast gods of the forest.
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It's genuinely so spirited and absorbing that you feel like you're watching it in a haze; Miyazaki's best work by a landslide, and one of the greatest fantasies ever committed to celluloid. Hisaishi's score is gorgeous, and that stacked English voice cast... don't even get me started: Billy Crudup, Claire Danes, Billy Bob Thornton, Jada Pinkett Smith and Gillian fucking Anderson?! Damn.
An engaging and masterful film from, arguably, one of the finest directors of animated films of our time. Colourful beauty punctuated with moments of horror, action, and adventure. I fondly remember discovering this on VHS.
Despite being immensely moved by My Neighbor Totoro and The Wind Rises, Miyazaki as a whole tends to leave me impressed but oddly detached. He animated one of the better action movies of the 90s, and he shows a better grasp of how to pace and expand an epic than almost any Hollywood director working today. Still, I feel like a bored wallflower at his coronation.
"Life is suffering. It is hard. The world is cursed. But still, you find reasons to keep living." My heart is just melt when I hear the old man said that. An hour later I watched The Seventh Continent. Worst decision, ever.
If there is any cell left in your organism that is not a nature lover, you should watch this. If you like animals, you should watch this. If are you kind of still suspicious about japanese anime (like I was years ago), you should watch this. If you like anime, but by any strange accident, haven't seen it, what are you waiting? If you love cinema, you should defenitely watch this film! One of Miyazaki's best ever.
The animation is beautiful, the music especially wonderful and the story is fantastic. I love the friendship they showed between Ashitaka and his Elk. I found it truly touching. You couldn't ask for a better hero than Ashitaka. He's brave and compassionate. This film is also quite epic. They don't hold back the violence but that's a good thing. Another great one from Miyazaki.
Japanese variations about the opposition between nature and industry. Great animation with some dazzling moments. I just regret that the ending is a lttle overchildish with its angelical and ecological message. Highly recommended though.