DRAMATIS PERSONAEHowl, the shameless coward, full of vanity and secret cares.Sophie, the cranky old woman, unnaturally aged.Calcifer, the fire demon, at the heart of the castle.Michael, the ever faithful apprentice and friend.Witch of the Waste, wicked, heartless, and cruel.
SETTINGCastle here.Castle there.Castle there, too.Castle ever moving and stationary.And, Wales.Miyazaki’s film diverges significantly from mid-story to the end, deflating the Witch into a doddering old fool. Miyazaki adds his magic touch—whimsical air machines, his wonderfully creepy blob monsters, and a fantastic walking steampunk castle. Diana Wynne Jones’ tale is more familiar and in some ways more satisfying. Both charm and delight.