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Porco Rosso Blu-ray Review

PR

“Porco Rosso” is an underrated Miyazaki film.

Set in a post WW1 era filled with seaplanes and pirates, “Porco Rosso” revolves around the titular hot shot pilot/bounty hunter/war veteran. The film begins with him stopping pirates and rescuing kids, but his troubles soon begun after a celebrity cowboy pilot named Curtis (who was hired by other pirates) blasts Porco Rosso out of the sky. Porco survives, but he needs a new plane built which is where the main character Theo (a young smart seaplane engineer) comes into play. Porco’s problems only continue with a debt piling up, pirates gunning for him, the Italian Government on his tail, and Curtis aiming for a prize rematch against Porco.

While light on story compared to most Hayao Miyazaki films, there’s something almost intimate about “Porco Rosso.” The film (which is based on a manga series by Miyazaki) is partly a high flying adventure story, but at its heart it is a character study about Porco himself (AKA the Crimson Pig/Marco). He has a definite arc here although the abrupt and vague ending does feel like a bit of a cheat to that arc. Still, if you think about it, it does still manage to feel true to the enigmatic character.

As astute Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki fans will notice, Miyazaki once again deals with themes of aviation, love, war, as well as spirituality. In some ways, “Porco Rosso” even feels like a precursor to “The Wind Rises.”

Animation wise, this is another spectacular looking Studio Ghibli production. The planes, the islands, the lush Italy locals are positively breathtaking even by today’s animation standards. There really is a timeless quality to Miyazaki’s work.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.85:1 1080p. How does it look? Another bright and beautiful transfer. GKIDS Blu-ray releases do not disappoint.

Audio Tracks: English and Japanese 2.0 DTS-HD MA. How do they sound? Honestly, you can’t go wrong with either track here. Both feature dynamic voice casts.

Extras: 3 theatrical trailers and a promo film, a booklet featuring a piece by Toshio Suzuki and a statement by Hayao Miyazaki, DVD copy, storyboards of the entire film, a quick interview with producer Toshio Suzuki and another “Behind The Microphone” featurette of the American voice cast.

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October 29, 2017 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , ,

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