Watch all these Ghibli Movies in Order: Studio Ghibli has been creating whimsical elements like magic, wonder, and anthropomorphic creatures since 1985. The Japanese animation studio, established by the filmmakers Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata, together with the producer Toshio Suzuki, is most recognized for its numerous award-winning films, distinct aesthetic, and recurring narrative themes.

Five of the top 10 highest-grossing anime films in Japan are produced by Studio Ghibli, with Spirited Away coming in at number two with a domestic take of 31.68 billion yen.

Studio Ghibli has produced a wide range of works throughout the course of its close to 40-year existence, including an extensive library of feature films. On July 14, 2023, the newest animated feature, “How Do You Live,” is scheduled to open in theatres in Japan.

In preparation for the film’s release, here are 24 Studio Ghibli movies you should watch. Currently, almost all Studio Ghibli films are available to stream on HBO Max.

High On Films in collaboration with Avanté

1. Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1984)

Directed by Hayao Miyazaki, the film’s synopsis reads, “Warrior and pacifist Princess Nausicaä desperately struggle to prevent two warring nations from destroying themselves and their dying planet.”

2. Castle in the Sky (1986)

The Japanese animated film follows “A young boy and a girl with a magic crystal who must race against pirates and foreign agents in a search for a legendary floating castle.”

3. Grave of the Fireflies (1988)

Directed by Isao Takahata, the animated film’s synopsis reads, “A young boy and his little sister struggle to survive in Japan during World War II.”

4. My Neighbor Totoro (1988)

Directed by Hayao Miyazaki, the film follows “two girls who move to the country to be near their ailing mother, they have adventures with the wondrous forest spirits who live nearby.”

5. Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989)

“A young witch, on her mandatory year of independent life, finds fitting into a new community difficult while she supports herself by running an air courier service.”

6. Only Yesterday (1991)

The film is about “A twenty-seven-year-old office worker who travels to the countryside while reminiscing about her childhood in Tokyo.”

7. Porco Rosso (1992)

Originally titled “Kurenai no buta,” the film’s official synopsis reads, “In 1930s Italy, a veteran World War I pilot is cursed to look like an anthropomorphic pig.”

8. Ocean Waves (1993)

Directed by Tomomi Mochizuki, the film follows, “As a young man who returns home after his first year away at college, he recalls his senior year of high school and the iron-willed, big city girl that turned his world upside down.”

9. Pom Poko (1994)

“A community of magical shape-shifting raccoon dogs struggles to prevent their forest home from being destroyed by urban development.”

10. Whisper of the Heart (1995)

Directed by Yoshifumi Kondô, this rom-com animated film follows “A love story between a girl who loves reading books and a boy who has previously checked out all of the library books she chooses.”

11. Princess Mononoke (1997)

Princess Mononoke (1997)
A still from Princess Mononoke (1997)

“On a journey to find the cure for a Tatarigami’s curse, Ashitaka finds himself in the middle of a war between the forest gods and Tatara, a mining colony. In this quest, he also meets San, the Mononoke Hime.”

12. My Neighbors the Yamadas (1999)

Directed by Isao Takahata, this Japanese animated film explores “The Life and Misadventures of a Family in Contemporary Japan.”

High On Films in collaboration with Avanté

13. Spirited Away (2001)

Directed by Hayao Miyazaki, this most well-regarded Ghibli film’s synopsis reads, “During her family’s move to the suburbs, a sullen 10-year-old girl wanders into a world ruled by gods, witches and spirits, a world where humans are changed into beasts.”

14. The Cat Returns (2002)

Directed by Hiroyuki Morita, this film’s synopsis reads, “After helping a cat, a seventeen-year-old girl finds herself involuntarily engaged to a cat Prince in a magical world where her only hope of freedom lies with a dapper cat statuette come to life.”

15. Howl’s Moving Castle (2004)

“When an unconfident young woman is cursed with an old body by a spiteful witch, her only chance of breaking the spell lies with a self-indulgent yet insecure young wizard and his companions in his legged, walking castle.”

16. Tales from Earthsea (2006)

Directed by Gorô Miyazaki, the film takes place In a mythical land where a man and a young boy investigate a series of unusual occurrences.

17. Ponyo (2008)

“A five-year-old boy develops a friendship with Ponyo, a young goldfish princess who longs to become a human after falling in love with him.”

18. The Secret World of Arrietty (2010)

Directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi, the film’s synopsis reads, “The Clock family are four-inch-tall people who live anonymously in another family’s residence, borrowing simple items to make their home. Life changes for the Clocks when their teenage daughter Arrietty is discovered.”

19. From Up on Poppy Hill (2011)

Directed by Gorô Miyazaki, the film follows “A group of Yokohama teens look to save their school’s clubhouse from the wrecking ball in preparations for the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.”

20. The Wind Rises (2013)

Directed by Hayao Miyazaki, the film is “A Look at the Life of Jiro Horikoshi, the man who designed Japanese fighter planes during World War II.”

21. The Tale of the Princess Kaguya (2013)

“Found inside a shining stalk of bamboo by an old bamboo cutter and his wife, a tiny girl grows rapidly into an exquisite young lady. The mysterious young princess enthralls all who encounter her, but ultimately she must confront her fate, the punishment for her crime.”

22. When Marnie Was There (2014)

Directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi, the film follows the story of Anna. The synopsis reads, “Due to 12 y.o. Anna’s asthma, she’s sent to stay with relatives of her guardian in the Japanese countryside. She likes to be alone, sketching. She befriends Marnie, a mysterious blonde girl”

23. The Red Turtle (2016)

Directed by Michael Dudok de Wit, this Ghibli film follows a story of a man who is shipwrecked on a deserted island and encounters a red turtle, which changes his life.

24. Earwig and the Witch (2020)

Directed by Gorô Miyazaki, the film follows an orphan girl, Earwig, who is adopted by a witch and comes home to a spooky house filled with mystery and magic.

Read More: The 15 Best Studio Ghibli Movies

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