10 best animated movies you can stream on HBO Max
In May 2020, HBO Max launched as a streaming service. While Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, and Disney Plus are among the most popular platforms, HBO Max had over 40 million subscribers in April 2021. It offers many types of TV series and movies, such as cartoons.
By definition, anime is Japanese animation. Often times it is adapted from Japanese comics known as manga or light novels and video games. But when it comes to cinema, animated films are generally stand-alone and have become popular thanks to production companies like Studio Ghibli.
Castle in the sky
Castle in the sky is a story about teenagers Pazu and Sheeta. It was an orphan from a mining town who caught up with her when she fell from the clouds. Soon after, Pazu finds out that Sheeta is being pursued by pirates as well as the government because they want her crystal necklace (which comes from the floating city of Laputa). The two go on an adventure to find Laputa and escape the bad guys.
This film was produced by Studio Ghibli and released in August 1986.
Surf your wave
Surf your wave tells the love story of Hinako and Minato. She’s a college surfer in a seaside town and he’s a firefighter who saves the day. But right after their meeting and their love, Minato dies in an accident due to the ocean itself. Then Hinako discovers that she is able to sing and summon him from water, any body of water.
This film was produced by Science SARU and released in June 2019.
My neighbor Totoro
My neighbor Totoro talks about magical creatures and little girls. There’s Satsuki, 10, and Mei, 4, and Totoros. The girls are sisters and they go on little adventures with the Totoros in the forest near their house. There is more to the plot, like the fact that they move to the countryside with their father to be closer to their mother who is in the hospital.
This film was produced by Studio Ghibli and released in April 1988.
Promare thirty years have passed since the appearance of Burnish, a race of mutant beings endowed with the power of fire. They destroyed much of the world with flames. Suddenly, a new group of mutant beings appear, and the two clash. These mutants are called Promare and are like firefighters and use mechs to fight back.
This film was produced by Trigger, XFLAG and Sanzigen and was released in May 2019.
Howl’s Moving Castle
Howl’s Moving Castle is a love story between Sophie and Howl. She is an 18 year old young woman who was cursed by a witch, turning her into an old woman. He is a magician who lives in a castle that moves and contains the fire demon Calcifer. Together they try to break the curse.
This film was produced by Studio Ghibli and released in November 2004.
When Marnie was there
When Marnie was there is 12-year-old Anna who befriends Marnie. They are in the Japanese countryside, where Anna likes to draw on her own. Marnie is mysterious. Eventually, the viewer discovers that Marnie isn’t just a stranger to her after all.
This film was produced by Studio Ghibli and released in July 2014.
Princess mononoke recounts Ashitaka’s journey in search of a cure for a Tatarigami curse. He got it from a demon while protecting his village. Ashitaka, on her quest in a forest, meets Lady Eboshi, who leads a clan of humans, as well as Princess Mononoke, a woman raised by wolves. A war is brewing between humans and forest creatures.
This film was produced by Studio Ghibli and released in July 1997.
Tales of Earthsea
Tales of Earthsea follows Ged, a young wizard. He is on a quest and eventually meets Prince Arren, who is timid but ruthless when it comes to protecting a young girl named Teru. They are studying why dragons appear in the human world. Apart from that, the witch named Kumo bothers Teru and steps in between the boys.
This film was produced by Walt Disney Pictures and Studio Ghibli and released in July 2006.
Abducted as if by magic
Abducted as if by magic is the story of Chihiro, 10 years old. She is caught in a secret world after losing her parents to a pig-like transformation. Chihiro ends up meeting strange spirits and creatures as well as an evil witch named Yubaba and a mysterious boy named Haku. She has to work at the Yubaba public baths to free herself and her parents (under Haku’s supervision).
This film was produced by Studio Ghibli and released in December 2002.
Alter with you
Alter with you is the story of a time in the world when the rain just won’t stop. Hodaka, a teenager, flees the Japanese countryside for Tokyo. There, he befriends an orphan girl named Hina who is able to manipulate time. Unfortunately, there is a price to be paid for using his powers and he is doing everything possible to prevent this from happening.
This film was produced by CoMix Wave Films and Story Inc. and was released in July 2019.
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