Miyazaki’s stunning, Academy Award-winning masterpiece Spirited Away was the biggest box office hit of all-time in Japan, as well as a film that helped redefine the possibilities of animation for American audiences and a generation of new filmmakers.
“In scene after scene, Spirited Away unleashes so much wonder and visual imagination that you end up watching the movie in a state of rapturous, awestruck bliss.” – Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald
Wandering through an abandoned carnival site, ten-year-old Chichiro is separated from her parents and stumbles into a dream-like spirit world where she is put to work in a bathhouse for the gods, a place where all kinds of nonhuman beings come to refresh, relax and recharge. Here she encounters a vast menagerie of impossibly inventive characters — shape-shifting phantoms and spirits, some friendly, some less so — and must find the inner strength to outsmart her captors and return to her family. Combining Japanese mythology with Through the Looking Glass-type whimsy, Spirited Away cemented Miyazaki’s reputation as an icon of inspired animation and wondrous, lyrical storytelling. (Dir. by Hayao Miyazaki, 2002, Japan, 125 mins, Rated PG)