5 Harsh Realities of Animated Movies (and 5 Benefits)

Animated movies are usually some of the best works the medium has to offer. However, there are also many trade-offs associated with the format.

There’s an endless amount of content to digest when it comes to anime, and each year brings more material that is destined to be the next big hit. The narration in the anime resulted in extremely diverse genres that appeal to everyone, no matter the size of a niche.

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There’s a lot of anticipation on new anime series, but animated feature films Also regularly defy expectations in incredible ways. Some of the most famous anime contributions of the last decade are movies rather than series, and this form of storytelling has its share of benefits as well, as well as deterrents.

ten Harsh reality: these are usually stand-alone stories


The garden of words

An ongoing narrative with an open ending isn’t always a good thing and often derails some anime series and fails to get back on track. However, audiences are still excited to see what these beloved characters do next. The opportunity for bigger, serialized storytelling just isn’t possible with animated movies, as most of them have to start and wrap up a stand-alone story in just a few hours. These limitations can sometimes be an asset, but they can be rather restrictive.

9 Advantage: they can have higher budgets


Animated series can do amazing things on a limited budget, but even the most accomplished productions have to make concessions in some areas. This is not a problem unique to television series, but is much more common due to the large amount of material that must be produced and accounted for. The high budget for a two-hour standalone movie can be far less restrictive and allow for more opportunities to indulge and binge. A weekly series should have something special to offer in every episode, but a movie can turn it all into a lonely experience.


8 Hard reality: there is often less character growth than in anime series


The Night Is Short Walk On Girl protagonists lean in to kiss during a play

A strong character arc is essential to any story, and it’s fair to say that the majority of animated movies push their protagonists through crises where they end the story changed for the better. However, the limitations of an animated film require all character development to occur on an accelerated timeline.

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These moments may still hold tons of emotional resonance and provide individuals with closure, but they’re ultimately superficial compared to a character arc that spans hundreds of episodes of a series.


seven Advantage: they can attract higher caliber talent


The lines between TV series and movies continue to blur, but it’s even more common for visionary authors and acclaimed directors to flock to feature films. Some of the industry’s most prolific names got their start in animated series, but they’ve gradually embraced the structure and storytelling possibilities that are only possible in movies. This means that some impressive talent is monopolized by animated films, whether in terms of artwork or voice acting. All of this results in stories that are more like big events and shows.


6 Harsh reality: Genre and storytelling tangents are less likely


Ashitaka and San Split Ways in Princess Mononoke

One of the advantages of an animated series is that each episode is an opportunity to try something radically different. Anime series experiments with tone and genre in a major way. Although they don’t always work, there are fewer risks. Animated feature films should always be effective and concise with what they spend their time on. This means that the odd tangents are usually the first things to hit the cutting room floor. Full series simply have more screen time to play than movies.


5 Advantage: they have the potential to receive greater recognition


Chihiro leaving the public baths

There’s no shortage of anime series that become virtually iconic across the entire industry, but there’s also a somewhat disposable quality to long-running classics like Dragon Ball, A piece, Where naruto because I feel like they will always be there. Animated films do not have this luxury and are often treated like artistic crowning of the industry.

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4 Harsh reality: sequels are rare and can take years


Sequels and extended stories are inevitable, but there’s a surprising amount of restraint when it comes to animated movie sequels. Oddly, perspective is more common with anime series, and even when feature films receive sequels, they can take years to come together properly, unlike the rushed production of anime series that air on TV. It’s certainly frustrating for fans when animated movies will probably never get a sequel. Sequels that arrive several years or even a decade later are unlikely to recapture the magic of the original.




3 Advantage: they can work with a larger production window


Princess Kaguya stands among the flowers

A compelling story and accomplished staff are useless if material must be produced at an unrealistic pace that only undermines the efforts of everyone involved. Burnout and overwork on anime series is a very real thing, and the constant need to produce new content can lead to fluctuating quality where some episodes suffer for the benefit of others. The public deserves consistency and to know what to expect. Movies are allowed to fall behind schedule, delay their release dates, and take a decade to release. This is impossible and impractical with an ongoing anime series.


2 Harsh reality: they may take longer to locate themselves


the debate between anime subtitles and dubs continues to rage on, but the power of effective anime dubbing cannot be denied. The anime industry has reached a surprising level of efficiency where it is not uncommon for the most popular anime series to receive dubs aired alongside the original versions. This process is much slower when it comes to animated films. There is no guarantee that a film will receive a dub or make it to theaters, and when this happens it can take up to a year from the start of the original.


1 Advantage: stories are usually not artificially prolonged


Shocked Perfect Blue Fish Anime

There can be plenty of rewarding twists and turns over the many long-running anime series story arcs, but there are plenty of narratives that are bound to continue because they’ve reached a certain level of popularity. Some anime thrive under this pressure, but it’s more common for it unnatural extension to stand out as awkward. This is a problem that animated movies don’t have to worry about since they function as stand-alone stories.

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Jet (left);  deformed Junpei (center);  Lelouch (right)


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