I originally watched The Cat Returns after watching a lot of Miyazaki films, and I didn’t love it. I re-watched it again yesterday and enjoyed it a lot more this time around.
The Cat Returns is the story of Haru, a girl who saves the life of a cat. It turns out that this cat is a member of the royal family of the Cat Kingdom, and their King personally arrives one night to thank Haru for saving the life of his son. As a reward for saving him, she will be given many “gifts”, including marriage to the prince himself.
- As expected by Ghibli, this movie is beautifully animated
- It’s quite funny (and the humour is sometimes quite dark for a Ghibli film)
- Good pacing
- Great mix of characters
- Wonderful character designs
- As interesting as the overall cast is, the characters themselves don’t feel very well developed
- Interesting fantasy setting, but the world could also have been expanded upon a bit more
- The plot is fairly simple/light, so you really just have to go with it
- Many people associated Ghibli with Miyazaki, and may expect the same kind of depth from The Cat Returns
- Cats walking on two legs was sometimes a little bit unnerving
There isn’t too much to say about The Cat Returns, so I’ll just get right into it. Overall, The Cat Returns is a light-hearted (and light) fantasy adventure that doesn’t ask you to think too much. It will undoubtedly be a hit with children and adults who want a film for an enjoyable effort-free way to spend 90 minutes. Also a must see if you like cats.