The Movie Nights are back! It seemed for a while that there was nothing left for me to show you via YouTube. There were a number of Ghibli films available, but many of them were removed. It seemed as though we were left with nothing left beyond small clips here and there. So I'm happy to see some of these movies return, if only for a little while. This week, we'll be watching Hayao Miyazaki's 1992 Studio Ghibli film, Porco Rosso.
Porco Rosso made a remarkable impression on me when I first watched it. Here is a movie about air pilots that is less interested in endless dogfights than in the pilots themselves. It's about the men who risk their lives in the air, and the women who love them. It's a bittersweet poem to a lost age of chivalry and rivalry. An age of romanticism, lost in the rise of fascism and the march towards the Second World War.
An American counterpart would merely settle with action, action, action! It would be, basically, a loud summer blockbuster ala Star Wars. There would probably be some preachy moral lessons that have little bearing on the real world. Marco, certainly, would discover his feminine side and become a sensitive changed man by the end of the picture. And there would be lots of generic pop songs to pad out the running time.
In other words, such a movie would be terrible and instantly forgettable. Thank goodness for the Porco Rosso that we have.
This movie is shown with the original Japanese soundtrack and English subtitles, starring Shuichiro Moriyama as Marco. It is broken into 9 parts, and assembled here in order. Enjoy the movie, and be sure to get the DVD, so you can watch on a nice big-screen TV.
EDIT UPDATE: I'm sorry to report that this movie has been deleted from YouTube, due to copyright infringement. Sorry, kids, them's the brakes.