When an unconfident young woman is cursed with an old body by a spiteful witch, her only chance of breaking the spell lies with a self-indulgent yet insecure young wizard and his companions in his legged, walking castle.
In order to power the city, monsters have to scare children so that they scream. However, the children are toxic to the monsters, and after a child gets through, 2 monsters realize things may not be what they think.
Chihiro and her parents are moving to a small Japanese town in the countryside, much to Chihiro's dismay. On the way to their new home, Chihiro's father makes a wrong turn and drives down a lonely one-lane road which dead-ends in front of a tunnel. Her parents decide to stop the car and explore the area. They go through the tunnel and find an abandoned amusement park on the other side, with its own little town. When her parents see a restaurant with great-smelling food but no staff, they decide to eat and pay later. However, Chihiro refuses to eat and decides to explore the theme park a bit more. She meets a boy named Haku who tells her that Chihiro and her parents are in danger, and they must leave immediately. She runs to the restaurant and finds that her parents have turned into pigs. In addition, the theme park turns out to be a town inhabited by demons, spirits, and evil gods. At the center of the town is a bathhouse where these creatures go to relax. The owner of the bathhouse ... Written by
In the scene during which Chihiro squashes the small worm like thing that inhabited Haku with her foot that, Kamaji tells Chihiro to "Cut the line!" Cutting the line is a Japanese good-luck charm performed by making a chopping gesture through another person's connected index fingers. This is done whenever someone is affected by some impurity. During footage of the dubbing process in the "Spirited Away" Nippon-TV Special, Rumi Hiiragi, playing Chihiro, was not aware of this concept and had it explained to her by Hayao Miyazaki. One of the sound engineers commented, "The young don't know it these days." See more »
When Sen and Lin are asked to clean the "big tub" before they start to clean it the tub appears full with dirty water but a few seconds later Lin and sen are stood in the tub but it is empty. See more »
[reading a card]
I'll miss you, Chihiro. Your best friend, Rumi.
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The credits have a series of still images from the film. The last image before the film fades is Chihiro's shoe in the river. See more »
Personally, I've never seen anything as original in an animated film as in this deeply mythical fairytale. What a surreal idea for a movie! It's hard to find an adequate description (because I also don't want to spoil this in the slightest way) but this film has a sense of "otherness" to it - for lack of a better word - like none I've ever seen. And the strange, mythical nature of this film - apart from the amazing artwork - is probably one of the main reasons for its appeal to me.
Maybe the themes of the story don't feel quite as strange to an eastern audience because they fit to a certain degree with some eastern/Asian mythologies - to me, this beautiful piece of wonder was something new. And a profoundly moving experience.
Outstanding animation; funny, weird, scary and touching at the same time, this unique work of art is one I can't recommend enough. 10 out of 10.