October 14 — t’was my 18th birthday, we’re in a mall [as usual in SM, ang mall na parang kabute kung magsulputan]. And so we decided to pass by Comic Quest, a store which sells stuffs for otakus. I waned to watch a movie that day, and while browsing the anime movie list, another of Hayao’s works caught our attention. and so we bought it. XD woot!
Howl’s Moving Castle is more of a magical piece than other movies done by Miyasaki with a more  emphasis Japanese animism. The setting is very European; It was more of a mixture of the setting of the golden age of kingdoms with huge advancement in war technology, where wizardry and the craft is still practiced and dictates the power of a realm. The story is set in a time where the war between countries are at its peak. And there’s this powerful wizard who is believed to have the greatest power among wizards, yet has surrendered his heart to a demon [the nagger Calcifer]. His name is Howl, a prisoner of fear and has chosen to live in hiding. He dwells in a house, people called Howl’s Moving Castle. Yeah, it moves literally, even for miles over the night! Of course with the power of Calcifer to whom Howl entered a contract with, this house is more than any castle filled with mystery like its owner. Physically, it can’t be called a castle; it was more like a moving lumps of trash for me. But this appearance froms a big role in a message that is embedded in the movie. A house is never better than a home. Struck me a lot. haha!
Alright, I think I have given enough for the setting. So there’s Howl and another is the young girl turned old nag Sophie, who was at the start of the movie cursed by the Witch of Waste. She needs to find the way to lift the curse; and so she entered as a cleaner in Howl’s castle. And Mark, the kid who lives with Howl as an assitant, who’s simply there for some sorcery. The Witch of Waste, who I first thought as the first outlyer in Hayao’s dogma [more of a trademark] of no pure good and no pure evil, but turned out to be good in the end, after being freed from the control of an evil. And yeah, Mr. Turnip, a very helpful “scarecrow.”
They seek for different reasons and found each other at the crossroad.
In the end, Howl found his freedom by facing his fears; Sophie was able to lift the curse by having self-confidence which she once lack; the Witch of the Waste is no longer a “waste.” The war was ended, by a unexpected peacemaker — Mr. Turnip. wooot! Mr. Turnip turned out to be the son of the King of the other kingdom and was cursed to become a living scarecrow.
And love sprouted as a side dish. XD
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