Movie Review: Castle in the Sky

Castle in the Sky Trailer

Castle in the Sky Summary

An airship carrying Sheeta—an orphan girl abducted by government agent Muska—is attacked by Captain Dola and her air pirate sons, seeking Sheeta’s blue crystal pendant. Trying to escape, Sheeta falls from the airship but, thanks to the amulet, she floats to earth, unconscious. An orphan boy named Pazu catches her and takes her to his home in a mining town. Pazu shows her a picture of a legendary floating city, Laputa, taken by his father. When Dola’s pirates and Muska’s men appear and pursue them, Pazu and Sheeta, aided by the amulet, fall into an abandoned mine, where she tells how she was kidnapped from her mountain home because of her necklace. Old miner Uncle Pom shows them the glowing deposits of Aetherium around them. 

Leaving the mine, Sheeta tells Pazu her full name: Lucita Toel Ul Laputa. Muska captures them and takes them to his fortress where the children are imprisoned in different rooms. Muska shows Sheeta a broken Laputan robot; knowing her name, he intends to make her reveal Laputa’s location. Muska threatens Pazu; for his own safety, Sheeta orders him to leave. A despondent Pazu returns home, where Dola and her sons await. To rescue Sheeta, Pazu joins them.

Sheeta recites a spell her grandmother taught her, unintentionally activating the amulet and the robot, which wreaks havoc until it is destroyed by the military’s huge airship, Goliath. Pazu rescues Sheeta, but Muska obtains the amulet. Pazu, Sheeta and the pirates return to their airship and pursue the Goliath, which is navigating by Sheeta’s amulet. 

Along the way, Dola tells Pazu and Sheeta how to turn the lookout into a kite, giving them a higher vantage point. Pazu spots a swirl of clouds in an approaching hurricane. Recognizing the clouds from his father’s picture, he tells Dola they have found Laputa and insists that they head toward the eye of the storm. However, the Goliath opens fire, sinks the ship and severs the lookout kite from it, sending Pazu and Sheeta into the clouds. 

On Laputa, they find plants and animals thriving in the ruins of the castle, which surround a huge tree. However, the army plunders the city as Muska captures Sheeta while Pazu frees the pirates. Muska takes Sheeta through the central sphere, a vast repository of scientific knowledge, to the center of Laputa, where an immense crystal powers the city. Muska reveals his real name, “Romuska Palo Ul Laputa”, another member of the royal line that left Laputa centuries ago. Using Sheeta’s crystal to access Laputan technology, he betrays his own army, destroys the Goliath, unleashes Laputa’s weapon of mass destruction and a dormant robot army, and declares his plans to conquer the world. Horrified, Sheeta steals back the amulet and flees. She gives the amulet to Pazu through a gap in the wall but is cornered by a pursuing Muska in Laputa’s dilapidated throne room.

Sheeta rebukes Muska, also revealing the people of Laputa left because they realized that man was meant to live on earth. Undaunted, Muska threatens to kill her unless she gives him the amulet. Pazu asks to speak with her, and Muska grants them one minute. Sheeta and Pazu recite the Spell of Destruction, causing the castle to collapse and blinding Muska, who falls to his death while the children are protected by the tree roots. The core of Laputa and its ruins ascend, disappearing from view, as Pazu and Sheeta take the kite to rendezvous with the pirates before both groups part ways.

Amidst the end credits, Laputa is shown floating in stationary orbit above Earth, its crystal gleaming.

Castle in the Sky Review

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Another beautifully rendered Studio Ghilbi film that is a must watch. Entertaining on many levels and appropriate for the whole family.

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