With the upcoming release of Ghost in the Shell as a live action movie, it’s reminded us of the awesomeness of the original animated movie. Anime offers such a wealth of cultural story telling and experiences that differs from more western approaches to animation, but for a lot of people they just don’t know where to start with it. We’ve compiled some great examples of movies and series that would make a perfect starting point for anyone that’s curious:-
Ghost in the Shell
“Primarily set in the mid-twenty-first century in the fictional Japanese city of Niihama, otherwise known as New Port City, you follow the members of Public Security Section 9, a special-operations task-force made up of former military officers and police detectives. Political intrigue and counter-terrorism operations are standard fare for Section 9 a they hunt a powerful hacker called the Puppet Master.”
What makes it so good? Haunting soundtrack and exquisite visual design make this an all encompassing experience.
“A mercenary swordsman who battles the Eight Devils of Kimon, a team of ninjas with supernatural powers who are intent on overthrowing the Tokugawa shogunate. During his quest, he is aided by Dakuan, an elderly but crafty government spy, and Kagero, a Koga ninja whose body is infused with poisonous toxins.”
What makes it so good? More like a classic film, presented in an animated format.
“A secret military project endangers Neo-Tokyo when it turns a biker gang member into a rampaging psychic psychopath that only two teenagers and a group of psychics can stop.”
What makes it so good? This is a movie of epic proportions, the craftsmanship in the visuals still astounds.
“The story of Naruto Uzumaki, an adolescent ninja who searches constantly for recognition and dreams of becoming the Hokage, the ninja in his village who is acknowledged as the leader and the strongest of all”.
What makes it so good? Ridiculous, at times infuriatingly slow to progress with fight scenes spanning multiple episodes but it’s great fun, and who doesn’t want to learn to become a ninja? There are hundreds of episodes so plenty of content to sit through.
“Follow the lives of a bounty hunter crew traveling on the Bebop (their spaceship). Cowboy Bebop explores philosophical concepts including existentialism, existential ennui, and loneliness”.
What makes it so good? Space Bounty hunting set in the future, what’s not to like? Great writing, mature approach to storytelling, characters with depth, this is another great intro to anime.
“Beck is a young program, who becomes the leader of a revolution inside the computer world of the Grid against the villainous Clu and his henchmen”.
What makes it so good? A more recent offering from Disney with a strong eastern influence in the way the characters are treated. Maintaining a mature storyline, at times the environment art just seems lifted straight from the concept art, beautiful work with a great voice cast. This comes with a pre-warning though, the series got cancelled so you won’t get to see the full arc of the story but what’s there is well worth the time investment.
Plot quotes from Wikipedia.