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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Princess Mononoke (1997, Japanese – Mononoke Hime)

Director: Hayao Miyazaki 

Plot: Man is at war with the Nature that fosters him.

Princess Mononoke (1997, Japanese – Mononoke Hime)

In this age of technological animation—where you can almost feel an on screen drop of water falling on you through your 3-d glass—Miyazaki is like a one-man army successfully leading the bandwagon of hand-drawn animation. And “Mononoke Hime” is “Avatar” of animation genre when it comes to visual creativity! Each and every character breathes freely to its maturity. 

Mononoke Hime is like beautiful bedtime story with loads of lessons in morality and right living. Such stories/movies are what make the world a better place. It is set in imperial age/iron age period of Japan and deals with the then society taboos e.g. lepers, prostitutes, outcasts. There are no negative characters in the movie as everyone of them is somewhat justified for their actions.

Main character Ashitaka is stuck between the battle of man and nature and tries to establish a harmony among them, in which he eventually succeeds.

This is an epic work even more substantial than “Spirited Away”.

While watching the English dubbed version I so badly wished for knowledge of Japanese so that I could watch and understand original too! As there are a few Japanese term which don’t have a meaning in English. Even though the dubbing is very impressive, I plan a re-watch with subtitles.

“It took Miyazaki 16 years to fully develop the story and characters of Princess Mononoke. Princess Mononoke came together after Miyazaki visited the ancient forests of Yakushima island, but he didn't fully complete it until well into production. The final storyboards of the film's ending were finished only months before the Japanese premiere date”


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