Howl's Moving Castle

2004 PG 1h 59m DVD

Howl's Moving Castle

2004 PG 1h 59m DVD
  • Overview
  • Details
Teenager Sophie works in her late father's hat shop in a humdrum town. But things get interesting when she's transformed into an elderly woman by the evil Witch of the Waste. Determined to reverse the spell, Sophie seeks the help of a wizard.
Emily Mortimer, Jean Simmons, Christian Bale, Billy Crystal, Lauren Bacall, Blythe Danner, Josh Hutcherson
Hayao Miyazaki
Widescreen 1.85:1
English: Dolby Digital 5.1, Japanese: Dolby Digital 5.1, French: Dolby Digital 5.1
PG - Some material may not be suitable for children. Parents urged to give parental guidance. May contain some material parents might not like for their young children.
age 8+
Common Sense rating OK for kids 8+
age 8+

Common Sense Note

Parents need to know that Howl's Moving Castle is a gorgeous animated fantasy that includes mildly scary images (featureless blob-men, wraithlike wizards, explosions, and background war scenes) and a couple of dark night scenes. There's a bit of peril, when main characters seem to be in danger or possibly injured. Its primary imagery is magical and whimsical, including the rather charming titular castle, which clatters and wheezes, walking on mechanical legs.

Sexual Content

Background chatter about romance; some romantic tension between central characters and discussion of being in love.


Explosions and war scenes (no bodies). Some potentially scary blob-men who chase after the main characters. Several moments of peril. One early scene where two soldiers intimidate and ogle the main female character.


A few colorful insults.

Social Behavior

There's a strong anti-war message running throughout. Kindness wins over cruelty and selfishness. Being old is not interpreted as a negative, but instead a state where one is wiser, more peaceful. Beauty is initially coveted, but ultimately becomes irrelevant.


Not applicable

Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol

A character smokes a cigar, which is called a "pleasure."

  • Age appropriate
  • Not an issue
  • Depends on your child and your family
  • Parents strongly cautioned
  • Not appropriate for kids of the age

This information for parents is provided by Common Sense Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving kids' media lives.

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