Sick of Disney? Animated films can be a great alternative for young viewers, opening up new cultures and ideas. However, many anime are not for children. Here are five wonderful, age-appropriate animated movies that little kids will love.
This piece originally appeared on 03/02/16.
What is anime? Short, it’s the japanese word for animation. It’s more than that, however. Since the country is culturally different from the West, showing cartoons to young children between the ages of 3 and 8 can introduce them to another world. Literally.
5. The cat returns
This list needs a good cat movie, and The cat returns is a good cat movie. Schoolgirl Haru is able to talk to cats and one day saves a cat from being run over. The cat was not an old feline, but the Prince of the Cat Kingdom. Children of all ages should enjoy The cat returns.
It’s not my favorite, but it’s not about me. These are children. Small children. And I found that little kids, in general, love this movie. Studio Ghibli’s lush take on the imagery and myth of Hans Christian Andersen The little Mermaid captivates young viewers, as does the catchy soundtrack.
3. Kiki’s Delivery Service
Kiki, a young witch, makes her own way, settles in a small town and finds a job delivering bread. A charming film that is suitable for all ages. The Japanese soundtrack is also fantastic, with some clever sound cues.
2. Wolf children
Wolf children tells the story of a woman facing the difficulties of raising half-man half-wolf children. Directed by Mamoru Hosoda of The girl who crossed time fame, this film will delight children and adults in equal measure. It’s one of the best movies I’ve ever seen about parenting. Wolf children is magic for young and old.
1. My Neighbor Totoro
I’ve lost count of how many times this movie has been shown in my house. My three kids grew up on it and all three love it. My Neighbor Totoro tells the story of a father and his two daughters who move to the countryside, while their mother recovers in the hospital. The magic soon follows, as director Hayao Miyazaki writes a love letter to the Japanese countryside and children’s imaginations. Also, this movie has a catbus. It’s a bus that’s also a cat. What else do you need?
It was a tough list to put together, and I left out a lot of movies. (The Doraemon movie, the Pokemon movies, Yo-kai Watch and Professor Layton and a bunch of other Ghibli movies and pre-Ghibli movies like To go! Panda, go!as well as TV series like Astro Boy, Speed Racer, Kimba the White Lion, Dragon Ball, Naruto…. and so on.) I hope you’ll share your own recommendations in the comments below.
In case you missed it, here it is Kotakuit is listing of the best TV shows for little kids.