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Spirited Away

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Juan Liebana-Mena
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Spirited Away

Spirited Away is a quite entertaining Japanese animated movie that my students really liked. I watched this movie a couple of times at my former school since the library had a copy and it was recommended by another teacher to use on field trip days when half of your class is absent.

The main character in this animation movie is Chihiro, a nine-year-old girl who throughout the movie is trapped in a surreal world and must look for an escape in order to save herself and her parents and come back to their original world. The world in which Chihiro is trapped is quite fantastic, dangerous, and beautiful at the same time. The graphics, characters and imagination of the creators is quite remarkable, which is why I think my students found it so fascinating and why they were so into the movie.

There are many scenes and characters that seem quite unreal and sometimes even random, but the high quality of graphics and interesting plot line keep you connected to the story and allow any viewer to feel sympathy for Chihiro. She faces many obstacles and challenges throughout her journey, but then she finds a friend named Haku who helps her overcome these challenges. I highly recommend Spirited Away, but I do think it is more suitable in a middle school setting since it’s quite fantastic and high school students may not find it to relatable or interesting.