The Wind Rises Review

Yeah, I thought so too.

HIPsince1980

yoko_out

The Wind Rises comes loaded with the awareness that it is potentially the last film by the acclaimed Hayao Miyzaki. For the first time, he tackles a politically sensitive narrative, using a historical biography with sporadic fantasy elements to tell the story the story of Jiro, a young man who once dreamed of flying planes but – due to poor eyesight – settles on merely designing them.

The film is set in Japan during the run-up to World War II and follows Jiro as he closes in on the perfect design that will birth the infamous Zero fighter plane. While it has some terrific flourishes, the film merely touches on the moral quandary facing Jiro as he designs his plane; his single-minded purpose never really contrasts with their intended use.

A short trip to Germany is a missed opportunity, with only one eyecatching moment featuring violent, dancing, half-glanced shadows hinting…

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Godzilla Review

HIPsince1980

Godzilla - Mar 2014

This latest reboot of the legendary 1954 Japanese classic ‘Gojira’ has some big shoes to fill; the most recent attempt by cheese maestros Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin in 1998 was critically panned, a relative box office flop and ridiculed by Godzilla movies in Japan that followed it.

While this new movie isn’t the triumph many hoped it would be – hampered by a clunky script and acting that is sporadically less convincing than the original film’s effects – it still emerges as an exhilarating monster mash.

The film opens promisingly with the discovery of an ancient burial site and a nuclear melt down, told in a style that harkens back to classic Spielberg blockbuster Jurassic Park. Bryan Cranston, who is criminally underused later in the tale, grounds the film early on with an emotionally devastating reaction to an encounter with one of the – initially – unseen menaces. These…

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