Analysis Of Hayao Miyazaki's Film My Neighbor Totoro

1351 Words Oct 15th, 2014 6 Pages
Hayao Miyazaki has directed ten Studio Ghibli films, and many more outside the company. Most of his films include a form of uncertainty, some of which include technological ambiguity, moral ambiguity, and the ambiguity of age. The focus of this essay is Miyazaki’s ambiguity of age, specifically through his film My Neighbor Totoro. Through the theme of the ambiguity of age, Miyazaki is able to show the different characteristics that are maintained through maturing, characteristics that are left behind, and characteristics that are gained from the process of growing up. I will focus on the differences of maturity between the two sisters and the father in My Neighbor Totoro. Miyazaki’s film My Neighbor Totoro “tells the story of the two young daughters (Satsuki and Mei), their father (Tatsuo), and the family’s interactions with friendly wood spirits in postwar rural Japan” (Wikipedia). Satsuki seems to be around ten years old, and Mei seems to be around five years old. The imbalance of maturity in Satsuki and Mei is first demonstrated when they are running around their new house. Nothing is explicit about age—Miyazaki only shows Satsuki running around the house, and then shows Mei doing the “same thing, but she does it like a young child” (Miyazaki 10). This seemingly small age difference is the foundation of Miyazaki’s themes, motifs, and juxtapositions. In the film, Satsuki and Mei’s mother (Yasuko) has a long-term illness

and is in the hospital. As a result, the…
Open Document