Jun 3, 2016 8:21 PM
6th An Anime and Me Entry - My Neighbor Totoro
Anime Relations: Tonari no Totoro
And here I am at My Neighbor Totoro!
On a side note, I apologize. For those of you who love reading my blog because it's sooooo good I'm sorry I haven't updated it for what, 2 weeks now? The end of school just sort of took priority. But it's summer now!
I actually had seen a Totoro prior to seeing this movie. My friend who is half Japanese had a little Totoro figure mixed in with her Littlest Pet Shops. And neither of us knew what it was. Yup, when I was little, I didn't play with Barbies or anything silly like that, I played with Littlest Pet Shops! My 200+ collection is currently sitting up in the attic collecting dust.
This movie is beautiful, like most Ghibli movies. The animation really brings out the fun and playful slice of life-ish feel this movie is going for.
I actually bought this movie for that same friend mentioned above. She really liked it. I bought it at my local DVD/CD/book store that I visit occasionally to eyeball the anime section, which is a whole 3 shelves long! I also have eyeballed the manga section there, which is about 6 shelves long! But the most important part about giving her that DVD was that she actually was genuinely excited to watch it, and she enjoyed it. This was my first time sharing my love for the best form of entertainment out there and having the receiver actually begin to enjoy it just like me. I am proud to say that I have watched anime with her and she hasn't ever complained about anything other than the video being laggy. When I get to the anime I've shown her, I'll mention my best friend again. As for that, I don't even know if she still considers me her best friend, but I think of her as mine. Since she went to a different school than me for the past 2 years, I've lost a bit of what we used to have back in Kindergarten through 6th grade. But we're going to the same high school, so we'll definitely see each other more often! Oh whoops, looks like I got off topic.
Back on topic, there's one thing about My Neighbor Totoro that I hadn't begun to appreciate until much later. In fact, I only began to appreciate it 3 weeks ago. Might as well explain how I began to appreciate the OST of all Ghibli movies for that matter. So... For the end of the year, my English teacher decided to let us design a final project on whatever we wanted. I obviously chose something manga/anime related! It was titled Influential Manga Artists and Animators and I wrote a 5 paragraph essay on Osamu Tezuka, Rumiko Takahashi, and Hayao Miyazaki. While writing about Miyazaki, I found it fitting to use Ghibli soundtrack compilations as study music. Over time, while working on said project, I began to especially like one certain soundtrack. This was Kaze no Toorimichi, from My Neighbor Totoro. It's beautiful! Now I'm even learning how to play it on the piano.
Another thing I appreciate about Totoro is how commercialized it is. There is so much merchandise out there for it! Even in a place like the US where anime is somewhat shunned, Totoro merchandise can often be found in "regular" stores. Plus, at stores that carry anime merchandise in general, there is often at least something Totoro.
I think that My Neighbor Totoro is a must watch for anyone familiar with Ghibli. Studio Ghibli's little thing at the beginning of their movies is a Totoro turning its head! Totoro is simply iconic for Studio Ghibli! Totoro might even be their mascot. Though I can't confirm that!