Breaking: LA Film Critics Name ‘The Tale of the Princess Kaguya’ Best Animated Film of 2014


The Los Angeles Film Critics Association have just named Isao Takahata’s The Tale of the Princess Kaguya as the top animated film of 2014. Their runner-up is The LEGO Movie.

Here is the official Twitter announcement of Kaguya’s win this afternoon.

If one pattern has emerged in 2014′s animated feature race, it’s that there is no pattern. Unlike last year, when critical consensus on the category centered around Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises, no animated feature has emerged as a frontrunner this year. That might be for the best too, since last year the Academy ignored the top critical choice, opting to honor the highest-grossing animation of the year, Frozen.

Here are the major award breakdowns so far:

The LEGO Movie (2 awards)
BAFTA Children’s Award
New York Film Critics Circle

The Tale of the Princess Kaguya (1 award)
LA Film Critics

How to Train Your Dragon 2 (1 award)
National Board of Review

For the record, the LA Film Critics honored the French film Ernest & Celestine as the best animated feature of 2013, and The Wind Rises as the runner-up. Both films went on to be nominated for the Academy Award.

  • Henry Cohn

    I’ve been wanting to see this for probably more than a year now and it still hasn’t set a release date for the UK. I’m not sure what the standards have been for other Ghibli films–this is the first one I’ve been truly keen on seeing–but it seems unlikely that they’ve given this little regard for the UK.

    • hellohue

      hey i saw your comment… you may or may not be pleased to know that Studio Canal (who handle Ghibli releases in the UK) have this pencilled in for a “Feb/March 2015″ cinema date. 17 months after the Japanese release. A bit of a piss take, even more so because by then it will be available to import on DVD/BD from Japan, US or Australia with subs and dubs. A shame, because I’d like to see it in the cinema first.

  • ea

    The Academy tends to ignore anime films not directed by Hayao Miyazaki.

    • Jessica Murlock

      … Did you even read the article? It states that “the critical consensus” for Best Animated Film was Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises. HOWEVER, The Academy, gave the Oscar to Frozen, a DISNEY flick, because it was the highest-grossing animated film that year. The Academy doesn’t always go with the critics’ opinions of a film.

      • KLA

        To be fair though, given its reviews, I’d say Frozen carried weigh with critics as well.

        • Jessica Murlock

          I’m not debating that, but one has to wonder if some of that was in part to the Frozen mania that surfaced after the movie came out.

  • George Comerci

    That’s good. It definitely deserves it.

  • Tres Swygert

    Awesome win for Studio Ghibli! And to be honest, the main three winners (Lego, Dragon, Princess) are worthy of the awards. It’ll be interesting to see when it’s the Annies and the Oscars.

  • William Bradford

    AWESOME. I’d have to watch both it and Song of the Sea again to decide which of the two i’d personally consider more worthy. BUT near enough that i’d be happy seeing either of them.

  • EverEndingStory

    Does anyone put any weight into the Animated Film Oscar?

    • Kusanagi

      I am sure there are some people who do.

  • AmidAmidi

    There’s A TON of awards at this time of year. We’re only tracking the ones that carry some level of industry legitimacy or are handed out by respected organizations.