“All I wanted to do was to make something beautiful” – Jiro Horikoshi. His quote inspired Hayao Miyazaki to create what would perhaps be his final work before he retires from Studio Ghibli. This story is a combination of fictionalised biopic of Jiro Horikoshi and the novel ‘The Wind has Risen’ by Tatsuo Hori. With the famous Anime Filmmaker deciding this film as his last contribution to the world, will it be able to surpass all of our expectations, especially when compared with other gems from the same studio? Let’s analyse it!
The basic premise is based on Jiro Horikoshi, who since a young age has begun to envision himself building airplanes after he read about Giovanni Caproni. However, with his imperfect vision, he could not become a pilot and fly them. One day, he begins to dream and in his dream world, Caproni appears. Caproni inspires him through his own imagination and Jiro begins to embark on his mission to create the most beautiful plane ever. Along the way, he meets his future fiance, but illness and war will be the trial to his dedication to his passion and love.
In a word, this is indeed a Masterpiece! Hayao Miyazaki manages to transform a fictionalised biopic of a real person and combine it with another novel’s narrative to bring us this extremely compelling story. The Wind Rises feels organic, with each of its character and world seemingly alive and filled with human touches. The unique animation style of Studio Ghibli is very apparent here, with its usual magic still working wonderfully. I’m amazed at the main character, who seems like a nerd without much facial expression. Yet, his action, body languages and certain crucial scenes reveal his own humanity and emotions that are hidden deep inside his heart.
You can actually empathise with him and the other characters for they seem so natural. Each scene is also scripted organically and does not feel overdramatised. The wind becomes its own theme in subtle ways as Jiro pursues his passion. His dream world becomes his imagination that immerses us into his world deeply. Furthermore, the music employed is another masterpiece of their own. Each track evokes a certain emotion that is subtle yet grandeur. It creates a serene scene that hides a strong emotion, waiting to be unraveled as the story goes.