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A simple young girl called Sophie is put under a curse by the evil Witch Of The Waste, transforming her into an ugly old woman. Ashamed of her appearance, Sophie deserts her hat shop and heads into the hills in search of a cure. She comes across the strange, yet awesome Moving Castle, the abode of the much-feared magician, Howl. Inside the castle, Sophie befriends the fire demon Calcifer, who can see through the spell and offers to help her return to her natural form. For his efforts, however, Sophie must help Calcifer break the contract he has with Howl, the details of which he is forbidden to explain. So Sophie assumes the position of the castle's cleaning lady and gets close to the young, handsome Howl, who takes a fancy to the young Sophie, whom he can also see behind her withered facade.