Sunday, June 8, 2008

"Dream Screen : Three Films by Hayao Miyazaki"
at Northwest Film Forum : June 24 - Aug 26

Maker of legendary (can I use the word legendary? his films certainly are, at least
in subject-matter) Japanese filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki's animated films are once
again gracing Seattle as a series over the course of this summer at the Northwest
Film Forum. To be further hyperbolic; Miyazaki's film is something that can amaze
and inspire like nothing else in modern cinema. Somehow he manages to always
take a truly idealistic, youthful and joyous perspective in his storytelling and save
it from being naive of oversimplistic. Through the use of complex characterizations
and antagonists that are as faulted and inherently human and his heros/heroins his
depiction of personal transformation in the lives of characters grappling with historically
global/social/ecological issues through fantasy/fantastic themes - its all unlike anything
in film, much less the world of 'cartoons'. As always with his work, the quality of the
animation from Studio Ghibli and its consistency from their beginnings in his first
independent production; "Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind" to his more recent award-
winning "Spirited Away" and the classic "Totoro" is undeniable. In seeing these again its
boldly self-evident that no one is making 2-D animation to this quality standard anywhere
else in the world. Can I enthusiastically endorse seeing these enough? Probably not.

Regrettably though, NWFF has chosen to screen the English dubbed versions of these,
no doubt for the tikes. Sadly, with no other scheduled subtitled screenings for the
adults in the audience:

Link to NWFF "Dream Screen : Three by Miyazaki" site

From the Northwest Film Forum:

"What better time than summer to bask in the glorious sunshine of Hayao Miyazaki’s
artistry, filled with brave children, epic adventures, enormous insects, unexpected journeys,
magical transformations and miraculous dreams of flight. Whether you are seeing these
astounding films for the first or fiftieth time, you will marvel at Miyzaki’s ability to conjure
stories that inspire and embolden audiences to see the world in a brand new way."