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Movies, dining and things to do / Spokane and North Idaho

Studio Ghibli Fest 2018 shows ‘The Cat Returns’

Cat fans take note: Another animated feature from Japan, "The Cat Returns," will screen on Sunday, Monday and on April 25 at two area theaters: Regal's Northtown Mall 12 and the Coeur d'Alene Riverstone Stadium 14.

The 2002 film, which was directed by Hiroyuki Morita, is part of the ongoing Studio Ghibli Fest 2018. As lovers of animation know, Studio Ghibli is the home of the great Hayao Miyazaki, creator of such classics as "Princess Mononoke" and "Spirited Away," and Morita is one of Miyazaki's students.

"The Cat Returns" tells the story of a young girl who, after helping a cat, finds herself betrothed to a cat prince. To escape, she has to rely on a cat statuette, clad in top hat and tails, who comes to life.

Here's what Michael Booth of the Denver Post has to say about the film: "(Director) Morita has a slightly cruder, more realistic sense of the world and its looniness than does Miyazaki, and you can see where 'The Cat Returns' moves on a different track even as it pays homage to Japan’s current animation master."

A dubbed version of the film will screen at 12:55 on Sunday and at 7 p.m. on April 25, while a subtitled version will screen at 7 p.m. Monday. Ticket information is readily available on the theater websites.

Don't forget to bring along some kitty treats.