Aroview: Animation visionary Hayao Miyazaki gets to fully unlock his boundless imagination through the otherworldly adventures of an innocent young girl that immediately recalls “Alice in Wonderland”, yet is distinctly Japanese in flavour and setting and a mythological masterpiece in its own right.
His wide-eyed heroine is “spirited away” to an opulently drawn dimension where a tyrannical old maid governs a palatial hotel catering to Gods and (mostly kindly) spirits of all shapes and sizes - insect drones, dragon-boys, gargantuan babies, slime monsters, and other amazing creations. Too grotesque for small children, but a mesmerizing must-see for fantasy fans of all other ages.
5 stars (Exceptional) It's like strolling into Alice's Wonderland and seeing every wonder sprout up around you for the first time. It is a film of such brilliant originality, intelligence, and emotion that I feel inexplicable joy when the opening title card fades in. ~Anon