“My Neighbor Totoro” (1988) Review


For many, there is no time more magical than our childhoods. Life feels simple, kind, and joyfully mystical for a great deal of young people. My Neighbor Totoro is one of many Studio Ghibli masterpieces that beautifully encapsulates such specific feelings of youthful delight through otherworldly adventure. In this story, a father and his two daughters move into a new house with their mother in a nearby hospital due to an unnamed illness. Deep in the forest, there lives a friendly nature spirit named Totoro – who can only be seen by children – who watches over the girls and the land. Masterfully animated landscapes place you fully in this gentle world the creators have so established, with warm and lively music in conjunction. To me, this movie signifies how wonderfully precious life is to us as little kids, and how that optimism shouldn’t have to dwindle as we age.

Heart-warming and uplifting through and through, this is yet another Studio Ghibli film that I will always recommend.