Many films, like Spirited Away, explore themes of self-discovery and the genuine meaning of love and friendship.
Spirited Away, by Hayao Miyazaki, is a wonderful coming-of-age film that emphasizes on the road of self-discovery. Studio Ghibli’s Spirited Away is widely considered one of the greatest animated films of all time. The story of Chihiro, a 10-year-old girl whose parents are turned into pigs by a witch, is told in Spirited Away. Chihiro faces a number of challenges in her quest to free herself from the magical world in which she has been imprisoned, but ultimately triumphs with the support of her companions.
Spirited Away isn’t the only film to explore the importance of friendship and love in a similar way.
1. Princess Mononoke
Ashitaka, the last Emishi prince, has been cursed by a demon and must find a cure before he is killed in Princess Mononoke. Ashitaka sets out on a journey to the west in search of a cure, encountering a wolf pack commanded by the wolf goddess, Mono, along the way. San, a human girl who has been fostered by the wolf goddess, rides beside the wolf pack. When rampant industrialisation threatens to destroy nature, Ashitaka joins the fight to protect the forest gods from being exterminated.
As with Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke follows the story of a human and a magical creature as they form a growing bond.
The manga artist Satoru Fujinuma, who has the capacity to go back in time and prevent accidents, is the focus of the tale in Erased. Reviving people is one of Satoru’s greatest accomplishments. Satoru, on the other hand, finds himself 18 years in the past after his mother’s murder. Now, as a primary school student, Satoru has the chance to avert the kidnapping and murder of his three companions and to right the wrongs that could lead to the death of his mother in the future.
Erased, like Spirited Away, is told from the viewpoint of a young person. He laments all the things he didn’t accomplish when he was younger and wishes he had done more. Satoru is determined to make the most of his newfound ability to think like a 10-year-old and see a bright future for himself.
3. A Letter To Momo
Eleven-year-old Momo expresses her dissatisfaction with her life in the letter A Letter to Momo. Momo’s connection with her mother has deteriorated since she was compelled to move to a distant island against her will following the death of her father. Momo is having a hard time adjusting to life on the island and longs to return to Japan. However, after she meets three demons or yokai, her outlook on life shifts dramatically.
A lot of things are similar between Momo and Chihiro. Both of the characters wish to return home and are dissatisfied with their current predicament. A Letter To Momo, like Spirited Away, features supernatural aspects due of the three yokai who later assist Momo in saving her mother. Like Spirited Away, this film is great for the whole family.
4. The Girl Who Leapt Through Time
In The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, Makato Konno, 17, learns that she can travel back in time after nearly crashing her car. First, Makato uses her time-traveling powers for personal gain, but she soon understands that her actions have hazardous consequences. The events of the film leave Makato grown and wiser at the conclusion.
The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, like Spirited Away, has a female protagonist who becomes embroiled in paranormal activities. Those who enjoyed Spirited Away should also see this film.
5. A Whisker Away
Animated film A Whisker Away tells the narrative of Miyo Sasaki, a high school student in love with Kento Hinode. It’s a mystical mask that turns her into an adorable feline after years of being spurned by her longtime crush Kento. Miyo grows closer to Kento and more enamored with him when she assumes the cat shape.
A Whisker Away, like Spirited Away, features a female protagonist who becomes entangled in the supernatural world without fully comprehending the ramifications. At the end of the day, Chihiro and Miyo want nothing more than to be free of the magic they’ve been exposed to and be back to normal.
6. Into The Forest Of Fireflies’ Light
Into the Forest of Fireflies’ Light, a novel by Yuki Midorikawa, tells the story of a human girl, Hotaru, and a forest spirit, Gin. Gin and Hotaru meet every summer in the forest and gradually build feelings for one other after a fateful meeting when Hotaru was a young girl. Hotaru, on the other hand, is unable to come close to Gin for fear of erasing Gin for good.
Into The Forest of Fireflies’ Light, an anime short film akin to Spirited Away, depicts the adventure of a little girl through a mystical landscape. Gin’s friendship with her helps her mature as a lady and appreciate the little pleasures in her life.
7. Children Who Chase Lost Voices
A young girl, Asuna Watase, has been left alone since the death of her father in Makato Shinkai’s Children Who Chase Lost Voices. Asuna is listening to the radio one day when she hears a peculiar music that her father has left for her. After that, Asuna meets Shun, a mysterious young man who saves her from a woodland monster and quickly becomes a close friend. Her sudden loss, on the other hand, sends her on a voyage into the underworld, where she meets new people, makes enemies and encounters a wide range of strange and otherworldly creatures.
Spirited Away’s elements are all present in Children Who Chase Lost Voices. Both films have a female protagonist and are filled with mystical aspects, which are evident in both films’ cinematography.
8. Natsume’s Book Of Friends
Natsume’s Book of Friends tells the story of a 15-year-old yokai-sighting Natsume, who is lonely. As a memento of his grandma’s life, he inherits her Yuujinchou, a book that lists the yokai that she was in charge of. Natsume is being pursued by the yokai because he is the new owner of the book. Through his efforts to aid the yokai in their quest for independence, Natsume also makes new friends and experiences the camaraderie he had long yearned for.
There are several similarities between Spirited Away and Natsume’s Book of Friends. In both films, the main characters become connected with magical beings and create a close bond with them, which profoundly alters their outlook on life.
9. Kiki’s Delivery Service
According to the customs of her society, teenage witch Kiki must leave her family and live alone for a year in Hayao Miyazaki’s film Kiki’s Delivery Service. Kiki, who has a part-time job at a nearby bakery, starts a delivery service and flies around on her broomstick to get the job done.
Spirited Away and this film about coming of age deal with the same idea of self-discovery. Even though both Kiki and Chihiro encounter obstacles in new and unfamiliar surroundings, they manage to conquer their challenges.
10. Howl’s Moving Castle
Howl’s Moving Castle is based somewhat on an English classic about a witch who curses and transforms a young woman into an old woman. The wizard Howl and Calcifer, a fire demon who wishes to break his contract with Howl, encounter Sophie in a weird moving castle as she sets out to undo the curse.
Sophie, like Chihiro, is dissatisfied with her mundane existence and is introduced to a magical world. Whereas Sophie finds happiness and love after meeting Howl, Chihiro, after entering the enchanted world, yearns to return home.