Kaze tachinu (The Wind Rises)
Autumn 2014 Features series
Sunday, December 7, 2014 at 4:00pm
Sunday, December 7, 2014 at 7:00pm
Directed by Hayao Miyazaki
Screenplay by Hayao Miyazaki and Mike Jones
Based on the short story by Tatsuo Hori
Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Emily Blunt, and John Krasinski
Rated G ·
Japanese, French, Italian, and German
Kaze Tachinu (The Wind Rises)
Nominated for the 2014 Oscar for best Animated Feature, The Wind Rises is Japanese Academy Award Winner Hayao Miyazaki’s (Spirited Away) latest film and, as the director announced, also his last. Animated in the distinctive, delicate and detailed anime style, the film deals with challenging historical events and presents them in a creative yet respectful way.
The Wind Rises portrays the life of the man who designed Japanese fighter planes during World War II, real-life engineer Jiro Horikoshi. It is based on the 1930s short story, The Wind Has Risen by poet and writer Tatsuo Hori and is also said to have been inspired by a quote from Jiro Horikoshi himself: “All I wanted to do was to make something beautiful.”
Inspired by the famous Italian aeronautical designer Caproni (voice of Stanley Tucci), Jiro (voice of Joseph Gordon-Levitt) dreams of flying and designing beautiful airplanes. Nearsighted from a young age and unable to be a pilot, he joins a major Japanese engineering company in 1927 and becomes one of the world’s most innovative and accomplished airplane designers, earning the respect of prominent industry greats, including Hattori (voice of Mandy Patinkin) and Kurokawa (voice of Martin Short).
The film chronicles much of Jiro’s life, depicting key historical events, including the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923, the Great Depression, the tuberculosis epidemic and Japan’s plunge into war. Jiro meets and falls in love with Nahoko Satomi (voice of Emily Blunt), and grows and cherishes his friendship with his colleague Honjo (voice of John Krasinski).
Writer and director Hayao Miyazaki pays tribute to engineer Jiro Horikoshi and author Tatsuo Hori in this epic tale of love, perseverance, and the challenges of living and making choices in a turbulent world.
“The film is visually sumptuous, morally ambiguous, dramatic and dreamlike, with a narrative as engrossing as any live-action movie of 2013. It’s easy to follow yet hard to shake.” (Lawrence Toppman, Charlotte Observer)
“Miyazaki is at the peak of his visual craftsmanship here, alternating lush, boldly colored rural vistas with epic, crowded urban canvases, soaring aerial perspectives and test flights both majestic and ill-fated.” (Scott Foundas, Variety)
“A work of immense mystery and strangeness, loaded with unforgettable images, spectacular sweeps of color and nested, hidden meanings. It feels to me like a meditative epic about Japan’s traumatic journey into modernity, and a complicated allegory about the innocence, arrogance and culpability of artists. It’s one of the most beautiful animated films ever made, and something close to a masterpiece.” (Andrew O’Hehir, Salon.com)