On their way to a new home, ten-year-old Chihiro and her parents take a wrong turn and wind up in the grounds of an empty bathhouse. They explore, not realising it’s enchanted. A little boy named Haku warns Chihiro of danger but it’s too late. She finds greedy pigs in place of her parents and is forced to spend the night in the bathhouse, unable to leave the grounds. Inside she encounters a witch named Yubaba and a menagerie of spirits, some good, some bad. There are magic dumplings, gold coins, dust sprites, decoy babies, tiny bees and everything else we’ve come to expect from the incredible spirit world of Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli.
Why You Should See This Film
Widely considered to be one of the greatest animated films of all time, this is the most successful release in Japanese history. Written and directed by newly-retired master Hayao Miyazaki (My Neighbour Totoro, Ponyo, Howl's Moving Castle), he has said that he created the story of young heroine Chihiro with the curious children of his friends in mind. But as much as ten-year-olds will surely love this film, so will anyone at any age with their sense of wonder still intact. If you see just one Ghibli film, this should be it.