I don’t watch anime movies very often, but when I do I just love them. I’m sure there are many studios out there, but one of the most beloved ones, both abroad and in Japan (especially in Japan) is Studio Ghibli. As soon as Studio Ghibli releases a movie, movie theaters get packed and discount tickets sell out quickly. A few days ago I went to one of my favorite cinemas, Wald9 (here’s an old post about my favorite movie theaters http://ameblo.jp/chappe-town/entry-11293511798.html), and watched their latest release: Kaze Tachinu, which translates as “Wind is Rising” or “The Wind Rises”.
This movie is based in between 1905-1940, a time in which Japan militarization reached its peak, Tokyo was struck by the disastrous Kanto earthquake and, well, as we all know, Japan joined World War II. I would say this is an unusual setting for a movie, but the war topic isn’t the main one.
As it’s usual in Ghibli movies, every background is very detailed. If you’ve read books or watched other movies based on the same period, you will notice how accurate the settings in the movie are. Nagoya station, the countryside, the big fire after the earthquake, everything looks very real and I’m sure most Japanese people would agree.
As for the story, well, it is a fictional biography of Jiro Horikoshi, a Japanese engineer who became a very notorious character during WWII because of his plane designs. Of course, we’re talking about fighters, not regular planes. However, as I said before, they don’t really focus on the war ambitions on Japan, but just on Jiro’s personal ambitions and dreams of designing the most beautiful planes in history. Sadly, his most famous design, the Mitsubishi A6M Zero fighter was the most advance air war-craft when it was first introduced.
It’s a hard time for Japan to talk anything about WWII. As you know, tensions among China, Korea and Japan have been a big issue this year, but, I honestly believe that this movie doesn’t really relate to the reasons why Japan joined the war or anything, but instead, shows a neutral point of view from people who didn’t start the war after all. It is worth watching and I won’t say much about the plot since I don’t want to spoil it for you guys!
Long time ago, I wrote a brief post about my experiences watching Ghibli movies. Check it out. Makes me feel nostalgic even though it was 7 months ago, hehe. http://ameblo.jp/okonomiyaki-chappe/entry-11450460966.html