Top 20+ Best Studio Ghibli Movies You Can’t Miss

6 Mins read

Studio Ghibli movies were founded by director Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata and producer Toshio Suzuki. Studio Ghibli movies are undeniably works of art. Films talk about real-life topics, heated debates, and many gloomy things in everyday life that make the audience reflect more about themselves. With creativity in beautiful expressions and animations.

Here are Top 20+ best movies of Studio Ghibli that you shouldn’t miss by Wiin Channel

1. Spirited Away (2001) – Best Studio Ghibli Movies

One of the studio ghibli films grossed $200 million worldwide before premiering in North America. The film tells the story of a little girl Chihiro and her family who arrived an abandoned amusement park, where there are horrifying and gruesome mysteries. The danger has reached the family of the little 10-year-old, her parents are turned into pigs and she is trapped in the grip of a miniature life – the witch Yubaba’s bathhouse. This powerful story – about a human girl who travels to the spirit world and is contracted to work in a mystical bathhouse in hopes of returning to a normal life. Each character in the movie is colorful and a bit creepy, the mugs, little Chihiro, The villain appears with the mask, the witch Yubaba, … etc. To feel your empathy and see the director’s rich imagination, watch it.

Chihiro and her family
Chihiro and her family

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2. Ponyo (2008) – best in Studio Ghibli Movies

Ponyo is the highest-grossing film of 2008 in Japan and the eighth film directed by Miyazaki in the ghibli movie collection. The movie tells the story of a goldfish Ponyo (Nara) who escapes from the ocean, she is washed ashore and trapped in a glass jar. She was saved by a five-year-old Sōsuke (Doi) boy. As they bond, the story involves solving Ponyo’s desire to become a human girl, against the dire plight of Ponyo’s purchase and use of magic. The film attracts young children by its close image and attractiveness.

A goldfish Ponyo
A goldfish Ponyo

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3. My Neighbor Totoro (1988) – best with lovely character in Studio Ghibli Movies

The studio’s mascot and most recognizable symbol is the character, Totoro, a giant cat-like spirit from the 1988 classic, My Neighbor Totoro. It’s a heartfelt film, and one that beautifully counterpoints the pain of separation within a family – the girls’ mother being ill in the hospital, and the youngest sibling getting lost in the surrounding fields trying to find her way there – with the joy of loved ones finding each other in miraculous ways. Hilarious storytelling has a profound effect on how children cope with difficulties and changes in their lives. Is Totoro in the story the friend of your imagination?

Totoro is an mysterious figure

4. Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989)

Kiki’s Delivery Service is the film in the 1989 highest-grossing ghibli movie collection in Japan. The story is about a witch apprentice Kiki, a thirteen year old girl who leaves home with a black cat named Jiji who moves to a new town and uses her flying ability to make a living. The story clearly depicts the gap between the independence and dependence of teenage girls in Japan.

A young witch-Kiki

5. Howl’s Moving Castle (2004)

Set in a fictional kingdom, it tells the story of a young girl Sophie and her love for Howl, but she is turned into an old woman by a witch who enters her shop and cursed her. She meets Howl and gets caught up in his resistance to fight for the king.

A young witch-Kiki
Howl’s moving castle

6. Princess Mononoke (1997)

Using the trappings of a 14th-century fantasy adventure, Princess Mononoke examines the ecological disaster humanity wreaks upon the Earth. Princess Mononoke questions the very morality of destroying the world we live in. That it makes a powerful point while still providing epic monster battles is just part of its magic.

Princess Mononoke-Emishi prince
Princess Mononoke-Emishi prince

7. Porco Rosso (1992)

The film had the highest grossing film in 1992 in Japan. The plot revolves around a former Italian pilot in World War I, currently living as a free bounty hunter chasing “air pirates” in the Adriatic Sea, Rossolini has received a mysterious curse. He became a humanized pig – hence the nickname ‘Porco’. It’s the ghibli’s fantastic and bizarre story, which is the film’s masterful satire of war films focusing on the hawk aviation industry that makes it the only film in the film that has already made it.

Porco Rosso-air pirate
Porco Rosso-air pirates

8. The Tale of Princess Kaguya (2013)

The Tale of Princess Kaguya is definitely the most beautiful anime on this Top 20+ best movies. Using its stylistic, brushstroke style, it stands out boldly from the tradition of modern animation and isn’t afraid to have minimalistic drawn sketches and colors centered. Princess Kaguya was discovered in a bamboo shoot, raised by the tree-cutter like her own child. She is the image of a young woman, charming, simple lifestyle. She and her family moved to the capital and a series of changes followed.

Princess Kaguya
Princess Kaguya

9. Grave of the Firefly (1988)

The story is about two siblings Seita and his sister Setsuko, as they fight for survival after an American bombing destroy their city during World War II in Japan. Grave of the Fireflies may be the saddest anime ever made, but it’s a powerful story that’s timeless.

Taeko Okajima-Only Yesterday
Taeko Okajima-Only Yesterday

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10. Only Yesterday (1991)

Only Yesterday was the highest-grossing film of 1991 in Japan. A real drama written for adults, especially women. The film was an unexpected box office hit, drawing in a large number of mature audiences

Taeko Okajima-Only Yesterday
Taeko Okajima-Only Yesterday

11. Whisper of the Heart (1995)

The first Japanese film in Dolby Digital, the highest-grossing film of 1995 in Japan. The film is a teenage story about self-realization. The subject of the story is a bit of interference with Only Yesterday, but the appearance of the talking cat makes this film gradually become more like a traditional Ghibli movie.

Shizuku and love story-Studio-Ghibli-Movies
Shizuku and love story

12. The Cat Returns (2002)

Lovely sketch film for children. The story surrounding Haru’s character prevents prince Lune of the cat kingdom from being hit by a truck. She is proposed by the prince on the journey to the cat kingdom. What will Haru’s marriage cause? The Cat Returns is a delightful, dreamy sequel to Ghibli’s Whisper of the Heart.

the cat returns-Studio-Ghibli-Movies
the cat returns

13. When Marnie Was There (2014)

When Marnie Was There is mixed sadness and joy about the story of young girl Anna and her friend Marnie, whom she met at a nearby abandoned mansion. As the summer passed, Anna spent more time with Marnie, and finally Anna learned the truth about her family and her foster care. This is Studio Ghibli’s last film, before the studio announced a halt after The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, and Hayao Miyazaki retired a year before the film’s release.

Young girl Anna and her friend Marnie-Studio-Ghibli-Movies
Young girl Anna and her friend Marnie

14. Castle in the Sky (1986)

Tales From Earthsea is a beautifully animated, yet difficult to follow fantasy epic that tries to cram too much narrative into one film. Castle in the Sky has had a strong influence on Japanese pop culture, the film has inspired many Japanese and international films, media and games. This is truly one of the best movies from Studio Ghibli movies collection.

Castle in the Sky
Castle in the Sky

15. The Wind Rises (2013) – among highest-grossing Studio Ghibli Movies

The Wind Rises is Japan’s highest-grossing Japanese film in 2013. The story revolves around Jiro Horikoshi, a Japanese designer who created the famous Mitsubishi A6M Zero fighter jet during the War. World War II.

The Wind Rises
The Wind Rises

16. Nausicaä and the Valley of the Wind (1984)

Set as a future apocalyptic world, the film tells the story of young princess Nausicaä of the valley of the wind. The story is the struggle of the kingdom of Tolmekia, destroying giant mutant insects.

Young princess Nausicaä of the valley of the wind.
Young princess Nausicaä of the valley of the wind

17. From Up on Poppy Hill (2011)

The film is the story of high school girl Umi Matsuzaki who lives in the inn ‘Coquelicot Manor’. She and her friends renovated the school club, but then had to protect it against the industrial motives of a local businessman. The movie brings sweetness to the hearts of viewers.

Umi Matsuzaki and Shun Kazama-Studio-Ghibli-Movies
Umi Matsuzaki and Shun Kazama

18. Pom Poko (1994) – one of the highest-grossing Studio Ghibli Movies

Truly the strangest movie in the Ghibli movies, it’s only inappropriate for kids if you can’t explain cultural differences. Pom Poko is the highest-grossing film of 1994 in Japan.

Pom Poko are all shape-shifting tanuki-Studio-Ghibli-Movies
Pom Poko are all shape-shifting tanuki

19. Tales from Earthsea (2006)

The world gradually declined, the great magician brought the prince with many concerns and malice in his heart to search for the source of evil, to save the girls they loved. Also the balance of the world has been restored.

Prince Arren and young girl named Therru-Studio-Ghibli-Movies
Prince Arren and young girl named Therru

20. The Secret World of Arrietty (2010) – charming Studio Ghibli Movies

Unlike many other Ghibli movies, the story for Arriety is small in nature, focusing on the relationship between Shō and the movie’s title character. It’s a charming film with interesting characters, but unlikely to be your absolute favorite from the studio.

Shawn and tiny people-Studio-Ghibli-Movies
Shawn and tiny people

If you have any suggestions to add to Top 20+ best movies of Studio Ghibli movies, let us know in the comments.

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