7.8/10
8,688
64 user 34 critic

When the Wind Blows (1986)

A naive elderly British rural couple survive the initial onslaught of a nuclear war.

Director:

Jimmy T. Murakami

Writers:

Raymond Briggs (book), Raymond Briggs (script)
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Peggy Ashcroft ... Hilda Bloggs (voice)
John Mills ... Jim (voice)
Robin Houston Robin Houston ... Announcer (voice)
James Russell James Russell ... (voice)
David Dundas David Dundas ... (voice)
Matt Irving Matt Irving ... (voice)
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Storyline

With the help of government-issued pamphlets, an elderly British couple build a shelter and prepare for an impending nuclear attack, unaware that times and the nature of war have changed from their romantic memories of World War II. Written by Andy Bogursky <bogursky@erols.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...It's No Fairy Tale

Genres:

Animation | Comedy | Drama | War

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

At Entertainment [Japan]

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 March 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Quando o Vento Sopra See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,597, 13 March 1988, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$5,274
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Dame Peggy Ashcroft and Sir John Mills won their Oscars while appearing in Sir David Lean epics. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the scene in which Jim and Hilda are bedridden, Hilda's feet are missing for a few frames as the camera pans across. See more »

Quotes

Hilda: The grass looks a funny color.
Jim: Yes. I'll pop down to Mr. Sponge's tomorrow and get some bone meal and dried blood.
Hilda: He may be closed due to the bomb dear.
Jim: What, old Sponge? Heh heh. Miss a day's trade? Oh not him. He'd rather die.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the end credits, Morse code can be heard in the background. The code, when translated, means "MAD". MAD is an abbreviation for the term "Mutually Assured Destruction". See more »

Connections

Featured in It Was Alright in the 70s: Fear in the 80s (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Folded Flags
Written by Roger Waters
Performed by Roger Waters and The Bleeding Heart Band
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Powerful stuff and in Brit-toon terms, a total one-off.
19 October 2007 | by cameron-burnSee all my reviews

Subjects don't come much bigger than total species extinction and in the mid-80s, the imposing shadows thrown by the superpowers' volatile arsenal of nuclear warheads pretty much blackened the entire planet. With last-grip, nerve-stretched lunacies like Mutually Assured Destruction dominating US and Soviet policies, the standoff also had the vinegary whiff of desperate farce about it. War is hell but at least there are winners. In a nuclear conflict, everybody - and everything - loses. One big bang and we all fall down. Or, in the case of When The Wind Blows, fall-out.

While Mick Jackson's telemovie Threads remains the screen's most potent account of mass panic on apocalypse day, this British to-the-frame adaptation of Raymond Briggs' graphic novella is unquestionably the most humane. Say hello and wave goodbye then, to Jim and Hilda, our naive retired home counties couple who, on hearing of an imminent World War III, set about merrily obeying the ridiculous instructions from government protect and survive pamphlets. They whitewash the windows (to shield the radiation), stock up on supplies (a tin of Christmas pudding) and cheerfully anticipate a Blitz-style cosy-up sipping Olvaltine under Anderson shelters.

At first, it plays out like a black comedy - just as the bomb hits, dim Hilda goes to get the washing in - but as the insidious crackle of fall-out settles and the sickness sets in, the movie reveals its true nature: an unbearably intimate, gently accentuated tragedy with a tenacious pacifist streak. Blending 2D cells with 3D modelling, director Jimmy Murakami is technically adventurous but crucially, his connection to Briggs' material is total. In fact, with its working class nuances, droll dialogue and mundane aura , you sense that if Mike Leigh made cartoons, the results wouldn't be too far from this.


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