It's a shame when animated movies are looked down upon. Some people believe they're meant for kids only and others assume they aren't to be taken seriously. But some of the most emotional and well-written stories in history are animated and they deserve to be treated with respect.
To show them some love, we've taken a look at the ratings for animated films on IMDB. While the scores there aren't a perfect measurement, it is always interesting to see how the hundreds of thousands of IMDB users feel about a movie. From Disney classics to Japanese blockbusters to Pixar and more, these are the ten best animated films of all-time according to IMDB.
10 Toy Story 3
Over a decade after the second installment, Toy Story 3 arrived and managed to exceed all expectations. Fans wondered if it could recapture the magic from the first two classic films. It did that and then some. The years in between releases allowed technology to advance at a rapid pace, making for an incredible looking movie.
Toy Story 3 perfectly bookended the trilogy by giving the characters an emotional sendoff as Andy said goodbye to his toys and went off to college. It won Best Animated Film at the Academy Awards, as well as Best Original Song. It also picked up a nomination for Best Picture, which is rare for an animated feature.
9 Toy Story 4
Nearly ten more years passed after the third entry when Toy Story 4 surprised audiences. There was even more cause for concern this time around because of how well the previous film wrapped up the story. Somehow, the filmmakers at Pixar managed to tug at our heartstrings once more with another goodbye.
This installment saw the toys adjusting to life with their new kid, Bonnie. No longer the favorite toy, Woody struggled the most. He embarked on a wild adventure to help save Bonnie's new favorite toy and he ran into his old flame Bo Peep. Once again, the animation improved by leaps and bounds, while the plot hit us right in the feels.
8 Princess Mononoke
In 1997, Princess Mononoke took Japan by storm. For several years, it held the record for domestic box office performance in Japan. The film was directed by the legendary Hayao Miyazaki, who is someone you'll hear about again on this list. Princess Mononoke signaled a more adult-focused version of his style that set the tone for his best work.
Princess Mononoke told the story of a young Emishi prince named Ashitaka and his place in a struggle between humans and forest gods over the consumption of resources. The film is as visually breathtaking as it is groundbreaking. Miyazaki nailed the man vs. nature story trope better than anyone else.
Pixar strikes again with this 2008 release. WALL-E is an interesting tale because it barely has any dialogue. That's not something you find in a lot of films directed at children. Instead, it focuses on visual storytelling and it hits on every aspect to deliver a touching story.
The plot centered around a trash compacting robot on an uninhabitable Earth who falls in love with a sleek robot and they travel across the galaxy, ultimately saving mankind. That romantic aspect is what drove this story. Fans were captivated by the love of two robots in a way that hasn't been matched on screen again. WALL-E also took home the Best Animated Film Academy Award.
The string of Pixar films continues. This 2017 release marked another impressive achievement for the successful studio. It was also a change for them. Instead of telling a story about cars, bugs, or toys, this one focused on a young kid who was transported to the land of the dead during the Day of the Dead.
With stellar music that won an Oscar for Best Original Song and gorgeous visuals, Coco was another huge hit for Pixar. It also took home Best Animated Film and sent audiences on another highly emotional journey. If you're not crying by the time "Remember Me" plays at the end, you may not have a heart.
5 Your Name
Another recent entry to the list, Your Name hit theaters back in 2016. It was a critically acclaimed Japanese fantasy animated film, giving the country another feather in its cap when it comes to this genre. Directed by Makoto Shinkai, Your Name is about a boy and girl in high school who swap bodies.
That premise may sound like something we've heard before, as body-swapping isn't uncommon in cinema history. However, none have done it quite as well. Your Name received widespread praise for its visual style and for the emotional weight the story carries.
4 Grave Of The Fireflies
We stay in Japan for this next entrant, but we go all the way back to 1988. Grave of the Fireflies was based on a 1967 semi-autobiographical story. It's not often that a tale about war is turned into an animated movie, but this film did it spectacularly. It focused on two siblings who struggled to survive the final few months of the Second World War.
Reception to Grave of the Fireflies was universally positive. Roger Ebert included it on his list of the greatest films ever, Total Film placed it on their greatest animated films list, and Time Out featured it on their best World War II films list. It also holds an impressive 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
3 The Lion King
There's a reason The Lion King is held in such high regard. The 1994 film stands as an all-time classic because it is beautifully animated, tells a fantastic story, and hits all the emotional beats you want from a movie like this. Simba and his sidekicks get a fun story that has a combination of uplifting and heartbreaking moments sprinkled in.
The Lion King is more than just a film. it has become a cultural phenomenon that spawned several sequels, television series, and a blockbuster Broadway show. It also holds the record as the highest-selling VHS home video in history. The 2019 remake has a lot to live up to because the original is a classic.
2 Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse
After years of different iterations of Spider-Man, it took an animated film to get it perfect. Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse took the idea that anyone could be the wall-crawling superhero and ran with it. Featuring various versions of the character, including Spider-Ham, Spider-Gwen, Spider-Man Noir, and more.
This film's success went beyond the plot. It featured a gorgeous animation style that felt like it was lifted right out of the comic book. Add in uplifting scenes, an outstanding soundtrack, respect for the source material, and an unbelievably strong voice cast and you've got something special. No other Spider-Man film even comes close.
1 Spirited Away
If you've read any list about great movies, you've probably heard of Spirited Away even if you haven't seen it yourself. Another fantastic film from the mind of director Hayao Miyazaki, this is the one that many anime fans consider their favorite. Released in 2001, Spirited Away took home the coveted Best Animated Feature prize at the Academy Awards.
This was another case of Miyazaki nailing the combination of telling a compelling story with an impressive animation style. Fans and critics everywhere loved it, as evidenced by how it overtook Titanic at the Japanese box office and its 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. You simply can't discuss the best in animation without mentioning Spirited Away.