Tue
Aug 11 2009 12:00pm

Ponyo Poster Giveaway!

Eugene Myers was kind enough to snag an extra Ponyo poster from this weekend’s New York City screening, so Tor.com is giving it away! Leave us a comment telling us what your favorite Miyazaki film is and why you love it so.

I’m not eligible, but I’ll go first anyway: Whisper of the Heart, not just because it is so sweet, inspiring, and deadly cute, but because it has that awesome cat, Moon.

To get this giveaway, all you need to do is comment (once—duplicates won’t count) on this post. The winner will be selected at random. You have until 12pm EST on Wednsday, August 12th, to comment here. No geographic restrictions apply.

81 comments
el forastero
1. el forastero
Although I love most of the Miyasaki movies, Ponyo is particularly beautiful because I doesn't tries to be a gigantic movie with a a lot of characters and overflowing of imagination. It has maybe a flavor of an old Myasaki, a children story, a love story everything in a simple package that is easy to love, as well as Ponyo, one of the most inocent and at the same time mysterious characters in myasaki
el forastero
2. Jim Betts
Mononoke Hime (Princess Mononoke) is my favorite, by far. Eco-mythology and spectacular animation!
philippe bergeron
3. bergphil
Hi,

My favorite one is Totoro, probably because i have seen it with my son so many time.
el forastero
4. Aldaron Castle
Princess Mononoke, because every time I see the vistas of swaying grass and river lands as Ashitaka heads west, I get chills down my spine as the music swells.
i e
5. klio911
Mononoke and Spirited Away are my favorites. I haven't seen many of the newer ones, though.
Eugene Myers
6. ecmyers
Obviously I'm not competing either, but my favorite Miyazaki films are still Princess Mononoke and Castle in the Sky, though I do love Whisper of the Heart (written but not directed by Miyazaki) an awful lot as well. Torie, have you seen the quasi-sequel The Cat Returns? Not a great movie, but Moon/Muta does make an appearance there as well.

I also really like Castle of Cagliostro, which predates Studio Ghibli, and Miyazaki's anime series Future Boy Conan. I keep hoping that show will be released in the US, but so far no luck.
Fabrice Gabolde
7. mikado
I can't really decide between Mononoke Hime and Nausicaa. I might like the older drawing style better than the more recent ones, although I have never been disappointed by any Studio Ghibli movie.
James Felling
8. Maltheos
I'd honestly have to say Castle in the Sky id my favorite( mostly because its my son's favorite)
nat ward
9. smonkey
Pom Poko the racoon war.
Its sorta long and wandering and so sweet and by the end you're laughing and crying.

Oh, and it got disney to release a movie that has giant shape changing racoon testicles in it. Lots of them.
el forastero
11. Hyperion76
Spirited Away is probably my favorite, due either to the nostalgic opening, the strange and enchanting characters that Chiyo encounters, or the always gorgeous music by Joe Hisaishi. I'd say that Princess Mononoke and Howl's Moving Castle are both close, close seconds!
Samantha Brandt
12. Talia
Spirited Away for its beautiful creepyness. Or maybe its creepy beauty. No Face is nightmare-inspiring.
el forastero
13. Kitty Pryde
It's so hard to choose! But I think it's My Neighbor Totoro (without the ear-killing little girl squeals of the English-dubbed version). It's so beautiful and so simple, and I find it very comforting.
Joseph Blaidd
14. SteelBlaidd
Right now, Kiki's Delivery Service, My wife and I are expecting a little girl in November and if she is half so kind, and loving, and confidant as Miyazaki's little witch I shall feel truly blessed.

Next favorite, Totoro for the unabashed magic of childhood innocence paired with the uterly real threats of an ill and, as far as the girls know, possibly dying mother and a lost little girl. It's especialy powerful when wached acording to the pattern of its original theatrical release; as the second half of a double feature with the heart breaking Grave of the Fireflies.

Other favorites, the delightfuly cockeyed Casablanca/Black Sheep Squadron feel of Porco Roso and the dead to rights take on familly life that is My Nieghbors the Yamadas.

I could probaly list these all day.
Ross Armstrong
15. SirRosstheWeary
Probably Nausicaa, although Mononoke is a close second. I think I like the visual style of the former more, while the latter has much better English voice casting.
el forastero
16. squish
i *heart* Miyazaki-san!
el forastero
17. birdbrainbb
I love all of his films, really, though I especially love Kiki's Delivery Service and Howl's Moving Castle. Kiki because it's sweet and happy and has a sarcastic talking cat, and Howl because it's the first decent adaptation of a book written by my favorite author I've seen yet (not that there's much to compare it to...).
Ryan Gustafson
18. robotrevolution
My absolute favorite is The Cat Returns, mostly for Cary Elwes's take on the Cat.
el forastero
19. nebka
My heart swings between Mononoke Hime and Spirited Away. But they are all great ones, in their own way.
Richard Fife
20. R.Fife
I enjoyed Spirited Away the most. I just loved the creepy feeling of the "otherworld" and, well, Kama-ji was just too fun of a character, even if he was minor.
Stephen W
21. Xelgaex
Spirited Away is my favorite. I love the characters and the world that's shown.

But Mononoke Hime and Howl's Moving Castle are right up there with it. And really I love them all, but if I have to choose, yeah, Spirited Away.
el forastero
22. boyhowdy
Princess Mononoke. Creepy apes, ftw!
j p
23. sps49
My Neighbor Totoro was the first Japanimation movie of any type I ever saw, although I still think My Friend Totoro to myself.

It was just soooo different from any cartoon I had yet seen, and led me to Urusei Yatsura, Nadia, Evangelion, etc.
el forastero
24. ChrisG
It's a tough call, but Spirited Away and Nausicaa are my two favorites.
Christine Evelyn Squires
25. ces
Spirited away is my favourite! The graphics are just beautiful, making for a film full of magic!

Howl's Moving Castle is my second favourite. Princess Mononoke is my husband's favourite, but I thought the film was too long & dragged-out.

We've also seen Kiki's Delivery System, Torturo, The Cat Returns, Nausicaa, Castle in the Sky. Haven't seen Ponyo yet,
el forastero
26. swmdilla
Spirited Away got me into Miyazaki, however I would have to say Howl's Moving Castle was my favorite. The mechanical quality of the castle was a pleasure to watch.
Micah Schwantner
27. Chiblade
I'm torn between Spirited Away (for the mystically whimsical way it moves along and the three dimensional characters) and Howl's Moving Castle (for the well developed story and, for Miyazaki, atypical story).
William Hassinger
28. iObject
I'd have to go with Howl's Moving Castle. I love Miyazaki's work in general, with all the big names and big movies being high up there. Castle, though, is fascinating to me because of what it did. It took a British woman's YA novel, ran it through a culture filter to become a gorgeous anime movie, and then was wrung back through the babelfish when it was dubbed. The end result is still remarkably faithful to the spirit of the book yet it's vastly different. There are so many things one can enjoy in Castle and so many angles from which to take it in. A part of me would dearly love to see Miyazaki do an adaptation of the quasi-sequel Castle in the Sky.


I must say, however, that I'm disappointed by the lack of love for Castle of Cagliostro so far in these comments. It was an amazing entry in the Lupin III material and a darn fine movie in and of its self. It had good music, typically wonderful animation, and the dubbing was some of the best. They added some really funny dialogue to fill dead air and it manages to not only sound natural in context but doesn't detract from the scenes in which they were added. Overall a really great little movie and one I'd recommend to almost anyone.
Wen Wen Yang
29. muteddragon
Kiki's Delivery Service
I love the scene when she says "Fly" and flies -- and then plummets. Because things are not so easy in reality.
Alejandro Melchor
30. Al-X
In terms of movies, it'd be a close battle between Princess Mononoke for the sheer epic scale of its implications despite being a very personal and very local battle for the protagonists, and Whisper of the Heart for its beautifully rendered characters.

However, in terms of titles... Nausicäa of the Valley of Wind. Hands down. The movie was very nice, but it told an incomplete story, and made Princess Kushana more of a villain than the heroic antagonist she actually is in the manga. Also, in the manga, Nausicäa is faced with the toughest choice I've seen a hero faced with in any media, and she makes it true to her heart and principles, and full responsibility for her actions. She's the first of my all-time favorite characters in anime (followed by Ghost in the Shell's Makoto Kusanagi and recently joined by Sage Wolf Horo from Spice and Wolf.)
el forastero
31. Sade Reed
I've loved everything by Miyazaki thus far, and I can't wait to see Ponyo and the Tales of Earthsea.
felipe lopez
32. lupercus
totoro and spirited away. the first because it seems so simple, and the second because of its take on the "girl crosses to the other side" idea.
el forastero
33. Kristoffer B
Mononoke, since that was what introduced me to the Ghibli films and opened up a new world...
el forastero
34. Terasita
Our entire family is counting down the days to the opening of this movie. Especially me.
Mark Chu-Carroll
35. MarkCC
Spirited Away. I don't honestly know why. Something about it just touches me. All of Miyazaki's movies are wonderful, but there's just something that I can't even name about Spirited Away.
el forastero
36. Woodge
My favorite is Castle in the Sky which was my intro to Miyazaki. Saw it at the Brattle theatre in Cambridge MA and really dug those dragonfly flying gizmos.
el forastero
37. FelineAlchemist
I've always enjoyed Miyazaki films. I like the layers to each story... each age range gets a little something different. I notice that, when watching a Miyazaki film I haven't seen in a couple years, I always find something new to analyze. My favorite right now is Princess Mononoke.
Pawel Martin
38. pawel_z_wrocka
"Tonari no Totoro", because it is so different from your regular movie, so peaceful and touching.

It never fails to raise my spirits.
el forastero
39. Mr Zog
My favorite is probably Spirited Away - for beauty and creeps all at once. Though Princess Mononoke is a tight second.
el forastero
40. Jamie S.
Whisper of the Heart is my favorite Studio Ghibli movie.
It's not that much of a fantasy movie, like Miyazaki's more well-known movies, but that is possibly what makes it so likeable. It's the more toned down cuteness of it, with the awkward couple meeting and eventually becoming friends, that made it what it is, not an overly adorable fluffy monster (although I'll always love My Neighbor Totoro).
Jacob Silvia
41. aethercowboy
Princess Mononoke. It's one foreign language film I could watch and enjoy in both the original language AND English (I blame the English scriptwriter).
el forastero
42. Johnny C
Favorite Miyazaki movie? I don't think I can narrow it down to just one. Surely My Neighbor Totoro is the best movie ever made for a younger audience. I cannot take my eyes away from it as an adult either. But then Princess Mononoke steals my breath away when I watch it, and Spirited Away ensorcels me with its Oz-like journey. My absolute favorite Miyazaki movie has to be the one that occurs off camera, when all the characters interact with each other. It's one big party where Mei chases Jiji, Nausicaa and Kiki cavort among the clouds, Ashitaka and Lord Yupa exchange fighting technique tips, and spirits of every type, from every world, mingle.
Ben Warmuth
43. inevitabledoubt
Howl's Moving Castle is easily my favorite. Saw it in the theatre with my sister (who got me into Miyazaki in the first place). The intricacy in the castle alone is enough to get me to watch it again and again.
Patrick Regan
44. tazo85
Now that's a tough one indeed, because I love them all so much. I think, though, if I absolutely had to choose, I'd go with Castle in the Sky, for the following two reasons (they're shallow, but since it's so hard to choose I'll take any reasons I can get):

1. It has Mark Hamil as the bad guy, which is something I would never say no to.

2. It mostly concerns airships, which hold a special place in my heart despite a mild fear of flying.
el forastero
45. tr1ck
My favorite has to be 'Nausicaä of the Valley of Wind' There was just so much to this movie that I can't decide if it classifies as sci-fi or fantasy. The art is amazing and the denouement is just ridiculously fulfilling. Not to mention that my favorite commander of Battlestar Galactica lends his voice to the production.
Ron Lauzon
46. rlauzon
Spirited Away. I just love the closing lines of that movie.

After all Chihiro went through, at the end when asked if she'd be all right with a new school, new house and new friends she says simply "I think I can handle it."

It only narrowly beats out Whispers of the Heart as my favorite.
el forastero
47. rtaka
Nausicaä of the Valley of Wind is the first Miyazaki anime I've seen. Most likely its my favorite one, with the manga filling in the rest of the story. Ceramic sword wielding heroine battling giant robots with a powered glider and some giant insects rampaging all over the place. Whats not to like?
Mustafa Cetin
48. mcetin
Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind is my favorite, because, it has very nice songs, very nice screens and most important the main subject is impressive!
el forastero
49. jesssica
Howl's Moving Castle, because in that early scene when Howl's jumping around the town in his twirly cape and blond hair, someone in the theater yelled out, "It's David Bowie!"
el forastero
50. Pomelo
Whisper of the Heart is my favorite, what with the library books and the violin making.
el forastero
51. Beaker
I love how he's able to capture the feeling of youth so well. I think that's why Totoro and Kiki are my favorites :)
el forastero
52. tim1724
hard to choose a favorite. I really liked Kiki's Delivery Service, Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away, and Howl's Moving Castle.
el forastero
53. Alain Ducharme
I am so looking forward to seeing this movie with my 5-years-old.
el forastero
54. Carla C
Out of all the Miyazaki films I have seen, Spirited Away is my favorite. The film blends Chihiro's problems with the adult world she is forced into so perfectly. Viewers don't lose hope for Chihiro as she slowly adapts to the strange world she is visiting. Chihiro is the everyman, or the everychild in this sense. For all of the Japanese lore in this movie, it is surprisingly realistic. With each viewing, Spirited Away gains a bigger piece of my heart.
el forastero
55. tldaisy
Howl's Moving Castle is my favorite Miyazaki film. I love the circular plot, the characters, and the beauty of the animation. The main character Sophie is both sweet and stubborn, which I adore.
el forastero
57. linwild
Spirited Away because I re-watch it most, or maybe Princess Mononoke because I think about it most.
el forastero
58. isnochys
hmm.

I would say Mononoke..
el forastero
59. Sottai
Nausicaa of the Valley of the Winds.
The world-building was spectacular, and all of Miyazaki's themes: feminism, environmentalism, took front and center.
Andrew Ty
60. eldritch00
Spirited Away, only because it's the most accessible for first-time Miyazaki viewers, even in its English dub. It's really hard to choose a favorite in a career characterized by such consistent quality as Miyazaki's, but hey.
Peter Tierney
61. Unit04
I like Porco Rosso. I'm a sucker for airplane movies.
el forastero
62. MDominic
I'm going to say that Ponyo will be my favorite Miyazaki film, because it will be the first one that I will be seeing in the theatre with my daughters, making it a memorable experience no matter how good the movie may be.
el forastero
63. BrianB
My favorite Miyazaki film would be Spirited Away because it was the first movie that I took my daughter to see "just us". We've seen them all but this one I will always remember.
el forastero
64. Dave Bauer
Howl's Moving Castle.

The style of the castle and the lanscapes are amazing.
Eldwin Truong
65. eltzjy
I like Spirited Away perhaps because it's one of the lighter films. It's also a load of fun. I think I might have liked Nausicaä more since I loved reading the manga but the DVD I got only had Chinese subs and dubs, which I couldn't really understand.
el forastero
66. Peyj!
Whisper of the Heart

This is the one and only movie I have ever wanted to watch again and again and again, not just because of the sheer artistic merit that Miyazaki brings to such a simple story about the life and love of a teenage girl, but also for the way Miyazaki manages to make it so damn beautiful. I also have some serious personal connections to this movie, but I'd rather not discuss them here.
Patrick Garson
67. patrickg
Spirited Away. It captures Childhood so perfectly, the fear of the unknown, the ambiguity, the fact that what seems bad can ultimately be good.
Chris Meadows
68. Robotech_Master
Hands down, Lupin III: Castle of Cagliostro. This movie is brilliant in a number of respects, and to go into all of them I would have to talk for the entire length of the movie.

In fact, I did talk for the entire length of the movie—I did a downloadable mp3 commentary track meant to be played with either of the NTSC Manga Video DVD editions of it (though I suppose the Japanese edition would work too). Judging by the comments I see about it in various places (including the Ghibli Blog), it's pretty highly-regarded among the fans if I do say so myself. (Hey, after the amount of work I put into it, I think I'm entitled to blow my own horn a little.)

What a lot of people don't realize about Cagliostro is that it's one of the few times Miyazaki has done a sequel to his own previous work. Miyazaki and Takahata took over the original 1972-1973 Lupin III TV series about a third of the way through its run—and if you watch that TV series (which is only available as digital fansubs, given that no American company has ever expressed any interest in licensing it) you'll be amazed at how many things Cagliostro called back to from that series.

Little things like someone plucking Zenigata's cigarette from his mouth to light it from a security laser, or Lupin running in front of spotlights (an iconic scene from the original 1969 Lupin III pilot film, lifted verbatim for the opening credits of the 1972 series and then again for this movie), or Lupin vacuuming up a jewelry counter, or counterfeit bills flying up in the sky in huge clouds—or even big things like the film's entire storyline (there was an episode of the '72 series that was essentially a simplified version of the Cagliostro movie plot)—would all have been recognizable to anyone who had watched that series. When you get right down to it, Cagliostro was actually every bit as much of a nostalgia film as any of the innumerable TV series reunion specials that come out ten to twenty years after a show over here goes off the air. Luckily, thanks to Miyazaki's craft as a filmmaker, we don't have to know any of that stuff to enjoy the movie as a movie.

Though ironically, since the Lupin character had undergone some changes since the original series (there was a new Lupin III TV series on at the time that moved Lupin from the gentler Miyazaki hero of the latter part of the first TV series back toward the raunchier character he had been in the original manga), most Lupin III fans of the day found the characters all but unrecognizable, and the movie originally flopped at the Japanese box office! It took a few years before people uncontaminated by that Lupin III were able to look at Cagliostro and recognize it as a work of genius in its own merits.

And as a result, almost all of the Lupin III TV specials, OAVs, and movies that have come about since then have included some reference to Cagliostro (or to other Miyazaki Lupin works), be it slyly hidden or shamelessly blatant. The jazzed-up version of the Lupin III theme from Cagliostro (which was absent from Lupin for about 15 years after Cagliostro) suddenly started popping up in almost every film from the late '90s onward. A Lupin special might include a Cagliostro-reminiscent scene of Lupin's Fiat crashing through undergrowth and a bird fluttering around inside the car, or the car defying gravity by scaling a sheer vertical cliff. The most recent Lupin III anniversary OAV, "Red vs. Green," was almost one long Cagliostro reference all the way from start to finish. And so it goes—after all, Cagliostro is the Lupin III that today's Lupin animators were most affected by as children.

So, yeah, that's why I like Cagliostro the most. (Though the '72 Lupin series, and the two episodes he directed of the later series, are also up there in my estimation.)

Of Miyazaki's more well-known films, I like Laputa a lot and have for a long time, but I think Spirited Away is probably my favorite.

Um…thanks for reading this long?

Um…you can wake up now. Really. I'm stopping.
el forastero
69. MartinJenny
I won't get any points for originality here, but for me it is Spirited Away. Most likely because it was the first Myazaki that I've seen. I was dumbfounded by all the beauty and weirdness of it, the depth of character and the magic. And let's not forget the music! It took me completly by surprise and I had tears in my eyes several times.
It was similar yet different with Totoro and Music of the Heart. Ah - you're cruel to make us rank such things of beauty.
el forastero
70. Nkemdili
Princess Mononoke remains my favorite for multiple reasons.

Its characters are complex. They are not 100 percent good or 100 percent evil. They have some of both within them. Even the gallant and good Ashitaka is marked by something evil. These characters are contradictory, unpredictable , flawed and most importantly *believable*.

The film is full of terrifying moments (like the scene with the possessed boar)and exhilarating moments (when the wind sweeps across the treetops and the Kodama tree spirits rejoice).

I also love the film’s multiple strong female characters, some young, some older. And of course, I love the theme of environmentalism that runs through the film. The film stresses that the industrial age/technology is inevitable but it does not have to be in such direct senseless conflict with nature.

My favorite part of the film was the forest. It is alive and drawn/animated that way; the forest is haunted, it is cursed, it is blessed, it is occupied, and it is filled with cute little naked tree spirits that have interesting issue with their necks. What more can you ask for in a film?
el forastero
71. Sakiblu
Hi !! I have to say Whispers of the Heart & Only Yesterday are my favorites..There is something real and very tender in these two movies, and they really tie in with the good and sometimes bad things families go through day to day !!
el forastero
72. samrad
It's got to be My Neighbour Totoro for me - Whenever I need cheering up I just stick that on and feel happy
el forastero
73. dancinbojangles
My favorite is probably Nausicaa. I really love his more fantastical works. What with the international stardom and all, it's easy to think of Miyazaki as this imposing figure in the film world, but frankly I think he's just a dude with a funny imagination.

Now his son, that guy's got the stupid famous person's kid thing going on. Ged Senki was teeeeeeerrible. Well, not THAT bad, but not Ghibli quality. Still, unfortunate that it's stuck in localization Hell. Fortunate, however, that I speak Japanese.
el forastero
74. rhastie
Whisper of the Heart is my fave Miyazaki movie... of those directed by him, Totoro and Kiki are best imho.
el forastero
75. Larry W. Virden
It is so hard to choose a favorite. If I were forced to choose only one favorite, however, I would choose My Neighbor Totoro, but the choice is based as much about my life, and the memories connected to the movie, as it is the movie itself.
Louis Wilson
76. louiswins
I would have to say Castle in the Sky. I love the combination of the machinery, especially that of the pirates, with the seeming magic and elaborate history/mythology that is developed.
el forastero
77. iSujuu
Spirited Away is my favorites. I've seen it so many times on T.V that i went out to buy the DVD.
el forastero
78. IsItArt
Spirited Away classic fairy tale .... tho i am transported by ????????
el forastero
79. anthy
Spirited Away is my absolute favorite. Beautiful animation, wonderful music, I love the story, I love the main character (Chihiro), and I love dragons.

Thank you for the giveaway. :-)
el forastero
80. anthy
Oh, whoops! This contest is probably long over, sorry. Please ignore my post!
el forastero
81. Bahnree
My favorite Miyazaki film is Spirited Away, because it was the first one I saw and it made me fall in love with his films. Also, dragon!Haku is AWESOME.

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