Taking the form of a scar, slowly begins to consume his flesh and soul. In his search for a cure he is forced to leave his village and journey east to a forest inhabited by animal gods.
Along the way, he spots a girl tending to the wounds of a giant wolf god. He eventually comes upon an industrial town where he learns of the ongoing battle against the gods, who have not taken kindly to human intrusion (led by the fierce and independent Lady Eboshi). Humans have cut down part of the great forest to fuel the smelting furnaces of the town, which produces firearms that are in turn used against the gods. It is "Princess Mononoke", the girl raised by the wolf gods, who leads the assault against town.
I like the fact that there is no good versus evil in the struggle and characters have shades of gray. Environmentalism is a recurring theme in Miyazaki's movies and it plays a very important role in Princess Mononoke. Strong female characters are said to be another staple in his repertoire, and it's definitely the case in this movie.
Anime legend Hayao Miyazaki conveys the man vs nature conflict brilliantly through this masterpiece and it no surprise that Princess Mononoke has received hundreds of laurels and top nominations along the way. Princess Mononoke is about as close to a perfect animated epic as you're likely to get. Let this one adorn your shelf, definitely recommended!