Director(s): Mamoru Oshii
Venice International Film Festival 2008 - Competition
The story takes place in another possible ‘now’ - a world that has eradicated war and finally attained peace. However, this prolonged state of peace created demand for a new kind of war. A conflict happening elsewhere, that could be seen on TV or read in the papers - in order to get a feeling of reality. Private war contractors enlist fighter pilots to perform their services in an endless “war as entertainment.” They call these pilots Kildren. Innocent-looking teenagers in appearance, Kildren never age into adulthood, and live in a state of eternal adolescence until the day they drift gracefully through the endless skies. One day, pilot Yuichi Kannami arrives to his newly assigned airbase. He has only vague memory of his past. The only two things he recalls are that he is a Kildren and how to operate a fighter plane. A woman is keeping an eye on Yuichi. She
is Suito Kusanagi, the base commander. A Kildren herself, Suito behaves as if she’s been waiting to meet Yuichi for a long time. Perplexed, Yuichi is nevertheless gradually attracted by her. All pilots at the base have to confront the most invincible enemy ace, known as Teacher. His trademark is a black jaguar painted on the nose of his plane. It is said that if you run into him up in the sky, you don’t come back to tell your friends. Who really is the Teacher? What does Suito know about Yuichi’s past? What are the secrets behind the Kildren?