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Studio Ghibli’s The Red Turtle is Simple and Pure

Through the story of a man shipwrecked on a tropical island, the Oscar-nominated animated feature film recounts the milestones of a human being.

Have you seen Studio Ghibli’s The Red Turtle? Though I am a fan of Studio Ghibli, I honestly, didn’t hear about The Red Turtle until I stumbled upon it on HBO Go, a TV Everywhere service offered by the American premium cable network HBO.

I got real curious with the title so I hit play without checking the trailer or synopsis. I mean, why would you not? Studio Ghibli is involved, the very same studio that produced Grave of the Fireflies, Howl’s Moving Castle, My Neighbor Totoro, Spirited Away and The Tale of Princess Kaguya.

But this time, they are not alone.

The Red Turtle, a 2016 animated fantasy film directed and co-written by Dutch-British animator Michaël Dudok de Wit was a co-production between Studio Ghibli and Wild Bunch. I have to say that this collaboration which is also Dudok de Wit’s feature film debut is a treasure.

You see, the story itself is so simple and so pure that you hold onto it from the very start. As the film progresses, you find it harder to let go because the story and the visuals work hand in hand making you ignore the fact that there is no dialogue at all.

Yes, you read that right. The Red Turtle is a wordless but touching tale about being human and alive. It’s about the journey which includes the hardships and heartache people encounter.

In this story, our main character did everything humanly possible – he built a raft so he could leave, tried again when his plan failed and never gave up. However, he lost hope and sight of what’s right at one point but the Red Turtle did him a favor.

The Red Turtle was his saving grace. And with that, the man continued his journey showing us that life is a cycle, a beautiful but strange one.

If you haven’t seen The Red Turtle, I urge you to watch it. You’ll definitely learn a thing or two. Plus, you’ll enjoy the visuals from beginning to end. It’s currently available on HBO Go. 10/10 IMDb

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