Wolf Children

Wolf Children

Mamoru Hosoda (2012)

117min
PG Certificate
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Review

Our Score
Mamoru Hosoda's intriguing anime tale of a mother rearing her half-lupine kids in the Japanese countryside explores the primitive aspects of the rural idyll with handsome, largely hand-drawn visuals. Hosoda's visual style and mixing of fantasy and the everyday has elicited comparisons with Hayao Miyazaki, though here he allows sentimental anthropomorphism to creep in, which is more a feature of American animation than the Japanese genre. It's the story of Hana, a student who falls in love with a classmate who happens to be the last shape-shifting grey wolf. Hana bears the wolf-man two children, Yuki and Ame, and finds herself alone with them after tragedy strikes. However, Hosoda chronicles their upbringing with plenty of gentle humour, and it is only when Yuki decides to take the human route and Ame opts to embrace his transformational nature that the real drama begins. Hosoda cogently tackles themes of identity, prejudice, mother love and the nature vs nurture debate that was also covered in Hirokazu Kore-eda's Like Father, like Son. But, while his metaphorical message is astute, the movie sometimes feels as twee as it is poetic.

Summary

A young woman falls in love with a werewolf, but after he dies she must raise their part-wolf children by herself. Animation, with the voices of Aoi Miyazaki, Haru Kuroki and Takao Ohsawa.

Cast & Crew

Hana Aoi Miyazaki
Yuki Haru Kuroki
Ame Yukito Nishii
Mr Tanable Shota Sometani
Mrs Doi Mitsuki Tanimura
Mrs Hotta Kumiko Aso
Sohei's mother Megumi Hayashibara
Director Mamoru Hosoda
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Other Information

Language: Japanese +subtitlesColourTheatrical distributor: Manga EntertainmentReleased on: 25 Oct 2013
Drama