Hayao Miyazaki is a singular director, and perhaps the greatest anime director of all time. However, back in 1995, he was struggling to create what would become one of his masterpieces, Princess Mononoke. So, as a side-project, he directed the seven-minute long music video for Japanese rock band Chage and Aska's single "On Your Mark." However, the short film has all the earmarks of his signature style, and it's breathtaking as a result.
"On Your Mark," told in a non-linear format and completely without dialog, follows two police officers and the angelic girl they try to save. In the background, Miyazaki leaves hints that the world is enduring what looks like a long period of strife, but the film keeps things fairly intimate throughout. Even without spoken words, the action is every bit as lush, expressive, and affecting as so much of the director's work — you really start to root for the main characters, a true sign of Miyazaki's skill. We almost wish it were stretched out into a feature film.