TALES FROM EARTHSEA
GEDO SENKI
2006, Touchstone Pictures, 115 min, Japan, Dir: Goro Miyazaki

Writer Ursula K. Le Guin’s Earthsea series inspired this animated fantasy, the directorial debut of Hayao Miyazaki’s son, Gorō Miyazaki. Dragons battling in the skies are a sign that life has fallen out of balance; to restore it, troubled prince Arren and wizard Sparrowhawk must defeat the evil Lord Cob.


THE TALE OF THE PRINCESS KAGUYA
KAGUYAHIME NO MONOGATARI
2013, GKIDS, 137 min, Japan, Dir: Isao Takahata

What may be the final film from Studio Ghibli co-founder Isao Takahata is one of the Japanese animation studio’s very best. A bamboo cutter discovers a tiny girl in a bamboo shoot and adopts her as his daughter, but the old man’s attempts to raise her as a princess are at odds with the girl’s homespun nature. This beautiful fantasy, based on a Japanese folktale, earned an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Feature Film. “Exquisitely drawn with both watercolor delicacy and a brisk sense of line.” - Nicolas Rapold, The New York Times.


WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE
OMOIDE NO MÂNÎ
2015, GKIDS, 103 min, Japan, Dir: Hiromasa Yonebayashi

In the latest animated marvel from Studio Ghibli, 12-year-old Anna (Sara Takatsuki) spends the summer in a small seaside town, where she discovers an abandoned mansion. She later meets one of the house’s previous inhabitants, a blond girl named Marnie (Kasumi Arimura) - whose connection to Anna is deeper than it first appears. Ghibli’s usual visual splendor and a fine score by Takatsugu Muramatsu add a touch of mystery to this reflective drama about family and memory.


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