Indiewire recently ran an article about a Studio Ghibli festival, partnering with Fathom Events to release six Ghibili films back in theaters. The dates run June 25 and 26 for My Neighbor Totoro, the first of the films, July 23 and 24 for Kiki’s Delivery Service, August 27 and 28 for Castle in the Sky, September 24 and 25 for Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, October 29 and 30 for Spirited Away, and November 26 and 27 for my personal favorite Ghibli film (excepting maybe The Wind Rises) Howl’s Moving Castle.
I was very excited to read about this, because I’m a big fan of animation in general, and Studio Ghibili has made some incredible works of art. I’m including a gif from each of the six movies screening, in order of their screening dates, so you can get a look at the visual style of each work and can see the animation in action.
My Neighbor Totoro:
Kiki’s Delivery Service:
Castle in the Sky:
Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind:
Howl’s Moving Castle:
The films are quite different from each other. Ghibli has a constant visual style, but the storytelling can be vastly different. For instance, Castle in the Sky has a slow and steady pace, almost like a long folktale, told in its entirety, whereas Howl’s Moving Castle almost has a The Princess Bride feel to it with a quick pace and a mixture of action, drama, and comedy.
I’m really grateful Fathom Events has become what it has. I love all the projects putting older films, or specific themed releases like this, or things like Broadway shows, into theaters. Because of these efforts to make theaters offer more diverse content, I was lucky enough to see Jaws on the big screen, in a packed house of people equally wrapped up in the action, despite the film releasing twenty odd years before I was born. I also got to see George Takei’s Allegiance, which I never would have been able to visit during its broadway run in New York.
I hope Studio Ghibli’s event is a success and continues in years to come, as well as sparking similar “Fests.” I’m also glad to see GKIDS involved, as they are an important distributor for indie and small studio animation projects like The Book of Kells, Ernest & Celestine, and A Cat in Paris (which is a lovely film noir for children illustrated like a children’s book. I would love to see GKIDS do some sort of GKIDS festival where they release some of their distributed films in a similar fashion.
The Book of Kells:
Ernest & Celestine:
A Cat in Paris:
Anyway, I was really excited to see this showcase of animation coming to theaters, and I hope it draws an audience of repeat viewers and newcomers. The films are certainly works of art worth the viewing.