My favorite movie is Spirited Away, Miyazaki’s 2001 animated masterpiece. Here’s a brief summary for those who have never seen the movie: ten-year-old Chihiro and her parents are driving to their new home when they get lost and wander through an old tunnel into this beautiful, deserted town that, at first glance, appears very normal. They stumble upon this traditional outdoor eatery with a plethora of the most orgasmic fucking food you can imagine. I’m just gonna show you this gif instead of describing it:
Anyway, being the fat asses that we all would be, Chihiro’s parents sit their fat asses down and start shoving everything they can into their drooling mouths. Not long after, they transform into pigs. To save them and return home, Chihiro ventures into this wondrous and scary world of spirits and witches and talking animals. My words do not and can never do justice to this movie: it’s 120 minutes of magical, visceral epiphany.
Spirited Away has become synonymous with my childhood, but the sad thing is that even if I do have the pleasure of entering Chihiro’s world, I probably wouldn’t last a day. I’d do exactly what Chihiro’s parents did and spend the rest of my life as a pig, because I doubt anyone would love me enough to go through all the shit Chihiro did to turn me back into a human being. But if I do manage to control my insatiable appetite, I’d just follow Chihiro everywhere – from Yubaba’s glorious bathhouse for the spirits to Kamaji’s boiler room to that eery water train. I want to watch her navigate through the labyrinth of Miyazaki’s imagination with her childlike curiosity and courage. Chihiro represents an era of my life so long gone that I doubt I can still recognize as mine. Watching Spirited Away, no matter at what age, always reminds me of the thrill and optimism I felt as a kid. Chihiro reminds me of the girl I was ten years ago, innocent and reckless and selfless. I could never be that girl again…I’m not even sure I really want to, but I miss her. And I miss being a stupid kid with stupid dreams.