“The concept of portraying evil and then destroying it - I know this is considered mainstream, but I think it is rotten. This idea that whenever something evil happens someone particular can be blamed and punished for it, in life and in politics, is hopeless.”
One of my very favourite recurring themes in Miyazaki’s work - especially in Spirited Away - is how the grotesque and initially threatening reveals itself to be benign and even compassionate. It’s so beautiful, and a lot more meaningful than the typical good-evil/black-white dichotomy of other mythology.
I wish western artists that cite Miyazaki as an influence would really absorb this message. A movie like My Neighbor Tortoro, which is a wonderful, lovely movie that children and adults adore, has no villians of any kind, and yet there’s still interest and conflict. Other films like Princess Mononoke introduce characters that resemble villians, but prove to be just more people doing what they think is right from their perspective.
Also most of his films have female protagonists. And while some of the films have romantic elements, it isn’t shoehorned into every single film as a cheap way to include a female character.
(I’M LOOKING AT YOU PIXAR)
(HANG YOUR HEAD IN SHAME)
hahaha i think that idea gives his work a special complexity. i watched that raccoon-dogs-have-huge-balls movie and the central conflict was a very banal one: their neighborhood was changing and time was going on and they had to adapt to a new lifestyle. there was no one to blame but still such sadness and emotion!