This was a hard one. I wanted five examples for each category at first but changed my goal into three when I noticed that five would never happen (and I still needed months). My main problem was that my definition of Mori mixes with my definition of Lolita quite a lot, so most of the things I could think of were ones that I have mentioned before.
10 – what are your favorite books? do you think they’re mori or not?
- The Brambly Hedge by books by Jill Barklem are some of my all-time favourites and something I’d call mori, even though they are quite something for Lolita, too. The stories are so full with mice and candied violets and houses in trees and picnics, they have to be mori!
- Life on Seacrow Island by Astrid Lindgren is less wood and more sea, but I’d nevertheless call it a mori-able book.
- The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, another one I’ll always love. I’d even go as far as to say that one could see Mary Lennox as the original Mori Girl, even though nobody knew back then.
11 – name 3 of your favorite mori girl style songs or musicians, even if they’re not explicitly “mori.”
Is there actually music that is “explicitly mori”?
- Loreena McKennitt, one of my favourite artists ever. I seem to mention her here often, I fear, but I simply love her.
- Patrick Wolf, who sees himself in some sort of Irish bardic tradition. My favourite piece of his music is The Tinderbox.
- Blanche, a Southern Gothic inspired alternative country band. I discovered them by luck some years ago and have taken a liking to their haunting style. I especially like this recording of their So long cruel World.
12 – What films, if any, inspire your mori girl look and life?
One thing I read about Mori rather often was that the character Hagu from Honey & Clover was kind of “the original” Mori Girl. Which is a little bit confusing as there are not only the initial manga and anime, but also a live-action film adaption and not only one but two additional live-action dramas, one from Japan and one from Taiwan.
As most dramas are rather unnerving I watched the anime, and I even noticed that I had started reading the manga some years ago.
Hagu ist nothing of a Mori Girl. At least not the original Hagu. She’s a 18-year old that looks and acts like a (rather annoying and sociopath) 9-year old. Actually, this character managed to ruin the entire – otherwise quite fun and absurd – anime for me. I dare say I was rather baffled, if not disappointed, and didn’t even make the attempt to watch further that the fist two episodes. Maybe it gets better later, but if a series can’t get me with the first two episodes, it’s simply not for me. She might be a Mori Girl in one of the live-action adaptions after all that I’ve seen from clips, though.
So much for my two pennies worth on one of the Mori Girl moving picture staples, sorry for the bit of bitterness. But now: on to the list!
- My Neighbor Totoro is so centered about woodland spirits that it was the first one that sprung to mind.
- Chocolat, one of the rare occasions that I liked the film even though it differed from the book. The atmosphere of the story is lovely, the costumes are wonderful and I always like things related to patîsseries and chocolateries.
- The Secret Garden, again. Even though I only advise you to watch it if you’ve read the book, as they mixed it up a little.