Saturday, December 26, 2015

“People who design machines and airplanes, no matter how much they believe that what they do is good, the winds of time eventually turn them into tools of industrial civilization. It's never unscathed. They’re cursed dreams. Animation, too. Today all of humanity's dreams are cursed somehow. Beautiful yet cursed dreams. I'm not even talking about wanting to be rich or or famous. Screw that. That's just hopeless. What I mean is, how do we know that movies are even worthwhile? If you really think about it is this not some grand hobby? Maybe there was a time when you could make films that mattered, but now? Most of our world is rubbish."
In the documentary the producer Suzuki is shown pitching the film to executives around Japan; he's very direct about Miyazaki's father and Miyazaki Airplane making parts for the Zero.

Miyazake's essay published by Studio Ghibli, on the war, the constitution and Abe.
Also in FP.  The original here. I missed it at the time.

The issues comes up in conversations recorded in the film, at a production meeting with staff and producers. At the end of the film after the essay has been published there are jokes about a backlash.
Suzuki- It's front page-news today. [Miyazaki laughs] They quote you from the article.
Miyazaki- Well, good.
Suzuki- This may impact the election.
M- The reaction is mixed?
S- Yes
M- Well, what can they do? [to the woman on his right] If Suzuki-san gets killed, [laughter] I'll go and die with him. Takahata-san will be stabbed too. But I'm glad they mentioned the constitutional reform.
[Shot of a Newspaper] Hayao Miyazaki says "Leave Constitution Alone"
This notion that one’s goal in life is to be happy, that your own happiness is the goal... I just don’t buy it. Because... What do you think? Do you think your goal is to become happy yourself? I mean, happiness is... I've heard that from several people now and I wonder, is that what post war democracy has amounted to? I don't get it so I'm curious. What about Suzuki-san? He can't be doing this for his own happiness. So why does he do it? Do you work for your own happiness? I don’t ever feel happy in my daily life. Really, isn’t that how it is? How could that ever be our ultimate goal? Filmmaking only brings suffering.
I've never seen Grave of the Fireflies, or anything else by Takahata. I think I've been avoiding it.

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