7.4/10
16,996
50 user 63 critic

Pom Poko (1994)

Heisei tanuki gassen ponpoko (original title)
A community of magical shape-shifting raccoon dogs struggle to prevent their forest home from being destroyed by urban development.

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3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Shinchô Kokontei ...
Narrator (voice)
Makoto Nonomura ...
Shôkichi (voice)
Yuriko Ishida ...
Okiyo (voice)
Norihei Miki ...
Seizaemon (voice)
Nijiko Kiyokawa ...
Fireball Oroku (voice)
Shigeru Izumiya ...
Gonta (voice)
Gannosuke Ashiya ...
Inugami Gyobu (voice)
Takehiro Murata ...
Bunta (voice)
Beichô Katsura ...
Kinchô Daimyôjin the Sixth (voice) (as Beichou Katsura)
Bunshi Katsura Vi ...
Yashimano Hage (voice) (as Bunshi Katsura)
Kosan Yanagiya ...
Abbot Tsurugame (voice)
...
Tamasaburô (voice)
Rei Sakuma ...
(voice)
...
Male Tanuki B (voice)
Minoru Yada ...
(voice)
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Storyline

As the human city development encroaches on the raccoon dog population's forest and meadow habitat, the raccoon dogs find themselves faced with the very real possibility of extinction. In response, the raccoon dogs engage in a desperate struggle to stop the construction and preserve their home. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@execulink.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for violence, scary images and thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

16 July 1994 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Pom Poko  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Official submission of Japan for the 'Best Foreign Language Film' category of the 67th Academy Awards in 1995. See more »

Goofs

The English-dubbed version incorrectly refers to the tanuki as "raccoons". Tanuki are actually "raccoon dogs" - they are in the canid branch of mammals. See more »

Quotes

Additional Voices: [turning around] I have no face!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Troldspejlet: Episode #51.19 (2014) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Impressive
30 June 2013 | by See all my reviews

I find it hard to summarize this film, since it is sort of all over the place. The main plot of the film involves the tanuki (raccoon-dogs) of the Tama hills near Tokyo and their struggle against the encroaching development that is destroying their woods. As the tanuki attempt to defend their home through the use of their shape-shifting abilities, they are also challenged by an inability to agree on the best course of action and a growing sense that their efforts may be inevitably doomed to failure.

The film, like its tanuki characters, seemed a bit unfocused at times, especially towards the end. Indeed, the plot mainly served as a set-up for showing a succession tanuki antics. Admittedly, said antics were very entertaining, but at 2 hours of runtime I'd prefer a little more narrative support.

Some have referred to this movie as environmentalist in nature, but viewed from that standpoint, it is actually somewhat weak. I was especially disappointed by the ending, which I thought failed to make any meaningful comment on the sequence of events depicted in the movie. Without giving too much away, it seemed like the movie was saying, "Development and urban sprawl are inevitable, but oh well. At least there are still golf courses and parks!" It was as if the people making the film didn't want to hurt anyone's feelings. I have nothing against ambiguity, especially with such a broad theme as the conflict between humans and nature, but I thought the overall effect of the film was wishy-washy, avoiding more serious questions for the sake of preserving a lighthearted tone.

The best aspects of this film in my opinion were its unrestrained playfulness, wacky sense of humor, and use of Japanese culture and folklore, much of which was largely unfamiliar to me as a Western viewer. The art and animation were also quite well done, with realistic natural elements rendered quite convincingly and an overall visual harmony between the static backgrounds and animated figures. Despite the shortcomings mentioned in the preceding paragraphs, I enjoyed this film quite a bit. 7 / 10.


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