Howl’s Moving Castle

Finally saw Howl’s Moving Castle yesterday. Laurent and I have been talking about watching this on the big screen for nearly a year now, as we’re both MASSIVE Miyazaki fans. In fact coming to think about it, I don’t think you can possibly watch a Miyazaki movie and not become a fan of his. Every new Miyazaki movie should be savored because in my opinion they honestly don’t come out as often as they should, which if I had it my way would be every single week.

The thing I liked the most in the movie was the characters who were all extremely well defined. The thing that made me laugh was how all the male characters came off as incredibly CAMP (read: slightly fruity in case you’re not familiar with the term camp), and to a certain degree I couldn’t really take them seriously. My favourite character without a doubt was Turnip Head, who is a fantastic addition to the number of characters under the Studio Gibli umbrella. A really pleasant surprise as well was the voice of Billy Crystal for Calcifer, who did an excellent job.

The world that this movie was set in reminded me of Kiki’s Delivery service a great deal, however for some strange reason I didn’t think the animation was even as close as polished as it was in Spirited Away, which remains my favorite Miyazaki movie ever.

Having said all that coming out of the movie you’ll have a massive smile on your face, since it’s such a great piece of cinema. As Laurent put it:

“There’s still hope in this world”


  1. I have wanted to see this for the longest time…I missed the last local showing here by a day…*sob*

    Spirited Away is one of my favorite movies of all time. My second favorite Miyazaki movie is probably his first: Lupin III Cagliostro Castle. It’s so raw compared to his most recent stuff, but it has all the elements: an incredible sense of motion, time, and place (I like how in every one of his movies, there is at least one point when the character has to slip and recover from it without breaking rhythm). He captures the sense of wonder. He unapologetically documents loss. In particular, I respect how all his movies end. There will be no coming back to revisit these characters in the future, because the story is over. The characters have moved on…so should we. I guess I also HATE that too, but after one of his movies I always feel like I should be getting off my butt and doing something with my life, just to keep trying. I feel by the end of the movie, if I’m going to respect the characters and what they’ve done, I should let them be and live their lives, and I should live mine.

    Miyazaki rocks. Dude, have you read the Nausicaa manga in its entirety? It’s one of my favorites.

    1 Dave Seah
  2. I bought Nausicaa like 2 years ago (the original release from Viz not the new remastered version) and it’s been sitting there not being read, which I know is a crime, but I’ve got soo many books I’m trying to get through, however I’ve obviously heard such great things about it, just haven’t pulled my finger out, maybe now would be a good time I guess :).

    Every single Miyazaki movie involves flying in some description, which I find strange but very cool.

    2 Khaled
  3. Our multicultural free-to-air station has been showing his works recently and I think I have another to look forward to soon. :D
    I saw Porco Rosso earlier in the week and a documentry of him and loved it. Spirited Away was also fantastic!
    He really knows how to capture ones imagination.
    He comes across as a little dark. I loved one of his quotes where he said he trys to keep those thoughts to himself. For the kids. :) You still see many traces of them! And it wouldn’t be the same without those.

    On another topic, can I get your feedback on Khaled?


    3 craig
  4. Yeah, I loved “Moving Castle” too. I was so into it, that I didn’t even think about who was doing the voices. So, I was surprised about Billy Crystal. I loved the old lady personna so much. the relationships were more mature than I thought they’d be. It was just an overall treat.

    4 anon