Kernel Rating (out of 5):
MPAA Rating: PG-13 Length: 126 minutes
Age Appropriate For: 13+. Like a fair amount of Studio Ghibli movies, although this film is animated, that doesn’t make it appropriate for young children. Instead, this film will better work for teenagers who can appreciate its themes about increasingly senseless violence during wartime, the pressures of long-distance love, and the seriousness of fatal illness. Various characters die, the threat of war lingers, and there are discussions about cultural output. Lots of fodder for parent-and-teen discussions here, but it’s not a children’s film.
Studio Ghibli mastermind Hayao Miyazaki may be delivering his final film with ‘The Wind Rises,’ a fictional biography of Japanese aeronautical engineer Jiro Horikoshi, who designed fighter planes during World War II. Although not nearly as fantastical as previous Studio Ghibli films, the emotions here are very real.
By Roxana Hadadi
Not all Studio Ghibli films have to be tinged with fantasy and the supernatural, although some of the Japanese movie studio’s most famous films—“Spirited Away,” “Princess Mononoke,” “Arrietty” (retitled “The Secret World of Arrietty” for American release)—certainly are. But then there are the ones that deal strictly in the human world, like last year’s “From Up on Poppy Hill” and this week’s release, “The Wind Rises,” and you realize that Studio Ghibli may portray layers of human emotion more effectively than any other animation studio out there. For subtle introspection, you can’t beat a film as inwardly looking as “The Wind Rises.”