Ghibli is famous with studio Ghibli complete movie collection of the magical world: wizards, wizards, and spirits, not to mention transformations and dozens of mystical symbols.
But like the Grimms tales, the magic in the Ghibli movies collection is not always what we think. Ghibli’s writers and directors were amazed at the magic, but not completely enchanted. In most cases, they present magic as a commercial system: you can use it, but there’s a price to be sure.
1. Magic in Spirited Away – best Studio Ghibli collection
One of the most famous (and most critically and commercially successful) films in the Ghibli movies collection, Spirited Away, involves complexity and the cost of magic. When little Chihiro and her parents happen to be passing by an amusement park that appears to be abandoned, her parents eat the seemingly abandoned food. Chihiro quickly learns that they are in a land of spirits, and her parents have eaten themselves without realizing the cost. Instead of regular currency, they lose their human form and turn into pigs. Trapped in the spirit world, Chihiro tries to find a way to save her parents. At first, she had to find a job, but she also had to come at a cost – she had to sacrifice her name and human identity, which could be quickly forgotten in the spirit realm.
When Chihiro works in the spirit bath, she encounters various forms of commerce. When she cleans an especially disgusting soul, she is paid with a magic cake that she wants to use to save her parents. (Ironically, her parents curse themselves with food, and the money she earns to redeem them is food too.) The healing property of this cake is vomiting – apparently like because they ate food that wasn’t theirs, they had to vomit to save themselves. Chihiro ends up using the cake on two other cursed creatures who similarly throw up the things they have improperly eaten – a bizarre, annoying price to pay for their safety. themselves.
The audience quickly understood that the main mechanism of the spirit world was also commerce, even though it was not connected to any human economy. The soul works and pays for the services. Theft is a serious offense that harms the thief’s body. Many of the major conflicts in Spirited Away involve greedy and outrageous acts. It was a punitive capitalist society where too much desire, too great, would lead to various magical penalties.
2. Magic in Howl’s Moving Castle – films from Studio Ghibli collection
Other films from studio Ghibli movies bundle, Howl’s Moving Castle, the witch Howl defined her life by a magic contract before he met the heroine, Sophie. The fire demon Calcifer possesses Howl’s heart, which keeps Calcifer alive and allows Howl to access its powers. But Howl’s advantage with magic causes him to lose his freedom and humanity. Not only was he tied to Calcifer – as a mage, he was also expected to serve as a soldier in his country’s senseless war. His power has made him lose his freedom. When Howl intervened in the fight instead of joining, in principle, he sacrificed more of his humanity, even losing his human form. In the end, his magic didn’t make things alright – it was Sophie’s love and perseverance that saved him.
3. Magic in Princess Mononoke
Princess Mononoke is a stellar epic historical fantasy anime by Hayao Miyazaki – from the Ghibli movies collection in 1997. Although Princess Mononoke lacks the magicians and wizards in Howl’s Moving Castle, the movie experiences a similar encounter of magic and war, albeit in a much more vivid and pressing way. The story opens with the protagonist, Ashitaka, killing a demon and gaining supernatural powers in one arm, which helps him throughout the film. But the price seemed to be his life. The demon has given him an illness that will spread and eventually kill him.
As he sought a cure, he encountered characters racing to hunt for a wild spirit whose head was supposed to bestow immortality. However, when the soul is beheaded, the results are dire. The entire area became an item in exchange for this soul’s head, and humans and animals were destroyed. But here, the commercialism of magic seems to be based on an economy of nature rather than an economy of bargains, advantages, or gold. The forest god brought death and life, with dead or blooming plants around it.
The spirit of the forest embodies nature’s duality, appearing as a deer-like creature during the day and a terrifying, giant wanderer after sunset. Magic in Princess Mononoke is not considered deception or punishment, it represents the principle of balance. In nature, there is a trade: one animal dies to feed another. A rotting tree to help give birth to a new tree. Destruction and creation combine. When humans upset that balance by taking something from the forest, unwilling to pay anything, of course, the result is greater devastation.
4. Magic in Pom Poko
But maybe Isao Takahata’s bizarre, fanciful Pom Poko story is what tells the most serious and solemn the price of magic. In this 1994 movie from studio Ghibli complete movie collection, a group of weasels threatened by humans are developing real estate in their homeland. They try to perform all kinds of conspiracies to stop humans, using their powers to transform into any creature or object. Although their conspiracy yielded some small results, it all got thwarted in the end.
So, in desperation, they plan for a great illusion that can drain their energy and combined ability: a giant parade of shape-shifting ghosts passing through town and haunting the residents. However, this conversion was a burden, and one of the wise elders of the clan died because of his efforts. Transformation magic is portrayed as an important weapon and survival skill, a secret to the species. But the cost of this magic is very expensive. In the past, one of the weasel elders explained to the others that their species was more obvious. When humans found out, they became jealous and hunted weasels as punishment.
Not even the biggest tragedy this innocent, cute-looking cartoon has to offer to its main characters. At the end, when it comes to losing to humans, the final price weasels have to pay for their ability to change shape is to decide between two equally detrimental ways of life. They can choose to live short, dangerous lifelike animals, avoid cars, traps, and foraging for food scraps. Or choose to be human, like your magical friends, the fox, and blend into society.
The final price weasels have to pay for their shape-shifting ability is to decide between two equally unfavorable lifestyles.
But the second option brings fatigue and dissatisfaction to weasels. Takahata followed a child, in human form, wriggling on the train and tired from a long day working on his desk. But the only way to live a sufficiently human life is to fall into the trap of capitalism; In a particularly sad point, the film tells us that some weasels turn into people in real estate, selling land like a house they lost, for it is profitable.
The magic in the Ghibli movies collection comes with a wealth of surprises and quirks, but it’s not believable. There is no easy fix for the compromise between being in the world and facing human pollution, war, and many other evils. As these movies tell us, magic is simply a shortcut. Trusting some mystical panacea only gives characters the illusion of strength and control, and it often deprives them of something important in return.
Characters must sacrifice the conception of their existence in the world, and lose a sense of personal responsibility
In-studio Ghibli’s world and studio Ghibli complete movie collection, this could mean losing their freedom or humanity, or their former way of life. But in a more practical sense, it is possible that characters simply have to sacrifice the notion of their existence in the world, and lose their sense of personal responsibility. Like in fairy tales, magic exposure can be a bit glamorous and awe-inspiring, but magic beans and magic lamps come at a price. In the end, they never solve the problems, they just change them. Unfortunately, real-world repair work will always fall on our heads.