101 Greatest Screenplays of the 21st Century (*so far)

The animated Japanese fantasy drops ten-year-old protagonist Chihiro in a surreal spirit world, where she must survive and try to save her parents and return to the world of the living. As Hayao Miyazaki said in Midnight Eye, “It was through observing the daughter of a friend that I realized there were no films out there for her, no films that directly spoke to her. Certainly, girls like her see films that contain characters their age, but they can't identify with them, because they are imaginary characters that don't resemble them at all. With Spirited Away I wanted to say to them, ‘Don't worry, it will be all right in the end, there will be something for you,’ not just in cinema, but also in everyday life. For that it was necessary to have a heroine who was an ordinary girl, not someone who could fly or do something impossible.”