The Last Sortie

Words by Lewis Butler

Hayao Miyazaki, one of the founding members of ‘Studio Ghibli’, is a bit like Paul Verhoeven. That is to say Miyazaki is an amazing film maker, yet is no real fan of creating sequels. However one sequel Miyazaki has pondered over is a follow up to his 1992 hit ‘Porco Rosso’, the story of an Italian pilot cursed by a witch, due to him allegedly not being able to love.

The first film is set in between the two world wars. The second, apparently called ‘Porco Rosso: The Last Sortie’, is said to be set in the Spanish Civil War, Rosso will of course not be flying for Franco. There are however a few problems with the film, largely being due to the studio liking to keep their projects hidden almost from public sight until completion.

Toshio Suzuki, an Anime producer and friend of Miyazaki, one who has produced many of Miyazaki’s greats, has said that ‘The Last Sortie’ may be more of a “spiritual cousin.” This meaning that it may be set in the same world as the first film, but may not directly follow the events of it.

The film isn’t up on IMDB, so may not even be in production. Though, it is twenty years after the original, as well as the success of most if not all of ‘Ghibli’s’ films to date, ‘Porco Rosso 2’should be something worth looking out for. That is, if it ever becomes more then a fan’s dream.

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Princess Mononoke Review

Words by Ryan Rabey

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‘Princess Mononoke’ (1997) is an epic Japanese film which was directed and written by Hayao Miyazaki of ‘Studio Ghibli’.

In the year 2000, the film was released in the dubbed American version featuring an all star cast including Claire Danes, Gillian Anderson and Yuriko Ishida.

The supreme ability that this film has to captivate audiences is because of the way it combines both historical and mythical aspects of Japanese storytelling which are demonstrated through beautifully detailed animation.

It is arguable that this film combines the epic adventure’s that persist throughout Homer’s ‘Odyssey’and the vivid transformations that are abundant in Ovid’s ‘Metamorphosis’.

The pace of the film’s narrative is also reminiscent of Kipling’s ‘Jungle Book’ because of the way in which the story portrays the formative years of a young man who is constantly struggling to be part of a society which will accept him.

To conclude, I would advise you to watch this film! It is vivid and detailed spectacle that nevertheless maintains the prowess of a mythical tale. This film has been made with a unique devotion conveying a story that needs to be told. So please, spread the word!