Majo no takkyûbin (1989)

“Majo no takkyûbin” (1989) (Kiki’s delivery service)

IMDb

Myazaki searching for Miyazaki

There are a few directors whose work is worth watching, no matter what they do. Miyazaki is one of those. He has a very personal and strong way to drive an audience and carry it to a world fully defined by the rules he creates. And the rules change from film to film. But they always include unreal (many times surreal) elements, translated into strange characters and physically impossible actions, at least in a Newtonian world. This is what today is called “fantasy”. This so called fantasy has many expressions, which are more or less drifting between two main poles: that of “show” and that of “contention”. Miyazaki is always contained, and thus emotionally intense (though many times he gets to produce spectacular imagery).

This being said, i believe this is a minor work of his in terms of final product, but a very interesting one to analyze in the larger picture of his works. Here fantasy is not so present; we have a witch in a world of reality, our world. That world is made of people who get as fascinated by the witch as we do. In a way, the inhabitants of that village are a continuation, on screen, of us, audience. There are no true villains, except the ones our little hero finds inside her. So, we watch an inner struggle for self-accomplishment. Miyazaki is here someone trying to master the medium for which he knows he is talented, he can “fly”, but he knows his road is long, and along the way he might have to make some “delieveries services”. What he came to do after this one proves he learned the job. Here he was struggling, with himself and his ideas.

Nevertheless this is not his most engaging work, since he doesn’t master so well the capacity to fully deliver a coherent vision out of many unreal elements.

Oh and this little Kiki is precisely the opposite of little Dorothy. This was a little girl from the “real” Kansas who made her “fantasy” visit to the dreamy Oz. Kiki is a fantasy girl who makes her way in a real world. Miyazaki once more.

My evaluation: 3/5

This comment on IMDb

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