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Young Jiro dreams of flying and designing beautiful airplanes. Nearsighted from a young age and thus unable to become a pilot, the grown up Jiro joins the aircraft division of a major Japanese engineering company in 1927. His genius is soon recognized, and he becomes one of the world's most accomplished airplane designers. (Based on a true story)

Review by Andrew L. Urban:
The revered anime director Hayao Miyazaki has paid a respectful tribute to one of Japan's great sons, Jiro Horikoshi, who engineered Japan's fabulously elegant and efficient fighter planes in World War II. So respectful is he that Jiro never ages, seemingly a perpetual 12 year old, at least in looks. His boyish face is largely without character, a constantly distracting element in a film where passengers on trains, his boss and villagers field allare presented with some degree of facial character.

The story is not intended for a family audience, being rather more concerned with meticulous detail about Jiro's development as an engineer. His ultimately tragic romance with Naoko provides the film's emotional driver, and that only late in the 2 hour movie, when his private misery coincides with his professional success.

The animation can be patchy, with some rather ordinary movement work, and the dialogue and action can be stilted. But these are not the elements that drag the film down for me; it's the fractured storytelling and absence of pace as well as the absence of tension in many scenes that are the disappointments.

On the up side, Miyazaki's legendary ability to invoke a sense of place and time is in full force, and some of the dream sequences benefit from imagination given free rein.

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(Japan, 2013)

Kaze tachinu

VOICES: Hideaki Anno, Miori Takimoto, Hidetoshi Nishijima, Zach Callison, Mirai Shida, Keiko Tekeshita. English dubbed voice cast: Joseph-Gordon Levitt, Emily Blunt, Jennifer Grey,[BREAK]Elijah Wood, Stanley Tucci, William H. Macy, Mandy Patinkin, Werner Herzog

PRODUCER: Toshio Suzuki

DIRECTOR: Hayao Miyazaki

SCRIPT: Hayao Miyazaki

MUSIC: Joe Hisaishi

RUNNING TIME: 126 minutes


AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: February 27, 2014

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