She certainly knows how to read the wind – Lord Yupa

She certainly knows how to read the wind – Lord Yupa

Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind is a 1984 Japanese animated film adapted and directed by Hayao Miyazaki. It is based upon his 1982 manga of the same title. The film takes place in a future, post-apocalyptic world where Nausicaa is the young princess of the Valley of the Wind. After the past apocalyptic conflict known as the ‘Seven Days of Fire’ (a chemical and biological war) has devastated much of the world’s environment, the few surviving humans live scattered in the hospitable environments within the ‘toxic jungle.’ Nausicaa can communicate with giant insects that populate the jungle and under the guidance of Lora Yupa, a veteran warrior, she works to bring peace back to their torn planet

This movie was Joe Hisashi’s first collaboration with Miyazaki as composer and director. It was also released before Studio Ghibli was founded, though it is now often considered a Studio Ghibli work and is a part of the collection. Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind is ranked as one of the greatest Japanese animated films of all time not only because of its character designs, narrative and music score, but also because of its influence of the development of anime and that the film’s success lead to the development of Studio Ghibli

  1. Miyazaki is well-known to having strong, female role models in his movies and Nausicaa is no exception. She is a skilled fighter and powerful, but also very compassionate and generous to others. She is also calm and level-headed


  2. Like many Miyazaki movies, environmentalism is a major theme like in Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind. But unlike his other movies, humans have already ravaged the planet. Nausicaa though seeks to bring peace to the kingdoms and an understanding of the jungle to people. In the end, humans must learn and accept that the cycle of decay that occurs in the jungle must continue because it is what purifies the Earth


  3. The people of the Valley of the Wind display strong teamwork throughout the film. Nausicaa always ensures that she informs the villagers of new discoveries she has made and the villagers work efficiently and effectively together. What is also very interesting about this teamwork displayed, is that there are no explicit orders given by Nausicaa – who could choose to dominate her authority over them because her status of princess. Instead, Nausicaa views herself and the villagers as a team and treats them with respect


  4. The film promotes pacifism and empathy. It also acknowledges and even uses the effects anger and fear have on people to teach viewers a lesson about how peace and level-headedness are favourable to war and fighting. This occurs when Nausicaa receives a lecture from Lord Yupa about the nature of war and its quick escalation after she is about to act rashly
    Nausicaa then exemplifies Lord Yupa’s lesson when her act of good will does not calm a raging herd of giant insects. But through this experience she learns to empathise with the creatures and comes to learn to understand them. This is a vital message in the film: that if our monsters can be understood, they stop becoming monsters


  5. Miyazaki has also shown the ‘toxic jungle’ to actually be an asset – such as our environment is. It is a renewable resource and provides humanity with the majority of the materials they need to make equipment (as exoskeletons are a vital source of raw materials for the villagers to help make things such as gliders) and because of this, it deserves to be treated with respect


Author: thespookyredhead

Come for the pop culture. Stay for the bad grammar.


  1. I really enjoyed reading what you had to say and which points you considered to be positive enough to make it into your list. What you had to say about the teamwork in the Valley was a really great insight. Nausicaa has been one of my favorite movies since the 90’s, and I never thought about their amazing teamwork before. I feel like I just took for granted that that was how their town functioned.

    I also really enjoyed what you said about the insects of the forest: “If our monsters can be understood, they stop becoming monsters.” That is a great notion and well said. It gives even more meaning to the fact that Nausicaa and Yupa view the insects differently than other people (and might even give some insight into Kushana’s and other war leaders’ attempts to weaponize the insects).

    Liked by 1 person

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