Netflix has doubled down on animated movies. Even while the overall movies section on the streaming giant has shrunk and Disney and Pixar have pulled their films for their own service, Netflix has grown ambitious in its own animated offerings. The streamer has quite a selection for children and adults alike. The anime section, in particular, has never been stronger. Since there’s no “Animated Movies” section on Netflix, finding them on the site can be a chore, but we’ve gone through all the kids and grown-up sections to select 25 animated movies streaming on Netflix that are worth your time. If you just want to find movies for the little ones to watch, you can also check out our guide to The 25 Best Kids Movies on Netflix Right Now.
Here are the 25 best animated movies streaming on Netflix:
In the distant technological future, civilization has reached its ultimate Net-based form. An “infection” in the past caused the automated systems to spiral out of order, resulting in a multi-leveled city structure that replicates itself infinitely in all directions. Now humanity has lost access to the city’s controls, and is hunted down and purged by the defense system known as the Safeguard. In a tiny corner of the city, a little enclave known as the Electro-Fishers is facing eventual extinction, trapped between the threat of the Safeguard and dwindling food supplies. A girl named Zuru goes on a journey to find food for her village, only to inadvertently cause doom when an observation tower senses her and summons a Safeguard pack to eliminate the threat. With her companions dead and all escape routes blocked, the only thing that can save her now is the sudden arrival of Kiri the Wanderer, on his quest for the Net Terminal Genes, the key to restoring order to the world.
The movie follows a 4-year old boy who is struggling to cope with the arrival of a little sister in the family, until things turn magical. A mysterious garden in the backyard of the boy’s home becomes a gateway allowing the child to travel back in time and encounter his mother as a little girl and his great-grandfather as a young man. These fantasy-filled adventures allow the child to change his perspective and help him become the big brother he was meant to be.—Variety
3. A Silent Voice
The story revolves around Shôko Nishimiya, a grade school student who has impaired hearing. She transfers into a new school, where she is bullied by her classmates, especially Shôya Ishida. It gets to the point where she transfers to another school and as a result, Shôya is ostracized and bullied himself, with no friends to speak to and no plans for the future. Years later, he epicly sets himself on a path to redemption.—Ariodito Koestoer
4. I Lost My Body
In a Parisian laboratory, a severed hand escapes its unhappy fate and sets out to reconnect with its body. During a hair-raising escapade across the city, the extremity fends off pigeons and rats alike to reunite with pizza boy Naoufel. Its memories of Naoufel and his love for librarian Gabrielle may provide answers about what caused the hand’s separation, and a poetic backdrop for a possible reunion between the three. Based on Guillaume Laurant’s novel “Happy Hand.”—Netflix
5. Mobile Suit Gundam: Char’s Counterattack
Amuro and Char, two best mobile suit (robotic weapons) pilots who fought together against Titans after the Zeon’s independence war, must face each other in a fateful duel where the Neo Zeon, led by Char, attempts to drop a gigantic asteroid and its nuclear weapons to Earth in order to cause Nuclear Winter to wipe out the Earth inhabitants.—Tzung-I Lin <[email protected]>
6. The Mitchells vs. the Machines
An animated action-comedy about an ordinary family who find themselves in the middle of their biggest family challenge yet…saving the world from the robot apocalypse. No big deal, right? It all starts when creative outsider Katie Mitchell is accepted into the film school of her dreams and is eager to leave home and find “her people,” when her nature-loving dad insists on having the whole family drive her to school and bond during one last totally-not-awkward-or-forced road trip. But just when the trip can’t get any worse, the family suddenly finds itself in the middle of the robot uprising. Everything from smart phones, to roombas, to evil Furbys are employed to capture every human on the planet. Now it’s up to the Mitchells, including upbeat mom Linda, quirky little brother Aaron, their squishy pug, Monchi, and two friendly, but simple-minded robots to save humanity.—Netflix
7. Apollo 10 ½: A Space Age Childhood
The story of the first moon landing in the summer of 1969 from two interwoven perspectives. It both captures the astronaut and mission control view of the triumphant moment, and the lesser-seen bottom up perspective of what it was like from an excited kid’s perspective, living near NASA but mostly watching it on TV like hundreds of millions of others. It’s ultimately both an exacting re-creation of this special moment in history and a kid’s fantasy about being plucked from his average life in suburbia to secretly train for a covert mission to the moon.
8. Lu Over the Wall
Kai is talented but adrift, spending his days sulking in a small fishing village after his family moves from Tokyo. His only joy is uploading songs he writes to the internet. When his classmates invite him to play keyboard in their band, their practice sessions bring an unexpected guest: Lu, a young mermaid whose fins turn to feet when she hears the beats, and whose singing causes humans to compulsively dance – whether they want to or not. As Kai spends more time with Lu, he finds he is able to tell her what he is really thinking, and a bond begins to form. But since ancient times, the people in the village have believed that mermaids bring disaster and soon there is trouble between Lu and the townspeople, putting the town in grave danger.
9. The End of Evangelion
After the defeat of the final Angel, Shinji Ikari falls into a deep depression. When SEELE orders the JSSDF to make a surprise attack on NERV’s headquarters, Gendo Ikari retreats down into Terminal Dogma along with Rei Ayanami, where he begins to advance his own plans for the Human Instrumentality Project. Eventually, Shinji is pushed to the limits of his sanity as he is forced to decide the fate of humanity.—J. S
10. The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf
The world of The Witcher expands in this anime origin story: Before Geralt, there was his mentor Vesemir a swashbuckling young witcher who escaped a life of poverty to slay monsters for coin. But when a strange new monster begins terrorizing a politically-fraught kingdom, Vesemir finds himself on a frightening adventure that forces him to confront the demons of his past.
11. How To Train Your Dragon 2
It’s been five years since Hiccup and Toothless successfully united dragons and vikings on the island of Berk. While Astrid, Snotlout and the rest of the gang are challenging each other to dragon races (the island’s new favorite contact sport), the now inseparable pair journey through the skies, charting unmapped territories and exploring new worlds. When one of their adventures leads to the discovery of a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace. Now, Hiccup and Toothless must unite to stand up for what they believe while recognizing that only together do they have the power to change the future of both men and dragons.—Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
12. How To Train Your Dragon
Long ago up North on the Island of Berk, the young Viking, Hiccup, wants to join his town’s fight against the dragons that continually raid their town. However, his macho father and village leader, Stoik the Vast, will not allow his small, clumsy, but inventive son to do so. Regardless, Hiccup ventures out into battle and downs a mysterious Night Fury dragon with his invention, but can’t bring himself to kill it. Instead, Hiccup and the dragon, whom he dubs Toothless, begin a friendship that would open up both their worlds as the observant boy learns that his people have misjudged the species. But even as the two each take flight in their own way, they find that they must fight the destructive ignorance plaguing their world.—Kenneth Chisholm ([email protected])
When Jesper (Jason Schwartzman) distinguishes himself as the postal academy’s worst student, he is stationed on a frozen island above the Arctic Circle, where the feuding locals hardly exchange words let alone letters. Jesper is about to give up when he finds an ally in local teacher Alva (Rashida Jones), and discovers Klaus (Oscar® winner J.K. Simmons), a mysterious carpenter who lives alone in a cabin full of handmade toys. These unlikely friendships return laughter to Smeerensburg, forging a new legacy of generous neighbors, magical lore and stockings hung by the chimney with care. An animated Christmas comedy directed by Despicable Me co-creator Sergio Pablos, KLAUS co-stars Rashida Jones, Jason Schwartzman and JK Simmons.—Netflix
14. Over the Moon
Having grown up hearing her mother’s favourite legend about Chang’e, pale moon’s goddess who lives alone on the silent celestial body pining for Hou Yi, her long-lost lover, the brilliant thirteen-year-old girl, Fei Fei, is in for an unpleasant surprise. Then, as if that weren’t enough, her doting father catches her off-guard by making a life-altering announcement, and Fei Fei’s whole world comes crashing down around her. Now, determined to prove him wrong, Fei Fei sets out to build a home-made rocket and blast off to the stars. Does true love last forever?—Nick Riganas
15. Violet Evergarden: Eternity and the Auto Memory Doll & The Movie
Violet Evergarden, a former soldier returned from war, comes to teach at a women’s academy and changes a young girl’s life.
Vivo follows a one-of-kind kinkajou (aka a rainforest “honey bear”) who spends his days playing music to the crowds in a lively square with his beloved owner Andrés. Though they don’t speak the same language, Vivo and Andrés are the perfect duo through their common love of music. But when tragedy strikes shortly after Andrés receives a letter from the famous Marta Sandoval, inviting her old partner to her farewell concert with the hope of reconnecting, it’s up to Vivo to deliver a message that Andrés never could: A love letter to Marta, written long ago, in the form of a song. Yet in order to get to Marta, who lives a world away, Vivo needs help from Gabi, an energetic tween who bounces to the beat of her own offbeat drum, to fulfill his owner’s wishes.—Netflix
17. Mr. Peabody & Sherman
Mr. Peabody is a business titan, inventor, scientist, gourmand, two-time Olympic medalist and genius…who also happens to be a dog. Using his most ingenious invention, the WABAC machine, Mr. Peabody and his adopted boy Sherman hurtle back in time to experience world-changing events first-hand and interact with some of the greatest characters of all time. But when Sherman breaks the rules of time travel, our two heroes find themselves in a race to repair history and save the future, while Mr. Peabody may face his biggest challenge yet – being a parent.—Juan Diaz
18. Wish Dragon
Determined teen Din is longing to reconnect with his childhood best friend when he meets a wish-granting dragon who shows him the magic of possibilities.
19. Modest Heroes
An anthology of three original shorts written and directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi, Yoshiyuki Momose and Akihiko Yamashita.
20. Puss in Boots
Years before meeting Shrek and Donkey, the adorable but tricky Puss in Boots must clear his name from all charges making him a wanted fugitive. While trying to steal magic beans from the infamous criminals Jack and Jill, the hero crosses paths with his female match, Kitty Softpaws, who leads Puss to his old friend, but now enemy, Humpty Dumpty. Memories of friendship and betrayal enlarges Puss’ doubt, but he eventually agrees to help the egg get the magic beans. Together, the three plan to steal the beans, get to the Giant’s castle, nab the golden goose, and clear Puss’ name.—Mr. Top Hat
21. Rocko’s Modern Life: Static Cling
After being in space for 20 years, Rocko and his friends attempt to adjust to an even more modern life in the 21st century. However, when he learns that his favorite 90s cartoon isn’t on the air anymore, Rocko tries locating its creator.
22. The Willoughbys
After the four children are kicked out of their home by their parents, the children are desperate to find new parents and think of a plan to ‘orphan themselves’ by sending their parents to a deadly vacation so that they can die. They see a travel agency after wandering homeless in the streets of a busy city, and Tim says, ‘We can send them away. What if we orphaned ourselves?” They then sneak back into their home (still kicked out) without their parents’ knowledge, and Tim states, “We shall craft a murderous adventure.” He then states, “A romantic getaway, hiding deadly orphaning opportunities. If they do melt in the hottest place on earth ( a scene is shown of the parents melting in lava)…they shall drown in the wettest (two sharks are shown eating the parents who are in a boat)…Cannibals will feast unless they freeze in glacial ice (a scene is shown where parents are being boiled in a large pot while cannibals dance around the fire with a knife in hand, then it shows them freezing in a glacier)…or dissolve in fields of acid (parents are shown as their skin dissolves due to the acid)…they shall not escape the bears (two large bears being aggressive)…we have saved the deadliest spot for last, the alp.” Then Jane points to a picture of the alps and says, “He who goes up does not come down.” After this point, the kids are on a race to get orphaned so they no longer have to deal with their unloving and selfish parents.
23. A Whisker Away
Miyo Sasaki is a weird second-year junior high student, who falls in love with her classmate Kento Hinode. Muge tries to make Kento notice her every day, but all in vain. Nevertheless, while carrying a secret she can tell no one, Muge continues to pursue Kento. Muge discovers a magic mask that allows her to transform into a cat, however, there is also a probability that she might never become human again, if she continues using the mask.—Scientiiaa
24. The Nut Job
In a city park, Surly the Squirrel has finally gone too far with his latest caper . Now exiled, Surly and his rat buddy Buddy’s collective nightmare on the streets ends when they discover a nut store to raid. With no other options, she arranges a deal to help in Surly’s heist for the colony, even while Surly fully intends to betray it. However, there is more going on with the nut store being a front for bank robbers while Raccoon has his own agenda to ensure his own power. In the mayhem to come, Surly finds himself challenged in ways he never expected and discovering the real prize to treasure in this adventure.—Kenneth Chisholm ([email protected])
25. Berserk: the Golden Age Arc I, II & III
The first adaptation of Kentaro Miura’s brutally visceral and viscera-laden manga Berserk, a TV series from 1997, is considered a classic. And while the first two films in this triptych from 15 years later receive a rather scornful treatment from most anime experts, its final offering is as riveting a watch as the form has to offer—and as violent, too. This grimdark fantasy, set in a feudal world clearly modeled on medieval Europe, follows a sellsword named Guts, who is forced to join the mercenary group called the Band of the Hawk once its leader defeats him in single combat twice in a row. From there on out, it’s all blood and Guts as an absolutely vicious cycle of battles, assassinations, sieges, duels, and the like pulls humans, bears, and demons alike into its vortex, with all parties vying to rip each other to shreds in the names of sex, power, and greed. And by Descent, the third entry, it’s as riveting and depressing as Game of Thrones at its best. —John Maher.