Film Reviews, News & Competitions

 
 


Howl’s Moving Castle

 
 
Film Information
 

Plot: A quiet girl, working in a hat shop, finds her life thrown into turmoil when she is literally swept off her feet by a mysterious wizard named Howl.
Release Date: Out now.
Format: DVD & blu-ray double play in a special limited-edition boxset.
Director(s): Hayao Miyazaki.
Cast: Jean Simmons, Christian Bale, Lauren Bacall, Blythe Danner, Emily Mortimer, Josh Hutcherson and Billy Crystal.
BBFC Certificate: U.
Running Time: 119 mins.
Country Of Origin: Japan.
Language: English, Japanese.
Review By: Paula Hammond.
Genre:
 
Film Rating
 
 
 
 
 
5/ 5


 

Bottom Line


If there was ever a year when we needed a little bit of Ghibli magic, this is it. And Howl’s Moving Castle is all magic.


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Posted December 21, 2020 by

 
Film Review
 
 

Studio Ghibli have been crafting beautiful, etherial tales for 35 years, each one seemingly dong the impossible: garnering both critical acclaim and big box office numbers.

Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke, Kiki’s Delivery Service…every Ghibli fan has their favourite but Howl’s Moving Castle has established itself as an ever green classic. In fact, it’s one of the most financially successful Japanese films in history.

StudioCanal’s new release is slated as the 15th anniversary edition—tho in truth, it was actually released in Japan in 2004. No matter. If there was ever a year when we needed a little bit of Ghibli magic, this is it. And Howl’s Moving Castle is all magic. From it’s delightful characterisations to its thought-provoking anti-war, ageing-positivity themes, Howl’s Moving Castle is a masterclass on how to make a film that’s engaging and charming, without being smoaltzy.

Sophie, a quiet girl working in a hat shop, finds her life thrown into turmoil when she is literally swept off her feet by a handsome but mysterious wizard named Howl. The vain and vengeful Witch of the Waste, jealous of their friendship, puts a curse on Sophie and turns her into a 90-year-old woman. On a quest to break the spell, Sophie climbs aboard Howl’s magnificent moving castle and into a new life of wonder and adventure. But as the true power of Howl’s wizardry is revealed, Sophie finds herself fighting to protect them both from a dangerous war of sorcery that threatens their world.

If you haven’t seen it, then StudioCanal has something very special up their sleeve to initiate you into the very wonderful world of  Howl, Sophie and Calcifer. A special limited-edition boxset, available exclusively on Amazon. The special edition is the third in an exclusive collector’s series following the recent releases of My Neighbour Totoro and Kiki’s Delivery Service.

The Collector’s Boxset includes the DVD & Blu-ray Doubleplay edition of the film, packaged in a deluxe oversize box with brand new exclusive artwork. The boxset also includes a hardback The Art of Howl’s Moving Castle book, as well as the following exclusive items: oversized art cards, a poster featuring the original Japanese theatrical artwork, a trolley coin keyring, a drawstring bag featuring the anniversary logo, and a set of drinks coasters.

Special Features:

  • Interview with Author, Diana Wynne Jones.
  • Interview with Pixar’s Pete Doctor.
  • Hayao Miyazaki Visits Pixar.
  • Explanation of CG Featurette.
  • The Sounds of Howl’s Moving Castle.
  • Behind the Microphone Featurette.
  • Alternative Angle Storyboards.
  • Original Japanese Trailers.
  • Theatrical Trailer.
  • Studio Ghibli Trailer Reel.

Paula Hammond - Features Editor

 
Paula Hammond is a full-time, freelance journalist. She regularly writes for more magazines than is healthy and has over 25 books to her credit. When not frantically scribbling, she can be found indulging her passions for film, theatre, cult TV, sci-fi and real ale. If you should spot her in the pub, after five rounds rapid, she’ll be the one in the corner mumbling Ghostbusters quotes and waiting for the transporter to lock on to her signal… Email: writerpaula@icloud.com


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