Dōbutsu no Mori (Japanese: 劇場版 どうぶつの森 Hepburn: Gekijōban Dōbutsu no Mori?, lit. “Animal Forest: Theater Version”) is a 2006 Japanese animated film directed by Jōji Shimura and based on the Animal Crossing video game series, specifically Wild World. It was produced by OLM, Inc. and distributed by Toho in association with Nintendo.
The film opens with Ai, a young girl, moving into the Animal Village during the summer. After being put to work by Tom Nook to deliver goods, Ai befriends four of the village’s residents, Bouquet, Sally, Alfonso, and Yū, participating in several activities. Ai begins to find a series of anonymous messages in bottles that state that a miracle will occur during the upcoming Winter Festival if pine trees are planted in specific points of the village. Ai complies with the messages and begins planting the trees, half-believing that the messages may have been placed by aliens..
This was an incredibly adorable movie. I played the Nintendo DS game that this movie is based on (Wild world is the only of the AC games I have played) and I felt it had a lot of the same feel that made me waste so many hours playing the game (noone is saying that is a bad thing.)
The story was well thought out and highly engaging. Great character development for all the main characters, and some of the minor characters. There were a few slow parts that I felt dragged on longer then they needed to, but nothing that negatively affected the movie. The music was well done and reflected that of the games it is based on. I am a little sad that they didn’t expand on the movie with another or a short series, either would have been awesome IMO.
If your a Animal crossing fan (and even if your not) I highly recommend giving this movie a watch. I watched it for free on AnimeHere.