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Complete Storyboards — Get an Insider’s Look at the Film’s Artistry
Original Japanese Trailer
Opening and Closing Animation (Without Credits)
“Critically acclaimed as one of the most delightful and charming family films ever, My Neighbor Totoro is a stunning animated treat full of magical adventure from Hayao Miyazaki. Follow the adventures of Satsuki and her four-year-old sister Mei when they move into a new home in the countryside. To their delight, they discover that their new neighbor is a mysterious forest spirit called Totoro, who can be seen only through the eyes of a child. Totoro introduces them to extraordinary characters — including a cat that doubles as a bus! — and takes them on an incredible journey. Full of wonder and heart, this spectacular 2-disc set features the voice talents of Dakota Fanning and Elle Fanning. My Neighbor Totoro is a magical experience for the whole family!”
My Neighbor Totoro is rated G.
Despite my kids love for it, I wasn’t as thrilled by My Neighbor Totoro. I didn’t feel like the story really went anywhere, I felt Totoro wasn’t a terribly engaging character, and the pacing of the film was rather slow. That being said, there was still a lot I did like about it. I loved the interaction between the girls, dubbed in the English version by Dakota and Elle Fanning. The way the younger girl imitated the older, their fascination with the spirits, and their enthusiastic nature really captivated me. I also loved the scenes where the girls first explored the “haunted” house. The Cat Bus was pretty cool, too. (I thought it was a bit odd that it was sporting a cat scrotum, but that’s another story.)
As usual, the animation is also superb. Notable scenes include the Cat Bus’ first appearance, the children dancing to make some trees grow, and other cool moments. It’s arguably the best animation in the world just like in all the other Miyazaki films. Overall, though, My Neighbor Totoro wasn’t the best Miyzaki film that I had ever seen, but it was certainly a memorable one.
The Bottom Line: