My personal history with studio ghibli is hit and miss.
So keep that in mind as you read.
First: This is not a kids film, do not bring your children to go see it... The theater i was in was 90% kids and they all left bored or disturbed and confused about some of the darker subject matter. Just because Disney is distributing it... just cause it's a "cartoon" doesn't mean it's okay to bring your children to it. look into the fi;m before you bring your kids to it.
Do i think kids shouldn't see it? no... i just know as a kid had I a seen a animated film where a character vomits blood i would not have handled it well.
Also the talk of politics, culture, history and planes could easily bore those who don't care.
so yeah don't bring them to a theater expecting happy fun time... watch it yourself and then decide if it's something they will like or if it's better to wait.
Second: This film is both extremly Real and incredibly Surreal.
The real focuses on the time frame, characters and politics of japan (mostly during WWII)... but it's offset with these surreal dreams of the main character.... where you get a flamboyent sterotypical italian showing the main character some planes that weren't intended for war but will be used that way.
Third: The film can feel..... awkward.
thats not necessarily a bad thing... but it's something to keep in mind... we don't normally see war films from the "losing" side.
Also long conversations about cigarettes (which considering time frame and mind set of japan... yeah it makes sense)
all that being said the film is.... okay.
The poster says "best animated film to hit theaters".... yeah i will respectfully disagree.... it's not bad but it's not that good. I don't think it'll be winning any oscars tomorrow (infact even though i haven't seen it i bet frozen will win tomorrow) but i think it's good that a film like this has been brought over without being edited too much.
these are japanese character in japan and that is never changed or glossed over unlike other Western dubs.
I had a decent time, it was a fairly pretty film... you can tell it was Miyazaki's love letter to aircraft and i could see why he wanted it to be his retirement piece (even though i'm pretty sure he's already confirmed that he's not retiring... again) but in the end i still prefer other films of his like Princess Mononoke.
ok one last thing, i saw the english dub... it was fairly flat which was a bit disappointing since there are a lot of talented people on this... but just... no real depth in how the characters speak.
still if you can easily go see it and are curious, give it a shot. if not then just wait a bit to see it.