The Castle of Cagliostro

The Castle of Cagliostro (Japanese: ルパン三世 カリオストロの城 Hepburn: Rupan Sansei: Kariosutoro no Shiro, Lupin the Third: Castle of Cagliostro) is a 1979 Japanese animated adventure comedy film co-written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki in his feature-length directorial debut. It is the second film featuring Monkey Punch's master thief Arsène Lupin III, from his manga series Lupin III. The film was Miyazaki's first time directing a theatrical feature after having previously worked as an animator for Toei Animation and TMS Entertainment and directing several shows including Lupin III and two episodes of Lupin III Part II.

In the twilight of his career, Lupin III's latest and greatest caper has hit a snag. What should've been bags of cash from a national casino turns out to be expert counterfeits! Together with his partner-in-crime Jigen, Lupin heads to the remote European nation of Cagliostro to exact revenge. Not everything goes as planned; the two encounter Clarisse, a royal damsel in distress being forced to marry the sinister Count Cagliostro against her will. Saving her won't be easy, however, as Lupin and Jigen -- together with Lupin's unpredictable ex-girlfriend Fujiko and the swordsman Goemon -- must fight their way through a trap-filled castle, a deadly dungeon, and an army of professional assassins! Can Lupin rescue the girl, evade the cuffs of his long-time nemesis Inspector Zenigata, and uncover the secret treasures of The Castle of Cagliostro?

Information courtesy of Wikipedia and synopsis courtesty of Discotek Media!

The Gang

Arsene Lupin III

The grandson of the legendary French thief of the same name, Arsene Lupin III always gets what he's after. After lifting millions in counterfeit bills from the National Casino, he travells to the remote country of Cagliostro to seek the source of the counterfeiting operation, but finds himself in a royal bind upon arrival.

Daisuke Jigen

One of the world's fastest gunmen, Daisuke Jigen is Lupin's right-hand man and the most relied upon member of the gang. He travels to Cagliostro alongside Lupin, and quickly finds that his sharpshooting skills prove valuable in dispatching the goons sent to stop them from investigating the royal family.

Fujiko Mine

Initially stationed in Cagliostro on a recon job unrelated to Lupin's endeavors, Fujiko Mine found herself posing as an aide to the royal family in an attempt to steal their riches for herself. Once Lupin arrives on the scene, she opts to help him out with insider information from the castle, among other things.

Goemon Ishikawa XIII

Goemon Ishikawa XIII comes to Cagliostro after being called for by Lupin. A dedicated samurai from the heart of Japan, Goemon wields his invincible Zantetsuken katana, with which he can slice through anything. Unfortunately, he finds himself on lookout duty for a majority of the heist.

The Supporting Cast

Inspector Koichi Zenigata

As tireless as he is foolhardy, Inspector Zenigata is an Interpol officer who has made it his life's mission to put Lupin behind bars. Initially summoned to Cagliostro at the Count's behest to deal with Lupin, he soon finds himself in well over his head as he begins to uncover the terrible secrets of the royal family.

Lady Clarisse D'Cagliostro

The sole survivor of a terrible fire, Lady Clarisse D'Cagliostro is the heir apparent to the throne of Cagliostro. However, being just a child, she was instead sent off to a nunnery, while the Count acted as interim regent. Upon her return, she finds herself at odds with the Count and his men, and draws Lupin and Jigen in to the conflict by happenstance.

The Count of Cagliostro

Serving as the acting ruler of Cagliostro while Clarisse was away, The Count of Cagliostro is a lecherous man of peerless ambition. He uses force to arrange for Clarisse to marry him, in a bid to give his reign legitimacy. His threatening demeanor and ruthless tactics put him at odds with Lupin and the gang, as they try to uncover the secrets that he works to bury.


The film's Japanese theatrical release was on 15 December 1979, and began screen testing in North America in the following year. Unfortunately, many of these screenings were not well-attended, as many Americans expected the film to be a light-hearted children's story, much like pevious animated works from Disney. As such, few bothered to make the trip to go see it.

In 1991, the film made its theatrical debut in America, featuring an English voice dub by Streamline pictures. This dub features a couple of localization changes (most notably, Lupin III is renamed 'The Wolf'), and gruffs up the dialogue a bit more to make the gang seem more hard-boiled. This version of the film saw home release the following year.

In 2000, the film was dubbed in English for a second time, this time by Manga Video. This version followed the original Japanese script more closely, and corrected the localization changes made in the previous dub.

In honor of the film's 35th anniversary, Discotek Media acquired the license to the film, and put together a Blu-Ray/DVD home release of the film, which sports the following features:

You can buy the Blu-Ray or DVD edition of the film here!