What was your first Hayao Miyazaki movie?

Created by KylevT on May 8, 2015, 7:40 p.m.
  • Back in South Africa my mom used to pick up movies for me from the local rental store, one day she brought home an animation called "Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind". This was back in '88 and I was 7 at the time.

    I think she just thought it was a regular children's cartoon but the imagery and story of that movie has stuck with me all these years. Now some 27 years later I just saw it again, the first time since then and I remembered every element in detail.

    I'm not sure I could choose a favorite Miyazaki movie but Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind certainly ranks up there with my fondest childhood memories.

  • I must add back then it was just subtitled, watching it again in English was a treat especially with the level of voice acting brought in for it.

  • It was Pom Poko only a couple of years ago and I am not going to forget that in a hurry!

  • That's really cool... mine is the same film... except that I saw it on HBO (cable television) when I was too young to understand things like Director or Writer. I didn't even know what the film was called and there was no Anime business/culture to go find it in my area. Not until the mid-late 1990s, when I could "alta vista" search for "girl flying red eyed bugs" over dial up modem, did I learn the name of it... someone had a Nausicaa fan site. And not until an Anime convention in circa 1999 did i see it again. Blew me away all over again. I cannot prove it but I think it is more than 'just film', Miyazaki affected my world view. That movie's themes today are as relevant as ever.

    I love it when they talk about Miyazaki on the podcasts, I have learned new things just from listening to them talk about his work.

  • believe it or not, i have thought long about this, and i truly don't remember. which is all kinds of crazy and heretic! i have no trouble telling which is my favourite (porco rosso) or my first exposition to princess mononoke (watching snips of a japanese-only bootleg at my friend's house, his father translating for us), but i have a hard time thinking of which was my first.

    but then, i am pretty sure that once that first spark was lit, i went to consume everything i could get my hands on in no time. so maybe it was that exposition to a lot of miyazaki in a rather short time frame that clouds my mind.

    kyle, i find it interesting that you see it as "just subtitled" – the numerically negligible outliers like nausicaa aside, i find the dubbing often so dreadful (it's bad enough in english, and even worse in german. bless everyone who doesn't know enough german to grasp the amount of unnecessarily stilted translation coupled with unenthusiastic reading and mispronounced names) that i much prefer getting the dramatic performance aspect of the original, and the meaning in subtitles.

  • @KylevT: yes, for when you're young, i totally see that. :)

    but having witnessed german dubs, i am fairly sure you can see where i'm coming from as well.

  • Kiki's Delivery Service, no subtitling or dubbing, at a con.

  • I just saw Arrietty and I must say its a lovely movie.

    I was already familiar with the Borrowers story from the '92 BBC live action mini series, which was also great. But the Ghibli touch was brilliant not to mention the soundtrack.

    In the Makers forum we were talking about the wealth of possible props to make in the series Warehouse 13, but the world of the Borrowers is equally full of tiny prop ideas.

  • I am a bit ashamed to say I have never seen a single one. Where should i start. Porco Roso?

  • @StephenWestervelt: ohhh hard choice, I don't believe there is a good or wrong place to start the movies he either directed or wrote... Porco Roso is diffiently a good one, so would be Spirited Away and for me Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind.

    Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind is a triple hitter for me because not only did he direct and write the story but its based on the manga of the same name that he wrote. So it his baby from start to finish ;)

    But then again I might be biased for that particular movie...

  • @StephenWestervelt: i bet you could ask n+x people that, for n = number of miyazaki films, and get n+x answers.

    porco rosso is my complete favourite, but i'm not sure it's the one i'd start with. probably because it's not just miyazaki making a great film, but also indulging in a topic he loves. i think of seeing one first where he "just" makes a great film as the safer route.

    don't worry, there are enough of his idiosyncrasies that seep into everything he touches anyway, so you're not missing out on miyazaki-ness. he does have a bit of an obsession with planes, though, and while he makes sure to put in quirky/memorable ones whenever he gets a chance, porco rosso is his amazing planes film. so i guess it's "neater" to see signs of his obsession first, and then see porco rosso.

    @KylevT is probably right, there is no real bad one to start with that ruins everything. i guess i'd start with princess mononoke or nausicaä if you feel like watching something with an environmentalist theme. (nausicaa feels delightfully 80s and has a solid quality english dub available) castle in the sky is more adventure-story-ish, kiki's delivery service more coming-of-age. all have atmospheres you just want to get lost in.

    make sure you watch OV with subtitles where possible. ;) have fun and report back please!

  • @KylevT: I have seen kikis delivery service when I was a kid. Man that was a crazy flash of a flashback when i saw the clip.

    I watched the Disney translation as a kid so much.

  • That's a surprisingly difficult question. I want to say Princess Mononoke but more than likely it was Kiki's Delivery Service on VHS. Sadly I haven't seen many of the newer ones. I need to catch back up with his Filmography

  • Princess Mononoke , in the theaters, though unfortunately it was a dubbed released, but still very very good

  • Totoro pretty sure it was in Japanese, without subtitles, as a little kid. Probably would not have been able to read, or at least not fast enough, even if there had been subtitles. We loved it anyways.


  • @KylevT said:

    Back in South Africa my mom used to pick up movies for me from the local rental store, one day she brought home an animation called "Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind". This was back in '88 and I was 7 at the time.

    I think she just thought it was a regular children's cartoon but the imagery and story of that movie has stuck with me all these years. Now some 27 years later I just saw it again, the first time since then and I remembered every element in detail.

    I'm not sure I could choose a favorite Miyazaki movie but Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind certainly ranks up there with my fondest childhood memories.

    Dude

    I just saw Nausicaa in Theatre thanks to Fathom Events + etc.

    There were some 20 something kids next to me, first time viewers, and they started crying... there is something immensely deep about a movie that can deeply affect you in viewings 15 years apart from each other....

    Yes. I like Star Wars, I enjoy it, I think The Martian is cool..... all the dystopias and all the war hero films are all interesting ....

    but in my deepest heart of hearts, I believe in Nausicaa.

    the little scientist girl who spends her time exploring nature and understanding the world, so that she can save us from our own destruction... our own ignorance really. there is this inextinguishable little tiny lightbulb inside my brain that will always feel like that is the right thing, that is what civilization is and what our species really is when it is at its best. not blowing things up, but understanding things enough so we dont need to blow them up in the first place.

    you could almost say it is an allegory for what is going on with fossil fuels, the death of honeybees, fracking + wastewater earthquakes, whatever.