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Tenkû no shiro Rapyuta
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Reviews & Ratings for
Castle in the Sky More at IMDbPro »Tenkû no shiro Rapyuta (original title)

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

James Van Der Beek's best

Author: Pat-88
16 July 1999

Forget that godawful Varsity Blues movie-- James Van Der Beek's acting is 1000 times better than that movie including Anna Paquin's. This is simply the best film I've ever seen. If you're a fan of Japanese Animation. This is a film for you. It rocks!


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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Yet another Miyazaki triumph

Author: Mike McJeff from Melbourne, Australia
8 November 2005

This is the 4th Miyazaki film I have seen so far (the others were "Kiki's Delivery Service", "Spirited Away", and "Princess Mononoke"). All I can say is that the man is a genius. This one is slightly different from his other films in that it leans more towards sci-fi than fantasy ... also, for the most part the focus of the animation is on architecture and structures, whereas most of his films are more about nature (though there are some beautiful natural scenes, especially later in the film). The animation is superb as usual, and the soundtrack is arguably the best of any of the aforementioned films. But the best thing about this movie is the strength of the character relationships; the true love and friendship between Pazu and Sheeta is one the most beautiful and heart-warming things I have EVER seen on film ... (also, the character 'Uncle' provides a rough prelude to one of the best characters in "Spirited Away", Kamagi the boiler-man); the character depth in this film also provides stark contrast to the dark, story-and-message focus of "Princess Mononoke" (probably my favourite Miyazaki film). Overall, this is another simply superb Miyazaki film - another true animated classic.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:


Author: Mike (righteousmikey)
24 December 2003

"Laputa" is an engaging film that really illustrates how an animated feature should be done. As always, the imaginative Hayao Miyazaki is on track with a perfect mixture of adventure, love, bravery, and so much more. You'll really fall in love with the characters, the storyline, the scenery. Beautifully animated and well thought out, this film will be enjoyed by many for a long time to come.

Highly recommended.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:


Author: staisil2 from Wisconsin
20 May 2003

This movie is just as great as the other movies by this director such as Spirited Away. This movie captures the spirit of imagination, and teaches you about love, bravery, cruelty, and honor. The dubbed version was just awesome, and the casted voices from actors such as Mark Hamill, Anna Paquin, and James Van Der Beek were chosen perfectly for this peculiar role. Castle in the Sky will make a grand edition to your movie collection! 8.5 out of 10.

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6 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Great movie; Paquin comes up lame

Author: Reid-14 from Seattle
9 January 2004

This film is a great deal of fun, though the depth of thought behind it does not match that of others by the same director. My primary comment, though, is how very poor Anna Paquin was as the voice of Sheeta. Her accent varied from American to British to New Zealandic and back again with no apparent rhyme or reason. A very bizarre experience. She also seemed to play her character with little of the backbone that the lovely girl the movie portrays actually displayed. Otherwise, a must-see for Japanese animation fans! (And I hope everyone has already seen "My Neighbor Totoro"! A truly great movie in every respect!)

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8 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

Very boring

Author: julytwentyfourth from United Kingdom
6 November 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

All I have to say is that I found the movie very boring. I expected to see one of the best anime films I've ever seen and I simply forced myself to watch it until the end. There wasn't a single moment that I was moved or gripped by the storyline. I didn't find it humorous either.

The most entertaining part was when Pazu was watching Sheeta floating down to earth and it went downhill from that point.

I think kids between 6 to 11 might enjoy it but as a 22 year old I was very, very bored throughout.

Maybe I find it dull because it was made in 1986 and I've seen Nausicaä of the and Princess Mononoke first. Maybe if I watched them in reverse order I would have enjoyed this because I just felt I was watching a very poor version of what I'd already seen before (well the main themes of the story). And it also felt predictable.

Big, big disappointment.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

My 300th movie!

Author: Eric Stevenson from United States
30 September 2016

As someone who loves great films, I felt bad about not having seen most of Miyazaki's masterpieces. I have yet to see any of them that I would give a score lower than three and a half stars and this is no exception as it's easily a four star movie. I really do think it's great that this film uses both celebrity voices and voice actors, as well as Mark Hamill who's actually both! The animation may not be as good as "Spirited Away", but it's still gorgeous to look at. I have been watching one movie a day since last December and decided to view this as my 300th movie overall.

It's because I bought a fairly expensive copy of it. I had heard this set a record for most Tweets about a single subject or something like that. Whatever the record, this was great to watch. It was actually pretty rare that Miyazaki movies had a story with an actual villain in it. They rarely have black and white morality. This film, however, was a great exception and I admit to liking the idea of a more traditional story from him. I've also never seen anything from him that was an outright action movie. Yes, this had great drama, but it certainly had tons of action and explosions!

I guess it's kind of weird being a fan of traditional anime like "Dragonball Z", but this appears to obviously be something more cultured. I just think they're both great in their own way and their genres well. I guess this is the closest Miyazaki ever came to a typical action movie. Needless to say, it still has the great emotion that makes his film a masterpiece. The characters are still pretty morally ambiguous. The air pirates seem evil at first, but you definitely lighten up to them as time goes on. It was great to recognize Jim Cummings' voice, especially since I actually met the guy at a con!

I love the designs of the robots. I was really impressed at how bad I felt for the original one. Robots are common in anime, but this was a truly emotional take on them. I really did feel sorry for this poor guy as he kept getting injured trying to help Sheeta. You briefly see some magic creatures that almost look like pokemon. It's great to see how such a great artist influenced all kinds of different anime. It takes a little while to get really good, but it's still flawless. This is for kids, adults, and anyone. ****

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Another Sterling Work from One of the Greatest Directors

Author: joshuafagan-64214 from United States
26 August 2015

I am so glad John Lasseter is friends with Miyazaki. If he wasn't, we may not have gotten these movies dubbed and formally released stateside. Say what you want about dubs vs subs and blah blah blah, but I often enjoy closing my eyes and immersing myself in movies. And it also allows so many more people to see these movies. And they are movies that deserve to be seen.

Lasseter's efforts here combined the fact that he more or less brought CGI animation to the masses have elevated him in my mind to the position of second most important person and third greatest person in animation to me. If you're wondering, the first list is Disney, Lasseter, Miyazaki and the second is Disney, Miyazaki, Lasseter.

The crazy thing is that I come into these movies expecting to be blown away. Most movies where this is the case, even the ones I adore, like Shawshank and LOTR, are diminished just a bit by this. Not these movies. Every time I see them, they grab my soul and run with it. Part of it is that the movies are such a stark change from American animation in every regard. The tone, the style; it's all different. The closest American animations I've seen to these masterpieces are the old Disney movies, from which Miyazaki took inspiration. But even those are only half as long as these movies and not nearly as epic. The other part of it is that they are just so good.

The images stick in my mind. For example, in the first third of this movie, the main characters go into an underground cave and the crystals react with a medallion that Sheena, one of the leads, is wearing. When they see why, they cut the rocks and it is revealed that there is what is dubbed as aetherium in them. In many other films, it would be a simple, expository scene. In this, it is a stylistic, atmospheric triumph. Scenes like that are littered throughout the movie. And they stick in my mind, as good animation and only good animation can do.

Another, more personal reason why I love Miyazaki films is that I share with him a deep love of aviation. The word Ghibli, the name of the studio, even means 'hot wind blowing in from the Sahara.' It is one of his three trademarks, if you will, the other two being environmental messages and strong female protagonists, two things that are done well and subtly here, to the film's credit. The inclusion of aviation, on the other hand, is not subtle, and I love that about it. In fact, the sky and flight are probably featured more here than in any of his other movies, and that is saying something. For a major part of the movie, they don't even touch the earth.

The flying scenes are all excellent. But I think my favorite is one near the middle of the film at sunset. It is in full color in my mind even as I write this review. Despite being a short scene, it makes you feel like you're in the sky like no other moment in any movie.

It perfectly encapsulates the emotions which come with sunset, flight, and the air itself and mix it together into one bit of atmosphere that is invocative enough to pull your soul from your body, at least for a minute.

The plot and pacing remind me, strangely, of Titanic. Not in any obvious way, but in that they both take a conventional tale and make it feel fresh and new, like you are a little kid hearing it for the first time. The characters are fleshed out well and the writing achieves a balance of making you know who they are without bogging the film down. The score is one of Hisaishi's best, and once again, that is saying something. I would compare the partnership between him and Miyazaki to the one between Williams and Spileberg, but, and I mean no offense to the latter pair, these two are above them. While Williams is a fine composer, I would argue that Hisaishi is one of the best composers of any kind over the last century.

And the artwork? I've already said enough about how pretty this film is. In fact, the sequence of this movie that won me over is an artistic one. The opening credits sequence ( didn't take the film that long) is done in a different style, one that fits the movie like nothing else could and lays the groundwork for the movie ahead. Wow.

This film is centered around the pursuit of a castle in the sky. And while it is stunning, as you know if you have watched this film, it cannot top another castle in the sky: the film itself. It is truly thus; as mystic and potent and artistic as Lapita itself. And unlike the main characters in the film, you don't have to go against a Mark Hamill-led military in order to get to it.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

A really enjoyable adventure movie!

Author: Irishmoviereviewer from Ireland
18 July 2015

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I quite enjoyed watching the film, the graphics were beautiful and the music score was really uplifting for an 80's film!

I found the movie had great action like the train scene where Sheeta and Pazu were being chased by their formal enemies which were the pirates. The film even had good humour with the pirate boys admiring Sheeta. I honestly thought she wasn't attractive but if they thought she was, I'll leave them to it haha. Although I have to admit, herself and Pazu were such a cute couple! I wish they both actually kissed instead of leaving the scene already in the end!

I was surprised that Mark Hamil aka Luke Skywalker and Jim Cummings aka Dr Eggman from SatAm (Sonic the hedgehog series) were involved in this anime movie. I thought Jim Cummings sounded like John Goodman seriously?! He is so talented with his voice!

I'm glad I saw the film so I'm giving it 8/10

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

One of Studio Ghibli's best

Author: evaherinkova
22 May 2015

While originally released in 1986 in Japan, an English version of this film was not widely available until 2003, which caused Castle in the Sky to become somewhat of a black sheep in the Studio Ghibli collection. Don't let this discourage you, however - Castle in the Sky is a fantastic, classic movie that manages to elaborately intertwine the themes of nature, technology, loyalty, and friendship into an epic adventure that still holds strong today.

With fast-paced action and beautiful animation, Castle in the Sky is an incredible film-watching experience for any Studio Ghibli lover or fantasy/fiction enthusiast.

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