The Wind Rises

A lifelong love of flight inspires Japanese aviation engineer Jiro Horikoshi, whose storied career includes the creation of the A-6M World War II fighter plane.


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  • ★★★★½ review by Matt Singer on Letterboxd

    "Humanity dreams of flight, but the dream is cursed. Aircraft are destined to become tools for slaughter and destruction."

    I'm not a Miyazai expert. I still haven't seen several of his early films, and I've been pretty mixed on most of his recent stuff. But I thought this was an absolute masterpiece about how the perfection we seek to achieve in life is only really attainable in dreams -- or, on rare occasions, in art.

  • ★★★★½ review by SilentDawn on Letterboxd


    Like Kubrick, Welles, Ford, Malick, and many other capital-G Great directors, you'd be hard pressed to come to an agreement on Miyazaki's finest film. They're all so aching with feeling - a universal past laced with eventual adulthood and the unbearable beauty of fantasy - but each singular in voice and tone. Everyone has a favorite, and in the case of The Wind Rises, the highest compliment that I could give it is that, one day, it could be MY Miyazaki; a film swept up by elemental pleasures and a haunting depiction of the passage of time that borders on the ethereal. It dances with the wind, building an evocative and gentle romance, which is almost Sirkian, around a complex study of the dreams we have and where they lead. Its lyrical pleasures climb towards a final scene, a piece engrained in the panethon of whispered love, to which we should bow to.

  • ★★★★★ review by davidehrlich on Letterboxd

    (or "Jiro Dreams of Mitsubishi")... unspeakably beautiful & bittersweet. Miyazaki may have saved the best for last.

    major looooolz to any critic who thinks the film brushes over the destructive ends to which the planes Jiro created are used.

    full review tk.

  • ★★★★ review by Evan on Letterboxd

    If this is in fact Miyazaki's last film, he certainly went out on a high note. While I don't find The Wind Rises to be one of his best films, it is still very good. If you've never experienced on of his films before, I truly feel sorry for you. Hayao Miyazaki is the best animated director of all time. An absolute mastermind!

  • ★★★★★ review by davidehrlich on Letterboxd

    “The wind is rising! We must try to live.” – Valéry

    Legendary filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki needn’t have formally announced his retirement for it to be abundantly clear that his latest feature would also be his last. While the cinema’s most revered animator confirmed on September 6th that he intends to put down his pencil once and for all, “The Wind Rises” is such a magnificently lucid summation of Miyazaki’s fierce humanism and singular genius that the film itself serves as a formal farewell.

    The only Miyazaki film since his debut (1979’s brilliant Lupin III adventure, “The Castle of Cagliostro”) not to prominently feature magic, “The Wind Rises” is the wistful work of a man whose consideration of the past belies an overwhelming concern for the future. A classic three-hankie melodrama folded into a biopic, this heavily fictionalized portrait of renowned airplane engineer Jiro Horikoshi – the man credited with designing the A6M Zero fighter that Japanese forces used to attack Pearl Harbor – ultimately resolves as a bittersweet yet breathtaking reflection on beauty in the face of its inevitable decay.

    We first meet Jiro in his dreams. A young boy living in rural Japan at the dawn of the twentieth century, Jiro’s unconscious mind is compelled by visions of building a bird-like flying machine and soaring over his small town as the locals look up with awe. These ecstatic reveries, however, invariably rot into nightmares, invaded by monstrous zeppelins that drop living bombs onto the houses and rice fields below as little Jiro is suspended in his airplane, helpless to stop the destruction.


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