Wolf Children (2012) IMDb
Seen in 2013.
Extremely fine visuals. The extended linearity of the plot is nice. The furry fantasy is a little distasteful, and the pure pastoral structure is somewhat clumsily executed, especially in the character of the grumpy old man with a heart of gold.
The most interesting part of the story is the suspicion of parental incompetence and child abuse, which seems like a perfectly reasonable humanitarian response from the community considering cases like that of the woman who abandoned four children in Sugamo in 1988. Oddly, it’s portrayed here as an intrusion.
For the boy, the wolf-human hybrid plot terminates in the nushi motif, which I think is unfortunate because it imposes a hierarchical model on nature, centered on reason, instead of taking the ecocritical opportunities on offer in the larger premise.
References here: The Tale of Iya (2013).