Original title: “Kaguyahime no monogatari”
I love “Studio Ghibli”. Love has started with “Princess Mononoke” and it continued with “Whisper Of The Heart”, Adventures Of Little Chihiro”, “Moving Castle” and many others to the last one – “The Wind Rises”. Almost all these movies were made by Hayao Miyazaki (Disney of the East). Earlier in 2014 there were reports that Hayao Miyazaki announced his retirement and that “The Wind Rises” was the last work of the animation master. In the shadow of that announcement, there were also reports about other film in the making: “The Tale Of Princess Kaguya” with Isao Takahata as the director.
I was interested to see the film already labeled as the first post-Miyazaki movie of “Studio Ghibli” and I’m happy to say that if their further work will be as this film then there is no doubt that they’ll have bright future ahead of them. “Tale of Princess Kaguya” is the best animated movie I’ve seen in 2014 and, in general, one of the best in the last year.
“Tale of Princess Kaguya” is, as you can assume from the title, a fairy-tale. Beautifully animated one, with less detail than Miyazaki, but nevertheless it is very original film. The story is about a girl found inside a stalk of bamboo by an old bamboo cutter. Girl rapidly grows into young lady with a troublesome character with exquisite voice and touch for empathy. When her adopting parents move to town to fulfill her destiny the mysterious young princess will find herself in the net of ambitions, beauty and social customs she’s not so ready to honor. In that brilliant psychological drama we will find out who is exactly baby from the bamboo, how is all connected to the bigger picture and the beautiful and emotional painting of destinies will be painted before us with great passion until the final credits roll on the screen.
Isao Takahata directed the movie with precision and passion, not committing himself to the details as Miyazaki used to do. That didn’t harm the film at all. On the contrary, “Tale Of Princess Kaguya” is movie rich with tempo, rich with continuous lines that are sometimes there with function to free Kaguya from the chains of “high-society” and to warn us that we don’t have to be slaves of strict rules and norms if that means we will forget to live life to the fullest. Kaguya is like a messy haircut of a painter focused only on the brilliant artwork he creates. That makes her special. That makes her warm. That makes us to care for her.
“Tale of Princess Kaguya” is also nominated for “Oscar” in the Best Animated Feature Film category. That was pleasant surprise for me. Nomination for this film is well deserved. Emotional journey with Kaguya I will not forget anytime soon. “Tale of Princess Kaguya” is wonderful and brilliant animated movie which proves that “Studio Ghibli” still makes the best animation in the world.
Sorry “Pixar”, but in my opinion you don’t even come close)