Rather formulaic for Miyazaki, but indicative of his love of planes. He is at his best when pushing the envelope instead of simply embracing the studio archetype. Nonetheless, this is disciplined, articulate narrative cinema with historical verve and a depth of creation representative of a master of the craft.
This is the kind of film Kurosawa used to make in between samurai films: deeply humane portraits of society's supporting players. The theme of trying to live one's life outside (or in spite of) a historical fissure aches with feeling—if this is a "kids' movie", it's the most morally complicated ever made. Miyazaki's animation is rich, taking history partway (but not too far) into fantasy. A masterpiece.
A tender, touching valediction from a master craftsman, The Wind Rises, like so much of Miyazaki's work, deals gently with fraught subject-matter, ruefully acknowledging the complicity of artists and other dreamers with those who would turn their unworldly dreams to all-too-worldly, deadly ends. The same wind that lifts us up crashes us back to earth, but not soaring is no option at all.
It’s to Miyazaki’s credit that despite making a film heavily set in the ‘real’ world, it’s as fantastical as the rest of his oeuvre. A fantasy rooted on mankind’s endless search for beauty. A deeply human swan song, in which the violence of men is but touched upon, while nature’s violence (sickness, earthquakes) is an opportunity for solidarity and love. This is how the world looks when you only wish to see beauty.
It's unreal what this man can do. Miyazaki can do no wrong. It's interesting that his final film is perhaps his strangest as it is the most deceptively simple. It's a biopic that serves as a tribute both to an astounding "artist" and to Japan itself. The final scene of his career is among his vert best. I shed tears not only as the story came to an end, but as one of cinema's greatest heroes bid farewell. Loved it.
Beautifully animated with a warm pallet in line with Ponyo, Wind Rises seeks to explore the rise and fall of life and creative energy by using the wind as it's metaphor. For the most part it succeeds, with some wonderful moments of lucidity and reflection only accessible with old age. It does lag tho in parts and several relationship scenes are repetitive without adding in development. 3.5 stars
"The wind is rising & I must live." If this truly is Hayao Miyazaki's final film, then he has bowed out with dignity and grace. THE WIND RISES, which chronicles the life of a young man who dreams of designing fast, beautiful airplanes, only to see them used as agents of death in the Japanese army during WWII, is a film of delicate, tremulous beauty. A breathtaking swan song from a cinematic grand master. A major work