Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind


Adventure / Animation / Fantasy / Sci-Fi


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
April 14, 2020 at 10:25 AM



Mark Hamill as Mayor of Pejite
Shia LaBeouf as Asbel
Uma Thurman as Kushana
Patrick Stewart as Lord Yupa
1.05 GB
Japanese 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 57 min
P/S 5 / 98

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by GDC 10 / 10

A masterpiece, if you can find the real version

First off, let me state emphatically that I'm referring to the REAL version of the film, not the pathetic crippled creature distributed as "Warriors of the Wind" on video. Although I must admit that I first fell in love with the movie in that form, I have now seen the full subtitled version, and I place a hideous curse on those who hacked over 20 minutes from its running time.

Although the incredible "Princess Mononoke" later upstaged this early work in terms of art and detail, in many ways I still prefer "Nausicaa". Its imaginitive and well-conceived world puts me in mind of Dune with its feuding factions, its giant creatures, and its strong ecological message. Even with a rather long running time, the story moves very briskly (boiled down as it was from a very lengthy manga series). The music deserves special mention, as well, as it is a large step up from the electronic pop stylings of most anime.

If you can get your hands on a copy of the original version, you'll find it more than worth the effort.

Reviewed by ElMaruecan82 10 / 10

If Miyazaki had made that film only, his legacy would have been the same...

The name of Nausicaä belongs to Greek mythology; she was the Princess who saved Ulysses from drowning. And the "Valley of the Winds" was loosely inspired from the tragedy of Minimata Bay and the way it maintained its ecosystem viable despite the pollution. "Nausicaä of the Valley of the Winds" finds the perfect balance between the theme of nature always finding its way and the dramatic struggle of a heroine saving humanity from "drowning" in belligerent wickedness.

I'm mentioning Minimata but the tragedy of Fukushima could have inspired a similar intuition that technological advances could only lead to the downfall of humanity inasmuch as men continue to display the same carelessness and arrogance. In his "Nausicaä", Hayao Miyazaki doesn't warn us but rather confronts us to a plausible future, a future with a few survivors driven to the last corners of Earth where wind and water prevented a toxic jungle name Fukaï from spreading.

The film, all in visual splendor, displays the usual Sci-fi and Fantasy archetypes but they don't distract from the environmentalist and pacifist message. We accept them in the sense that the story is set one thousand years after the apocalypse and we expect technology to have produced jet-propelled gliders and flying vessels. But the film also has a Renaissance look à la "Princess Mononoke", it's not an artistic license, the privileged people of the Valley represent a wiser side of humanity that got back to the roots, acknowledging the eminence of nature, a renaissance indeed.

They live in an oasis-like area where the air is breathable, outside; they must wear a gas mask, accentuating the dystopian look even within a natural setting. The hostility of nature is symbolized by giant mutant insects and the Ohm, armored trilobite-like insects whose eyes turn to an ominous red whenever they feel threatened. But Miyazaki never lets us get the wrong idea about these Ohm, understand they're not the most life-threatening creatures out there.

There's a key scene right in the beginning where a little fox-like creature bites Nausicaä, she patiently keeps her finger until its frenzy fades out and then the animal licks her wound. This moment is pivotal because it highlights the real tragedy that caused men's downfall, not violent actions but immediate assumptions of violence causing bad reactions. Only Nausicaä is capable of showing mercy and empathy toward any living creature, she challenges all the common conceptions and even tries to understand the place she lives in, which is the epitome of wisdom.

From the spores taken during regular expedition, she discovers in her laboratory that plants are capable of producing air, later in the film that some jungle plants purify the polluted topsoil and produce clean water. In other words, life always finds a way but humans can't see it. Nausicaä becomes the messianic character that will open the eyes of humanity, and as truth can be stranger than fiction, she's also a pivotal moment in Miyazaki's career, as the first film to have emerged from the fertile soil of his own imagination.

Nausicaä foreshadows all the elements that will define his work: the independent free-spirited heroine, the aerial settings and the environmental and anti-war messages, and more than that, the revolutionary notion that you don't need villains to make a story. Everyone is imperfect and fallible, even the most violent attacks are meant as defensive moves or precautions. The film contains a lot of action, lethal explosions and battles, people die by the sword, including Nausicaä's but Miyazaki couldn't have been more pacifists, every detail says in subtext that violence isn't the answer.

Indeed, how can the cause of the trouble ever be the solution? Miyazaki, a master storyteller, delivers crucial information even in the most unnoticeable moments, even the opening credits show through Roman mosaic and medieval tapestry the fate of the modern world. Seven giants launching immense fire blasts (metaphor for nuclear power?) into modern buildings, it's just as if Hiroshima was depicted like the Pompeii eruption. But what is the tragedy exactly, that history taught men a lesson or that men didn't learn it?

Nausicaä is set at a time that looks like a second chance but people are still fighting for good or bad reasons, from a sword master and father-figure named Lord Yupa, a young Pejite interceptor who respects Nausicaä's actions and the Tolmekian queen who (like Lady Eboshi from "Mononoke") is perhaps the tumultuous counterpart to Nausicaä, mutilated by the creatures, she believes in violence as the language of the force, illustrating its dangerously communicative effect, the never-ending spiral that killed the world… or that might lead to a third worldwide conflict.

And in the midst of nihilistic violence and desolation, Nausicca emerges as a beautifully inspirational heroine. There's a hypnotic flashback (with a so-catchy playful tone) where Nausicaä's father kills a baby Ohm, on the basis that human and insects can't live together. The whole conviction of Nausicaä is that every creature has its place on Earth; it's not just about empathy but the unshakable faith on Nature's equilibrium. It is very significant that the most beautiful images from the film, all in golden yellow, are provided by the Ohm's tentacles, weren't they supposed to be the ugly monsters?

Yet, at the time of its release, the film was badly edited for foreign audiences and lost into translation to become some Manga adventure in the air, and the Ohm were indeed hostile creatures. It's just as if Miyazaki was ahead of his time and it would take one decade and half before people would come back to their senses and realize that this isn't "Flash Gordon". Nausicaä is about conviction and goodness, pacifism and environmentalism deprived from any political innuendo.

Miyazaki drew the original Manga so the film could be made, showcasing as much confidence as his heroine. In a way, Miyazaki was the Nausicaä of animation, a man with a vision, spirit and guts.

Reviewed by TanjBennett 10 / 10

loyalty, bravery, and adventure after an apocalypse

This was the film which introduced me (and many others in the 1980s) to Miyazake, and even in the form of a poor quality VHS on an ordinary TV, it was amazing. By 1984 Miyazake was already well known in Japan for his anime work in film, TV, and for the comic strip that this film was based upon.

In this early full length film he really got to spread his wings. There are fantastic aerial sequences like the jet-glider evading the flying snakes, which (this predates computed 3D, and aerial sequences are present in most of his work) are just a tour-de-force of imagination and geometry. And yet this is a world that feels very organic, not geometric, with a cast of characters drawn in a unique cross between hobo, samurai, and pirate - totally blending in to an imaginary post apocalyptic world where humans scratch out a precarious life in villages hidden in the few green valleys left in a world of desert, where the only remaining resources are wind, sunlight, and humans.

But it is also a world of enormous dangers, including airborne bandits and the strange, mutated creatures that have evolved to control the barren and scarred earth. When our heroine's valley home is attacked by raiders, she embarks on an adventure against them that will lead her, and some unlikely allies found along the way, to an eventual confrontation combining warring armies of bandits, ancient machines of infernal destruction, and the implacable, mysterious, threatening beasts which roam the badlands. The pace is swashbuckling - if this were a book, it would be one you could not stop reading.

It has the feel of the original comic books, but plays out wonderfully on the screen - you don't need to know the comics. The style is very unique. Even though it is very stylized (no photorealism here), you immediately get the feeling of the world and the characters. The story works for children of all ages (mine both first saw this before they were 6, and have memorized it long since), and combined with the wonderful visuals it is a treat for adults too. As a genre I would classify it as soft (no attempt at scientific correctness) sci-fi rather than fantasy, though some might think it more a work of fantasy. It is fascinating partly because its roots in style and action are unexpected for a western viewer. Japanese manga and stories had evolved in their own way, and although this is early Miyazake, it is already a product of that mature and distinct art form.

As always with Miyazake - if you haven't seen his work, well you haven't seen anything like it, and it is time you did.

Read more IMDb reviews


Be the first to leave a comment