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April 21st, 2005, 12:05 PM
I looked back to see if there's a thread already on this but didn't find one. If there is, could someone please bump it and delete this?

Anyway, the first trailers are up for this movie which is based on the Diana Wynne Jones book, and made by Studio Ghibli. Christian Bale does Howl, Jean Simmons is the older Sophie, and Lauren Bacall is the Witch. And Billy Crystal is Calcifer (I'll have to hear it before I accept it).

This came out last year internationally but is coming out in the US in June. I'd heard it would come out much later so happily surprised.

Anyone else really excited to see this? I just read the book last year, and loved it.

Bitter Buffalo
April 22nd, 2005, 01:43 AM
I'm very excited to see it, I loved "Spirited Away" and "Princess Mononoke". Surprisingly most of the reviews I've read online about Howl seem to be a little bit on the negative side. I'm still going to see it but I'm not going set my expectations high. I mean, you can't hit a homerun every at bat and Miyazaki has hit an awful lot of homers in his career.

April 22nd, 2005, 08:08 AM
I've seen similar reviews. One thing I notice is they tend to compare the film to other Miyazaki films. I'm not sure, but is this his first adaptation?

One reason I ask is because I wonder if some of the problems re: plot are influenced by Wynne Jones' writing. The film has changed stuff, but just from watching the trailer, its incredible the amount of detail from the book which managed to get in. Now I really like Wynne Jones, but she's not always the most linear plotter. And characters do tend to change like crazy. I needed to make an outline just to keep everything straight when I read Hexwood because people were jumping in and out of time, space, bodies, etc. Howl's not that bad, but it does make me wonder: will some of these problems be as noticeable to fans of the book as they are to the critics?

April 23rd, 2005, 06:50 AM
Maybe the negative reviews are coming because it's a western story?

I like what I've seen from Studio Ghibli - Castle in the Sky, Sprited Away and Princess Mononoke.

So looking forward to Howls... Miyazaki's films have a very visual style... can't help thinking that the old women looks like the old women from Sprited Away!

April 24th, 2005, 10:41 AM
I absolutely want to see this movie. But unfortunately I haven't heard anything about a release where I live. :(

Anyway, I also remember reading a story in Locus that the director visited Diane Wynne Jones to show her the movie and he had an interpreter with him so that he could translate the movie for her. I think she liked it a lot.
Could be wrong now, but I don't remember in which Locus I read this.

Wulfa_Jones, interesting notion that it might be because it is a western story!

April 24th, 2005, 07:43 PM
I also heard that Diana Wynne Jones enjoyed the movie, although I don't think she was really involved in the process.

Also here's some links to trailers, and the official Disney site, in case anyone was looking.
Official Disney site (www.disney.com/castle)

Trailers at AICN (http://www.aintitcool.com/display.cgi?id=19966)

May 8th, 2005, 11:44 AM
I, living in Korea, managed to see it last Christmas. However, it was not as good as my expectation.

I do not know if this is the publishers` fault, but the plot was severely flawed in terms of development. The plot, as well as the scenes, was very relaxed and comfortable, but it does not develop by itself. Like a deer peacefully sleeping, the plot just stays there. Perhaps I, liking other Miyazaki films, expected too much of him who is just 5 years younger than my grandmother, but I thought that he was forcing the plot to develop. The characters seemed to act out of mere coincidence. Even after watching it four successive times, I still have no idea what Howl was up to at those nights. I, also, do not know the details about most characters. All right, that annoying wizard woman taught Howl at his school, but what more is given? Why is he known as different people? And why does his teacher call for him?

Of course, this movie was good for itself, and the tunes are simply excellent. Also, the fact that I don`t know Japanese is quite devastating to my understanding of the movie. Nevertheless, compared to other Miyazaki films, this movie was quite "off topic". The topic swayed from love to peace, then to love and again to peace. The last scene, with a great load of effort, finally manages to merge the two topics, but I could not get rid of my feeling as if I was reading a book and was suddenly stopped by some accident. There was too little coherence, actually. Maybe I should not have expected Miyazaki`s unique voice in an adaption, but seeing his latest two movies, I think that his passionate, environmentalist voice is beginning to slowly fade.

May 8th, 2005, 11:45 AM
PS:I actually tried to send a protest to the director for his being too incoherent, and consequently making me watch the same movie four times.

June 10th, 2005, 10:39 AM
I'm pretty excited to check this movie out this weekend. The trailer looks good, and from all the pictures and stuff I've seen, the animation looks just as amazing as all his other films.

June 15th, 2005, 12:31 AM
There are a lot of clips up now over at Yahoo and other places if people are interested.

Quick Question: I have seen a new banner for HMC saying it starts EVERYWHERE on June 17. Is the mouse just being a tease or can anyone verify this?

Of course, I know those of us in the great state of New Mexico don't always get included in "everywhere" but I'm hoping there's a chance.