Written by Sasha HuzsvaiÂ
Japan, 1988. 86 min. Tokuma Japan Communications Co., Studio Ghibli. Voices: Dakota Fanning, Timothy Daly, Elle Fanning, Pat Carroll; Music: Joe Hisaishi; Produced by: Toru Hara, Yasoyoshi Tokuma, Rick Dempsey; Written by: Hayao Miyazaki, Cindy Davis Hewitt, Donald H. Hewitt; Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
During my childhood, I must have watched My Neighbor Totoro a hundred times, and it has never lost its magic for me, even until this day. Itâ€™s strange sitting down and trying to put the essence of this film into words, because even now, when Iâ€™m grown up and expected to be able to analyze, to break down into pieces and build up again, to self-examine, My Neighbor Totoro remains intact, impenetrable, like a vision half-glimpsed but never quite within reach. For me, at least, itâ€™s synonymous with my own childhood, and it canâ€™t be separated from myself and broken down into categories of good or bad, exciting or dull. Now, when I think of the details burned into my memory when I was seven – the Cat Bus, Mei running through the rice fields, the impish dust bunnies floating through the air â€“ itâ€™s hard to separate those memories from myself, because they shaped who I have become.