8. Pom Poko (1994)
7. Kiki's Delivery Service (1989)
6. Castle in the Sky (1986)
5. Princess Mononoke (1997)
4. Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (1985)
3. Ponyo (2008)
3. My Neighbor Totoro(1988)
1. Spirited Away (2001)
The following movies are not included in my top 10, but are still fine Studio Ghibli films
Porco Rosso (1992)
Porco Rosso (The Crimson Pig) is undoubtedly Miyazaki's oddest film. It's set in war torn era Europe and is about an ace pilot whose head was somehow magically transformed into a pig's. This is never clearly explained, nor does Porco, whose real name is Marco, seem to mind. Marco is ace pilot in he Adriatic sea and bounty hunter who used to fly for the Italian Air Force. He also hates the fascist, Italian government. Marco is a loner and lives in a secret hideout in the rocks, but also has many close friends who help him. A group of air pirates, tired or Porco Rosso's interference, hire another ace pilot, the American Donald Curtiss to shot Porco Rosso down. Curtiss soon falls in love with Gina, the beautiful and charming owner of a hotel on an island in the sea. She is a three time widow to air pilots and also Marco's closest friend. The two pilots battle it out in spectacular dogfights in the skys and fight for Gina's affections on the ground. Will Porco Rosso be victorious? Check out this nostalgic, war era love story with a twist.
Grave of the Fireflies (1988)
The last film is technically not a Hayao Miyazaki movie, but is one of the most famous released by Studio Ghibli. Recieving critical acclaim all over the world, This is not a movie for kids. Grave of the Fireflies is one of the best war films ever made, yet it is animated and there are no battle scenes. It is the heart wrenching, yet thought-provoking tragedy of a brother and sister caught in the turmoil of Japan during WWII. 14 year old Seita and his 4 year old little sister Setsuko's father is away, serving in the Imperial Navy. At the beginning of the film, their mother is killed in a firebombing in Tokyo. With nowhere else to turn, they go to live with their Aunt. But she has little sympathy or affection for them. She has a family of her own to care for. She seems cruel and resents having two more mouths to feed. After a short time, Seita decides to leave with his sister. He believes he can care for her better on his own. They end up living in a cave near a stream and for a short time, know happiness. I can't say this is one of my favorite Ghibli movies, not that it isn't a great film with wonderful animation and storytelling, but because it's so sad.I guess I prefer movies with a happier ending. However it does beg the viewer to think who is to blame for what happens to the children? Is it the war, the cruel people, or is it Seita's own stubborn pride that prevents him from staying with their aunt?
Hayao Miyazaki Box Sets
I think the best and most cost effective way to enjoy all these films is through one of the various box sets available through Amazon. Start your collection today and enjoy these films which have enthralled audiences all over the world.