Sunday, August 3, 2014

Princess Mononoke (1997)

IMDb plot summary: On a journey to find the cure for a Tatarigami's curse, Ashitaka finds himself in the middle of a war between the forest gods and Tatara, a mining colony. In this quest he also meets San, the Mononoke Hime.
Directed by Hayao Miyazaki. Starring Yôji Matsuda, Yûko Tanaka, Yuriko Ishida, and Kaoru Kobayashi.

(Spoilers ahead.)

While this isn't my favorite Studio Ghibli by far, I really enjoyed the story and the animation. I was particularly fascinated by the character of Lady Eboshi, who ends up taking on a mostly-villain role in the plot, but her character is layered and complex. She wants good things for her village and makes questionable choices to make that happen. I really like when movies don't paint characters as completely morally good or bad, and I was quite impressed with the level of complexity given to nearly all the characters here.

On top of that, the animation is gorgeous, the score is stunning, and it creates an interesting world to observe. While for me it doesn't quite hit the emotional notes of Totoro, Spirited Away, or Pom Poko, it's a good solid Ghibli flick.

3.5 stars.

Flickchart: #603 out of 2188, below Gentleman's Agreement and above A Few Good Men.

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