The Wind Rises, English Dub Review

Posted 9 years ago by myetvmedia

The English localization of “The Wind Rises” (Kaze Tachinu), follows in the tradition of Disney’s efforts to bring Studio Ghibli films to North America, that is to say it is great. Disney has handled Ghibli’s Western releases and has always brought together a fantastic lineup of Hollywood talent; Billy Crudup and Claire Danes starred in “Princess Mononoke”; Kirsten Dunst voiced the famous Witch Kiki in “Kiki’s Delivery Service”; Christian Bale lent his voice to the moniker role of “Howl’s Moving Castle”. Suffice it to say Disney and Ghibli attract the highest of talents. We initially reviewed the film when it made it’s North American Premiere in Japanese at TIFF last year so if you are concerned with the content of the film I urge you to check that out, or if you would like to know how the English track for the film was handled, read on. “The Wind Rises” was recently nominated for an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature Film.

Disney Does it Again

Disney has obviously gone to great lengths to preserve the integrity of the story. This is after all a very intense and unique portrayal of pre-war Japan and the cultural shift between that went along with industrialization. The film originally received harsh criticism in its own country over a supposed anti-Japanese theme. Perhaps a global audience can put that nonsense to rest; this is a carefully and sensitively crafted story about people, and it does not shy from portraying its hero crafting weapons of war for the axis powers. That is just a part of the story and the film rectifies it with the intentions of its characters aptly.

The script has been translated well, and while I did feel the subtitled Japanese version was superior to the new script, this new version is no slouch. The cast features heavy hitters like Joseph Gordon Levitt, John Krasinski, Emily Blunt and Werner Herzog. They all play well and exhibit a deep familiarity with the voice work.

“The Wind Rises” is excellent and so is this new English version, after all it’s a Disney-Ghibli co-production. There was never any chance it would fall short of greatness.

– Max Romano

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