Hayao Miyazaki announced his retirement to the shagrin of a massive following, a couple days ago. It was announced along with the presentation of his last movie The Wind Rises.
Hayao Miyazaki has a big place in my heart and in the hearts of many people around the world who yearn for something extraordinary. I have children, and we discovered this man’s work a few years ago, when we accidentally stumbled upon “My Neighbor Totoro”. Our whole family was immediatly enamored with Miyazaki’s style.
He makes and oversees movies that the entire family can experience (I used experience intentionally, it’s not simply watching) and feel and love without all the monotonous, Disney-fied storyline and fairytale romance. His films are quiet, deep, and visually engrossing. The kind you’re kind of sad that it had to end. This one’s my personal favorite.
My children love his films for the beauty and bravery of his soul, that he gladly and generously pours into every stunning film. We love them for the honesty of the characters and imaginative worlds we travel with him. We awaited the arrival of “The Secret World of Arriety” with the same vigor as the masses of teen girls awaiting the next installment of “Twilight”. Not all the films that are, in one way or another, born by Miyazaki’s hand, are ok for smaller children, we love that when there are princesses, they are brave and kind. When there are villians, they still have goodness in them. When there are wars, they are wars. That’s what life is. And life is beautiful.