Japan Lists Its Favourite Studio Ghibli Flicks From Hayao Miyazaki

Do you have a favourite Studio Ghibli film? You know, the anime house behind such wonderful movies as Princess Mononoke, My Neighbor Totoro and Castle in the Sky. In Japan, kids and adults alike love Ghibli films. But is there one Ghibli film — rather, Hayao Miyazaki-helmed Ghibli film — that the country likes best?

According to Shunkan News, Japanese polling site Research Panel asked 136,295 to list their favourite Studio Ghibli flick from Miyazaki. Here are the results:

9. Ponyo: 2.1%

8. Howl's Moving Castle: 2.5%

7. Porco Rosso: 4.2%

6. Princess Mononoke: 4.9%

5. Kiki's Delivery Service: 9.1%

4. Spirited Away: 10.9%

3. Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind: 14.8%

2. Castle in the Sky: 17.6%

1. My neighbour Totoro: 24.3%

Talk about a razor's worth of difference. Some of the answers seem almost too close to call.

Within those numbers, there were people (yes, people!) who had never seen a Studio Ghibli film. What, you say you haven't seen a Ghibli film, either? It would be rather hard not to see one in Japan, seeing how they often rebroadcast them in primetime TV and sometimes show them at school. Out of the 130,000-some people polled, 9.6 per cent had never seen any of these Studio Ghibli films. Here's the breakdown by age:

Teens: 5.2% Twenties: 4.2% Thirties: 5.3% Forties: 9.8% Fifties: 10.6% Sixties: 18.3% Seventies: 29.0% Eighties: 33.6%

There's an obvious generation gap here. That's being said, I want to believe that every 90-year-old polled had seen all of these movies. I want to believe that 90-year-old people were polled.

Ghibli nerds, if they've made it this far, are probably pointing out in the comments section that Nausicaä is not a Studio Ghibli film per se, as it was a Topcraft production, made before Ghibli was established in 1985. Topcraft became Studio Ghibli.

For me, I'd say Kiki's Delivery Service and My Neighbor Totoro are my favourite Studio Ghibli films, with Grave of the Fireflies being my favourite non-Miyazaki Ghibli film. Because I like to cry? My favourite Miyazaki film is that wonderful Lupin the Third flick, The Castle of Cagliostro, which was made before Studio Ghibli existed.

I'd say Ponyo is my least favourite. I'd say it's everyone's least favourite.

Hit us up in the comments with your favourites.

好きな宮崎駿アニメ調査 3位『ナウシカ』で2位が『ラピュタ』 [Shukan News]

Picture: Socwall


    I'd like to say Ponyo is one of my favourites.. But it only became that after a few watches. It has it's charm.

    Laputa castle in the sky is my all time favourite followed by

    Spirited away
    Kiki's delivery service
    My neighbor totoro
    Howls moving castle

    It's really hard to rank them!!

    (I haven't seen monoke or porci Rosso)

    Porco is a great film. Looking at that list reminds me just now good Miyazaki's movies are.

    Least favourite? Nah there's that Whisper of the Heart one about a girl that has a good work ethic... that sends me to sleep every time.

    Mononoke popped my cherry and it remains my favourite and Totoro is an absolute classic. Porco Rosso makes me feel like I'm on holiday in the Med every time.

      Whispers was form the studio but it wasn't a Miyazaki joint.

      Worst film from Ghibli in general is hands down Tales From The Earthsea. It's still the only movie I watched in the cinemas where I fell asleep in it, just terrible. It's the reason why I'm hesitant on checking out From Up On Poppy Hill. Wasn't a big fan of Only Yesterday either, the facial animation looked weird & creepy.

      Least favourite H. Miyazaki movie though? Way too difficult, I love them all like they're my children...

    Howl's Moving Castle number one for me, followed by Arrietty and Ponyo. The others I have seen (Laputa, Porco, Spirited, Totoro, Fireflies, Cat Returns, Earthsea) are all equally awesome. A special mention to Castle of Cagliostro, though not a Studio Ghibli film, is still Hayao Miyazaki's debut film and a grand one at that.

    Last edited 26/02/13 9:12 am

    Monokoke and Spirited Away, definitely. I didn't mind Tales from Earth-Sea, tbh. NO one seems to mention that one.

      Tales was helmed by Goro Miyazaki, Hayao's son. While I like the animation and use of colour in Tales, it's woefully slow and lacks any set piece moments, there's no part of the film that I can mention that really stood out for me unlike other Ghibli films. But that's just my opinion of it.

      Last edited 26/02/13 9:19 am

        Also compared to the structure of the novels it's not even close.

    Laputa and Nausicaa would be tied at 1st place, Totoro and Kiki's tied at 2nd. Porco Rosso 3rd.

    Honourable mentions to Ocean Waves and Pom Poko, one because it personally liked, and the second is because nobody ever talks about Pom Poko :)

      It's the giant testicles.

    I don't think the Isao Takahata films get enough of a look in. Grave of the Fireflies destroys my soul every time.

    let's not forget Panda Go Panda.

    Last edited 26/02/13 9:52 am

    My list would be:


    My top 3:
    Porco Rosso, Laputa & Nausicaa

    Totoro is basically *the* kids film there still, which explains it being at the top. For a lot of Japanese people it was their first or possibly only Ghibli exposure as a kid.

    Also, point of order: Nausicaa is not a Studio Ghibli film. It was made before the studio formed.

    Howls for me and my kids..they love the little fire demon.

    Spirited Away & Mononoke in the top 2 (in that order). Then it's Totoro, Nausicaa, Howl, Kiki and Ponyo.

    Tales of Earthsea was meh, and Arietty was just... going nowhere? That last one was a huge disappointment for me :(

      I'd agree with this list altho the lack of Porco Rosso and Laputa is a little offputting (I'd slot them in after Howl).

        Hmmm, I like both Laputa and Porco Rosso, but it didn't capture me in a way that the others listed above did. To this day I still want to get kidnapped by Japanese Gods.

    My Neighbors the Yamadas needs mention. I love that movie.

    ive seen and own every single one, i say this is a great list!!! go Japan

    1. Howl's Moving Castle
    2. Spirited Away
    3. Kiki's Delivery Service
    4. Totoro
    5. Ponyo

    Howl's Moving Castle will always be my favourite. That film is beautiful. Hell, they're all beautiful.

    My top three favorite Studio Ghibli films would be:-


    But character-wise, Ponyo's one of my faves -- and PONYO ON THE CLIFF BY THE SEA most definitely would not be my least favorite Studio Ghibli film. Instead, that'd be Goro Miyazaki's TALES FROM EARTHSEA (despite its lovely theme song).

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