Mamoru Hosoda is like no other animation director. From his days doing Digimon and One Piece movies to making a name for himself with such critically-acclaimed films The Girl Who Leapt Through Time and Summer Wars, Hosoda has showcased a sort of unique talent regarding how a story is told and how it looks. Because of his talents he has been called "the next Miyazaki" by many critics in Japan and the rest of the world.
With his latest film Wolf Children, Hosoda doesn't just reach the top of the anime directorial mountain; he claims the throne that rests on its peak.
Wolf Children tells the story of Hana (Aoi Miyazaki), a college student who falls in love with a secluded man (Takao Osawa). After a few dates the man reveals his biggest secret to Hana: he is a wolf that can switch to a human form. Instead of running away Hana embraces this discovered side, and the couple become closer than they were before.
Hana later bears the wolfman's children: a daughter named Yuki (Haru Kiroki/Momoka Ono) and a son called Ame (Yukito Nishii/Amon Kabe). Soon after the birth of Ame tragedy strikes, leaving Hana to take care of the two children on her own. As one can probably guess, raising half-human/half-wolf kids is a lot of hard work. The city life turns out to be a burden on keeping her kids' identity secret, so she decides to move her family to the quiet, peaceful, and above-all private country life.
Once Hana, Yuki, and Ame settle into their new lives, the story begins to focus its slice-of-life approach on the kids. How they cope with being these human/wolf hybrids; the challenges of fitting in with the other regular kids at their schools; most of all, how they connect with the nature around them. Growing up has never been showcased like this in any shape or form.