Best Movies by Farr

The Tale of the Princess Kaguya

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What's it About

In 17th century Japan, a lowly bamboo cutter (Caan) finds a doll-sized girl in a magical bamboo shoot. He raises her with his wife (Steenburgen) and she quickly grows into a beautiful young woman (Moretz). Although she would rather play in the woods with her friend Sutemaru (Criss), Princess Kaguya (as she is now called) is tutored in ladylike ways by the stern Lady Sagami (Liu). Suitors arrive to win her hand, but all the while Kaguya misses her simpler, rural life.

Why we love it

Eight years in the making, and adapted from a 10th century folktale, this may just be the penultimate film from Studio Ghibli, the Japanese anime house. The traditional, meticulous 2D animation has a striking beauty born of simplicity, with broad pastel lines suggesting the brushstrokes of a watercolor. Directed by Ghibli co-founder Takahata, this whimsical Oscar nominated fable is a swirl of fantasy, emotion and melancholia, and in true Ghibli tradition, features a strong, free-spirited heroine.

BEST MOVIES BY FARR is your personal guide to great movies to rent, stream, or buy; to watch at home or on-the-go. Led by film advocate John Farr, the Best Movies by Farr team works as a "quality filter" for the discerning moviegoer. Every day, we bring you the best of the best, the fantastic familiar films and hidden gems, to answer that age-old question: "What should we watch tonight?"