Just a short scene from the film Porco Rosso, which I had not seen until last night. What a crime — the movie is heartfelt and touching, and it quickly became one of my favorites from Hayao Miyazaki.
Just like all of Miyazaki’s animated classics, Porco was beautiful and had a wonderful theme, but this one seemed to have something special to it. It’s no surprise, considering that Porco is his fifth installment in the Ghibli universe, made even before Princess Mononoke, which was done in 1997. Porco was released in 1992.
All of the elements seen in Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind, Castle in the Sky, My Neighbor Totoro and Kiki’s Delivery Service were all present in Porco, and this film was a turning point in Miyazaki’s talent and style.
I recommend this film to anyone who hasn’t seen it. Though it isn’t one of Miyazaki’s most famous films (due to its mature story), it is one of his brightest and best.
And for all fans out there, I have some good news about Porco!
Miyazaki has proposed that he would like to make a follow-up to the 1992 original if his next few films following Ponyo are successful. The protagonist will be male this time around, as opposed to his affinity for strong female leads in his most recent films. The working name is currently Porco Rosso: The Last Sortie and it will be set during the Spanish Civil War with Porco also returning, albeit this time as an old pilot, reflecting Miyazaki’s own aging.
A sequel is in the works and slated to be released in 2012. Let’s hope all goes well with production!