Studio Ghibli is known for producing some of the finest animated films, and Princess Mononoke is one of the finest among them. The film follows the cursed prince Ashitaka as he travels west in search of a cure, but ends up in the middle of a war. The forces of Irontown, a technologically advanced settlement, are clashing with the forest — clans of boars and wolves dedicated to defending their land from the humans' destructive grasp. This battle is personified in the rivalry between Irontown's leader Lady Eboshi, a tough and idealistic industrialist, and San, a girl raised by wolves,who rejects her humanity and fights viciously for the forest.

Princess Mononoke's environmental themes are powerful due to the film's willingness to portray complexity in its message — there is no clear good-and-evil, but rather an exploration of an inbalanced natural order, where humanity takes more than it gives, and nature responds with fierce devastation. The film is willing to portray its industrialist as good intentioned but short-sighted, and its forest animals as stubborn and hateful, setting it apart from other heavy-handed environmentalist messages in media, and allowing its message of harmony to attain rare, true resonance.