My Neighbor Totoro is drawn in an expansive, naturalistic way that makes an atmosphere of trees, rice fields and hills unraveling in the distance a hypnotic shadow character. In some scenes this nature is so delicious it becomes a poetical presence. [08 May 1993, p.C3]
Compared to the breathtaking action sequences and elaborate fantasy landscapes of Miyazaki's early features, the genteel, languid Totoro seems at first slight, and even soporific. Yet My Neighbor Totoro may be the most enduring entry in Miyazaki's impressive filmography, because it's so particular about the nuances of human behavior and emotion.
"My Neighbor Totoro" is an animated masterpiece that continues to enchant audiences of all ages, even after over three decades since its initial release. The film captures the essence of childhood wonder and imagination in a way that few films have ever achieved. The story revolves around two young sisters, Satsuki and Mei, who move to the countryside with their father to be closer to their ailing mother. While exploring the surrounding forest, they encounter a variety of fantastical creatures, including the iconic Totoro.
The animation in "My Neighbor Totoro" is breathtaking, with stunning visuals that transport the audience into a magical world filled with wonder and awe. The film's soundtrack perfectly complements the story, enhancing the emotional impact of each scene. The characters are endearing and relatable, with Satsuki and Mei's relationship serving as the heart of the story.
What makes "My Neighbor Totoro" so special is its ability to capture the essence of childhood, evoking a sense of nostalgia and warmth that stays with the viewer long after the film has ended. It's a testament to the talent of director Hayao Miyazaki and the team at Studio Ghibli, who have created a timeless classic that will continue to inspire and captivate generations to come. If you haven't watched "My Neighbor Totoro" yet, you're missing out on a truly magical experience. 10/10, without a doubt.
Miyazaki so effectively captures the feeling of a child’s life, inside as well as out, that little ones are often mesmerized by the movie, and adults are returned to a time when they could enjoy mystery for its own sake.
My Neighbor Totoro is a gentle and affirming film. It's certain to delight smaller children, although boys accustomed to the slam-bang violence of super-hero cartoon features and TV shows may chafe at its leisurely pace.
An ideal animated film for young children, it has also found favor among adults who appreciate its unusually gentle, painterly style of animation, a trademark of the film's director, Japan's most renowned animator, Hayao Miyazaki.
When My Neighbor Totoro, which was written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki, is dispensing enchantment, it can be very charming. Too much of the film, however, is taken up with stiff, mechanical chitchat.
I am a huge Studio Ghibli/Miyazaki fan, and My Neighbour Totoro is no exception. In fact it is one of my favourites from them. There are so many wonderful things about My Neighbour Totoro. It is very simple in story and character but it is all very beautiful, charming and touching. The animation is typical Ghibli, ethereal-looking and just ravishing to watch, while the music is one of my favourite scores in a Ghibli film. The story is simple, but I loved the simplicity, it had such a pleasant atmosphere to it, and the characters are engaging with great chemistry together. I have very little to complain about the voice acting either, everybody did a fine job. In conclusion, in my opinion this is an animated classic. 10/10 Bethany Cox
The film certainly has a lot of positives within it. It does a good job of establishing the characters as relatable, in a way that a lot of animated films never do. The imagination and the joy of youth really does come through in the presence of the two girls. However, the movie probably spends too much time with them in its lackadaisical state and not enough time on story. Half an hour into the film, the novelty of the movies encapsulation of youthfulness and subtly implied magical world-building, start to wear thin. You may find yourself questioning where the film is going. Be prepared to wait nearly another hour wondering, as this film is very light on plot. At the end of the film it does pull out everything it can to provide an emotional and satisfying conclusion, and succeeds quite well at doing so in fact. But I'm not sure the meandering journey was quite worth the destination. The movie could have probably been helped by a harsher edit; a good twenty minutes or so cut from the movie might have helped the pacing. Also, worth mentioning is that the music is quite good, if not sometimes a little elevator music-y. The Totoro theme that plays over the credits is quite catchy.