If it’s Studio Ghibli, it’s safe to say that it must be a film worth all the trouble seeing. You’ll never go wrong with a Studio Ghibli creation.
But even among a vast collection of anime classics, there will always be those that come off as more favored—in a simpler word, better.
Is it possible for Studio Ghibli to have films better than its other creations since their films range from drama to comedy, action adventure to slice of life and so caters to different audiences?
Yes, it’s possible. Studio Ghibli films, after all, provide the same message of courage, hope and love in a world of difficulties and conflicts.
At one point or another, Studio Ghibli films have made an impact on those who’ve seen them. And that impact remains even after the lines, colors and sounds from the film itself have withered away in the depths of the memory.
Let’s find out which of these outstanding films have affected otakus the most. animeHOLIC lists down the Best o’ the Best from Studio Ghibli.
10: Porco Rosso
Scouring the Adriatic Sea is Porco in his red sea plane, ready to fend off pirates, and come night, to visit Hotel Adriano to have a sip with an old friend.
Madame Gina is more than ready to tell him how much she feels for him, but with the arrival of a young girl named Fio, Porco’s going to have a tough time deciding which to choose between the two. Or at least that’s what everyone around him would think so.
Remember these Porco Rosso scenes?
: With the men out to work, the women decides to help build Porco a better plane, acting like they were hostaged and was never paid when Porco left so as to escape the authorities. Quickly after that is the exciting rush out of the river.
: Gina said that she was gambling with her heart. She was certain to tell Marco how much she loves him.
: Fio woke up to see a man on the table looking at bullets. She uttered “Porco” and the man turns to reveal its face as that of a pig.
: The deciding match between Porco and Curtis happened in the water after both their artillery were jammed. Gina came in at last to ask Marco if he was about to hurt another woman. Marco pulled himself up to be the winner of the bout.
09: Castle in the Sky
It’s the action-adventure of a boy whose father once took a picture of the mythical castle hidden in the clouds and the girl who turned out to be the castle’s last descendant.
Pazu and Sheeta try their best to escape from a band of misfits and a power-hungry man who both share the same desire to capture her and use the power she never thought she had.
Remember these memorable scenes from Castle in the Sky?
: Sheeta was stationed in the kitchen of the Dolly gang’s mother ship and the boys was just too fond of her that they start helping her. Remember how jealous they became towards each other as one by one they find a brother inside the kitchen?
: In the train chase, Pazu and Sheeta ended up falling to their death on the cliff. The stone on Sheeta’s necklace, however, saved them as they were floated down to the ground.
: A peculiar-looking robot believed to have come from the castle in the sky (because it fell from the sky), went berserk and took Sheeta to the top of the fortress. Sheeta thought it was trying to take her hostage but realized that it was actually trying to save her.
: When Sheeta finally spoke the words passed on to her by her grandmother when she was a child, the castle in the sky started to crumble and separate like lego pieces before finally falling into the ocean below. What remained was the topmost part of the castle with what looked like huge trees floating in the sky.
08: Ponyo on a Cliff by the Sea
Ponyo is a mermaid who became curious and went to explore the waters. She ended up with a little boy who befriended her and made her decide to become a human. Her father (who was once a human) however, resented the idea while her mother wanted nothing but Ponyo’s happiness.
Remember these scenes from Ponyo on a Cliff by the Sea?
: Ponyo was stuck in a glass bottle and Sosske used a stone to break the glass. Just when Sosuke was saddened when he saw the “goldfish” dead, Ponyo licked the blood on Sosuke’s wound, startling the boy.
: Nothing could stop Ponyo from what she wanted to do. She made a mess of her father’s place to get to Sosuke through gigantic waves that challenged even the height of Sosuke’s mountain home.
: The drive to Sosuke’s home on a stormy night proved to be the scariest thing with waves that seem to follow them. When Sosuke turned outside the window, he saw a little girl running on top of the giant waves.
: After her first encounter with a human on land, Ponyo decided to become a human and started growing limbs. Her father had to try his best to turn her back to her original form.
07: My Neighbor Totoro
Satsuki and Mei’s family had to move to the country to make way for their mother who’s about to leave the hospital. And as they wait for the day when their family will be complete again, they were entertained by the unusual creatures they find living in a giant tree right beside their house.
Remember these memorable scenes from My Neighbor Totoro?
: When Satsuki and Mei were waiting for their father along the street, a strange (and gigantic) creature stood beside them and had some fun with the raindrops.
: Mei was lost and it took the help of a catbus to help Satsuki find her young sister.
: Satsuki was gathering some woods outside when a strong, almost ominous wind blew strong. To make her and Mei feel comfortable, however, their loving father started to laugh loudly to make their fears float away.
: Satsuki, at her young age, felt the tension of worrying for her mother after a message was delivered to their house regarding her mother’s condition.
06: Kiki’s Delivery Service
Kiki is a young witch who just made it to her new city home. There, she learned just how different she is and at some point came to lose her power because of not being able to fit in.
In the end though, she learned to be confident about who she is and since then was loved by everyone in the city.
Remember these memorable Kiki’s Delivery Service scenes?
: Jiji had to play the part of the cat doll that was part of Kiki’s first delivery job. Good thing the dog was friendly.
: Kiki went on a vacation with a friend in the woods when she learned one morning that she has lost her witch powers.
: Kiki and Tombo went on a ride on his wind-propelled bicycle which proved quite scary when they almost got hit by a truck and flew down on the mountainside.
: Even after coming out of her vacation in the woods, Kiki’s confidence was still in question. But when she saw Tombo hanging for dear life with the Deriggible crashing, she knew only she (and a street sweeper) could help her good friend.
05: Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind
While the humans think that the world is acting against them, Nausicaa and the rest of the Valley of the Wind thought otherwise and has learned to cope. Nausicaa has a strong resolve to be one with nature.
But Nausicaa as well as the Valley of the Wind is only one compared to territories that look up to power in a world threatened by a war between its equal inhabitants.
Remember these Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind scenes?
: The valley had its first big scare when a foreign airship crashed on their territory bringing insects. One of those insects survived and it was up to Nausicaa to calm it down and prevent it from calling onto other insects for help.
: Nausicaa saw a baby Ohmu stabbed and carried to the Valley of the Wind to lure the giant Ohmus and destroy everyone in the valley including the Giant Warrior.
: The Ohmu calmed down while the baby Ohmu was looking at an unconscious Nausicaa. Then the giant Ohmus lifted her up and healed her, fulfilling the prophecy told about a man in blue becoming the bridge between man and the insects.
: The Giant Warrior even in its unfinished stage was able to create massive destruction over the attacking Ohmus.
04: Grave of the Fireflies
A sad story of two siblings in a time of war. Seita and Setsuko have lost everything but each other and must learn to survive the harsh reality looming above them on bomb-loaded war planes.
Remember these memorable scenes from Grave of the Fireflies?
: Seita saw his mother burned completely and lied to his sister Setsuko about their mother’s condition. Then, in an unusual act of burying fireflies, Setsuko mentions about their mother being dead already as told by their aunt.
: Seita and Setsuko slept in a dark shelter and Seita had the cute idea of gathering fireflies to illuminate them inside the mosquito net, much to Setsuko’s delight.
: Seita came back to the shelter bearing food for Setsuko’s nourishment and finds his little sister hallucinating, giving him rice balls out of mud and eating a marble for a candy. She ate a watermelon and since then did not wake up.
: Setsuko’s joy over her can of Sakura drops.
03: Howl’s Moving Castle
Sophie never dreamt of becoming invovled in something magical but as fate would have it, she met Howl. Since then, she got entangeld in a web of jealousy and was cursed to become an old woman.
But when she came to the moving castle of one of the world’s greatet wizard, she started to see more to life than being stuck in a hat shop.
Remember these Howl’s Moving Castle scenes?
: The first time Sophie met Howl, he took her up on the air to walk with the wind.
: Sophie cleaned the entire moving castle, much to Markl’s disdain for she messed up with Howl’s stuff, which caused Howl’s hair to turn dark.
: Calcifer taken out of the fireplace and begging for Sophie’s help while she cleaned up.
: The entire moving castle walking uncontrollably after the Witch of the Waste took Calcifer to keep to herself.
02: Spirited Away
Chihiro didn’t like the idea of moving to a new house. And when her father drove in front of a peculiar entrance, she soon learned that there are places other than what she knew, filled with creatures she may have never imagined.
And when her parents were turned into fat, ugly pigs, she had no choice but to work for the great witch Yubaba who took her name and changed it to Sen.
Remember these Spirited Away Memorable scenes?
: After Sen let the odd spirit called “No Face” in, it fed the employee’s desire for money and soon made a mess when Chihiro refused to accept its gift.
: Sen woke up to find a white dragon hovering about in the waters below but later realized that it was being attacked by a horde of paper dolls.
: While flying to Yubaba’s bath house from the witch’s twin sister Zeniba, Chihiro felt a memory touch her about a white dragon and a river. She then remembered an incident when she was younger about being saved in the river with the river bearing the name “Haku”. Haku’s memory of his identity came back.
: When Sen came to Yubaba’s office to work as a maid in the bathhouse, she got the shock of her life with the image of a witch with the biggest head she’s seen. Yubaba later peeled off part of her name from Chihiro’s contract.
01: Princess Mononoke
When San met peace-loving and cursed Ashitaka outside Irontown, she grew to care for him as much as he did to her and both strive to make ends meet despite their different views of how to make everything alright.
Remember these Princess Mononoke memorable scenes?
: After getting cursed by the boar-god, Ashitaka’s cursed arm displayed superhuman powers that had helped him escape a group of killers in a village by decapitating one of them by an arrow shot.
: San cried over Ashitaka’s shoulder and stabbed him with the stone on her necklace when they saw the Forest god’s head shot off.
: Moro, even after having been beheaded by the ooze coming from the dead Forest god, was able to move and retaliate over Lady Eboshi by biting off the woman’s arm.
: San fought Lady Eboshi when she came to Irontown but the duel was interrupted by Ashitaka, who, despite spilling blood on the floor after an accidental fire of a rifle to his chest went outside carrying San with enough power to open the giant gate.