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Pom Poko

Pom Poko (Japanese: 平成狸合戦ぽんぽこ, Hepburn: Heisei Tanuki Gassen Ponpoko, lit. "Heisei-era Raccoon Dog War Ponpoko") is a 1994 Japanese animated fantasy film written and directed by Isao Takahata, animated by Studio Ghibli for Tokuma Shoten, Nippon Television Network and Hakuhodo, and distributed by Toho.

An environmental allegory, the story features tanuki, or Japanese raccoon dogs (incorrectly referred to as "raccoons" in the English dialog). In Japanese folklore, tanuki are considered to be magical creatures, capable of shape-shifting into people or other objects. They are a highly sociable, mischievous species, too fun-loving and fond of tasty treats to be a real threat – unlike kitsune (foxes) and other shape-shifters.

The phrase "Pom Poko" in the title refers to the sound of tanuki drumming their bellies, from a 1919 poem by Ujō Noguchi which became a popular children's song when it was set to music in 1925.

Prominent scrotums are an integral part of tanuki folklore, and they are shown and referred to throughout the film, and also used frequently in their shape-shifting. This remains unchanged in the DVD release, though the English dub (but not the subtitles) refers to them as "raccoon pouches".