The Tale of the Bamboo Princess, Kaguya-hime no Monogotari

  • Kaguya-hime no Monogatari is yet another work of art produced by Studio Ghibli. It was written and co-produced by Isao Takahata, a co-founder of Studio Ghibli. Derived from “The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter,” the film centers on the character of “Princess Kaguya” who was found by a bamboo cutter in the woods.

    Having no child and believing that she was of divine presence, he took her home to rear her with his wife.

    The Story

    Princess Kaguya, originally came from a bamboo shoot. She used to be a miniature girl who was transformed into a baby upon the touch of an old lady who then decided to raise her. She grew up as a happy child surrounded by happy people. She was just like any other kid but there was one thing that made her different from the rest. It seemed like she was growing very fast. People noticed it immediately, thus she earned the nickname “Takenoko” or “Little Bamboo” from the other children in the village. Nevertheless, her parents still called her “Princess” all throughout her life.

    One day, her father, Sanuki no Miyatsuko, found gold and fine cloth from the bamboo grove where he found his daughter. He then used these as an evidence for claiming Princess’ divine royalty. Everything started to change. They moved into the capital, leaving her friends behind. She found herself in a very beautiful mansion with servants and fine clothes. There was even a governess who was tasked to transform her into a noble woman.

    Princess was given a formal name of “Princess Kaguya” due to the light and life that radiates from her. She grew up so beautiful that many suitors from all over the land wanted to marry her, including the Emperor. He was so taken by her beauty that he offered several proposals but Princess Kaguya demonstrated her ability to disappear. With this, the Emperor understood that he was too forward and took his leave.

    In the end, Princess Kaguya revealed to her parents that she came from the moon and was about to go back. The story ends with an attendant draping a robe around Kaguya while ascending to the Moon. Kaguya is seen looking back at her parents with tears in her eyes and was assured that she’ll forget all of earth’s memories and impurities.

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