Porco Rosso

Movie review by
Brian Costello, Common Sense Media
Porco Rosso Movie Poster Image
Lesser known Miyazaki with heavy themes, cartoon violence.
  • PG
  • 2005
  • 94 minutes

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 4 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Challenges the traditional ideas of war heroism. Warfare is portrayed in an unglamorous, complex manner.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The main character is a cynical womanizer. A young female airplane mechanic overcomes sexist stereotypes and proves she can be just as heroic as anyone.

Violence

There are lots of cartoonish airplane dogfights in this film, as well as machine gun fights, grenades, and explosions. There is also a lengthy fist fight between two of the main characters.

Sex

One female character is a sultry nightclub singer and there is some romantic attraction between her and some male characters.

 

Language

A few occasions of "hell" and "damn."

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Porco Rosso is seen drinking wine, and often has a cigar in his mouth. There are also bar scenes where characters drink and smoke. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Porco Rosso is an  animated fighter pilot-themed movie from renowned Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki. It's packed with cartoonish violence including WWI-era airplane battles and machine gun fights. Characters smoke and drink and there is some romance and references to womanizing threaded through the plot. Underneath the deceptively simple story is a complex exploration of the ravages of war on those who fight.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bycce September 8, 2015

lots of vices / awsome characters / solid values

At the surface level, Porco Rosso should be a horrible kids movie: lawlessness, smoking, drinking, fist fights, etc. However, the movie has solid, if not tran... Continue reading
Adult Written byCaius Gracchus September 11, 2018

A great, meaningful, fun film with great characters. Recommended for all.

Porco Rosso is an amazing film that tackles themes like finding things of value in life, the complexity of war, gender discrimination, humanity, and loyalty to... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written bypoe-ette November 26, 2011
Kid, 11 years old April 1, 2012

good movie

i luv it! great fight scene, nobody knows what happens to the hero and one of the main female people

What's the story?

PORCO ROSSO (voiced by Michael Keaton) was a WWI flying ace who became half-man, half-pig after his compatriots were killed in battle. He is now a jaded womanizing bounty hunter rescuing ships and babies from the attacks of bumbling pirates across the Adriatic Sea while ignoring the romantic overtures of the cocktail singer Gina (Susan Egan). When Porco's plane is shot down by Donald Curtis (Cary Elwes), a cocky American fighter pilot who joins forces with the pirates, and when the fascists take over Italy, Porco takes his plane to the mechanic, where Fio (Kimberley Williams-Paisley) fixes the plane and encourages Porco to fight Curtis for honor's sake.

Is it any good?

This is more than just beautiful anime portraying lots of cartoon violence between archetypal characters from war films bordering on stereotypes; it has a third dimension to it.

What is especially interesting about Porco Rosso is how, for all its parodic references to the flyboy films of WWII -- the sultry cocktail singer, the comedically cocky American fighter pilot, the spunky tomgirl who fixes airplanes, and even Porco himself as the anti-hero hero -- warfare and its consequences is critically examined. It is through Porco, who "quit being human" after seeing too much of the horrors of combat and now lives as a half-man half-pig sexist womanizer, that the audience experiences the deep hurt and depth of feeling of those who fight.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about heroism. What does it mean to be a hero? What are the ways Porco Rosso is and is not heroic? Who else is heroic?

  • What is the movie's message about how war affects places and people? What are the consequences of warfare for those who fight it? How is violence portrayed in this movie?

  • Are there any stereotypes in this movie? How are men and women represented differently?

Movie details

Themes & Topics

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