The Anime Cafe - Your complete source for anime reviews

[ go to homepage ]
[ what's new - editorials, calendar, to-do list, news articles, mailbag and archives ]
[ episode-by-episode anime reviews, how we review ]
[ a parent's guide to anime, title list, titles by category ]
[ the anime encyclopædia ]
[ café trivia - anime trivia ]
[ anime humour, the laws of anime, light articles, etc ]
[ serious articles, essays, anime guides, etc. ]
[ message forum for the discussion of anime, manga, reviews, etc. ]
[ faq about the café and contributors, awards given to the café, etc. ]
[ feedback forms, error reports, or e-mail the café ]
[ links to other resources on the internet ]
[ site map ]


T.H.E.M. Animé Café Awards

7th Place

[ café reviews ]

Kiki working at the bakery, waiting for customers

Majo No Takyubin
(Kiki's Delivery Service)

Copyright: © 1989 Tokuma Shoten Publishing
Length: 96 minutes
Genre: comedy / drama / fantasy
Rating: G, suitable for family viewing
Format: Original Japanese Dialog (VHS/LD)

Based on a story by Kadono Eiko. Directed and produced by Miyazaki Hayao (Studio Ghibli).

[ rated g ]

Suitable for Family Viewing - Some parts might not hold the attention of impatient kids. There are many good role models throughout the movie. Kiki's bloomers show (very often), but there is no nudity, sex, foul language or double entendres. The movie does depict "witches", but they are all "good" -- no evil spellcasting or anything else that might be considered objectionable.

[ plot summary ]

vhs jacket

Kiki is a pretty typical young girl -- except that she also happens to be a witch. On a clear, full-moon lit night, Kiki and her black cat, Gigi, set out to find their own city to work in. (In keeping with their traditions, a witch must work for a full year on their own when they reach thirteen years of age). But what sort of job can a witch who can barely handle her own broom possibly find? A courier service, of course!

[ capsule review ]

This, in my books, is Miyazaki's hallmark production -- a truly masterful piece of storytelling. There are no earth-shattering revelations in the script, nor are there any spectacular mecha animation sequences to feast your eyes upon (but the animation quality is, as with all Miyazaki productions, top-notch.). Instead, we have a gentle, well-written story of a young witch ("majo" in Japanese) learning to support herself in the city. Along the way, she discovers the types of people, friendships and experiences that you or I have come across during our own lives.

The animation is smooth, characterisations are excellent, and music is just wonderful. I especially like the music and animation when Kiki and Gigi (the black cat) first fly into the city by the sea. (The song, "Umi No Mieru Machi," is simply wonderful.) Miyazaki has an on-going fascination with Europe and all things that fly (or might fly), which is very evident in the level of detail throughout the movie. Gigi often steals the show, with either his poignant remarks, or physical humour as only Miyazaki's animation can present. Don't forget to watch this film right to the end; the scenes during the closing credits are really cute, plus there's a short epilogue after all the credits. This is a wonderful, heart-warming, "feel-good" film about growing up and self-discovery -- I can hardly wait until Disney picks it up and translates it into English. - AN

Kiki's is an incredible story by Miyazaki about a young witch who has moved to the city for a year to work on her own. (It's part of the necessary training for becoming a witch). The characters are excellent and well developed, the animation is again excellent, as is the music. Gigi's character is extremely loveable with his sarcastic wit. (Gotta love those eyes!)

As a movie, Kiki's is one of the best animations out there, and is very typical Miyazaki. Kiki is a young thirteen year old out on her own for the first time and is learning to support herself, and also trying to master flying. She never was very good at it, and she finds that, as with all skills, she needs to hone her flying abilities. Unlike Naüsicaa which had a definite message, Kiki's deals more with human nature and growing up. It has a beautifully written script which we can all relate to. While we've never had to struggle to learn to fly, we've all gone through the headaches and heartaches of making new friends and developing our own talents. Hopefully, when Disney releases this film they will put in the same effort that Fox did with Tonari no Totoro. A definite "feel good" movie, this is definitely one for the movie collection. - JYN

[ café rating ]

Original: Subbed: Dubbed:
Story: 5 stars N/A N/A
Direction: 5 stars N/A N/A
Acting: 5 stars N/A N/A
Animation: 5 stars N/A N/A
Music: 5 stars N/A N/A
Translation: N/A N/A N/A
Overall Rating: 5 stars N/A N/A

[ café trivia ]

[ see also ]

[ home ] [ what's new ] [ café contest ] [ café reviews ] [ parent's guide ] [ encyclopædia ]
[ café trivia ] [ café latté ] [ café espresso ] [ about the café ] [ feedback ] [ links ] [ site map ]

© 1997-2000. All rights reserved. The Animé Café logo and the Crystal Kyoko award are original creations of the Animé Café. Please do not use any of the materials on this site without the expressed written permission of the Animé Café.

Page last modified 1999.10.26