13 Great Sci-Fi Animated Movies You Need To Check Out – GameSpot

Everyone loves a good science fiction story. Of star wars to star trek, it seems audiences will never tire of the cosmos.

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But what about those who want their sci-fi to be a bit livelier? No need to worry, because there are a litany of great sci-fi animated movies for fans of all ages. From anime icons to Pixar classics, there are plenty of sci-fi anime movies every movie junkie needs to check out.

Updated November 14, 2022 by Hannah Saab:

With highly anticipated releases like Spider-Man: Through the Spider-Verse (June 2, 2023) and Elementary (June 16, 2023), it’s clear that animated sci-fi movies aren’t going anywhere. There’s an enduring interest in mixing genres, as films that fit the category are often remarkably unique and unforgettable. Sci-fi anime fans have plenty of must-see films to choose from.

“Akira” (1988)

Released in 1988, Akira is fondly remembered as one of greatest animated movies ever made. Set in a dystopian 2019, the film tells the story of Tetsuo, a boy who gains superpowers from a motorcycle accident. These powers caused him to become involved in a dark government scheme and all of Neo-Tokyo was swept up in turmoil.

Even more than thirty years after its initial release, Akira continues to welcome newcomers to the world of anime. The cyberpunk setting, superb animation, and fascinating commentary make this a must-watch for sci-fi fans.

‘WALL-E’ (2008)

Long before Light year, WALL-E was Pixar’s first journey into the far reaches of outer space and into science fiction animation. The film follows the main character, a robot designed to get rid of trash, as he travels through an Earth long abandoned by the human race. Eventually, he travels to space and embarks on an adventure that will forever change the fate of mankind.

WALL-E remains an interesting oddity in Pixar’s library, even after so many films have followed it. Excellent sound design and stunning visuals combine to make this a truly out of this world Pixar film.

“Cowboy Bebop: The Movie” (2001)

While the cowboy bebop The anime is often hailed as one of the greatest anime series ever made, there is generally little said about its movie. Set during the second half of the series, the film sees Team Bebop take on a terrorist who plans to subject the humans of Mars to a deadly virus.

Although the film is not as discussed as the series, Cowboy Bebop: The Movie has everything that made the show so endearing to so many people. From compelling characters to a stunning soundtrack, there’s a lot to like whether you’ve seen the show or not.

“Treasure Planet” (2002)


treasure planet, directed by Disney regulars John Musker and Ron Clements, remains the studio’s most famous sci-fi adventure, even twenty years after its release. A science fiction story Robert Louis Stevenson novel, the film follows young Jim Hawkins as he embarks on a dangerous journey to discover the long-lost treasure planet.

While it was a box office bomb when it hit theaters, the weather has been kind to Jim Hawkins’ story. Between a loud voice and an imaginative vision of the cosmos, maybe it’s time to give it another shot.

“Ghost in the Shell” (1995)


Another reference title in the anime, ghost in the shell has long been revered as one of the finest cyberpunk works. Set in the futuristic 2029, the film follows cybernetic human Motoko Kusanagi as she attempts to locate and find an unknown hacker.

Although the film flopped upon its initial release, it became an underground hit, inspiring other franchises like The matrix. For anyone who loves cyberpunk stories, few stand on the same level as the original ghost in the shell.

“The Transformers: The Movie” (1986)

Transformers movies might be all the rage these days, but so far there’s only been one animated movie based on the toyline. The Transformers: The Movie bridged the gap between the original cartoon’s second and third seasons, killing off many fan favorites and introducing some new faces in the process.

Although many would say the movie is little more than a toy commercial, its beautiful animation, iconic 80s soundtrack, and awesome voice acting make this one worth watching. Plus, could you really say no to a movie that features Orson Welles as a giant robot?

“Castle in the Sky” (1986)

Laputa castle in the sky.jpg

Studio Ghibli is no stranger to making great animated feature films, but their first film, Castle in THE sky, is their most notable sci-fi effort. Set in the late 1800s, it follows a boy and a girl who set out to discover a lost castle. During the trip, everyone from pirates to the military tries to apprehend them and the mysterious crystal they possess.

While it might not be the best-known film in the Ghibli catalog, the inventive steampunk setting and lovable characters make it just as entertaining a film as its successors. You can’t go wrong with a movie that gave Studio Ghibli the world, can you?

“Titan AE” (2000)

The last feature film directed by Don Bluth, Titan AE was Fox Animation Studios’ short-lived attempt at space opera. Set hundreds of years in the future, the animated robot movie follows Cale Tucker as he sets out on a journey to protect a spaceship that can create a new planet after the destruction of Earth.

Although the film was a box office flop, Titan AE has managed to find a cult following since its release. With a unique voice cast, darker tone, and stellar art direction, it’s no surprise many have fallen in love with Bluth’s latest directing effort.

“Robots” (2005)


Not all sci-fi movies need to be serious to be good. The 2005 comedy robotswhich follows inventor Rodney Copperbottom on a mission to make his dreams come true, is proof of that.

robots remains a favorite among the generation who watched him as children, and it’s not hard to see why. With a solid cast and the artist’s wonderful aesthetic William Joyce in theaters, the film is sure to please sci-fi fans of all ages.

‘Megamind’ (2010)

Victory of Megamind and Minion walking through the streets of Metro City.

Superhero movies are a dime a dozen these days, but there are surprisingly few animated movies featuring capes and tights. However, there are at least Megamindwhich follows the titular villain as he explores life after defeating his nemesis, Metro Man.

by Megamind its greatest strength is its comedy. It mocks classic superhero tropes and cliches, but still looks utterly original. If you’re tired of the endless onslaught of superhero movies, by Megamind the comedic touch might just be the medicine you’ve been looking for.

‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’ (2018)

Often cited alongside the best sci-fi animations of recent years, it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse reinvigorated the oversaturated superhero genre. It features the likeable Miles Morales, who struggles to balance his regular life as a student and son with his new responsibility as a hero.

With its jaw-dropping action sequences mixed with stunning visuals, the film is highly regarded as an obvious love letter to comic books. No Spider-Man story is complete without the technology that helps him do his job, and a multiversal element makes Miles’ story even more exciting.

‘Paprika’ (2006)

featured paprika
Image via Sony Pictures Japan

Any sci-fi anime fan should consider Paprika visualization essential. What many will recognize as the original Creation, Paprika takes place in a world where therapists can use machines to enter their patients’ dreams. When it is stolen, the titular therapist must embark on a risky mission to retrieve it.

The protagonist’s wild and wacky journey through the subconscious blurs the line between fantasy and reality. Along the way, audiences can enjoy some mind-blowing animation to go along with the new mystery it’s all too easy to feel invested in.

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13 Great Sci-Fi Animated Movies You Need To Check Out – GameSpot

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