5 Best Anime Movies like My Neighbor Totoro

5 Recommended Anime Films Similar to My Neighbor Totoro

My Neighbor Totoro

Anime has become much more popular all over the world lately partly because the category meets preference of both adults and kids. Many anime lovers’ favorite My Neighbor Totoro, which is directed by the world’s famous Hayao Miyazaki in Studio Ghibli, has been loved by many children and their parents for a long time.

For fans of My Neighbor Totoro, here is the list of 5 best anime movies like My Neighbor Totoro, which you can enjoy watching at every age.

About My Neighbor Totoro

My Neighbor Totoro (となりのトトロ), one of the most famous and popular Studio Ghibli movies, was directed by Hayao Miyazaki in 1988. The fantasy film was released at the theater with the other part of the double feature: Grave of the Fireflies directed by Isao Takahata.

The setting is inspired by Tokorozawa, Saitama in Japan, which is a rural area near Tokyo, around the 1950s. My Neighbor Totoro centers on a 12-year-old girl Satsuki and her little sister Mei who is 4 years old.

The sisters and their father move to the countryside, where the hospital their mother is hospitalized in is located nearby. Mei and Satsuki meet the mysterious creature known as Totoro in the forest and encounter strange happenings.

5 Best Anime Movies Similar to My Neighbor Totoro

1. Ponyo

Ponyo (崖の上のポニョ), written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki in 2008, is one of the most recommended to those who like My Neighbor Totoro. The family-friendly film is the anime movie with the 5th highest box office revenue of all time.

It follows a main character Ponyo, which is a goldfish wishing to become a human and leaves the ocean. Ponyo in difficulty is saved by another main character Sosuke, who is a 5-year-old boy. Ponyo’s father try to pull her back from the ground to the ocean influencing the human’s world with the magic, but she runs away with Sosuke.

Both Ponyo and My Neighbor Totoro have a similar plot: children meet a mysterious creature and the fantasy stories are unfolded.

2. Kiki’s Delivery Service

Kiki’s Delivery Service (魔女の宅急便) is one of the classic popular Studio Ghibli movies as well as My Neighbor Totoro. It was directed by Hayao Miyazaki and released in 1989, based on the same titled novel written by Eiko Kadono in 1985.

Kiki’s Delivery Service is set in somewhere in Europe and revolves around a 13 years old girl Kiki, who is an apprentice of witch. The story starts when she leaves home for her independence with her pet black cat Jiji. She grows up visiting the unfamiliar towns, meeting new friends and facing her personal problems.

Many Kiki’s Delivery Service’s fans also like the world of My Neighbor Totoro, both of which were created by Hayao Miyazaki around the same time.

3. Panda! Go, Panda!

Panda! Go, Panda! (パンダコパンダ), which is also known as Panda Kopanda, is famous as the prototype of My Neighbor Totoro with the 33-min runtime. The comedy and fantasy anime movie was created by the two top directors Isao Takahata and Hayao Miyazaki. It was released in 1972, when a pair of giant pandas came from China to Japan.

Panda! Go, Panda! focuses on an elementary school girl Mimiko, who loses her parents and gets to live alone temporarily. The mysterious story begins when she meets a baby panda named Panny and his father named PapaPanda that can speak to Mimiko. She accepts the pandas as if they were the real family.

4. Wolf Children

In addition to Hayao Miyazaki in Studio Ghibli, Mamoru Hosoda is also one of the top anime directors in Japan. If you like My Neighbor Totoro, Wolf Children (おおかみこどもの雨と雪) is a perfect recommendation. His 2nd original full-length anime film was released in 2012 following Summer Wars in 2009.

At the university in Tokyo, a main character Hana meets a man, who can transform into a wolf. Then, they have two kids Yuki and Ame who can also change their forms into wolf and get back into human. As they grow up, their inner conflicts are increasing: they should live as a human or a wolf.

Wolf Children is also what both adults and kids can enjoy watching as well as My Neighbor Totoro.

5. A Letter to Momo

A Letter to Momo (ももへの手紙) is a modern drama anime film directed by Hiroyuki Okiura in 2012. It has some in common with My Neighbor Totoro.

A Letter to Momo is set in the real-life Shio Island in Setouchi and centers on an elementary school girl named Momo, who loses her father and finds his unfinished letter to her. She meets Yokai (Japanese folktale ghosts) in the unfamiliar island, where she moves with her mother.

The slice of life movie with the theme of ghosts is less known to foreign people, but it is highly recommended if you like My Neighbor Totoro.

For more info about popular anime and anime movies, check these articles below, too!

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I'm writing by my motto: helping travelers spend their limited time experiencing something priceless in Japan. My articles won't let you down! Living in Tokyo and traveling many popular and hidden sites all over Japan, I deliver well-selected and latest tourist information to you from the perspective of “100% Japanese local”. My specific interests are island hopping, eating countless bowls of ramen, watching anime and reading manga. Enjoy Japan Web Magazine for recommended food spots, hidden gems Japanese Otaku (geek) culture, and everything about Japan :)