Synopses & Reviews
Spirited Away, directed by the veteran anime film-maker Hayao Miyazaki, is Japans most successful film, and one of the top-grossing ‘foreign language films ever released. Set in modern Japan, the film is a wildly imaginative fantasy, at once personal and universal. It tells the story of a listless little girl who stumbles into a magical world where gods relax in a palatial bathhouse; where there are giant babies and hard-working soot sprites, and where a train runs across the sea.
Andrew Osmonds insightful study describes how Miyazaki wrote, storyboarded and directed Spirited Away with a degree of creative control undreamt of in most popular cinema, using the films delightful, freewheeling visual ideas to explore issues ranging from personal agency and responsibility to what Miyazaki sees as the lamentable state of modern Japan. Osmond unpacks the films visual language, which many Western (and some Japanese) audiences find both beautiful and sometimes bewildering. He traces connections between Spirited Away and Miyazakis prior body of work, and provides an account of the films production and the creative differences between Miyazaki and his collaborators, arguing that Spirited Away uses the cartoon medium to create a compellingly immersive drawn world.
An insightful study of the popular Japanese anime film, Spirited Away. Osmond exploreshow veteran film-maker Hayao Miyazaki wrote, storyboarded and directed the film, and how he kept firm creative control over the entire process. Osmond alsoconsiders the visual language, issues addressed in the film and Miyazaki's previous work.
Spirited Away, directed by the veteran anime film-maker Hayao Miyazaki, is Japan’s most successful film, a wildly imaginative fantasy and one of the top-grossing "foreign language" films ever released. Andrew Osmond’s insightful study includes information about the film hitherto unavailable in English and unpacks the film’s visual language, which audiences find both beautiful and bewildering.
About the Author
Andrew Osmond is freelance film journalist. He writes for a range of publications including Sight and Sound, Empire and SFX. He lives in Berkshire, UK.