Watch 10 Years with Hayao Miyazaki Free Online: A Four Part-Part Documentary on the Unstoppable Japanese Animator

When Conan O’Brien found him­self tem­porar­i­ly out of a late-night tele­vi­sion host­ing job a few years ago, he went on tour with a stage show instead. If the doc­u­men­tary chron­i­cling that peri­od of his career was­n’t called Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop, a sim­i­lar title could equal­ly fit the recent films that have cap­tured Hayao Miyaza­k­i’s oscil­la­tion between work and “retire­ment.” In 2013’s King­dom of Dreams and Mad­ness, pre­vi­ous­ly fea­tured here on Open Cul­ture, we thought we wit­nessed Miyaza­ki ani­mat­ing the final frame of his final fea­ture. But his sub­se­quent with­draw­al from film­mak­ing proved short-lived, and his prepa­ra­tion for re-emer­gence (includ­ing his gone-viral cri­tique of exper­i­men­tal com­put­er ani­ma­tion) pro­vides the sub­ject for 2016’s Nev­er-End­ing Man.

This year, Nev­er-End­ing Man direc­tor Kaku Arakawa returns with 10 Years With Hayao Miyaza­ki, a four-part doc­u­men­tary avail­able to watch free at NHK’s web site, and whose trail­er appears at the top of the post. “Where­as Nev­er-End­ing Man tracked the director’s career from his short-lived retire­ment in 2013 to the ger­mi­na­tion of his forth­com­ing fea­ture How Do You Live?, this series cov­ers the decade run­ning up to 2013,” writes Car­toon Brew’s Alex Dudok de Wit. Those were busy years for Miyaza­k­i’s Stu­dio Ghi­b­li, involv­ing as they did the pro­duc­tion of Ponyo and The Wind Ris­es, as well as two films direct­ed by Miyaza­k­i’s son Goro: the Ursu­la K. LeGuin adap­ta­tion Tales from Earth­sea and the 1960s board­ing school-set From Up on Pop­py Hill.

Tales from Earth­sea came out in 2006, and at the time Miyaza­ki felt that Goro was unready to make his debut. As awk­ward as the peri­od of estrange­ment between Miyaza­ki père et fils dur­ing that movie’s pro­duc­tion may feel — espe­cial­ly giv­en how often they’re in the same office — it reflects the near-impos­si­bly high stan­dard to which the man who direct­ed My Neigh­bor TotoroPrincess Mononoke, and Spir­it­ed Away holds not just his suc­ces­sor and his col­lab­o­ra­tors, but him­self. Above all him­self, as revealed by the can­did footage Arakawa’s decade of access to Miyaza­k­i’s life allowed him to gath­er.

“We see him at work in his pri­vate stu­dio and at Stu­dio Ghi­b­li, and relax­ing at home,” writes Dudok de Wit, “inso­far as he’s capa­ble of relax­ation.” What Miyaza­ki says to Arakawa about his craft, his world­view, and his life sug­gests a mind per­pet­u­al­ly at work, even dur­ing the rare times his hands aren’t. 10 Years With Hayao Miyaza­ki ends with the mak­ing of The Wind Ris­es, but Arakawa must sure­ly have known not to take the ani­ma­tor’s pro­nounce­ments of it being his final fea­ture seri­ous­ly: Hayao Miyaza­ki can’t stop, nor do we want him to.

Watch 10 Years With Hayao Miyaza­ki online here, and find it list­ed in our col­lec­tion of Free Doc­u­men­taries, a sub­set of our col­lec­tion, 4,000+ Free Movies Online: Great Clas­sics, Indies, Noir, West­erns, Doc­u­men­taries & More.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

The Phi­los­o­phy of Hayao Miyaza­ki: A Video Essay on How the Tra­di­tion­al Japan­ese Reli­gion Shin­to Suf­fus­es Miyazaki’s Films

The Essence of Hayao Miyaza­ki Films: A Short Doc­u­men­tary About the Human­i­ty at the Heart of His Ani­ma­tion

Watch Hayao Miyaza­ki Ani­mate the Final Shot of His Final Fea­ture Film, The Wind Ris­es

Watch Moe­bius and Miyaza­ki, Two of the Most Imag­i­na­tive Artists, in Con­ver­sa­tion (2004)

Hayao Miyaza­ki Meets Aki­ra Kuro­sawa: Watch the Titans of Japan­ese Film in Con­ver­sa­tion (1993)

Based in Seoul, Col­in Mar­shall writes and broad­casts on cities, lan­guage, and cul­ture. His projects include the book The State­less City: a Walk through 21st-Cen­tu­ry Los Ange­les and the video series The City in Cin­e­ma. Fol­low him on Twit­ter at @colinmarshall or on Face­book.

by | Permalink | Comments (1) |

Sup­port Open Cul­ture

We’re hop­ing to rely on our loy­al read­ers rather than errat­ic ads. To sup­port Open Cul­ture’s edu­ca­tion­al mis­sion, please con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion. We accept Pay­Pal, Ven­mo (@openculture), Patre­on and Cryp­to! Please find all options here. We thank you!

Leave a Reply

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.