My Neighbor Totoro Still Shot

Hayao Miyazaki Movie Marathon

Hayao Miyazaki, the famous Japanese animator and director, is retiring! What a great time to have a Miyazaki movie marathon!

I was first introduced to Miyazaki years ago by the anime club at Grand Valley State University – back in the days when you had to go to clubs to watch anime. His films range from epically awesome and beautiful to fun and exuberant  to adventuresome but downright weird. I can say this much – you are always guaranteed a unique experience when you see a Miyazaki film.

Some themes are common in Miyazaki’s films, such as anti-war, pro-ecology, strong female leads, etc. If you have a Miyazaki movie marathon, make sure to play Miyazaki movie marathon bingo!

If you wish to embark on a 24 hour Miyazaki movie marathon, I have a sample schedule ready to go for you below. Every film directed by Miyazaki is below, and one film which he didn’t direct but wrote the screenplay for is also included. I’ve ordered them in chronological order by release, so you can see his entire career from beginning to end.

Miyazaki Movie Marathon Movies

Lupin the Third: The Castle of Cagliostiro

Lupin the ThirdMy take: An internationally renowned thief saves a princess, defeats an evil count, and gets the treasure. Hayao Miyazaki’s first feature film – resembles his other films 0%.

Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind

Nausicaa of the Valley of the WindMy take: After the apocalypse, small pockets of humanity war with each other to while battling the encroachment of gigantic bugs from the “Toxic Jungle”. A heartwarming story for the whole family!

Castle in the Sky

Castle In The SkyMy take: A boy discovers a girl falling from a castle in the sky. They really should install some guardrails on the castle. Someone could get hurt!

My Neighbor Totoro

My Neighbor TotoroMy take: Two girls discover forest spirits and have some fun with them. That’s it. No. Really. There is no villain. There really isn’t any conflict either. How would you classify this plot? Human vs. nature? No. Human vs. herself? Nope. Hm….

Kiki’s Delivery Service

Kiki's Delivery ServiceMy take: A young witch strikes it out on her own and starts her own broom-based delivery service. Pretty ingenious if you ask me. Maybe she can upgrade to weather manipulation in the sequel.

Porco Rosso

Porco RossoMy take: A straightforward story of a jaded pilot, weary of the world, but yet compelled to do the right thing. Oh, did I mention he’s an anthropomorphic pig? He is. Why? Uh….something do to with a curse? I think?

On Your Mark

On Your MarkMy take: A quick music video directed by Miyazaki. Still great, even at seven minutes long.

Princess Mononoke

Princess MononokeMy take: An epic battle between humans and nature – with crazy forest gods, evil black tentacle disease, kick-butt heroine – watch it!

Spirited Away

Spirited AwayMy take: A girl and her family is transported to a spirit world where all sorts of weird magical things happen. If you plan to take recreational drugs during your movie marathon, here’s your chance!

Howl’s Moving Castle

Howl's Moving CastleMy take: The Wizard Howl has a castle that can walk around on legs. It’s the magical equivalent of a Winnebago. Oh – and there’s a plot of a young woman cursed and she utilizes crazy flying machines or something.


PonyoMy take: Ponyo is a fish who wants to be a human girl. Its “The Little Mermaid” but with toddlers instead of true love kisses.

The Secret World Of Arrietty

The Secret World of Arrietty PosterMy take: Little people live with big people and secretly steal their stuff to survive. Wouldn’t it be easier to just announce that you exist and live in tiny little houses? I suppose the morning commute to your tiny little job in your tiny little car would be a stressful. Maybe it is easier to just steal the big people’s stuff.

The Wind Rises

The Wind RisesMy take: Miyazaki’s last film, about a man dedicated to designing airplanes – and how his designs were co-opted to produce World War II zeros.

Miyazaki Movie Marathon Schedule

Start TimeTitle
12:00 PMLupin the Third: The Castle of Cagliostiro
02:00 PMNausicaa of the Valley of the Wind
04:00 PMCastle in the Sky
06:15 PMMy Neighbor Totoro
08:00 PMKiki’s Delivery Service
10:00 PMPorco Rosso
11:35 PMOn Your Mark
11:45 PMPrincess Mononoke
02:00 AMSpirited Away
04:15 AMHowl’s Moving Castle
06:15 AMPonyo
08:00 AMThe Secret World Of Arrietty
09:45 AMThe Wind Rises

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