Studio Ghibli has produced several movies, with movies like Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle and My Neighbor Totoro being extremely popular. But there are a few Studio Ghibli movies which don’t get as much viewership as they deserve. Here are a few of them.
1. Only Yesterday (1991)
Ghibli movies always center around topics like humanity, society and life. Movies like The Tale of Princess Kaguya and Grave of Fireflies are astute studies of society and human lives. Only Yesterday follows the same route.
The movie has a lot of nostalgia that it touches on and follows Taeko Okajima as she muses over her childhood, adolescence, aspirations and struggles of adulthood.
2. Porco Rosso (1992)
If you are a fan of Ghibli, then you would love to watch Porco Rosso. The movie is set in Italy after the end of World War 1 and features many aspects like airplanes and anti-war commentary often found in other Miyazaki movies.
Porco Rosso is an Italian World War 1 fighter ace. He now hunts bounties as a freelance. In the midst of romance, intrigue and action, the movie speaks about economic changes, political change and industry that swept through the nation in World War 1.
3. Pom Poko (1994)
Both Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata have used ecological themes in their movies, yet differently. While Princess Mononoke is a drama that depicts nature as larger-than-life; Pom Poko is satirical, and humorous. It tells the story of a group of tanuki trying to save their homes in the mountain forests.
A movie combines traditional folklore with modern media. It portrays eco-terrorism and activism by the desperate tanuki.
4. Whisper of the Heart (1995)
Ghibli classics are often romantic movies based on manga, so Whisper of the Heart is a classic coming-of-age romantic drama. It revolves around protagonist Shizuku and Seiji who has a crush on her.
While Seiji wants to become a world-class violin maker, Shizuku decides to pursue a path in writing. Their musical elements give the movie a heartwarming, nostalgic mood. Take Me Home, Country Roads is included and gives it an especially nostalgic feel.
5. The Cat Returns (2002)
It’s a spin-off of Whisper of the Heart, featuring a character from Shizuku’s fantasy story. The plot is completely unrelated, focusing on Haru and her experiences as she gets dragged into the Kingdom of Cats and starts turning into a cat herself.