The Wind Rises

Hayao Miyazaki
Miyazaki has stated this is his farewell to full-length films. If so, it's an intoxicating blend of the familiar (aircraft and flying are key to many of his films, most deeply Laputa and Porco Rosso; reality blends into fantastical dreams as the protagonist who dreams of designing aircraft converses with an Italian designer) and the new - it is far more historically-based than any of his previous works and paints a vivid picture of inter-war Japan. Above all, it is an old master's film, recalling late masterpieces from The Tempest to Kurosawa's Ran. Horikoshi is haunted by the freedom offered by aircraft, journeying between dreams and reality; and by love iin his pursuit of Nahoko. The fragility and preciousness of life are emphasised at every stage in Horikoshi's journey from student to triumphant designer - not least in a stunning sequence set during the Tokyo earthquake. Full of meditative moments, it is about the magic that being human can make rather than magical people.
Might appeal to people who enjoyed: 
All or any of his other work, with the provisio that it is not a children's film - though mine aged 11 and 12 were immersed. Fans of traditional and beautiful hand-drawn animation.


We really enjoyed it, only seeing it by chance after a marathon three films the previous day. Agreed it's not a children's film but my ten year old loved it and had no trouble with the story.

and was quite taken with it. It was a bit odd, seeing it as an American, watching the story of the man who designed the Japanese Zero used so devastatingly against the U. S. Navy at Pearl Harbor, being portrayed as a great hero. But then, part of why we watch movies from other countries is to understand that people around the globe all have their own perspectives on history. This was probably my favorite of his films that I've seen.

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