Regular readers of The Brothers Brick probably know by now that my favorite movies by Hayao Miyazaki (maybe of all time) are the ones he released in the 80’s, including Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind and Laputa: Castle in the Sky. I’ve certainly enjoyed his more recent releases, such as Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away, but they don’t compare to my childhood favorites.
Still, Miyazaki’s latest film, Howl’s Moving Castle is a wonderful movie (which I just got on DVD for Christmas). Moko has created minifigs of the three main characters, Howl, Sofie, and Calcifer:
Dave DeGobbi of Burnaby, B.C., Canada attended NWBrickCon 2006 over this past weekend, and stole the show (well, at least the steampunk section) with his Goliath airship:
Naturally, the Goliath won the Best Steampunk prize for the show! Inspired by my favorite movie of all time, Hayao Miyazaki’s Laputa: Castle in the Sky, the airship includes many cool features:
Dual, counter-rotating props
Four vertical props
Dual, motorized bomb bays with a payload of sixteen bombs
Ten three-blade props
Steam engine with working crank shafts and light-up boiler fire
Two main air-to-surface artillary guns
Two anti-aircraft guns
Nine small turrets
Four tail guns
Dave says it took him about eighty hours to build, based on three years of parts collecting. The movement is powered by seven regular LEGO motors and one micro-motor. He estimates that Goliath includes over 7000 LEGO elements, which he spent more than $1000 CDN to purchase. (Multiple Yoda sets on clearance helped with the tan.)
Those of you who transport large LEGO creations may also be interested to learn that Dave included a 3/4″ x 1 1/4″ x 4′ Brazilian cherry beam in the Goliath, which makes it strong enough to survive long trips. As an added bonus, it makes the airship strong enough to hang from the ceiling. Here’s a picture of the DUPLO cradle and straps he uses to secure the Goliath:
Be sure to check out the full photoset on Flickr for lots of detailed shots. Dave’s awesome airship has been showing up in lots of Flickr photostreams, so you might see some new details in other people’s photos as well. Thanks for sharing this info and sending me the video, Dave!
Try as I might, I can’t think of a better way to build Princess Mononoke minifigs than the way Moko did. With San and Ashitaka out of our reach, the rest of us mere mortals are stuck building minor characters, as Andrew Horvatits does:
Horace Cheng continues his series of creations inspired by Hayao Miyazaki movies with princess Nausicaä’s “mehve” (or “möwe,” which means “seagull” in German), from the 1984 film Nausicaä of the Valley of Wind (click for gallery):
Horace also puts a beast from Star Wars to good use as a “bird-horse”:
I’ve been subscribed to Japanese builder Ken Takeuchi’s blog for some time. (Ken goes by “Ken-Tucky” online.) However, it wasn’t until Soren Roberts mentioned Ken’s creations as a source of inspiration for his recent “Heavy Missile Cruiser” (Blocklog post) that I took the time to explore Ken’s Web site, LEGO Works.
Since 1998, Ken has been posting fantastic LEGO creations. (And it’s interesting to see his building style evolve over the last eight years — integrating newly available parts and new building techniques.) With an English version of his LEGO pages, exploring his site is well worth your time. To whet your appetite, I’d like to introduce a few of my personal favorites.
One of dozens of micro-scale vehicles in his “L.E.G.O Force,” here’s an awesome “Armed Starfighter Carrier”:
Demonstrating that Ken’s not just a Spacer, here’s the bathouse building from Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away:
My favorite anime director by far is Hayao Miyazaki. Although my favorite movie is Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind (「風の谷のナウシカ」), I’ve always enjoyed Laputa: Castle in the Sky (「天空の城ラピュタ」). With my increasing collection of US-released Miyazaki DVDs, I thought I’d try my hand at some minifigs.
From left to right, Muska, Uncle Pom, Pazu, Sheeta, and a couple of air pirates.
I highlighted Brickshelf user comic’s Robonoid MOC a couple weeks ago, promising to post (must…resist…cross-linking!) about his Star Wars stop-motion movies. Before I had a chance to do so, he posted some really cool creations based on my favorite Hayao Miyazaki movie (and lengthy comic book saga), Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind.
First up, the fighter/gunship from the city of Pejite:
Admittedly, the gunship is dark red in the movie, but the shape is great! Nice use of the canopy from Anakin’s Jedi Starfighter.
Second, the powered glider Mehve that Nausicaa herself flies:
I like the little Ohmu in the fourth image in the gallery, as well as comic’s use of the submarine bubble as the Ohmu’s eye that Nausicaa gets from the forest. My only suggestion would be to use this torso for Nausicaa instead of the plain blue one. But maybe the plain blue works — I’ve never entirely liked the Nausicaa minifigs I’ve made myself…