Princess Mononoke

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Princess Mononoke
Directed by Hayao Miyazaki
Produced by Toshio Suzuki
Written by Hayao Miyazaki (screenplay and story)
Neil Gaiman (English adaptation)
Starring Yōji Matsuda
Yuriko Ishida
Yūko Tanaka
Kaoru Kobayashi
(Japan)
Billy Crudup
Claire Danes
Minnie Driver
Billy Bob Thornton
(USA)
Music by Joe Hisaishi
Cinematography Atsushi Okui
Editing by Takeshi Seyama
Studio United States Miramax Films
Distributed by Japan Toho
United States Buena Vista Pictures
Canada Alliance
Release date(s) Japan July 12, 1997
United States October 29 1999
Canada November 26 1999
United Kingdom October 19 2001
Running time 134 min
Language Japanese
Budget ¥2,400,000,000 (estimated)

Princess Mononoke (もののけ姫 Mononoke Hime?) is a 1997 anime movie made by Hayao Miyazaki. The long animation movie of Studio Ghibli. The catch copy of this movie is Ikiro(生きろ). Mononoke is not a name, but a word that means spirit or monster in Japanese. The forest in Princess Mononoke looks like Yaku-shima(屋久島).

Story[change | change source]

This movie takes place in Japan during the Muromachi period. There was a small village in Ezo.[1] People lived peacefully. Ashitaka lived there. One day the evil god attacked the village and Ashitaka was cursed. The evil god was once a god of the forest, but he was shot by human and died in terrible pain. Ashitaka knew when he would die. He went to the west where the bullet which killed the god was made.

On his journey, he met a man called Jikobo. Jikobo told him where the Forest of Shishigami was. Ashitaka decided to go there. On his way to the forest, he met the girl raised by the wolf god, Moro. She was with her family. Ashitaka thought they must know about the forest. He called out to them. She and three big wild wolves disappeared into the forest.

Then Ashitaka found injured men and helped them. He reached the village Tatara, where these injured men lived. Eboshi Gozen organized the village. People made iron weapons there. She wanted to get the Forest of Shishigami, turn all Gods in the forest out, and make it a men-centered place.

It was said that Shishigami had a power of immortality. Because people wanted this power, they aimed at the head of Shishigami. Then these people, Shishigami, Eboshi and her people, San and Ashitaka started and were involved in huge complicated war for the forest. In this war, Ashitakar and San understood each other little by little.

Characters[change | change source]

  • Ashitaka (Ashitakahiko)..Main character. A boy with a strong sense of justice. Seventeen years old. He gets a curse on his right hand as a big snakelike bruise. It sometimes gives him mighty power but shortens his life at the same time.
  • San-Princess Mononoke The girl who was raised by a Japanese wolf. Fifteen years old. She hates humans because they destroy forest, so she attacks Tataraba many times. She puts a grotesque clay mask on her face.
  • Yakul Ashitaka's antelope, which he rides.
  • Moro The wolf which is three hundred years old. She is considered to be a god of the mountain. She speaks Japanese.
  • Eboshi Gozen She is the leader of Tataraba. She is admired and liked by people. She wants to get Shishigami's forest.
  • Shishigami God who bring life. It transforms into a huge translucent blue creature called Didarabocci at night.
  • Okkotonushi The wild boar which is five hundreds years old. God of wild boars.
  • Jikobo The man who told Ashitaka about the Forest of Shishigami. He aimed at the head of Shishigami.

Theme Song[change | change source]

Theme song is "Mononoke Hime(もののけ姫)". The composer of this song is Joe Hisaishi, who deals with many songs of Studio Ghibli . This song's singer "Mera Yoshikazu" became famous in Japan when Princess Mononoke was showed. He is a countertenor singer and his very high voice shocked the then people.

References[change | change source]

  1. Mononoke-hime QA1

Other websites[change | change source]