Sayonara, Hayao Miyazaki

No, he’s not dead. Just retiring. Again.

Hayao Miyazaki was not a photographer but he was a great visual genius and I think any photographer can learn from him. In any case, although I’m not a knowledgeable fan, I am a fan. I have seen seven or eight of his films and love them; so does my daughter. Here is Time’s listing of his top 10.

Hayao Miyazaki: Ranking His 10 Movies (Time online)

I particularly agree about ranking Spirited Away #1 — although really, you can’t go wrong with any of those I’ve seen. I think this list includes just films he directed, not his screenplays (like The Secret Life of Arietty).

In some ways, watching his films is, for me as an American adult, a bit like eating a piece of foreign candy. Strange. And yet, the visual imagination is great — and universal. I haven’t tried this but I’m tempted to watch one of his films in Japanese, which I don’t know at all. The dialog doesn’t seem to be the point.

Miyazaki is quoted as saying, “Do everything by hand, even when using the computer.” Sounds right to me.

And now we can wait for his last film, “The Wind Rises” (Kaze Tachinu). Something to look forward to. Official Japanese trailer on YouTube, here.

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