Vancity Theatre

View it online Media Contact: Lainé Slater, laine@viff.org or 604-685-0260 x 809


CASTLES IN THE SKY: THE MASTERS OF STUDIO GHIBLI

Dec. 14 - Jan. 3

The Vancity Theatre and The Cinematheque are pleased to co-host a major restrospective of the films of Studio Ghibli, the world renowned anime studio founded in Tokyo in 1985 by directors Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata and producer Toshio Suzuki.

Perfect for transcending the winter greys, these films prove Studio Ghibli is every bit the equal of any animation studio in the world or in film history. The films are all wonderful.

All Studio Ghibli films presented at the Vancity Theatre will be screened in 35mm in the English-language versions. All films at the Cinematheque will screen in Japanese language prints with subtitles.

These wonderful film are open to all ages. Princess Mononoke is classified 14A, all other titles are rated G or PG. The Vancity Theatre offers a special rate of $7 for youth under 19.


MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO

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Best Animated Film of All Time"- Time Out Magazine

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Whenever I watch it, I smile, and smile, and smile" - Roger Ebert

Big Easy Express

Fri. Dec 14, 6:30pm; Fri. Dec 21, 5:00pm; Sun. Dec 23, 3:50pm; Mon. Dec 24, 2:00pm; Fri. Dec 28, 2:00pm

Japan, 1988, 35mm, 86 min. English

Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Cast: Voiced by Dakota and Elle Fanning, Tim Daly

Related links: Review | Trailer | Buy Tickets

Two little girls and their father move into a beautiful old house in the countryside to be near their mother, who is seriously ill in hospital. Largely left to fend for themselves, Mei and her big sister Satsuki encounter a strange and beautiful world of forest sprites named ’Totoros’. Miyazaki’s most beloved film is simply magical and magically simple.


NAUSICAA OF THE VALLEY OF THE WIND
(Kaze no tani no Naushika)

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"A joy to watch."- New York Times

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Sat. Dec 15, 3:00pm; Sun. Dec 16, 4:00pm

Japan, 1984, 35mm, 117 min., English

Directed by: Hayao Miyazake
Cast: Voice cast includes: Alison Lohman, Shia LaBeouf, Edward James Olmos, Chris Sarandon

Related links: Official Website | Trailer | Buy Tickets

Miyazaki’s first film as writer-director (based on his own successful manga) is an extradinarily rich fantasy film, an eco-allegory set in a feudal, toxic future and a spirited adventure movie. Led by the courageous Princess Nausicaa, the people of the Valley of the Wind are engaged in a perpetual conflict with powerful insects called "ohmu", guardians of a poisonous (and spreading) jungle.


SPIRITED AWAY

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Enchanted and enchanting… fast and funny; weird and wonderful. Mostly wonderful." - Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Sat. Dec 15, 5:20pm; Mon. Dec 17, 6:30pm; Thu. Dec 20, 5:30pm; Mon. Dec 31, 2:00pm

Japan, 2001, 35mm, 125 min., English, Classification: PG

Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Cast: Voices: Daveigh Chase, Suzanne Pleshette, David Ogden Stiers, Michael Chiklis, John Ratzenberger

Related links: Review | Trailer | Buy Tickets

Chihiro and her parents are en route to a new home when they drive through a mysterious tunnel and enter a deserted town. When her folks start gorging on food and transform into a pair of pigs, Chihiro discovers this place is not quite as empty as she had imagined. This is a place of spirits, gods, monsters and witches.

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Picks up a resonance, weight and complexity that makes it all but Shakespearean… No other word for it: a masterpiece." - Tony Rayns, Time Out

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SIX STARS (exception must be made for the excepional). Spirited Away is a feast of wonderment, a movie classic and a joy that will enrich your existence until you too are spirited away. I don’t expect ever to love a film more." - Nigel Andrews, Financial Times


PONYO

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You’ll be planning to see Ponyo twice before you’ve finished seeing it once... It offers up unforgettable images [...] images that use the logic of dreams to make the deepest possible connection to our emotions, and to our souls."- Kenneth Turan, NPR

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Sun. Dec 16, 2:00pm; Wed. Dec 19, 6:30pm; Mon. Dec 24, 3:45pm; Sat. Dec 29, 4:15pm

Japan, 2008, 35mm, 101 min., English,

Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Cast: Voices: Cate Blanchett, Liam Neeson, Matt Damon

Related links: Review | Trailer | Buy Tickets

Miyazaki’s strange and beguiling fantasy film about a sea spirit – it’s an odd eco fable about the terrible power of the sea, but illustrated with such beauty and imagination it transports us entirely into another world. Rated G, this is suitable for children of all ages.

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Miyazaki knows the secret language of children; he dives deep into the pool of childhood dreams and fears and, through his animagic, takes children down to where they can breathe, and feel, and be free." Richard Corliss, Time


PRINCESS MONONOKE (Mononoke-hime)

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Complex, superbly rendered, and wildly eccentric - even by Miyazaki’s own standards."- J Hoberman, Village Voice

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Sun. Dec 16, 6:15pm; Tue. Dec 18, 6:30pm

Japan, 1997, 35mm, 134 min., English, Classification: 14A

Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Cast: Voices: Billy Crudup, Billy Bob Thornton, Minnie Driver, Claire Danes, Gillian Anderson.

Related links: Review | Trailer | Buy Tickets

Set during the Muromachi Period (1333-1568) of Japan, Princess Mononoke is the tale of a mystical fight between humans and the Animal Gods of the forest. Aimed at a slightly older audience than most Ghibli fare (it is classified 14A), this epic folk tale shows the influence of Akira Kurosawa (a Miyazaki-fan himself) and of John Ford too. The film was the most successful ever at the Japanese box office (prior to Titanic), and named the film of the year in Japan’s equivalent to the Academy Awards

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A symphony of action and images, a thrilling epic of warriors and monsters, forest creatures and magical spells, with an underlying allegory about the relationship of man and nature.” - Roger Ebert


CASTLE IN THE SKY (Laputa: Castle in the Sky)

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"Frequently astounding." Richard Harrington, Washington Post

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Sat. Dec 22, 12:00pm; Sun. Dec 23, 5:45pm

Japan, 1986, 35mm, 124 min., English

Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Cast: Voices: Anna Paquin, James Van Der Beek, Cloris Leachman

Related links: Trailer | Buy Tickets

An island in the sky? The story of a young boy who sees a girl floating down from the sky. He comes to her aid in her flight from sky pirates, the army and secret agents. An adventure story influenced by Treasure Island and Gulliver’s Travels, Castle in the Sky is dynamic, imaginative family entertainment with valuable lessons about technology and ignorance.


PORCO ROSSO

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Smooshes fantasy and history into a pastel-pretty yarn as irresistible as his feminism." - Jeannette Catsoulis, New York Times

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Sat. Dec 22, 4:10pm; Sun. Dec 23, 2:00pm

Japan, 1992, 35mm, 94 min., English

Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Cast: Voices: Michael Keaton, Cary Elwes, Susan Egan, David Ogden Stiers

Related links: Review | Trailer | Buy Tickets

 

Pigs will fly! This cockeyed tribute to Humphrey Bogart and Ernest Hemingway features an anti-fascist flier (who happens to look like a pig) tracking sky pirates over the Adriatic in the 1930s. An exhilarating romp with a melancholy undertow - and amazing flying machines!

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Teems with Miyazaki’s personal passions […] rendered with the utmost detail and beauty. As stirring as Casablanca, and as sophisticated as Only Angels Have Wings, it’s a sublime chivalric fable." Nick Bradshaw, Time Out


KIKI’S DELIVERY SERVICE (Majo no takkyûbin)

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Astonishing in its visual splendor and delightfully entertaining, this magical family film about a little witch-in-training, from Japan’s celebrated animator Hayao Miyazaki, is not to be missed." - LA Times

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Wed. Dec 26, 2:00pm; Wed. Jan 2, 4:15pm; Thu. Jan 3, 2:00pm

Japan, 1989, 35mm, 103 min., English

Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Cast: Voices: Kirsten Dunst, Debbie Reynolds, Phil Hartman, Janeane Garofalo

Related links: Trailer | Buy Tickets

In keeping with tradition, 13-year-old witch Kiki dusts off her broom and flies away from home for a year of independence and self-discovery in the big city. Her only companion is her beloved black cat, Jiji.


HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE

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A stunning example of a pure, disorienting dream logic that cinema provides all too rarely."- Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out New York

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Thu. Dec 27, 4:30pm; Sat. Dec 29, 2:00pm

Japan, 2004, 35mm, 119 min., English

Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Cast: Voices: Christian Bale, Lauren Bacall, Blythe Danner, Emily Mortimer, Jean Simmons

Related links: Official Website | Review | Trailer | Buy Tickets

Teenager Sophie is cursed by the Witch of Waste and finds herself trapped in the body of an old woman, and is unable to tell her mother or anyone else what has happened. She finds help of sorts with the wizard Howl, living as a servant in his astonishing walking castle.

Sophie is an innocent who must prove her resourcefulness, courage and conviction in a bewildering, alien world


POM POKO (Heisei tanuki gassen ponpoko)

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Pompoko is a delightful, often uproariously funny film, at once childishly irreverent and thoughtfully mature. Being a Ghibli work, it is beautifully rendered and technically impeccable, with a great number of memorable set pieces."- Tom Mes, Midnight Eye

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Thu. Dec 27, 2:15pm; Sun. Dec 30, 3:30pm

Japan, 1994, 35mm, 119 min., English

Directed by: Isao Takahata
Cast: Voices: Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Clancy Brown, JK Simmons

Related links: Official Website | Review | Trailer | Buy Tickets

Imagine Watership Down, Studio Ghibli-style. Instead of rabbits, we have raccoons. And not just any raccoons - these critters have magical powers of transformation. As their habitat is stripped and paved by the encroaching humans, the good-natured but rather undisciplined forest creatures embark on a campaign of disruption and distraction.


THE CAT RETURNS (Neko no ongaeshi)

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An enchanting, magical fable with a twisted vein of surrealism." - Neil Smith, BBC

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Fri. Dec 28, 3:45pm; Sun. Dec 30, 5:45pm; Mon. Dec 31, 4:20pm

Japan, 2002, 35mm, 75 min., English

Directed by: Hiroyuki Morita
Cast: Voices: Anne Hathaway, Cary Elwes, Judy Greer, Elliot Gould, Tim Curry

Related links: Trailer | Buy Tickets

 

Schoolgirl Haru bravely saves a cat’s life - and finds herself summoned to the Kingdom of the Cats for her pains, where she is to become the wife of the Cat Prince! When she refuses, she starts sprouting whiskers and furry ears.. What’s a girl to do?


 

WHISPER OF THE HEART (Mimi wo sumaseba)

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"A beautiful film." - David Jenkins, Time Out

Rolling Stones; Charlie is My Darling

Wed. Jan 2, 2:00pm; Thu. Jan 3, 4:00pm

Japan, 1995, 35mm, 111 min., English

Directed by: Yoshifumi Kondo
Cast: Voices: Brittany Snow, Cary Elwes, David Gallagher, Courtney Thorne Smith

Related links: Trailer | Buy Tickets

A lovely change of pace from Studio Ghibli, this is a teenage first-love story, set in a realistically observed modern day Tokyo. Bookish schoolgirl Shizuku meets her soul mate with a little help from a portly cat.



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