Studio Ghibli films aren’t known for lovey-dovey relationships, but still, there are some great couples in many of the movies that just make me melt. What movie do you think has the Best Studio Ghibli Romance? Who is your favorite Studio Ghibli couple?
Me? I love Sheeta and Pazu… but then… Howl… who couldn’t fall for Howl?
Take a look at the list… see if you agree that these couples represent the Best Studio Ghibli Romances.
Sophie and Howl
The energy between Sophie and Howl in Howl’s Moving Castle is almost palpable….there is such a strong attraction. But then, who wouldn’t be attracted to Howl’s amazing good looks. Both Sophie and Howl have been cursed! Sophie was turned into an “old woman” by the witch of the waste… and Howl was left emotionally stunted and unable to love when he gave his heart to Calcifer…. But their love is stronger than the curses… and they end up together…
Umi and Shun
From Up on Poppy Hill my not have talking cats or tree spirits, but the simple sweetness of the story, and determination of the characters make this a movie I can watch over and over. Umi starts each day by raising flags that can be seem by passing ships, as a way of remembering her father. One day, a poem about her flags appears in the school newspaper. When she finds out it was written by the handsome and popular Shun, she falls for him… but there is a wrinkle. They both have the same photo of three men… Umis father and 2 friends. Since Shun was adopted, he fears they might have the same father…. Umi and Shun stay friends, and deeply care for each other, despite all that goes on around them. And eventually find out they are not related.
Jiro and Naoko
Click to see the sweet hand holding scene–>http://www.cornel1801.com/animated/Wind-Rises-2013/video-quotes/give-me-your-hand.html
The Wind Rises is primarily the fictionalized story of Jiro Horikoshi, designer of the famous Japanese Zero warplane. Yet, the relationship between Jiro and Naoko is such an important part of the film, you could almost call this a romance movie. Jiro first meets Naoko on a train when she is young, and he ends up helping her get home after her maid is injured in an earthquake. Later, they reconnect, and there is no pulling them apart. Sadly, Naoko has Tuberculosis… a death sentence at the time, but the two make the best of the time they have.
Ponyo and Souske
I guess this isn’t a classic romance, but still, it is a very strong connection. In Ponyo on a Cliff by the Sea we see just how much 5 year old Souske’s love will go to help his friend Ponyo. In this retelling of the Little Mermaid, Ponyo is the daughter of the a Sea Wizard and Granmamare, the goddess of Mercy. Ponyo sneaks away from her father, and is caught up in the destruction caused by at trawler. Souske saves her, and gives her the name Ponyo… but her father takes her back to the ocean. Missing Souske, Ponyo escapes, gains human form, and finds Souske… only this time, there are huge environmental consequences. But still.. when Granmamare asks Souske if he truly loves Ponyo whether she’s human or fish, he tells her he “loves all the Ponyos!” And the world is put to right again.
I love the fan speculation that Ponyo and Souske grow up to be Osono and Fukuo from “Kiki’s Delivery Service”
Sheeta and Pazu
What an adventure Sheeta and Pazu have togehter! It all begins when Pazu catches Sheeta as she falls to earth from a hijacked airship. Together they must search for the fabled Laputa… the Castle in the Sky... while being chased by Pirates, secret agents and Sheeta’s evil uncle Muska! Eventually they are able to destroy the fabled city, and fly off together to live happily ever after
Shizuku and Seiji
Whisper of the Heart is a lovely film about finding out the best way to be ourselves while at the same time encouraging someone you love. Shizuku, a struggling writer, is intrigued when she finds that she’s been checking out the same library books as Seiji…and develops a whole narrative of who he should be. She never puts together that he is the same popular boy who “teases” her at school. In an interesting Antique Shop, Shizuku is entranced by a statue of the Baron (remember The Cat Returns) and creates an amazing narrative around the him. Meanwhile, she is getting to know Seiji, whose Grandfather owns the shop. Shizuku both admires and envies his dream to build violins…. but in the end, they both realize they have the power to become what they are destined to be, and be together.