Howl’s Moving Castle

2004 Director: Hayao Miyazaki Words – Christian Abbott In 2004, the landscape of animation was rapidly changing. 9 years previous, Pixar released the revolutionary Toy Story, showcasing the very first fully 3D animated feature. The following years, and especially at the beginning of the 21st century, there was a race to switch from 2D to…

Kiki’s Delivery Service

1989 Director: Hayao Miyazaki Words – Christian Abbott In film circles you will often hear the phrase “every frame a painting”. An experience, both poetic and practical, used to describe the inherent beauty of cinema. Cinematography, lighting, editing, and more, all can come together to create some of the most striking images in artistic history….

Princess Mononoke

1997 Director: Hayao Miyazaki Words – Christian Abbott Ghibli fans are like a loving mother, they would never pick a favourite. All are equal in their eyes, each different, each unique, each loved. Yet, there seems to be this vocal minority rising-up that challenge this view. Some declare that actually, there is one that tips…

Spirited Away

2001 Director: Hayao Miyazaki Words – Christian Abbott Asking someone to choose a favourite Studio Ghibli film is like asking someone what their favourite song is. It is an ultimately pointless question, as much like music, Ghibli’s filmography feels subjective to mood and emotion. However, as with all this, there does appear to be one…

Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse

2018 Directors: Bob Persichetti; Peter Ramsey; Rodney Rothman Starring: Shameik Moore, Jake Johnson, Hailee Steinfeld, Brian Tyree Henry, Mahershala Ali, John Mulaney, Nicolas Cage, Liev Schreiber, Lily Tomlin Words – Nathan Scatcherd It’s a good time to be a Spider-Man fan right now. The character got one of the most emotionally impactful moments in Infinity…

Mary and the Witch’s Flower

2018 Director: Hiromasa Yonebayashi Words – Joe H. The dearly loved Studio Ghibli announced it was stopping production in 2014, alongside director Hayao Miyazaki announcing his retirement, and with the passing of Studio Ghibli co-founder Isao Takahata (director of Grave of the Fireflies and The Tale of Princess Kaguya), you would be forgiven for thinking…

Isle of Dogs

2018 Director – Wes Anderson Starring – Bryan Cranston, Koyu Rankin, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Jeff Goldblum, Bob Balaban, Kunichi Nomura, Scarlett Johansson, Liev Schreiber, Greta Gerwig Words – Rhiannon Topham Only Wes Anderson’s zany aptitude for endearing repartee could enchant an adult audience awaiting an animated film about dogs, with an opening foreword that…

Fantastic Mr Fox

2012 Director: Wes Anderson Starring: George Clooney, Meryl Streep, Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, Michael Gambon, Willem Dafoe, Owen Wilson, Jarvis Cocker, Adrien Brody, Wes Anderson Words – Rhiannon Topham “And so it begins…” These are the prophetic words of the titular vulpine as our Fantastic Mr. Fox derails the settled life he has built for…

Coco

2018 – USA Director(s): Lee Unkrich, Adrian Molina Starring: Anthony Gonzalez, Gael García Bernal, Benjamin Bratt Words: Josh Senior Pixar movies are generally cinematic high points in any calendar year. Since Toy Story in 1995 the famed animation house has been churning out consistently high quality content on an almost annual basis. They are movies we crave, and…

My Neighbour Totoro

1988 – Japan Director – Hayao Miyazaki Words – Christian Abbott Some have called this the gateway film into the works of Studio Ghibli, Hayao Miyazaki, even Japanese animation itself, and it isn’t hard to see why. This is a film about, and a celebration of, child-like wonder. It’s about the power of imagination, discovery,…