10 best animated movies of the 80s

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Ah, the 80s. The decade of big hair, spandex, Depeche Mode and, most importantly, great animated movies. Now, a list like this is definitely going to piss off a few people. Picking the ten best animated movies of any decade isn’t an easy task, but picking them out in the ’80s is a particularly difficult task as this decade in anime history is arguably its period. most influential.

Many of the stylistic attributes that are now commonplace in anime were first seen in the ’80s, a small studio you may have heard of called Studio Ghibli was founded in 1985, and a lot of what is considered THE best anime movies of all time came during that ten-year span. So how exactly do you condense such an incredible time in anime history to just ten points?

With great difficulty, it is like that. Honestly, that list could be fifty entries, and you would still have a hard time trying to decide exactly which movies to leave out. This ten-year period has only had many bangers.

Before you start, it’s important to give a thumbs up to a few movies that weren’t lucky enough to make this list but still deserve your attention, such as: Space Adventure Cobra, Golgo 13: The Professional, Kamui’s Dagger, Barefoot Gen, Laputa: Castle in the Sky, and even My Neighbor Totoro.

You know that was a great time for the anime where you have to leave My Neighbor Totoro off the list.

If you don’t know the name “Mamoru Oshii”, first of all – how dare you? – and secondly, you might want to take note of the name because it sure won’t be the last time you see it appear on this list.

Oshii is the director of several critically acclaimed films, including the most popular Ghost in the Shell, with his work earning him nominations for both a Golden Lion Award and a Palme d’Or.

Urusei Yatsura 2: Beautiful Dreamer is a sequel to Urusei Yatsura: Only You, also directed by Oshii, adapted from the manga of the same name. While Only You is a brilliant film in its own right, it was a pretty faithful adaptation of its source material. Rather, the Beautiful Dreamer sequel is a massive departure from the Urusei Yatsura manga, so much so that author Rumiko Takahashi initially rejected her screenplay.

Thank goodness Takahashi came, because once Oshii was free to adapt the source material, he ended up creating a sweet but stimulating piece about time loops and dream worlds that taught him to finally understand, in his own words, “how to make a movie”. For that alone, Beautiful Dreamer deserves its place.


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