In this episode of Casual Chats, Patricia and special guests Zenith Warrior Princess and Filip Kanzurovski discuss about the Japanese animation company Studio Ghibli founded on June 15, 1985 by Hayao Miyazaki, Isao Takahata, Toshio Suzuki, and Yasuyoshi Tokuma. They have been known for producing some of the most groundbreaking, critically acclaimed 2D animated movies in Japan from Castle in the Sky to When Marnie was There. They go over the films, the memorable characters, the atmospheric scenes, the quiet moments, and the risky storytelling ranging from protecting the environment to the struggles of surviving a war as well as the cute, charming stories from two sisters interacting with a creature named Totoro to a witch trying to help her neighborhood with delivering goods alongside her smart aleck cat. 35 years after the studio’s premiere, people from around the world love the films and has gained a massive audience into the world of anime. Which movies do Patricia, Zenith, and Filip think are the best films in Studio Ghibli’s library? Listen and find out. Check out Zenith’s links down below.

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1 thought on “Old School Lane Casual Chats: The Studio Ghibli Films

  1. What movie is the song during the intro playing from? It’s beautiful.


    I haven’t seen every Ghibli film (no desire to watch Grave of the Fireflies because I think it would wreck me), so I’ll just comment on the ones I am familiar with:

    Castle of Cagliostro – one of my all time favorite animated movies, as you brought up. The absolute best entry in the Lupin III franchise, and more people need to watch it.

    Nausicaa – need to rewatch it again but I do remember enjoying it. Had an environmental message without being too preachy.

    Castle in the Sky – my first introduction to Ghibli. Loved the designs of the steampunk civilization, the sky pirates, and Mark Hamill was perfect as Muska.

    Kiki’s Delivery Service – wasn’t that strong (I agree with you that it was a bit too slow-paced), but I enjoyed watching Kiki as she grew into her own person and forged new friendships. And Phil Hartman was simply perfect as Jiji. Charming, but I wouldn’t call it one of my favorites. I never thought of the parallel about how Kiki losing her powers is akin to children growing up until Zenith brought it up.

    Pom Poko – Raccoon scrotes. Weird, but funny.

    Spirited Away – weird, somewhat frightening at times, energetic, and heartfelt. Agreed that it is a bit overrated and some of the elements don’t make sense, but it’s still a fun watch.

    Howl’s Moving Castle – my second favorite Ghibli film. Very strange, but heartfelt. You can’t help but feel for Sophie during her plight. Howl is such a charismatic yet mysterious character, and I love the dynamic between the two of them. Never knew about the anti-war sentiment behind the development though.

    Ponyo: Not as bad as a lot of detractors say it is, but kind of messy. I couldn’t find myself to get invested in the characters or care about the plot. Animation is still beautiful, except when Ponyo is in her half-fish/half-human design; that was kind of nightmarish.


    You did get me interested in seeing Whispers of the Heart, so I’ll have to check that out when I can. And I never knew he didn’t work from a script. I don’t think I could ever take that approach if I was in the creative business. Like Zen and Fil, I need to have everything laid out in writing.



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