To see the works of Hayao Miyazaki is to be propelled backwards into a fantastic other-worldly fantasy where cats can talk, pigs can fly, and children always know best.
Penning verdant imaginary worlds, the many works of this "God of Anime" teem with clever, unexpected surprises. Oddly, however, although among the most-influential illustrators of all time, this Oscar-nominated animator's work was virtually unknown until recently in the West.
In his most popular films, such as My Neighbor Totoro, Spirited Away, and Princess Mononoke, Miyazaki introduces his audiences to his refreshing Anime style. An intentional departure from the all-too-often mechanical quality of most rock'em-sock'em robot anime, Miyazaki's work stands apart with its gentle but recurring emphasis on the culturally pervasive themes of environment, respect, and duty to obligations, which dominate his many of his works.