Kaze no Tani no Nausicaä – Anime Review

Are you wondering if Kaze no Tani no Nausicaä is as good as everyone says? Well, read our review to find out!

Director

Nausicaä was directed by the legendary Hayao Miyazaki. You might have already heard about him because he is quite famous; after all, he is one of the co-founders of Studio Ghibli. Moreover, he created some of the most beloved and critically acclaimed anime films like My Neighbor Totoro, Princess Mononoke, and Spirited Away.

But before all that, he was “the brain” behind Lupin III and possibly didn’t have it easy with Nausicaä. Started as manga or anime? Bit fuzzy. Some say he wanted an anime, got shut down, and manga happened. Others claim manga was the plan, and anime was kinda forced. Either way, the movie was a success, and Studio Ghibli was established by the staff who created Nausicaä.

By the way, the manga, written and illustrated by Miyazaki himself, outlived the film, going strong for seven volumes. In any case, it could have easily been an anime series instead of a movie.

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Story

Set in a post-apocalyptic world, the movie follows the story of Nausicaä, a princess of the Valley of the Wind. The earth is covered in a toxic forest, and humanity struggles to survive amidst warring nations and giant insects. Nausicaä, driven by her love for nature and peace, becomes a beacon of hope and strives to understand the mysteries of the toxic jungle.

Comparing Princess Mononoke to Nausicaä, you’ll notice many similarities. Even though the former highlights dense forests, serene meadows, and flowing rivers, the latter shows us beauty in everything around our heroine, even when she explores mysterious poisonous forests.

Nausicaä doesn’t have the dreamy vibe of the newer Ghibli films, but that’s what makes it stand out. It’s a solid mix of complexity and simplicity – enough depth for those into deep stories, but straightforward enough for everyone else. It’s that sweet spot where everyone can enjoy the ride without getting lost.

Art

Gorgeous artwork is expected and you will be satisfied with the beautiful and vibrant world Nausicaä presents. All in all, it’s an excellent production. Surprisingly, the animation holds up to this day, which is admirable since this movie is 40 years old.

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What makes it even more impressive is that the movie was crafted without any computer assistance, showcasing pure artistic skill. The action scenes are detailed, although some light-hearted moments might bring a smile for the wrong reasons…

While it might not match the slick animation of later Ghibli films, considering it’s an ’80s creation, it stands out among its ’80s counterparts, trailing behind only a few, like Akira and arguably Ghost in the Shell.

Main Characters

Nausicaä

Studio Ghibli is known for its strong female heroines and Nausicaä is not an exception. She is not your “typical princess.” Nausicaä is compassionate, gentle, and completely bonded with nature, even though the jungle is toxic. If there is a good role model for kids, it’s HER.

Motivated by a desire to protect everyone and everything, Nausicaä, despite her noble intentions, is inherently human, prone to making mistakes and experiencing moments of anger. This duality is what makes her human, though, and where she outshines shallow heroines that can be found in many anime.

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Yupa

Yupa is Nausicaä’s mentor, who is a skilled and wise swordsman. Like her, he is also selfless and peaceful. He is renowned as the greatest swordsman in the Periphery, with exceptional combat skills that allow him to defend himself and others when necessary. However, Yupa prioritizes diplomacy and conflict resolution over violence.

Kushana

A fierce and determined leader of Torumekia, Kushana is used to getting things done her way and can be bossy, even ruthless at times. However, deep down, she cares about her people and wants to find a solution to the environmental crisis, even if it means using different methods than Nausicaä.

Ohmu

Ohmu are giant, scary insects with hard shells and many eyes, living in a toxic wasteland. They seem like monsters, but they’re protecting the environment and playing a crucial role in the ecosystem. Nausicaä believes in understanding them rather than seeing them just as threats.

Overall Enjoyment

Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind remains incredibly relevant today, reflecting our world’s challenges with war and pollution.

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Essentially, it’s a well-rounded movie for:

  1. Animation Fans: If you like beautifully animated films.
  2. Nature Lovers: Especially those concerned about the environment.
  3. Fantasy Enthusiasts: Who enjoy imaginative worlds.
  4. Deep Thinkers: It has thoughtful themes about war and humanity.
  5. Families: Generally suitable for all ages, offering a positive message.

If you find yourself in any of those categories, consider giving it a try, it’s only 2 hours long!


YumDeku
YumDeku

Blogger / Jujutsu Sorcerer / Unpredictable knuckle head Ninja that spends his free time writing, reading, watching and playing all things Anime, Manga and Gaming.

Articles: 308
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