For Millennials. By Millennials.
Live-action anime adaptations have developed a negative reputation comparable to that of video game movie adaptations, whether they are full-length films or broadcast programs. In addition to trying to please ardent devotees of the original material, those in charge of visualizing source material must also engage audiences who are not yet familiar with the fandom. Despite this, a few exceptions exist to demonstrate that there is still hope.
These films serve as strong proof of how important it is to select the ideal production team that is knowledgeable in their field. Hence here is a list of some of the best live action anime movies and the top live-action anime movies.
Related: Sad Anime Movies To Watch
1. Rurouni Kenshin Film Series
The Rurouni Kenshin film series consists of six films that were released over the years from 2012 to 2021. All the films are directed by Keishi Ohtomo. The films are based on a manga of the same name which is written and illustrated by Nobuhiro Watsuki. Rurouni Kenshin is frequently referred to as “the decade’s best live action Japanese action saga”. This is because it has it all, amazing combat choreography, gorgeous photography, elaborate sets, and likable actors. A modest tone shift is one of the minor differences between the manga and its adaptation.
The live-action movie decided to forgo ludicrous humor and cuteness, allowing for some lightheartedness. They ultimately opted for a more subdued attitude, fitting for a tale of a samurai who longs for peace and swears to never kill again but is repeatedly forced to draw his sword to protect the innocent when confronted by the ghosts of his past.
2. Alita: Battle Angel
Based on Yukito Kishiro’s manga series Gunnm, Alita: Battle Angel is a 2019 American action movie by director Robert Rodriguez. Rosa Salazar plays the lead role of Alita, a robot who wakes up in a new body with no recollection of her past. Hence she goes out to discover her destiny, in this performance-capture film. Alita: Battle Angel is one of the rare exceptions in the world of popular culture with regard to live-action adaptations. It was one of the few occasions Hollywood showed enthusiasm for the world of anime and was able to do it right.
Positive reviews of the movie were given by both well-known critics and many aficionados of the source material. How close the plot is to the original work, which also extends to the actor’s mannerisms and demeanor, is a rare feature. This also distinguishes it from other Hollywood adaptations. Even Alita’s 3D eyes, which are typically ignored or derided in the live-action community, seemed to be well received. If you are looking to watch one of the best live-action anime movies, then this is the film for you.
3. Blade Of The Immortal
The film is based on Hiroaki Samura’s popular manga series of the same name and stars actors Takuya Kimura and Hana Sugisaki . Blade of the Immortal portrays a heartbreaking, bloody story about the brilliant Ronin Manji, who has a secret that he is immortal. Manji’s immortality is the result of an 800-year-old nun’s curse. In order to break it, he must murder 1,000 bad men.
He encounters an orphan girl on his mission and offers to aid her in avenging her parents. This breathtaking action epic, which also happens to be Takashi Miike’s 100th film, is another horrific classic. It is a must-see for fans of samurai flicks and horrifyingly brutal boss battles. In the list of top live-action anime movies, this one definitely ranks pretty high.
4. Death Note
Death Note has a troubled past, having given rise to both one of the poorest, most repulsive, and wholly failed movie on Netflix as well as one of the best, exemplary live-action anime movies. The outstanding 2006 remake is a slow-moving psychological thriller filled with tension. It follows bright student Light Yagami as he grabs a notebook that grants him the ability to kill nearly anyone in the entire globe. By killing criminals (and eventually anybody who attempts to stop him), he decides to improve the world. However, his form of justice instills more terror than joy. He is hunted by a mystery detective, and a cat-and-mouse game ensues.
It is based on a manga of the same name by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata. Death Note is directed by Shusuke Kaneko. Later on in the same year, a sequel, Death Note 2: The Last Name, was also released. Another one of the best live action anime movies would be death note for sure.
Related: A Guide to the Anime World: Death Note
Yasuhisa Hara’s Kingdom manga has not only inspired a fantastic anime series, which will premiere its fourth season later on in the year but a live-action anime movie based on the manga too was released in 2019. The movie, like almost everything else linked with this franchise, is unique, even if it occasionally feels a little hasty. The film just like both the manga and anime follows two orphans. The two of them want to be generals on a war-filled odyssey.
The 2019 film works well as an emergence to this world because it successfully blends fantastic action and strong character development. Unsurprisingly, the live-action adaptation falls short of the quality of the anime and particularly the manga, but it is still a worthwhile film in its own right. The film comes from director Shinsuke Sato and is produced by Sony Pictures Japan.
The manga “Inuyashiki” by Hiroya Oku provides a unique variation on the action hero person theme. A self-assured teen and a gloomy old man both get cybernetic-themed abilities when an alien meteor strikes in Japan. The old man, Ichiro Inuyashiki, who is down on his luck, takes the initiative to transform into a hero in a refreshing change of scene and also because he is forced into the role when the teenage Hiro Shishigami starts abusing his newfound abilities.
The live-action version of Inuyashiki is primarily concerned with examining the psychology of its main character, much like the original source and anime adaption. Although there are battle scenes, the protagonist’s development comes before the action. The movie is directed by Shinsuke Sato and stars Noritake Kinashi, Takeru Satoh, Fumi Nikaidō, and Kanata Hongō. This is one of the live action anime movies that deserve to be on your watch-list.
A wonderful method to satiate the need for additional Bleach content while fans wait impatiently for the revival and wonder how the manga’s last chapter will be transformed would be to replay this Netflix live-action film. This adaptation of Bleach manages to capture the source material’s humor and rhythm while remaining remarkably accurate to it. The Netflix adaptation of Bleach embraces its premise and strikes a good balance between its trademark self-irony and soulfulness, focusing on elements that are precisely what fans absolutely adore about the original, the stylish, aesthetically stunning fights, urban fantasy elements, and of course the main characters.
The movie features incredible chemistry between Ichigo and Rukia, whose partnership will always be at the center of the narrative. Sota Fukushi’s moody, no-nonsense character contrasts brilliantly with Hana Sugisaki’s intensity and endearing ignorance. The movie is directed by Shinsuke Sato.