Sunday, January 04, 2009

Howl's Moving Castle (Miyazaki)

Finally saw it. So behind on everything. Knew that it deviated from the book, but what interested me was the habit it has of deviating and then wandering back. Book and film are still mostly about the same thing: the danger of catching falling stars. Isn't that right?

I thought the biggest change was in Howl's character. In the movie he's much more heroic (which makes the tantrum he throws over a hair dye malfunction seem rather out of place.) He doesn't flirt with anyone except Sophie - that was a major change. (In the book, in fact, Howl resembles Genji.) The unexpectedness and combativeness of their relationship is pretty much gone, which is kind of disappointing.

The only other comment I have is that Howl's apprentice is named Michael. The Japanese version of that seems to be "Murkl"??? and the English translation did not restore the English name. That's really weird.

Final verdict: not bad. Miyazaki is cool. Very very cool to see DIANA WYNNE JONES's name on the big screen. It's about time.

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