Wolf Children [Movie]
Nineteen-year-old college student Hana meets a young man who sneaks into her classes for lessons and falls in love with him immediately. They soon start dating. One day, the man reveals his identity to Hana; he is a Wolfman and the only surviving descendant of the extinct Japanese wolf. Undeterred by this fact, Hana invites him to live with her. A year later, when Hana becomes pregnant, she decides not to visit a hospital out of fear that her child will be born a wolf. Their daughter, Yuki (“Snow”), is thus born at home on a snowy day, along with her brother, Ame (“Rain”), who is born a year after her, this time on a rainy day. Not long after Ame’s birth, the Wolfman suddenly disappears. Hana searches frantically, only to discover city workers working to remove a wolf’s carcass from a canal. He had died accidentally while hunting on instinct to feed his young. Although devastated by the loss of her beloved, Hana resolves to take good care of their wolf-children by herself.
However, Hana finds living in the city with her children extremely difficult. Yuki, who is temperamental, often switches between her human and wolf forms, creating a lot of noise and making the neighbors upset. Hana’s landlady receives complaints that she is keeping pets at home due to the wolf cries coming from within the apartment, and threatens to evict her. Making matters worse, child-protection officers have been hounding Hana because her children have not gone for the compulsory immunization program. Eventually, Hana decides to move to the countryside and stumbles upon a dilapidated house that is virtually rent-free, but requires a lot of renovation work. Most importantly to her, however, is the fact that the nearest neighbor is miles away, and the house is surrounded by nature.
Hana gets down to work immediately, repairing the house and later trying to grow crops. Initially skeptical of her at first, the other villagers warm up to her and help her to settle in. One fierce old man who treats newcomers harshly even shows Hana how to grow her own farm. At the same time, Hana tries to find ways to educate her children about wolf survival in the wild. She eventually gets a job as an assistant in a nature reserve to learn more about nature. Meanwhile, Yuki loves the new environment, while Ame dislikes it. One snowy day after the family goes into the forest for a run, Ame (in his wolf form) finds the will to chase after a kingfisher, but loses his footing and falls into a stream, nearly drowning but is saved by Yuki. After that day, Ame had changed, becoming confident in himself.
Soon, when Yuki and Ame reach school-going age, Yuki begs her mother to send her to elementary. Hana is reluctant in sending Yuki to school due to her frequent transformations. But after days of crying, whining, and begging, Hana agrees on one condition: they must never transform into wolves in front of people. Although Yuki does not fit well into the school environment initially due to her background, she soon adapts and makes many new friends at school. However, Ame does not adapt very well and is bullied to the point that he stops attending and frequently wanders into the woods behind their house. Later, Hana discovers that Ame is taking lessons from an old fox about hunting and survival in the wild.
In school, Yuki’s class receives a new transfer student, Souhei, who immediately tells Yuki that she smells like a “furry animal”. Fearing that he will uncover her identity, Yuki avoids him. Souhei, confused and frustrated asks her if it was because he was an exchange student, Yuki denies it and tries to slip away. However, he follows and harasses her around the school until Yuki, unable to control herself, transforms into a wolf and scratches him across the ear. Hana is called in to school and apologizes to Souhei’s furious mother. Hana tells Yuki to apologize, but then Souhei speaks saying that a wolf had hurt him leaving his hysterical mother confused. Yuki is seen returning to the classroom, and then running out because of her classmates asking what had happened. Yuki is seen in the car with Hana as she starts to cry and apologize to her mother. Haunted by this incident, Yuki refuses to go to school. However, moved by Souhei’s persistence in sending her homework and foodstuffs every day, Yuki eventually returns to school, and even becomes good friends with Souhei.
Hana begins to notice Ame acting strangely as he fights with Yuki. Hana encourages Ame to stay at home for fear that he won’t come back after he tells her that his master (an old fox) has been hurt and will soon die and that he needs to be replaced. A fierce storm comes and Ame disappears into the forest with Hana chasing after. Hana searches for Ame in the forest while Yuki waits to be picked up at school. Hana falls in the forest and has a vision of her husband, while Hana is passed out Ame carries her (human form) to a parking lot. She awakens there in time to see Ame turn into an adult wolf and leave. Later Yuki starts to dorm at her middle school and Hana laughs about the story of raising her wolf children for 12 years and saying it was like a fairy tale. (Wikipedia)