Wolf Children Ame and Yuki Review — A-

Ame and Yuki’s mother marries a wolf. The film showcases her efforts at raising two children who have the ability to transform into wolves.

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This is a movie about children, but it’s a movie for adults. It showcases a woman’s challenges as a single mother, raising her children and eventually letting go of them. This becomes even more difficult due to her children’s poorly controlled wolf transformations and her resulting reluctance to rely on other people.

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I would be amiss if I didn’t mention that the art is gorgeous. I particularly appreciated the effort they put into drawing people’s faces. It’s beautiful. Likewise, there’s a ton of attention to detail. The movie is a joy to look at.

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The movie has its adorable moments, its funny moments, and its heart-breaking moments. It knows how to play with your emotions and runs you through the whole gamut.

One of the major topics of the movie is whether the children will choose to live as humans or to live as wolves. Initially it seems like Ame will clearly want to be a human, and Yuki will clearly want to be a wolf. Over the course of the movie they reverse positions. I appreciated the way that the characters grew in a way that was entirely believable.

My main complaint about the movie is Ame’s story. It didn’t click with me like Yuki’s did. Basically, it seemed like Ame became a wolf because he couldn’t make any friends. It seemed less like a choice to actively become a wolf than his running away from the human world. I still don’t understand why their mother stressed that they had to make a binary choice, and didn’t encourage them to live in both worlds as their father had.

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Give this a watch.

  • Storytelling – B – Ame’s story was a bit weaker.
  • Voice – A – Reminds me a bit of a Ghibli movie.
  • Characters – A – Just a few characters, who get the attention they need.
  • Attention Grab – A – Not bored at all.
  • Production – A – Beautiful.
  • Overall – A-

Recommendations – Hotarubi no Mori e, Usagi Drop

12 thoughts on “Wolf Children Ame and Yuki Review — A-

      1. The girl ran away too which is why they say that twelve years after giving birth the mother was all alone! How sad.

        1. Oh! She went to boarding school, she didn’t run away. Her mother came with her to the opening ceremony. It is kind of sad that a child would leave home at such a young age though.

  1. Oh, i see Hotarubi no mori e on your recommendations. Did you like the movie? 🙂

    Based on what you said, Ame’s story about not making friends sounded like a freudian excuse just to justify his reason for wanting to be a wolf. But maybe i’m being too judgemental, since I’ve only read the manga and not the movie. I don’t think i was even at that part.

    1. Yes I did like Hotarubi no Mori e! I actually wrote a review for it but apparently haven’t published it, will save it for a slow day. I love those kinds of bittersweet romance stories.

      No, I don’t think you’re being too judgmental, that’s how I felt as well. Choosing to be a wolf on Ame’s part seemed more like an act of cowardice than something he wanted to choose.

  2. I find Ame’s decision quite reasonable.The reason is because in the human world, the world is mostly full of bad people around. For example:People sabotaging one another during work, bullies bullying the weak in schools, crimes and so on. Bullies often causes the weak to have thoughts about being unwanted in schools and that could lead to serious cases. So i think being a wolf would help him forget about all those problems and it could help him to become independent.

    1. I definitely agree that it’s reasonable that he would make that decision. But I still find it a bit cowardly of him to flee from those bullies rather than confronting and overcoming his fears like Yuki did.

  3. This was a beautiful movie. However I was a tiny bit little disappointed about the children’s (especially Yuki’s) resolution in the movie. It seemed a little sad to me that she would stymie her heritage and who she naturally was in favor of fitting in (her mother said it best, she should just be who she is). She went from being an outgoing and happy child to a bit more quiet and reserved in middle school (somber, even). Perhaps that’s one of the social commentary parts of this movie–an issue all girls going to schools have to undergo, with cliques and such. She valued being accepted as her happiness so she began to fear/dislike her wolf form.
    I guess the incident with that boy cemented those fears, so that when she actually got into a physical fight with her younger brother, she’d rather just run away than actually defend herself… However she did seem a bit happier once she realized that the boy (forget his name) would accept her, wolf form and all.

    And then there’s Ame, who straight up just left his mother and sister at such a young age to live in the forest.

    Consider the extreme polarities the two children went through, I was hoping the movie would conclude on a happier note, with balance. I was a little disappointed when it did not, as I felt them finding a balance between their human form and wolf one would’ve allowed for a lot more character development.

    All in all though, I loved this movie and would rate it a 10/10. It was a wonderful piece of art. Music, story, and visuals were breathtaking.

    1. Yeah, it was not the happiest of endings. But sometimes life’s like that.

      I can’t really blame Yuki’s choice to decide to fit in. If it were me, I would pick that over Ame’s refusal to fit in. However, it is a shame that neither of them could find a middle path.

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