- Actors: Anna Paquin, Keiko Yokozawa, Mayumi Tanaka, James Van Der Beek, Kotoe Hatsui
- Directors: Hayao Miyazaki
- Writers: Hayao Miyazaki
- Producers: Hideo Ogata, Isao Takahata, Tatsumi Yamashita, Todd Olsson, Toru Hara
- Format: Animated, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
- Rated: Not RatedNR
- Number of tapes: 1
- Studio: Walt Disney Video
- VHS Release Date: April 15, 2003
- Run Time: 125 minutes
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (639 customer reviews)
- ASIN: B00005JKYF
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #85,732 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
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Castle in the Sky [VHS]
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The magic touch of master animator Hayao Miyazaki is visible from start to finish in CASTLE IN THE SKY -- an imaginative tale full of mystery and adventure. The high-flying journey begins when Pazu, a mining apprentice, finds a young girl wearing a glowing pendant and floating down from the sky. Together, they discover both are searching for the legendary floating castle, Laputa, and vow to unravel the mystery of the luminous crystal around her neck. Their quest won't be easy, however. There are air pirates, secret agents, and astounding obstacles to keep them from the truth -- and from each other. With spectacular animation, a fabulous musical score, and the voice talents of Anna Paquin (Sheeta), James Van Der Beek (Pazu), and Cloris Leachman (Dola), CASTLE IN THE SKY is an animated masterpiece you'll never forget!
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I first saw this movie when it was released in US theaters as "Laputa the Floating Island." The mythical floating island of Laputa is taken from Swift's "Gulliver's Travels." Like Swift, Miyazaki cloaks a political statement with a fantasy, giving deeper meaning to his story. Environmentalism has always been central to his films, and "Castle in the Sky" is no exception.
Visual, the film is a literal flight of fancy. Much of the film takes place in the air. Air pirates travel in unwieldy flying machines. Giant dirigibles sail the skies. Travel by kite is an acceptable option. The animation is of the highest quality, as is the sound and acting.
The story may seem familiar to followers of animation. Miyazaki also work briefly on the script of "Nadia: Secret of Blue Water" using some of the same concepts. The story was also adapted by Disney as their film "Atlantis," sending the characters underground instead of up to the sky. However, "Castle in the Sky" is the story in it's original, best form.
I cannot recommend this film enough.
Also disclaimer: This review contains complaints galore so if you're not in the mood, it's best you pass this one by.
I love Studio Ghibli movies. There's a magical element of adventure and heart that are hard to find elsewhere. And Laputa is by far my favorite movie of all Ghibli movies I've seen (seen most of them). I think the English release unfortunately killed it. Note: The 2003 and the newer 2010 DVD versions both point to the same reviews. This review is based on the 2003 Disney American DVD release. It appears that the 2010 version reverts back to the original Japanese soundtrack, extra filler dialogue not present in the Japanese version have been removed. That said, the main points in the review - the choice of voice actors and change in dialogue - still apply. Also, below the title on the Amazon page, you'll see the list of actors as: Barbara Goodson (Actor), James Van Der Beek (Actor) - this is completely confusing as Barbara Goodson is not in the Disney version (read about that in the updated section of this review at the end). I wish Amazon wouldn't blindly combine different versions of this movie onto one page with shared reviews...
I won't focus on the story since many others have done so (it's amazing) but more on the audio, the dub and the translation. First is the dub. It's atrocious. It's horrid. It's painfully subpar. And I cannot help but be overwhelmed with utter frustration that I must accept this as the final product. It's been released. It's done. There's not a do-over. We're unfortunately stuck with this.
I'm a native Japanese speaker so I can tell how well things get translated...Read more ›
After 16 years since Castle in the Sky was first released in the theatres, I still consider it the creme da la creme of all anime movies. Certainly Laputa's art direction cannot compare to today's S/B CGI and S/B 3D animation. However, the story is much more fascinating and breathtaking than KiKi Delivery Service, My Neighbor Totoro, and even Princess Mononoke. Princess Mononoke is a graphically stunning piece of art but Castle in the Sky is a wonderful story of courage and determination. While there are a few graphically violent scenes in Princess Mononoke, Castle in the Sky is packed with action without graphic violence.
I considered myself fortunate to be able to see it on the big screen (the original English version.) Castle in the Sky is a grand movie that deserves the big screen. I love the soundtrack of the movie very much. It is very uplifting and motivating. The title song, Carrying You, communicates the same kind of warmheartedness that permeates throughout all of Miyazaki's films.
That said, this is an atrocious rendition for American audiences.
Overall, the voicecasting isn't too shabby. However, the actor playing the main character - the adventurous boy Pazu - is just plain awful. Not only does he sound more like a 28 year old than a 13 year old, but he has two voice settings: loud and soft, and absolutely no nuance in between. Listening to him is a rather teeth-grinding experience.
The translation of the dialogue from the original Japanese is pretty wretched. A lot of the original meaning was simply discarded and replaced by Disney. The lines of the air-pirate sidekicks were completely altered and not for the better. By the end of the movie, their constant stream of inane babble will have you wishing someone would just jettison the entire airship crew at high altitude. Overall, the dialogue of most of the supporting characters shows extremely poor scriptwriting.
For some odd reason, Disney decided to mute most of the sound effects in this movie. The ominous whirr of massive propellers, the sudden crash of explosive shells, the crisp sound of gun shots. All of it was toned down and muted-out by Disney.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A favorite and much requested movie in our house. My 6 and 8 year olds cannot get enough and claim it is bwir favorite studio ghibli film.Published 15 days ago by Stephanie
It started off a little scary - I had to double check the rating on the back of the box! But after the initial part, my kids loved it.Published 18 days ago by P. E. Prince
There are so many versions of this classic that it is confusingly difficult to find the right one!Published 1 month ago by Roger R
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