Review: Wolf Children
Wolf Children is a cute feel good story revolving around the life of a woman named Hana and her experiences from meeting her husband to raising her children. The story is lightly narated by the daughter Yui as she looks back at her mothers life, though the story follows mostly from her mothers point of view.
The story begins with Hana meeting her husband in university and how she gets to know him. It turns out that he was not really a student at the university and just attended the lectures in secret. The story shows how soon after she met, they began to go on dates together, until eventually he works up the courage to inform her that he is actually half-wolf. Thinking that Hana would be scared and run away, he was pleasently surprised to find that she not only accepted this, but continued to love him.
Jumping forward, Hana has had two children, one named Yui and the other called Ame. However, on the night Ame is born, her husband is killed bringing food back to them. Because he was in wolf form, she was not able to hold a funeral for him.
Struggling to survive on her own, Hana eventually moves to the countryside in an area where her husband was raised and begins to live seperately from everyone else so she can raise her two children who switch between wolf and human regularly as they try to make up their mind on whether they should be wolves or humans.
This story is quite wonderful in its dealings with Hana's emotions and the differences between Ame and Yui. We find how they begin to develop different interests and develop different ideas of what they want in life, we also see how much Hana struggles to both raise her children and hide the fact that neither one is human. The help of the community to teach her how to farm the land is essential to her survival and she is truely thankful to them.
Though nothing big really happens in this story, it is a cute feel good story in both Movie (Written by Mamoru Hoshida) and Manga form (Illustrated by Yu as their first published work, and an adaption of the already made film). The only real criticism I have of the story is that it left me feeling I wanted to know more about what happened to the family as Hana got older and after the kids had left home. The addition of a scene showing her as a grandmother with the children visiting her I believe would have made this story almost perfect.