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Film, Spirited Away, By Miyazaki Hayao

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In Miyazaki Hayao’s animated film, Spirited Away, Miyazaki presents a young girl Chihiro who visits an abandoned amusement park, only to become trapped in a fantasy world where spirits reside. Although most of these creatures are very unique and quite unlike the others, most of them have one thing in common: their body features are very disproportional compared to the size of their bodies. This strange similarity depicted by Miyazaki invokes strong feelings of fear and appreciation in particular for the viewer. While many characters have ominous, creepy appearances similar to that of a ghost, they still have large eyes, blob-shaped bodies, and they make little-to-no-noise. These three characteristics emphasize the helplessness— the cuteness—of these creatures. The ominous appearance of the characters does however quickly begin to clash more obviously with their cute defining factors. In one early particular scene, Chihiro encounters a radish spirit: a large, round creature whose body shape resembles a radish. At first, the creature is threatening to the viewer, as it is large compared to most characters and its appearance is foreign and bizarre. But even though the spirit appears scary, Chihiro sticks around it briefly, and the viewer is prompted to further observes its figure. At that point, the the rotundness of the spirit radish’s figure becomes more apparent, and the viewer is lead to see him as not just threatening anymore, but also cute. But things that are cute are
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