Griffin Stenzel’s review published on Letterboxd:
If My Neighbor Totoro is the sweetest Studio Ghibli film, and Grave of the Fireflies is the most heart-wrenching, then Princess Mononoke must be the most epic. Powered by lush visuals and surprisingly gory action sequences, this movie beautifully critiques human nature by displaying how we have not only industrialized forests, but our very minds. Though many Studio Ghibli films tackle these topics, each one continues to remain unique and stand out on it’s own. Miyazaki understands that we all live in a world with too many layers for clear-cut villains, perfectly pure heroes, and 100% correct answers.
Princess Mononoke boasts gorgeous animation that immerses you into this world with it’s vibrantly colored beauty. While the lush landscapes provides a feast the eyes, the elaborately designed demons and sprits place the cherry on top. The translucent forest spirit that sparks the night and the miniature skeletal ghosts that ignite memories of my bobble-head collection with their clicking, whirly heads truly are highlights of the movie.
My main complaint is how the dialogue can be dull at times and lacks the gravitas the very scene calls for. However, that may just be because I watched the English dubbed version (cuz im lame like that ✌️) Either way, the story is absolutely brilliant, but the script doesn’t quite match it. Ultimately, Princess Mononoke is a grand, expertly-crafted landmark for animation, even if it’s not a personal favorite.