Studio Ghibli: My Favorite Anime Movies

Studio Ghibli is a Japanese animation film studio best known for its anime movies, and famous for making some of the highest grossing anime films in Japan. Hayao Miyazaki, the acclaimed director, is one of the founders of the Studio. Much like Disney, Pixar and DreamWorks, Studio Ghibli has a standard and reputation of its own. I have grown a liking for the extensive, immersive storytelling, imaginations implemented with wild abandon, and the colorful characters showcased in most of its movies.

Howl's Moving Castle

This is my personal favorite. I just loved the story, which was rather beyond imagination, wildly changing courses, full of magic, fantasy and awesome characters. It has a village girl, Sophie, who is turned into a wrinkled, stooping old woman, by a witch’s curse. And it has Howl, a half-man, half-bird, and an accomplished magician who has no permanent residence but prefers to move around in the countryside in his moving castle. It's a love story of sorts. Curious, aren't you? It might need patience for some, but I can safely say it's a must watch.

Spirited Away (

Spirited Away

A family takes a wrong route to their new house, only to find themselves caught up in a dark adventure. A young girl has to survive through a land full of spirits, witches, monsters & other fantastical creatures and cure her parents who have turned into giant pigs. This seemingly absurd imagination makes for one of the most mesmerizing movies by Miyazaki.

Princess Mononoke

Again a grim, rather dark imagination of the what the fate of the world is when the nature is provoked, and the balance in the ecosystem is skewed. The story follows a prince who is fatally infected while killing a demon, and must travel to a different land to find his cure. The adventures he undertakes on his way, meeting a tribe of wolves, the princess, the fantastic creatures, makes for a roller coaster ride.

Grave of Fireflies

A story set in the World War II, it is about how a brother and sister survive the monstrosities of war, through bomb drops, open fires, and famine. It will make you feel the loss, grief, despair, deep emotions, and would make you cry. A subtle message against war and such man-made atrocities, this fable like tale steeped in Japanese nationalism and pride, is a must watch.

Kiki’s Delivery Service

This one is a comparatively light-hearted one. A witch leaves home at the age of 13 to make a living in town. It is a story of growing up, accepting responsibilities, learning how to live independently and making a world of one's own. This coming of age tale of a clumsy witch who establishes her delivery service makes for a heartwarming watch.

Castle in the Sky

This movie is rather simple one, does not have as complex a storyline as the others on the list. A girl tries to save Laputa, the castle in the sky, among the clouds, from power hungry government officials and other humans hell bent on acquiring the seemingly magical place, without caring about its destruction. Read the review here.

Whisper of The Heart (

Whisper of the Heart

I don't know why but I just love talking cats. May be Japanese stories are brimming with cat spirits. Be it Haruki Murakami's stories, or this movie, cats play an important role in the plot. This movie is again one of my personal favorites. Though a little slower than others, it presents an endearing tale of a shy girl, a clock worker, an aspiring violinist and a cat. Another lovely tale!

Which of these movies have you watched and which would you recommend? Let me know in the comments. Expecting lots of recommendations. :D

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  1. I started watching Studio Ghibli movies recently, my fav. being, Kiki's delivery service, Howl moving castle, Spirited away, my Neighbour Totoro...graves of firefly was really sad and brought empty feelings...

    This post made me remember them and I guess, I would watch them again...greetings froma fellow Studio Ghibli lover.


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My Last Trip Before Lockdown

When Covid19 had just put its foot in the country with only 3 cases in Kerala, we had our Ooty trip planned. All tickets and bookings were done since the new year. With just three days in hand, four of us travelled from Mumbai, Pune and Bhubaneswar, to Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru, to join a few others staying in the city. And the excitement to finally meet one another after 6 months of that trip to Pune, the Lohagard Trek- we were kids excitedly clicking selfies in our face masks, hurriedly putting a quick dab of sanitizer before hugging one another.

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