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Title Info

  • alias: Tenku no Shiro Laputa
  • alias: Castle in the Sky
  • type: movie
  • grade: exemplary
  • people: Ghibli Miyazaki
  • Other elements of this title:
    • This title is a personal favourite.
  • made: 1986
  • Review created: A while ago, i'll revise it eventually.
  • mod: none

See the tags above? They say Ghibli and `fav' which should really be all that needs to be said. This Ghibli film is interesting, because apart from being great as expected, it is also one of the most `direct' pieces, having quite a lot of action and a good epic adventure plot. The story concerns the young girl Sheeta who, for some reason, has suddenly become of great value to a group of air pirates and the government. During a fight between them she falls into (literally) a small mining community where she meets the resourceful Pazu. This makes this one of the few Ghibli films where a male is the dominant lead character.

It turns out that in this world there is a legend of castles that float in the air, and all the various groups are somehow tied to the re-awakening of this ancient legend although discovering the truth is not without some suprises. The world is some sort of alternate 1940'sh Europe, but grittier and darker than the beautiful world of `Kiki'. The characters are amazingly good, with members of the pirates, the government and the mining community beautifully developed in addition to the two leads. As mentioned there is also some lovely action, some of it from the suprisingly humorous pirates, which is dynamic and occasionally quite epic. The dialogue is very clever and the story is exciting and solid, although being a Ghibli film the pace is not rushed. The animation and production values are amongst the best of the Ghibli films, which puts it at a very high level indeed. The design, art, voices,'s all just too good. The ending is dramatic and satisfying, but do be prepared for a reasonable body count during some of the battle scenes. I simply find it hard to imagine a reason under which you would want to avoid this excellent example of Ghibli anime.

The people at THEM love it, and note that this may contain the only truly evil Miyazaki villain, in their review. The Anime Review identifies it as an `action' film, but the review leaves no doubts about its quality.


Words by Andrew Shelton, Web by Ticti, Last Compile: Wed Aug 5 12:39:20 WST 2009