Alas, Miyazaki’s latest, Hauru no ugoku shiro/Howl’s Moving Castle, has been overwhelmingly lambasted over being too derivative of, and inferior to, his older work. On my end, there’s always something to like in any of his films, from lovingly framed scenes, to odd-cute characters.
My, uhm, bootleg copy has acceptable fan subtitles (a lot, lot better than the one that came with Ghost in the Shell II Innocence; more on this on a later post), but really bad video-quality, which is quite a pity for watching animation this astonishing.
But yes, Sophie is no Kiki (Kiki’s Delivery Service), no Princess Mononoke, not even a Chihiro (Spirited Away). A supposed anti-war film, I guess Miyazaki delivered a lot better with his subdued environment themes.