Review: Howl’s Moving Castle [2004]

Howl's Moving CastleJapanese Title: Hauro no Ugoki Shiro
Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Based on the novel by: Diana Wynne Jones
Music: Joe Hisaishi
Release Date: September 5, 2004
Running Time: 119 mins.

Voice actors:
Howl: Takuya Kimura/Christian Bale
Grandma Sophie: Chieko Baisho/Jean Simmons
Calcifer: Tatsuya Gashuin/Billy Crystal
Markl: Ryunosuke Kamiki/ Josh Hutcherson

Plot summary: (from wikipedia)
18-year-old Sophie works in a hat shop and lacks confidence and direction. Her chance encounter with the handsome but mysterious wizard Howl results in Sophie being turned into a 90-year-old woman by the vain and manipulative Wicked Witch of the Waste. On self-imposed exile, Sophie finds shelter in Howl’s moving castle; a mobile, chaotic ensemble of metal scraps but a feat of engineering nonetheless. Inside the castle, Sophie encounters Markl, Howl’s eight-year-old apprentice, an animated scarecrow whom Sophie names Turniphead, and Calcifer, a feisty, smart-talking fire demon who plays a key role in Howl’s intrinsic being. Sophie’s love and support comes to have a major impact on Howl, who, while a grown man, is still a boy in many ways.

I Say…

I actually watched Howl’s Moving Castle out of curiosity and i was trying to forget the pressure of CP (we call it CP). 2 friends of mine suggested that HMC is good and Chase-neesan even said that it’s very different from other Studio Ghibli creations because of the happy ending. She collected the Ghibli movies and her opinion counts. And then the other one, Cheeney-chan, told me, “neechan… HMC is good! Howl is very handsome!” I think a month ago I bought the Ghibli collection and haven’t touched it. Just recently I was able to watch HMC. Now that I have, what can I say about it?

-Howl is handsome indeed! So, Chase-neesan and Cheeney-chan were both right. I like his style too.
-The house, I mean castle is amazing! What kind of engineer can build one? I don’t even think I could make an eccentric design!
-HMC is so like HP. i mean, the magic and all that… Well, I can’t blame British minds! They all believe there’s really magic, maybe.
– I wish everything would be real. If life is that easy and everything is so animated, well, Filipinos won’t be required to have themselves employed on foreign lands to become housekeepers.
– I really like the little apprentice, Markl, he’s really cute and loyal to Sophie!
– Calcifer, is so like Mushu of Mulan… you know… annoying yet funny!
-The beginning somehow bored me out and I don’t know… the plot doesn’t seem to thicken until the last 45 minutes or so. Or was it because I watched the english dubbed…
– I hardly felt anything for the movie, it was just entertaining… but I’m not saying it’s not good… well… it just didn’t strike me emotionally that’s why.
-HMC is fair enough, worth the watch.


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