The Wind Rises (2013) Review


The Wind Rises is a biopic of Jiro Horikshi who invented the Mitsubishi AM5 a Japanese fighter plane that was used in World War 2. This was stated to be Hayao Miyazaki’s last ever feature film before his retirement making it a very important part of film history.


I love how ambitious of an inventor Jiro is in the film, I think this is a personal thing because I am very creative myself and I am very passionate about the things that I have made so I felt very connected to this character.


The dream sequences were my favourite part of the movie, they were all very creative and full of the imaginative imagery that you would expect from Miyazaki, this isn’t as crazy as some of his other work but it is still fantastic without going overboard.


There was a romance built up in the movie and while it was fine, I did feel that it didn’t make much difference to the plot and if it wasn’t there I do not think the movie would have been affected.


Spoiler ahead but I want to discuss how good the ending of the film is, its another dream sequence but at this point Japan had lost the war and it showed Jiro being regretful for making the planes but one of his heroes who appears in most of his dreams comforts him saying that his dream has been realised, the film ends on a sweet but sour note yes Jiro achieved his dream but at the cost that his dream was used to take many lives in one of the worst times in history.

The Wind Rises is a really interesting movie, it focuses more on the character and his inventions than it does the tragedy of war, I suppose if you wanted to see the effects of war you can watch Grave of the Fireflies, I really don’t know what to think of this one I really enjoyed it but it didn’t impact me the same way as Miyazaki’s other films, this one is really good and educational with some big names in its cast, Joseph Gordan Levitt, Elijah Wood, Martin Short and many others. I don’t its a movie to watch countless times but one viewing is well worth your while.

I hope you enjoyed this review of The Wind Rises

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Grave of the Fireflies (1988) Review


Directed by Isao Takahata Grave of the Fireflies is an Animated war film that is based on a story from 1967 with the same title.


This is by far the most tragic film in the Studio Ghibli Collection it starts with the corpse of the main character Seita being searched by a Janitor in a train station, he takes a candy tin and throws it into a field and this releases the memory of Seita’s younger sister Setsuko who is joined by the memory of her brother,  they both board a train and then the film shows the struggle they went through during the end World War 2 that eventually lead to both of them dying.


Even though the beginning the film shows that the outcome of these characters is not good, what makes the film worth watching is the message that it gives, throughout the journey audiences will be rooting for Seita and Setsuko to survive because of how well they get along and how much they truly love each-other.


The tragedy of the film is truly Seita’s character, he wants the be the protector of his sister after their mother dies, but he doesn’t have a lot of experience doing this eventually pushing away everyone who tries to help them. Its his stubborn nature that causes the downfall in their story but he means so well and only wants the best. This makes the film extremely difficult and sad to watch its a really good movie with excellent animation and characters, I actually think that these are some of the best characters the studio has ever produced because they seem so real.

Grave of the Fireflies is one of the most hard to watch animated films ever made, its a great piece of cinema that shows that cartoons and animation really is not just for children and families, this film is not suitable for children and it definitely wasn’t made for them its a story that will cause emotion and pain for all who see it, its fantastically tragic.

I hope you enjoyed this review of Grave of the Fireflies

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Silent Night (2002) Review


Elizabeth Vincken and her son Fritz seek shelter in a cabin in the woods during World War 2, two American soldiers invade the cabin in hopes of finding a bed for a fallen comrade, its not long until three German soldiers turn up and try to kill the Americans but some how Elizabeth convinces all of the soldiers to leave their guns outside and spend Christmas together.


When I heard that this was based on a true story I was genuinely shocked, the plot seems very far-fetched and you would think it almost impossible that enemy forces in World War 2 could ever become friends even if it is Christmas.


Like I said almost impossible, this apparently really did happen and if that is the case then this movie being bad would be quite an insult to all of those involved in the real life historical event.


Luckily this film is fantastic all of the actors do a fairly decent job of expressing convincing emotions of sadness,fear and happiness, the movies only actress Linda Hamilton who plays Elizabeth does an exceptional job in her role as the caring mother who hates the war and only wants peace.

Throughout the movie all of the soldiers slowly warm up to each other and they slowly start to realize that even though they are fighting for different sides of the war all of the soldiers share many similarities.

Silent Night is a wonderful movie, it is surprisingly charming and family friendly for a film that carries such a serious subject matter, very young viewers will likely find the film to be uninteresting and boring but anyone who enjoys a good drama or has an interest in History will surely love this film.

With all 12 Christmas movie reviews finished, this brings Raggle Fraggle Reviews to an end until 2016.

Thank you for joining me on what I consider be the most successful year for the website.

I hope you all have a Merry Christmas and a fantastic New Year.


It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) Review

There will be spoilers, so keep that in mind

“Every time a bell rings an Angel gets it’s wings”


It’s a wonderful life follows the life of George Bailey, as a young lad George enjoyed a regular childhood of playing in the snow, climbing trees and trying to find adventure in his every step, unfortunately for George after he saved his brother from a near death experience he went death in his left ear.


As an adult George is married with three kids and has taken over his fathers job as a bank manager and everything is going absolutely fine until eight thousand dollars goes missing just when the Bank inspector arrives, this causes a warrant to go out for George’s arrest and at this point he’s lost it.


George runs to nearest bridge and hes about to jump when he sees another man fall into the river, George jumps in and saves the screaming man, the man tells him that his name is Clarence and that he is George’s Guardian angel.


George tells Clarence that he wishes he had never been born, Clarence decides to grant George’s wish and he shows George what life would be like if he had never existed.

Every time I watch this movie I cant believe that there is a Christmas movie about a man wanting to kill himself and yet it is so good, It’s a Wonderful Life is one of the most iconic Christmas classics out there and and with good reason, it manages to send a serious message about suicide while also having enough charm and character to keep it’s audience thoroughly entertained.

The film surprisingly has quite a bit of well written humor on offer and lets not forget it’s brilliant cast, James Stewart (George) and Henry Travers (Clarence) have a really good connection not only as their respected characters but also as actors, throughout the film both of their personalities bounce of each each other perfectly and it’s this connection that really helps the film maintain such a wonderful atmosphere for such a dark subject matter.

The film is runs for over two hours and unfortunately Clarence doesn’t make an appearance until near the end which is a real shame because as much as the rest of the film is still brilliant at maintaining an interested audience I always felt that he should have been in the film more often than he is.

It’s a Wonderful life is and always will be my Favorite Christmas movie of  time and I most defiantly recommend to any fan of classic Christmas films.

Thanks for reading this review of I’ts a Wonderful Life

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