Discover the Ultimate List of the Top 10 Anime Movies of All Time

Top 10 Anime Movies Of All Time - A Cinematic journey to discover

✅Quick Summary

Step into the captivating world of anime with our list of the top 10 anime movies of all time. Immerse yourself in a stunning blend of vibrant visuals, compelling storytelling, and unforgettable characters. Whether you’re a seasoned anime enthusiast or just dipping your toes into this fantastical realm, this list is sure to have something that will leave you in awe.

  • From masterpieces like “Spirited Away” and “Your Name” that have won awards and captured the hearts of millions, to lesser-known gems that deserve more recognition, we have carefully curated a selection that showcases the diversity and brilliance of anime storytelling.
  • Each movie on this list offers an immersive experience that will transport you to another world, making you laugh, cry, and question the very nature of our existence.
  • Get ready to embark on a thrilling adventure as we take you through anime movies that explore themes of love, friendship, loss, and self-discovery.
  • So grab some popcorn, find a cozy spot, and prepare to be captivated by the magic of anime cinema. These top 10 anime movies are waiting to sweep you off your feet and leave you craving for more.

SEE ALSO: Top 10 Greatest Anime Series

RankMovie NameIMDB RatingsMovie Year
1.Spirited Away8.6/102001
2. Your Name8.4/102016
3.Howl’s Moving Castle8.2/102004
4.The End of Evangelion8.1/101997
6. Perfect Blue8.0/101997
7. Ghost in the Shell7.9/101995
8.Ninja Scroll7.8/101993
9. Paprika7.7/102006
10.Weathering With You7.5/102019

10 Weathering With You

“Weathering With You” directed by Makoto Shinkai, is a critically acclaimed Japanese animated romantic fantasy film. Like all creative works, it has aspects that people love and some elements that might not resonate with everyone. Here’s a look at the pros and cons of the film:

Pros of the Movie:

  • Makoto Shinkai’s films are known for their breathtaking animation and “Weathering With You” is no exception. The depiction of rain-soaked Tokyo is visually captivating with intricate details and vivid colors.
  • The Japanese rock band RADWIMPS‘ music perfectly reflects the tone of the movie. The tracks are evocative and enhance the emotional depth of the scenes.
  • The movie touches upon the theme of climate change wrapped within a love story, offering an intriguing blend of fantasy and realism.

Cons of the Movie:

  • While the blend of romance, fantasy, and environmental issues is innovative, some viewers might find it challenging to grasp or feel that these themes don’t mesh seamlessly.
  • Some critics and viewers felt that the film’s pacing was inconsistent, with certain parts dragging on.
  • A few viewers believed that the storyline followed a somewhat predictable trajectory, especially if they were familiar with Shinkai’s narrative style.

09 Paprika

Paprika is a 2006 Japanese science-fiction anime film directed by Satoshi Kon, based on the 1993 novel of the same name by Yasutaka Tsutsui. It’s a visually arresting piece that delves into the world of dreams.


  • Directed by Satoshi Kon, “Paprika” is celebrated for its mesmerizing and surreal animation sequences. The blend of dream and reality is portrayed through vibrant colors and imaginative landscapes, providing a feast for the eyes.
  • The film’s plot, which revolves around the intrusion into people’s dreams, is intricate and offers depth. This challenges viewers to think and piece together the story, providing an engaging experience for those who appreciate complex narratives.
  • The film’s music, composed by Susumu Hirasawa, complements its surreal atmosphere perfectly. The soundtrack enhances the emotional and psychological depths explored in the film.


  • Given its intricate plot and frequent shifts between dream and reality, some viewers might find “Paprika” confusing or hard to follow, especially on the first watch.
  • The surreal and often bizarre sequences might not appeal to everyone. Those who prefer straightforward narratives might find the film too abstract.
  • While it’s an animated film, “Paprika” contains mature content that might not be suitable for younger audiences.

08 Ninja Scroll

Ninja Scroll is a 1993 Japanese anime action thriller film directed by Yoshiaki Kawajiri, produced by Madhouse, and based on a story by Kawajiri. It’s known for its dark themes, action-packed sequences, and mature content. Here’s an exploration of the pros and cons of “Ninja Scroll.”


  • One of the major strengths of “Ninja Scroll” is its stunning art and animation quality. For its time, the level of detail, especially during action sequences, was noteworthy.
  • Numerous action scenes, each choreographed with flair and creativity, punctuate the movie. These scenes are both violent and thrilling, keeping viewers on the edge of their seats.
  • The characters, especially Jubei and Kagero, are multi-dimensional, having their own motivations, strengths, and weaknesses, making them compelling to the viewers.


  • The film contains scenes of violence, gore, and explicit content. This might be off-putting for certain viewers or those looking for a more subdued anime experience.
  • Some viewers might find the political intrigue and numerous characters introduced a bit hard to follow, especially on first viewing.
  • While the main characters are well-developed, some of the villains can feel one-dimensional, serving more as obstacles for the protagonist than fully fleshed-out characters.

07 Ghost in the Shell

Ghost in the Shell” is a landmark 1995 anime film directed by Mamoru Oshii and produced by the revered animation company, Production I.G. It is based on the manga of the same name by Masamune Shirow. The film, with its cyberpunk setting and themes of artificial intelligence, consciousness, and identity, has been both influential and controversial. Here’s a breakdown of its pros and cons:


  • The film’s visuals are groundbreaking. The detailed cyberpunk world, combined with fluid animation, sets a benchmark for anime aesthetics.
  • “Ghost in the Shell” delves deeply into themes of identity, humanity, and the merging of man and machine. It raises philosophical questions that are still relevant in our advancing technological age.
  • Composed by Kenji Kawai, the film’s haunting and atmospheric score complements its visuals and themes beautifully.


  • The film is methodical and contemplative. While this suits its thematic depth, some viewers might find its pacing slow or somewhat static.
  • The plot, combined with its heavy philosophical themes, can be dense and hard to digest, especially for first-time viewers.
  • For those unfamiliar with cyberpunk or philosophical sci-fi, “Ghost in the Shell” can seem esoteric or hard to relate to.

06 Perfect Blue

“Perfect Blue” is a psychological thriller anime film directed by Satoshi Kon, based on a novel by Yoshikazu Takeuchi. Released in 1997, it has garnered a cult following and is known for its intense and thought-provoking narrative. Here are some pros and cons of the film:


  • “Perfect Blue” offers a complex and psychologically intense storyline that keeps viewers engaged throughout. It delves into themes of identity, reality, and obsession, making it a thought-provoking experience.
  • Satoshi Kon’s direction and animation work are visually striking. The film effectively blurs the line between reality and hallucination, creating a visually captivating atmosphere.
  • The main character, Mima, undergoes a significant transformation throughout the film, and her character development is well-executed. Her descent into paranoia and fear is portrayed convincingly.


  • Perfect Blue” contains several disturbing and violent scenes, including sexual assault and murder. Some viewers may find these scenes to be too graphic and unsettling.
  • While the complexity of the plot is a strength, it can also be a drawback for some viewers. Those looking for a straightforward narrative may find the film confusing or hard to follow.
  • The film deals with themes of stalking, obsession, and the loss of personal identity, which can be triggering for some viewers, especially those who have experienced similar situations.

05 Akira

“Akira” is a groundbreaking animated film released in 1988, directed by Katsuhiro Otomo, based on his manga of the same name. It is widely regarded as a classic in both the anime and science fiction genres. Here are some pros and cons of the movie:


  • The film features a memorable and atmospheric musical score by Geinoh Yamashirogumi, which enhances the overall experience and is still celebrated by fans.
  • “Akira” had a significant influence on the anime industry, helping to popularize the medium in the West and inspiring countless future creators and works. Its impact on pop culture cannot be overstated.
  • The film provides a deep exploration of its main characters, especially Kaneda and Tetsuo, as they navigate the complex and dangerous world they inhabit.


  • “Akira” contains intense violence and graphic imagery, including body horror and destruction. Some viewers may find these elements disturbing or unsettling.
  • The film has a runtime of over two hours, which some viewers might find a bit long. Additionally, the pacing can be slow at times, with moments of intense action interspersed with slower, more contemplative scenes.
  • While the animation in “Akira” was groundbreaking at the time, some viewers accustomed to more modern animation techniques might find it somewhat dated in comparison to contemporary works.

04 The End of Evangelion

“The End of Evangelion” is a 1997 animated film directed by Hideaki Anno and serves as an alternative ending to the original “Neon Genesis Evangelion” anime series. It is known for its complex and controversial narrative, as well as its unique and thought-provoking themes. Here are some aspects of “The End of Evangelion”:


  • The film features striking and innovative animation, particularly during its surreal and abstract sequences. The imagery and symbolism are visually captivating and have left a lasting impression on viewers.
  • “The End of Evangelion” explores a wide range of complex themes, including existentialism, identity, loneliness, and the human psyche. It raises profound philosophical questions and challenges viewers to contemplate their meanings.
  • The film delves deeper into the characters of Shinji, Asuka, and Rei, providing more insight into their motivations and inner struggles. It allows for a more comprehensive understanding of their complexities.


  • The film’s narrative is notoriously complex and abstract, which can be confusing for some viewers. It is not a straightforward conclusion to the series and requires careful attention to detail to fully appreciate.
  • “The End of Evangelion” contains graphic and disturbing scenes, including intense violence and sexual imagery. Some viewers may find these elements unsettling.
  • While the film provides an alternative ending to the series, it still leaves some questions unanswered and can be seen as an intentionally enigmatic conclusion. Some viewers may find this lack of closure unsatisfying.

03 Howl’s Moving Castle

“Howl’s Moving Castle” is a 2004 animated fantasy film directed by Hayao Miyazaki and produced by Studio Ghibli. It is based on the novel of the same name by British author Diana Wynne Jones. The film is known for its enchanting visuals, imaginative storytelling, and well-developed characters. Here are some aspects of “Howl’s Moving Castle”:


  • As with all Studio Ghibli films, “Howl’s Moving Castle” features beautiful and detailed hand-drawn animation. The film’s visuals, from the magical landscapes to the intricate designs of the castle itself, are a feast for the eyes.
  • The movie presents a fantastical and imaginative world filled with magic, steampunk-inspired technology, and whimsical creatures. This richly realized setting adds depth and wonder to the story.
  • The film’s characters are well-developed and endearing. From the titular character, Howl, to the young protagonist Sophie, and even the quirky side characters like Calcifer and Markl, each character contributes to the film’s charm and emotional depth.


  • The plot can be somewhat complex and may require multiple viewings to fully grasp, especially for younger audiences. Some viewers might find certain plot points and character motivations a bit convoluted.
  • While many appreciate the film’s slower pacing and leisurely exploration of its world and characters, others may find it a bit too slow, particularly if they’re looking for a fast-paced adventure.
  • Fans of Diana Wynne Jones’ original novel may notice significant differences between the book and the film adaptation. While this is common in adaptations, some purists might be disappointed by the changes.

02 Your Name

“Your Name” (Kimi no Na wa) is a 2016 Japanese animated film directed by Makoto Shinkai. It received widespread acclaim for its storytelling, animation, and music. Here are some pros and cons of the film:


  • “Your Name” is known for its stunningly detailed and vibrant animation. The film showcases breathtakingly rendered landscapes, cityscapes, and character designs, making it visually captivating.
  • The film’s plot, which revolves around a body-swapping phenomenon between two teenagers, Taki and Mitsuha, is emotionally engaging and full of surprises. The narrative combines elements of romance, science fiction, and drama, keeping viewers invested throughout.
  • Taki and Mitsuha undergo significant character development as they navigate the challenges and mysteries of their situation. Their growth and evolving relationship are central to the film’s appeal.


  • Some viewers may find the pacing uneven, particularly in the first half of the film, where the body-swapping sequences can be somewhat repetitive. However, the story picks up significantly in the latter half.
  • The film introduces a time-travel element and alternate realities, which can be a bit confusing for some viewers. Understanding the mechanics of these elements may require multiple viewings.
  • Some secondary characters are introduced briefly, and their roles can be somewhat underdeveloped. This may leave some viewers wanting more insight into these characters.

01 Spirited Away

Spirited Away is a 2001 Japanese animated fantasy film directed by Hayao Miyazaki and produced by Studio Ghibli. It is renowned for its imaginative storytelling, beautiful animation, and emotional depth. Here are some pros and cons of the film:


  • “Spirited Away” introduces viewers to a rich and enchanting world filled with fantastical creatures, spirits, and magical landscapes. The film’s ability to immerse the audience in this imaginative setting is one of its greatest strengths.
  • The film’s protagonist, Chihiro, is a determined and resourceful young girl who undergoes significant character development throughout the story. Her courage and resilience make her a relatable and inspiring character.
  • “Spirited Away” explores complex themes such as identity, growing up, and the relationship between humans and nature. It does so with subtlety and emotional resonance, leaving a lasting impact on viewers.


  • The film’s plot can be quite complex and surreal, especially for younger viewers. Some may find certain sequences or characters challenging to understand.
  • While many appreciate the deliberate pacing, some viewers may find the film a bit slow, particularly in the first act as Chihiro explores the bathhouse and meets various characters.
  • “Spirited Away” includes some scenes that may be intense or frightening for young children. The film’s dark and eerie moments, such as encounters with certain spirits, may be unsettling for some viewers.


The top 10 anime movies listed above represent a diverse range of genres, styles, and themes, each leaving a lasting impact on audiences worldwide. From fantastical journeys and powerful emotions to thought-provoking explorations of humanity and society, these movies showcase the immense storytelling potential of anime as an art form. As the genre continues to evolve, these timeless classics and modern masterpieces will undoubtedly continue to captivate and inspire audiences for generations to come.

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Zainab Hashmi

I'm Zainab Hashmi, and I'm the Head Editor of I'm uncovering the world's wonders and presenting you with the most interesting top ten lists in many categories. I've been as a guest on various national radio and television networks.

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