By Lariena Nokes
The imaginations of creative people can run wild.
The 2012 anime feature film “Wolf Children” takes the concept of form-shifting that does not exist in Japanese mythology and creates a modern day fairytale around the idea.
The Honshu wolf was forced into extinction in 1905; these two ideas are merged into Honshu werewolves.
The idea that a human can shift or transform into an animal is anthropomorphic, two natures combined in one being.
This fictional idea is explored from three points of view in this anime movie.
In “Wolf Children” the anthropomorphic characters are Osawa, a man and father; Yuki, a young girl; and Ame, a little boy who grows up to be a man.
The story of a shy orphaned college girl falling in love with a half man, half Honshu wolf set the scene for this touching tale.
Having canine instincts and human expectations creates a difficult situation for the couple’s half human, half Honshu daughter Yuki and son Ame.
The half-wolf, children test their mother’s patience and force her to study new ways of parenting to meet their needs.
Yuki is a bright young girl with a quick wit and plenty of courage; not your typical werewolf to be sure.
Drive and ambition lead her to chose a human path and temper her half-wolf side.
For Ame the son with his father’s eyes, his mother’s shyness in his own character slowly gives way to his quiet confidence.
In human form he struggles to fit in, but as a wolf he strides with power and grace and seeks to be the guardian of Japan’s mountains and animals.
The American version of the movie had a limited release in U.S. theaters on Sept 27, 2013, with a PG rating, and was well received.
The movie has moving scenes that appeal to fans of Charlotte Brontë style romance and a plot that moves swiftly, just like a Jack London adventure.
For the science fiction or anime fans Wolf Children holds the prospect of uncharted territory. Romance fans will enjoy the wholehearted romance between Hana and Osawa.
For werewolf fans the childhood adventures of Yuki and her brother Ame are greatly entertaining.
If you are looking to escape into a great story with fully developed anime charters, “Wolf Children” should be on your list of movies to see this summer.