Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1984)

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9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting: 9/10
Visuals: 10/10

Great looking, great story, good cast

Similar themes to Princess Mononoke but came first

 
Movie Info

Movie Name:  Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind

Studio:  Top Craft

Genre(s):  Animated/Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Action/Adventure

Release Date(s):  March 11, 1984

MPAA Rating:  PG

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I’m Nausicaä and I’m no Disney princess!

Nausicaä is Princess of the Valley of the Wind, and she like most of the inhabitants of the world find themselves in constant battle with the ever-growing jungle.  While Nausicaä tries to work with the creatures of the jungle to live in peace, others try to battle it…leading to war.  When the last living Giant Warrior from the Seven Days of Fire crashes in the Valley of the Wind, a new battle begins to break out that threatens to destroy everything that Nausicaä holds dear…and only she can stop it!

Written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki, Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (風の谷のナウシカ or Kaze no Tani no Naushika ) was Miyazaki’s first original film following his film premiere with The Castle of Cagliostro in 1979.  The movie was originally released in a shortened version called Warriors of the Wind which led to criticism by Miyazaki which led to a “no edit” clause for his other movies (Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind didn’t receive a reedited version until 2005).

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Let’s fly!

I’m a big fan of Miyazaki and my favorite film of his is Princess Mononoke…though now I have to reconsider Nausicaä since watching it, I feel that the main reason that Princess Mononoke exists is because of Nausicaä which carries very similar themes.

Like Princess Mononoke, Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind is really an environmentalist movie.  The story is a clash of cultures and ideas.  Nausicaä is trying to live at peace with the world and accepts the poison being pumped out by the toxic jungle.  Rather than fight the giant Ohm which inhabit the planet, Nausicaä seeks peace with them…Just like in Princess Mononoke, there is a threat to this peace in Princess Kushana who is reigniting the war with Giant Warrior…which threatens to destroy the world forever.

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When the hero creature is slimy and shoots fire from its mouth, you probably backed the wrong horse…

Like many of Hayao Miyazaki films, the studio went all out for the English dub.  The cast voiceover work for the 2005 English translation included Alison Lohman, Shia LaBeouf, Uma Thurman, Chris Sarandon, Edward James Olmos, Mark Hamill, Tress MacNeille, and Patrick Stewart.

The film looks fantastic.  I didn’t love Miyazaki’s less evolved art for The Castle of Cagliostro.  This is Miyazaki in full force.  Scenes like Nausicaä flying on her glider and the Ohms crossing the desert look as fresh today as they must have looked back in 1984.  It is nice touches however that give the film realism like Nausicaä allowing the fox-squirrel Teto to bite her until it accepted she wasn’t a threat.  They aren’t necessary, but they adds to the characterizations through the visuals.

Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind is a great animated adventure worth checking out.  It has a really strong female lead for girls and a good message.  Check it out if you get the chance!  Miyazaki followed up Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind with Castle in the Sky in 1986.

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Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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