I was lucky enough to be invited to a screener of Earwig and the Witch, and tardily release this review weeks after it released to what few cinemas could operate in this Covid infested world.
The movie is Studio Ghibli’s first 3D outing, and as such they had to put their best foot forward and convince us they could still create soul mendingly beautiful cinema even if it requires interfacing with a dehumanising machine first. Instead of doing that they took a half step with their gimpy leg and then called it a day.
Earwig is a girl who was abandoned at an orphanage as a baby by a redheaded witch being chased by some other witches.
Skipping years later Earwig is adopted by (shock horror) a witch, who takes her on as a servant. Earwig then spends the time in the movie attempting to unravel the mysteries of the house, gaining the upper-hand against her new parents, and just generally dicking around until the movie suddenly finishes midway through a cliff hanger scene.
Upon initially seeing the trailer for the film I wasn’t a fan of the 3D work they put in. But in the context of itself it actually really works. Earwig is one of the most expressive characters I’ve seen in a long time, and I was quickly won over. Leaving the movie I spent a lot of time gushing about the expressiveness. It’s unfortunate I spent the other half gobsmacked at the lack of an ending.
Matt, a professional with an opinion gave the movie a 5 out of 10 “cause that’s how much movie there was”.
It appears that the source material published posthumously by Diana Wynne Jones was in an equally unfinished state as this movie, so my expectations of any sort of sequel or diminished but not entirely dashed. Now let’s be clear, I enjoyed the time I had with this film. If it DOES get a sequel, that’d be incredible, sign me up for more. If it doesn’t then this might be the most bizarre trash Ghibli has ever released.
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