Wolf Children the Movie (anime review)

Wolf ChildrenTitle: Wolf Children

Director: Mamoru Hosoda

Studio: Madhouse and Studio Chizu

U. S. Distributor: FUNimation

U. S. Release Date: Nov. 26th, 2013

Format: DVD/ Blu-ray / Feature Film / 117 Minutes

Genre: Supernatural, Slice of Life

Age Rating: TV PG

Overall Grade: A




From Mamoru Hosoda, the internationally-acclaimed director of The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, Summer Wars and Winner of the Japan Academy Prize for Best Animation of the Year, 2013.


Hana was a student before she was a mother. She was bright and pretty, and her future held endless possibilities. Then she met a man, who turned out to be a wolf, and together they built a family.Hana loved her mate fiercely, but fate took him from her, leaving her alone with two unusual kids she didn’t know how to raise. Frightened of being discovered, Hana and her wolf children fled to the countryside to build a new life. Raising her little wild things was an adventure. It left Hana bruised, scratched, exhausted, and joyously overwhelmed as her pups grew stronger and wandered further every day. This is a mother’s journey. Teach your children to chase their dreams – and smile through the tears as they disappear into the world in search of who they will become. Hana wasn’t always a mother, but it was always what she was meant to be.




I know that there are quite a few people awaiting the DVD / Blu-ray U. S. release of Wolf Children because of all the hype that has been put out there and honestly it is everything that is being said and more. Hosoda managed to create a beautiful film that touches even the hairiest of hearts. Watching these children grow up is a reminder to all parents of the trials and tribulations they must endure and at the same time a reminder of the most pure type of love that exists. Mamoru Hosoda continues his ways by capturing the human emotions that we all go through in times of stress and moments of  truth. Wolf Children does more than just tell the story of a single mother trying to raise two enchanted children, it tell the story of all parents trying to raise their children and provide the best environment possible for them. I know that most of us are trapped by our economic position in the world, but for Hana, she managed to break those bindings and discover a new path that suited her kids the best.


The animation of the film is typical Hosoda and it accentuates the world around the characters and at the same time flattens out the humans in order to allow the richness of their characters shin through. This style worked well for him in Summer Wars and even better in The Girl Who Leapt Through Time. The beauty of nature is always a focal point in Hosoda’s anime and Wolf Children shows it off well. The plot makes it easy to focus on nature, but at the same time it also reminds us of the importance of all things that surround us.


If you are looking for a action packed film like Summer Wars please rethink the way you approach Wolf Children. This one is a film that needs to wash over you just the same way life does.


Overall Grade: A


Being a huge fan of Mamoru Hosoda’s work it is easy for me to grade Wolf Children with high marks, but this film is deserving of every bit of praise heaped upon it. The only thing I might see as a weakness is that the film is not a children’s film even though it highlights two children growing up. This film is really about being a parent and the trials and tribulations they go through trying to raise children. It is also about children growing up and discovering who they are. Wolf Children is one of the best anime films released in the U. S. this year and continues to prove that Mamoru Hosoda understands us all in some very special ways.  This one is a must see.

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