This is the story of a young witch, named Kiki who is now 13 years old. But she is still a little green and plenty headstrong, but also resourceful, imaginative, and determined. With her trusty wisp of a talking cat named Jiji by her side she's ready to take on the world, or at least the quaintly European seaside village she's chosen as her new home.Written by
Anthony Pereyra (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The name of Osono's bakery, "Guchokipanya" is a Japanese pun made from the words "guchokipa" (Rock Paper Scissors) and "pan'ya" (bakery). See more »
The four-engined biplane (more precisely, sesquiplane) that Kiki sees during the opening credits is a real aircraft, the Handley-Page HP42. Eight of these planes - the first four-engined aircraft ever built - were commissioned during the 1930s; later they were converted to military use, and all were destroyed by 1941. But since this movie - according to director Hayao Miyazaki - takes place in a world where World War II never happened, it's plausible that the HP42 would still be in civilian service. See more »
[Jiji looks at his paws and around the room that is covered in flour]
If you wake up tomorrow and find a white cat, it's me.
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The denouement scenes of the film play out with the credits rolling ending with Kiki's parents reading a letter from her after the credits finish. See more »
The English dubbed version adds a lot of extraneous dialogue (particularly when the characters are off-camera) over several silent passages. In several cases, Jiji is given extra lines that transform his character into a wisecracking conscience, but in most instances the extra dialogue is redundant or unnecessarily expository ("Look, she's got a cat"), while in others it's used to promote 'Disney values' (Ursula says "It's OK, I know that guy" when they hitch a ride; Jiji tells Kiki not to disobey a policeman's instructions). See more »
Written and Performed by Sydney Forest (1998 Disney re-release) See more »
A beautiful and introspective masterpiece
Having already been familiar with and a great admirer of some of Miyazaki's other Ghibli films, including Princess Mononoke, I turned to Kiki's Delivery Service on the recommendation of someone who suggested it as "light-hearted" fun. Being an eighteen-year-old male, I didn't think it would be much more than thata guilty pleasure to indulge in once in a while, something I could watch and then say, "Aw, what a cute film!" But Kiki's Delivery Service is so much more than "light-hearted fun." For one, it is a beautifully animated work of cinematic art, with Miyazaki's usual flair for gorgeous landscapes and astonishing detail. As in his recent films Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away, Miyazaki's brush paints a beautiful world.
There is not much to be said about the plot itself: Kiki is a 13-year-old witch who has just left home to begin a year of training on her own, and she moves to a seaside European town, befriends a husband and wife baker, and sets up a flying delivery service.
What sets Kiki's Delivery Service apart from many of Miyazaki's other works is the personal, rather than epic, nature of the story. It wonderfully captures the day-to-day life of an aspiring 13-year-old girl moving into the life of a bustling town. While there is plenty to please the thrill-seeking adventurous spirit, the film's real beauty lies in its ability to portray the more introverted aspects of life. Most Western animated cinema centers around loud, pop-influenced music and a bad-guy-fighting action-oriented plot, but Kiki's Delivery Service has a charming and understated musical score, and lacks a traditional antagonist. Life isn't all excitement and fighting bad guyssomething that this film seems to get across more than any Disney, Pixar, Fox, or other Western animated film I've ever seen. In fact, the doldrums of life are what form the heart of this film, as Kiki finds that she begins to lose her witch's abilities and can no longer fly.
Kiki's Delivery Service is a masterpiece, one of my all-time favorite films, and Kiki's search for the heart within herself is a tale that adults may appreciate more than their children. Indeed, Kiki is one of the most appealing characters that Miyazaki ever brought to life, which is certainly saying something. One of Miyazaki's great arts is in never talking down to his audience, and this fantastic story is no exception.
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