A forlorn castaway who just has the sea, birds, crabs and turtles for company, finds love unexpectedly on a deserted island.
Running Time:
80 min
Release date:
18 May 2016
Directed by:
Michael Dudok de Wit
Produced by:
Pascal Caucheteux
Vincent Maraval
Grégoire Sorlat
Toshio Suzuki
Written by:
Michael Dudok de Wit
Pascale Ferran
Music by:
Laurent Perez Del Mar
Shot by:
Editing by:
Céline Kélépikis
Distributed by:
Wild Bunch (France)
Lumière (Belgium)
Toho (Japan)
Sony Pictures Classics (United States)

What’s Hot

  • The film has no dialogues and relies on the sounds of water, wind and birds and the occasional strains of Laurent Perez del Mar’s graceful score. Yet it has this strange quality like any Ghibli film of pulling the viewer into submitting to the magical realism on show.
  • As ever the animation is exquisite with the scenes in the dark and when the protagonist has hallucinations transporting us into a serene space. The evocative expressions on the faces of the 3 characters, fabulous landscape overlooking the sea, and the tiny gestures the humans make toward one another and the sea creatures that share their island home,have been captured vividly.
  • The films explores multiple themes of pain, yearning, rage, guilt and love. The fact that the filmmaker Michael Dudok de Wit has been quite successful in conveying all these emotions without dialogues speaks volumes about the making and the staging.

What’s Not

  • The film has a simple plot and meanders along leisurely. So it requires a good level of patience to sit through and allow oneself to be immersed into the subject.


Sound Design


Verdict Stamp

The Red Turtle takes you on a journey where even the desolate places and depressing circumstances are overcome by love in the most magical fashion possible. Studio Ghibli have lived up to the high standards once again with this thoroughly disarming fairy tale.