Actually I've watched this movie long long time ago but, again, due to my laziness collecting the screenshots and doing the review, I have to delay this project Y_Y. However, this time I will pay my debt. beforehand, thanx a bunch to aniki, for buying me the Ghibli DVDs. Sankyu!
It's always been unpleasant for kids to move to a new residence, so does it with Chihiro. This young girl feels resentful with her new residence. Her parents tried to cheer her up but she wasn't much enthusiastic about it. On the way to her new house, her father tried a shortcut which leads them into a strange tunnel. Since the car couldn't go further, Chihiro's parents decided to walk in on foot. Chihiro wasn't delighted with her parents reckless act and forced them get into the car and head back. But seeing her parents fading into the tunnel she had no choice but to follow them.
The tunnel was quite long till they finally found it's end and saw an abandoned view-park. Chihiro was so amazed to see it, she had no idea what she's seeing. Curiosity is human nature, so they walked on further to know what is the place they newly found. Chihiro had already got the creep even before she entered the tunnel, so she asked everyone to return. But her parents didn't heed her and went further in, Chihiro's father was so excited with his invention and decided to observe more. As they crossed a dead river, Chihiro's father smells something delicious and provokes everyone to find out its source.
Eventually they found a district of restaurants but no one seems to live there. Empty stomach has led Chihiro's father to a restaurant with a lot of delicious foods. Chihiro's parents decided to eat some but Chihiro refused to do so. Instead, she wandered alone and found a public bath-house. As she's observing around the bridge, a boy caught her and warned her to get out of there quickly before dark. However, it seems to be too late. Chihiro ran to her parents who had turned into pigs. Unbelieving her sight she ran in panic and found herself trapped in that place with many weird-looking spirits.
She cried as her body starts fading, convincing herself that it was only a dream. Suddenly the same boy whom she had met before came and calmed her down. He gave her a pill and ordered her to eat it. Obviously Chihiro refused it, but the boy convinced her to eat it or else she'll disappear. In hesitate, Chihiro ate the pill and her body came back to normal. Not yet to be relieved, a bird was flying above them. Quickly the boy covered Chihiro and told her that the bird is looking for her. Convincingly, the boy said that he'll be helping her and then he took her into the same bridge where they first time met.
The boy told her to hold her breath deeply as they're crossing the bridge, because even a lil breath will break the spell and everyone will see her. Chihiro was holding her breath deeply as a frog came along and leaped in front of them, addressing the boy as Haku-sama. Chihiro was startled, and spontaneously took a breath. The frog saw her but Haku quickly grabbed Chihiro and ran to a secret entrance. Haku told Chihiro to hide and wait for his return, since now everyone has found out her presence. Haku indeed returned, he told Chihiro to see someone named Kama-jii.
After a risky trip Chihiro finally met the man whom Haku mentioned, he is a spider-like creature who works as a boilerman. Chihiro asked for a job to Kama-jii but he said that there were no more vacancies. Soon after, a maid named Lin came in to bring meals and she caught out that Chihiro is a human. Thanx to Kama-jii for protecting her and asked Lin to bring Chihiro to meet Yu-baba. It's for the first time Chihiro to see the inside of the bath-house, there were so many strange creature in it. Chihiro eventually met Yu-baba and asked for a job to her. Yu-baba granted her wish but she has to change her name. Taking the first character of her name, she was then addressed as Sen.
There she met Haku again, but this time Haku was so cold that she thought it was a different person. Sen was contracted to work as a maid, just as Lin does. She lived in a small apartment with another maiden. On the break of dawn, Sen went out with Haku to see her parents in the pigpens. Sen was so grief-stricken that she couldn't hold her tears. Once upon a day a huge and stinky spirit came to the bath-house. Yu-baba ordered Sen to serve the spirit which actually a polluted-river spirit. As a gift for cleansing him up, the river spirit gave Sen a glum of soil.
One day when Sen was alone, came along a white dragon chased by numerous paper birds. He was badly wounded, soon Sen realized that it was Haku. Sen tried her best to save him by feeding Haku the glum of soil from the river spirit. Yet the terrible hemorrhage had made Haku got blackout. Later on Sen noticed that Haku was cursed by Yu-baba's twin sister named Zeniba because Haku had stolen her solid gold seal. In order to save Haku's life, Sen decided to return the seal to Zeniba in the name of Haku. But a chaos was taking place in bath-house when a black spirit got outrageous and demanded to meet Sen.
It was the spirit which Sen had let in to the bath-house previous time. However, Sen made it to calm down and they eventually make friends. Everything went smoothly, Sen met Zeniba and she apologized for Haku's sake. In the bath-house, Haku was making a deal with Yu-baba to cancel Sen's contract and set her free along with her parents. Haku came afterward to pick up Sen and on the way Sen finally remembered that Haku was the river spirit named Nigihayami Kohaku Nushi who had saved her from drowning when she was little. Before Sen departed, she and Haku made a promise to see each other again someday. Then Sen went back to the tunnel with her parents who didn't remember about anything that had happened to them. Sen looked back trough the darkness of the tunnel, wondering when she'll meet her first love again.
[ Post Note from Inumako ]
undoubtedly it's the most sensational Ghibli's movie! yet don't you think Haku is quite resembled with Touya Akira from Hikaru no Go? well, i guess it's just a coincidence ^^"". i'd like to thank my mom who had bought me the copy of this awesome movie. also to my friend Michan for provoking me to buy the Studio Ghibli Original Soundtracks Compilation (geez, it's the best compilation album i've ever had!). last but not least, to Dhani-kun, thanx for the Ghibli postcards.