If we were living in a parallel world, and My Neighbor Totoro were an American film, this scene would’ve turned out very differently. Scratch that, this scene would never have been animated, drawn, or even concepted in the first place.
After all, it does seem a little silly on paper: two young girls expose a magical forest creature to the joy of listening to raindrops hitting an umbrella. But in the hands of a master like Hayao Miyazaki, the simple scene is filled with boundless creativity, joy, and a child-like wonder at the simplest and seemingly most mundane of things.
For my money, this is one of the most important scenes in cinema history ever.