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The Cat Returns - Studio Ghibli Fest 2024

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On her way home from school, Haru spots a cat with a small gift box in its mouth attempting to cross a busy street. The cat fumbles the package in the middle of the road, but Haru manages to scoop the cat away to safety before a truck can hit it. To her amazement, the cat then gets up on its hind legs, brushes itself off, and thanks her very politely. That night, a feline motorcade replete with vassals, maidens, and Secret Service cats shows up at Haru’s door with the King of Cats. In a show of gratitude for saving his son’s life, the King showers Haru with gifts and whisks her away to marry the cat prince and rule over their kingdom. In order to find her way back to the human world, Haru must turn to the mysterious Baron von Gikkingen for help.


  • Chizuru Ikewaki
  • Yoshihiko Hakamada
  • Aki Maeda
  • Takayuki Yamada
  • Hitomi Satô
  • Kenta Satoi
  • Mari Hamada
  • Tetsu Watanabe
  • Yôsuke Saitô
  • Kumiko Okae

Atom User Reviews

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Dec 3, 2019

As with much of Miyazaki’s own output, the film offers a winning heroine and a joyful dip into Japanese folklore, even if it does not stand up against the studios most celebrated works.

Metacritic review by Ben Nicholson
Ben Nicholson
Dec 3, 2019

The results are disappointingly conventional for a Ghibli film—the film is good-hearted, energetic, and full of Ghibli's characteristically beautiful hand-rendered animation, but it's also lightweight and hyper, with none of Miyazaki's more resonant themes.

Metacritic review by Tasha Robinson
Tasha Robinson
The A.V. Club