This summer, I’ve been to Sydney for my brothers wedding. What a great city! I’m definetly going down again to the next MXDU conference sometime in March. While there, I wandered around Sydney’s Chinatown and picked up the best DVD box I’ve ever seen: “The Studio Ghibli Collection” (17 DVDs!). Ghibli is often called the “Disney of the East”, but I’d say they are way better than that. Disney have become so commercial that they only make boring movies that they know will make them money. It’s years since Disney innovated story-wise and I stopped buying Disney a long time ago (except for the Pixar ones). Disney movies are not “magic” to me any more, but the Ghibli movies sure are. Their stories are inventive, gripping, odd, magical and both adults and kids love them.
If you like animation and don’t know the movies from this studio, you should definetly check them out. If you already love Ghibli, this is the box to get! It contains all the 15 feature movies produced by Ghibli and Hayao Miyazaki, including Howls Castle, The Cat Returns, Spirited Away, Kiki’s Delivery Service, Princess Mononoke, Castle in the Sky and my alltime favourite animated movie My Neighbor Totoro. The box also contains a big plush toy Totero and two special discs. The first of these contains a lot of short movies and advertising produced by the studio (including some fascinating shorts made for Yamaha). The second contains artwork and other extras. I had ten of the movies already, but the rest was really hard to get hold of. I payed just 165 australian dollars for the whole box and it’s worth every cent!
All the movies are in original version with english subtexts (except for two). The most recent ones also has the english soundtrack. The movies come in small paper enclosures stacked inside a pretty box with a magnetic lock. There’s no inlays or anything and all menus on the discs are in Japanese, but they all follow the same pattern so they’re pretty easy to navigate. The subtexts are pretty lousy, but that really does not matter much as the movies are so good. I’ve tried to locate this box on Amazon.com and other shops, but I can’t seem to find it? The old 4-disc collection is the only one listed, and it’s unavailable for the moment. Guess one will have to go to Sydney to get it?