Hayao Miyazaki's animated classic Spirited Away comes to theaters this weekend.

Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away Is Coming Back to the Big Screen This Weekend. You Should Go See It.

Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away Is Coming Back to the Big Screen This Weekend. You Should Go See It.

Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
Dec. 2 2016 3:48 PM

Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away Is Coming Back to the Big Screen This Weekend. You Should Go See It.

spirited_1
No-Face says: Don’t delay.

Studio Ghibli

Spirited Away, the Oscar-winning animated film from acclaimed Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki, will return to theaters on Sunday to celebrate its 15th anniversary. Fathom Events, which in the past has coordinated limited theatrical runs for other beloved, nostalgia-drenched movies like The Iron Giant and Space Jam, originally teamed up with distributor GKIDS to bring the Studio Ghibli movie to theaters this Sunday and Monday only. But ticket sales for the event were so promising, they decided to add an additional date, with an extra screening coming on Thursday.

That means you have three chances to see Spirited Away on the big screen, and you should absolutely take advantage. A staple of Japanese cinema, Spirited Away is revered both in Japan, where it still holds the record for highest-grossing movie of all time even after 15 years, and abroad, having won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature (the only anime ever to do so).

Advertisement

Miyazaki’s films are consistently excellent, but none more so than his enchanting tale of a 10-year-old girl trapped in a bathhouse vacation spot for spirits, some of whom are amoral and grotesque in ways that your average Disney movie just won’t allow. That doesn’t mean the film isn’t beautiful—the animation is truly stunning, and the score by Joe Hisaishi is a marvel. But like most of Miyazaki’s work, Spirited Away eschews lazy characterizations (such as that ugly = evil) and instead offers a more complicated outlook on themes like greed, selflessness, and unlikely heroism.

The English-dubbed version of Spirited Away will hit theaters on Dec. 4 and 8, with the original Japanese version showing on Dec. 5 with English subtitles. The three-night engagement will also include the U.S. debut of an animated short film, Ghiblies: Episode 2, which chronicles the adventures of Studio Ghibli’s animators. So what are you waiting for? You can buy tickets on the Fathom Events website here.