Spirited Away

User Score
9.0

Universal acclaim- based on 1387 Ratings

User score distribution:
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  1. KrisA.
    Sep 30, 2002
    4
    Unfortunately, this film is evidence that unbridled creativity can be a bad thing. Positively amazing animation and delightfully imaginative concoctions are heaved at you as a substitute for any sort of cohesive storyline or theme. This work was a surprising break from Miyazaki's "Princess Mononoke", which employed fewer creative resources to the animation, devoting them instead to Unfortunately, this film is evidence that unbridled creativity can be a bad thing. Positively amazing animation and delightfully imaginative concoctions are heaved at you as a substitute for any sort of cohesive storyline or theme. This work was a surprising break from Miyazaki's "Princess Mononoke", which employed fewer creative resources to the animation, devoting them instead to story and character development. Expand
  2. KumarG.
    Apr 2, 2010
    5
    You might think otherways, but anyhow, i am not a fan of anime and manga. So, I think, this movie is a bit overrated. There are a hell lot of movies in which transformation from childhood to adulthood is depicted. So there's nothing new, even the animation was poor, considering its contemporaries.
  3. DesmondL
    Jun 16, 2010
    5
    The film was okay, but didn't not attract me at all. First at all, the characters were unlikeable (expect Haku), the story was boring (because the plot didn't not give any sense) and mostly it didn't not scary!! I don't know why the reviewer so over-hyping and gave it over 90 or 100.
  4. OliverW.
    Jan 18, 2009
    4
    Unlike just about everybody else, I do believe that films are supposed to make sense. For example, the characters must have reasons for their actions. And the very presence of a character must be necessary to the story. Don't get me wrong -- I have no problem with metaphor and fantasy worlds, I only ask that the storyteller lay the ground rules and follow them. Unfortunately, there Unlike just about everybody else, I do believe that films are supposed to make sense. For example, the characters must have reasons for their actions. And the very presence of a character must be necessary to the story. Don't get me wrong -- I have no problem with metaphor and fantasy worlds, I only ask that the storyteller lay the ground rules and follow them. Unfortunately, there is no rhyme or reason to this story. It's as if Miyazaki dropped acid one day and wrote everything down. The only reason I gave it a 4 is because his world, though disturbing and nonsensical, is so compellingly original. But watching it was a bit like chewing tinfoil. Expand
  5. LizzyL.
    Jun 1, 2003
    4
    Oh my god. Like, I didn't get this film at all. I mean, it's ANIME people! Anime is for kiddies not teens. I mean, like, the animation is sooooo bad. Why was the little girl so scared all the time? She was such a wuss, except I liked her bathouse outfit thing's color because it was pink. But the design was so, like, retro! I'm only giving this movie a 4 because Haku is Oh my god. Like, I didn't get this film at all. I mean, it's ANIME people! Anime is for kiddies not teens. I mean, like, the animation is sooooo bad. Why was the little girl so scared all the time? She was such a wuss, except I liked her bathouse outfit thing's color because it was pink. But the design was so, like, retro! I'm only giving this movie a 4 because Haku is a hottie. Expand
  6. Feb 8, 2013
    4
    Quite possibly the most overrated film by both the critics and the audience. Was it unique and interesting at first? Yes, but it manages to turn into a bizarrely random movie that makes you don't feel any emotion in the end. The metaphors in this movie must be hidden very well, cause I can't point them at all.
  7. MichelleP.
    Oct 5, 2002
    6
    Very disappointing. It was okay, but geez! Not good enough to give it a 99! There were some things too strange for words in it. Like the giant baby, or that moody No Face. I thought "My Neighbor Tortoro" and "Kiki's Delivery Service" were much better.
  8. HairyD.
    Mar 9, 2004
    4
    For kids. As an adult I found the movie silly and boring in parts. I'm not suggesting a fantasy should make sense but this one made even less sense than I would expect - how did Chihiro figure out that getting No-face outside the bath-house would calm him down? (or that none of the pigs were her parents?) There were a lot of side plots like that where Chihiro got to be cute, lovable For kids. As an adult I found the movie silly and boring in parts. I'm not suggesting a fantasy should make sense but this one made even less sense than I would expect - how did Chihiro figure out that getting No-face outside the bath-house would calm him down? (or that none of the pigs were her parents?) There were a lot of side plots like that where Chihiro got to be cute, lovable and heroic to the point of nausea. It highlights the fact that there was no overall plot. Basically side plots kept happening until the movie was ready to end and then the parents were just freed. So apart from a lame ending, lame side plots and pseudo pedo-erotic love between Chihiro and a River (did anyone not find that creepy!?), it was fine. As long as you're a kid and don't ask too many questions. Expand
  9. LaraC.
    Oct 16, 2002
    4
    Let me get a few things straightened out. First of all, I've seen better animation from Miyazaki's previous films. There was no computer animation in them, unlike some of the computer animation in "Spirited Away". Some people say it's more "realistic", but I think it looks so strange. Another thing is, how can a person enjoy all that weirdness? I mean, do they LIKE having a Let me get a few things straightened out. First of all, I've seen better animation from Miyazaki's previous films. There was no computer animation in them, unlike some of the computer animation in "Spirited Away". Some people say it's more "realistic", but I think it looks so strange. Another thing is, how can a person enjoy all that weirdness? I mean, do they LIKE having a spirit barfing all over the place because he ate something that tasted bad? Do they like an obnoxious giant baby who resembles a sumo wrestler? Do they like an overly wrinkled witch that needs a taller body? Do they like being left hanging with questions such as:Why was the spirit No Face kind, then evil, and then kind again? Or, why did everyone say Yubaba's sister was dangerous when she was immensly kind? The "charm" the movie was SUPPOSED to have, was drowned in childish weirdness. Miyazaki had none of that in his previous films. Plus, his previous films had the charm that could beat some of Disney's animated films, but "Spirited Away" just didn't have that charm. Sorry Miyazaki. Your other films were fantastic though. Collapse
  10. ChristopherJ.
    Mar 17, 2007
    5
    I spent most of the time going, "What?" and "Huh?" and "Not in America..." The plot is somewhat fascinating, but when you realize that very little will be revealed you can't help but feel abandoned.
  11. Oct 3, 2014
    4
    Spirited Away is great in terms of it's weird, imaginative characters, and somewhat confusing storyline but the voice acting (English dub) is just really cheesy, and bad.
  12. Jan 31, 2011
    6
    A little girl called Chihiro falls into a surreal world, from which she tries to save her parents. At first most characters appear to be bad-tempered or even evil. Nevertheless, along the way they all turn out rather nice. Therefore, none of the characters are categorizable into the typical archetypes of good or bad. This "realness" of the characters' personalities, however, makes theA little girl called Chihiro falls into a surreal world, from which she tries to save her parents. At first most characters appear to be bad-tempered or even evil. Nevertheless, along the way they all turn out rather nice. Therefore, none of the characters are categorizable into the typical archetypes of good or bad. This "realness" of the characters' personalities, however, makes the movie's storytelling very unusual to the habits and expectations of us western moviegoers. Moreover, one might miss a sense of having learned a lesson over the course of the film, for the parents do not rethink their piggishness, and Chihiro, despite many experiences and therefore many opportunities, does not appear to have grown much out from her childish vulnerability and dependence either. For these reasons, and despite its vivid imagination, Spirited Away (has great potential, but) might not satisfy everyone. However, the viewer might learn a lesson of freeing oneself from expectations and opening up for the unconventional. Expand
  13. Jun 29, 2013
    6
    Decent movie worth a watch, with a strong storyline and a good script. However, I am not a fan of the animation, it reminds me too much of Pokemon and the typical Japanese cartoons.
  14. YoonC.
    Sep 21, 2003
    5
    Miyazaki tediously repeats the glories of his past with diminishing returns. The result is a cluttered, uninspired mess, an indulgent mishmash of ideas regurgitated like vomit. It's Miyazaki's Juliet of the Spiirts, imagination trashed about in the manner of a drunken orgy. After the tiresome phantasmagoric excesses, Miyazaki tries to tag on some ecological message but by then Miyazaki tediously repeats the glories of his past with diminishing returns. The result is a cluttered, uninspired mess, an indulgent mishmash of ideas regurgitated like vomit. It's Miyazaki's Juliet of the Spiirts, imagination trashed about in the manner of a drunken orgy. After the tiresome phantasmagoric excesses, Miyazaki tries to tag on some ecological message but by then who the hell cares? Stick to Laputa, Nausicaa, and Totoro instead. Expand
  15. R.Kamath
    Nov 5, 2002
    6
    It's a decent movie, but really nothing to write home about. The plot and dialogue felt too scripted to be natural, and I found myself not really caring about what happened to the main character. I am a bit perplexed as to why the critics see this as a complete triumph, when it is not really a flawless movie. Eh.
  16. GaryG.
    Dec 6, 2002
    6
    Creative characters, with touches of Maurice Sendak's imagery. Some characters appear just for affect, though, detracting from the meaningful ones. Plot does not, in the end, mean much: there is little motivation for the fate of the girl's parents, and little context for the fates she encounters.
  17. NaumanK.
    May 12, 2003
    4
    Nice to look at but no classic. Plot is very weak and tries too hard to appeal to too many audiences. Stop over-hyping it ! It's just an Alice in Wonderland story. Definately one for the critics rather than the kids.
  18. TomG.
    Jun 6, 2003
    6
    Cute and decently developed, with originality as its strongest point. But overly long for its low-key action and insubstantial characterizations, a bit too thin on content, and most certainly too heavy in mood. Its main success appears to be that it led all the movie gurus down the garden path. Bit it WAS cute.
  19. PaulaW.
    Jul 14, 2003
    5
    I usually hate anime, but I made an exception and watched Spirited Away. The imagery is gorgeous (the train ride scene!) and there truly is a dreamlike fairy-tale quality to the story, but these are not happy dreams. It's hard to explain. I found the emotional atmosphere interesting, but also dreary, bizarre, disturbing and ultimately depressing. See Lara C.'s review, below, for I usually hate anime, but I made an exception and watched Spirited Away. The imagery is gorgeous (the train ride scene!) and there truly is a dreamlike fairy-tale quality to the story, but these are not happy dreams. It's hard to explain. I found the emotional atmosphere interesting, but also dreary, bizarre, disturbing and ultimately depressing. See Lara C.'s review, below, for some of the questions that vexed me. And where did the preachy eco-subtext fit in? The best comparison I can make is to a complex broth with many subtle flavors that ends up tasting like nothing yet leaving a stinky aftertaste. I don't usually object to movies or music on the grounds of being too weird, but Spirited Away was different. It certainly got under my skin. I can't really say that was a good thing. Expand
  20. DamianP.
    Mar 24, 2003
    4
    I cannot understand why people like this movie so much. There was nothing spectacular about the animation and the story wasn't very challenging. Kids stuff.
Metascore
94

Universal acclaim - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 37
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 37
  3. Negative: 0 out of 37
  1. 100
    A visual masterpiece about a scared little girl's breathtaking journey of self-discovery. All of the fun is getting there.
  2. Yet its visual surrealism, identity-bending and strong social/ecological message make it as much an allegory as a fable.
  3. Turns everything we know about the contemporary world on its head, and substitutes it with one in which spirits, monsters, magicians and animals mix it up in a carnival of energy, good humor and freewheeling illusion.