I watched this film for the first time with my students. I must admit, I wasn’t sure what to expect. The animation was unusually creative. I observed a lot of detail in the drawings.
If I were to compare this story to any others I’ve read or heard about, I think of Alice in Wonderland. We have many weird characters in a strange setting and a little girl trying to find her way back to the “normal” world with her family intact.
Several themes stand: hard work in life is necessary, family is important, greed is evil and a person must be true to oneself. Themes that are traditional as they are enduring.
I have to hand it to the animator Hayao Miyazaki for a visually stunning piece of work! ~~LMMolina