Following the meticulous grandeur of Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises, here is an equally extraordinary, but very different, farewell film from another master of Japanese animation. The Tale of Princess Kaguya, from Isao Takahata, co-founder of beloved Japanese animation house Studio Ghibli, is an eerie and plaintive folk tale, alive with sadness and drawn with an ecstatic freeness that recalls the animated adaptations of Raymond Briggs.

The plot is based on a 10th-century Japanese legend about a poor woodcutter who finds a tiny, doll-like girl. He brings her home and suddenly she transforms into a human baby. The woodcutter and his wife raise the child as best they can – they call her Princess. When a cache of gold is discovered in the same bamboo grove, the woodcutter and his wife decide the gods must want their girl to be raised as a noblewoman, so they start a new life in the city. Various princes try their best to woo the princess, who has been given the name Kaguya. But Kaguya pines for her simpler, country life.

Robbie Collin
The Daily Telegraph


Please note that the festival is over 18s only