Spirited Away

Spirited Away is a spectacular Japanese anime film that centers around the importance of love and staying true to oneself. These themes are extremely common of Japanese motion pictures, as they tend to go off the idea of avoiding solitude. In an attempt to not loose those she truly cares about, Chihiro sets out to save her parents. She is willing to do whatever it takes to turn them back into human beings. She earns the archetypal role of a hero as she overcomes all odds, breaking the powerful spells placed on both her parents and Haku by Yubaba.

The aesthetics of Japanese anime is very distinct. Spirited Away utilizes the art of hand animation. The intricacies of the drawings are impeccable as they give such attention to detail. For instance, as Chihiro is traveling on the train her profile is shown as she stares toward the front of the train and her reflection is shown on the window, along with the glistening water in the background. The preciseness of the drawings place even more emphasis on each aspect.

The lighting and incorporation of creatures in this film gives it the feel of a film of the genre fantasy. The soft edges give it a fanciful feeling that is commonly associated with fantasy films. The lighting is extremely superficial as the film demonstrates a stark difference from daytime to nighttime. It is used to emphasize the mood of the film. Creatures are yet another typical aspect of anime that is found in Spirited Away. These creatures consist of animals, humans, a combination of the two, and made up beings. The creatures work to criticize humans and their greedy, materialistic mentalities. This is extremely evident as the lust for gold in the bathhouse leads to the downfall of individuals. It clearly shows how people loose sight of who they are and what they will do for material things.


One thought on “Spirited Away

  1. You make a lot of great observations! I too agree with you that the film is centered on the importance of love and finding oneself. I also feel that the film follows a bildungsroman model as the audience sees Chihiro find these values by growing up. Around the age of ten in the film, Chihiro definitely changes from the weak and needy girl she was in the beginning to the essentially strong and experienced, dare I say, woman in the end. What’s interesting is that although she grows up, she never loses sight of what she values as she keeps kindness and caring nature throughout the film. Through her experiences, she becomes wiser and serves as the gold standard against central themes in the movie such as over indulgence and greed.

    Spirited Away is definitely a stunning visual masterpiece. When this is added to the fact that the film delivers a great message to all of its audience, it is truly a wonderful film.

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