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The best animated movies on Netflix right now

Netflix … for kids??? Netflix is well-known for having a massive repository of content, so pretty much anyone can find something to watch. That’s true of family-friendly films as well. Netflix’s animated movie collection has a number of quality entries for the whole family, as well as some more adult animation that will captivate the imagination.

Whether you want to tap into your inner kid, find something for the kids, or be visually amazed, we’ve gone ahead and searched Netflix’s library to pull together the best animated movies on Netflix right now.

Looking for something else? We’ve also rounded up the best movies on Netflix, the best shows on Hulu, the best shows on Amazon Prime, and the best shows on Disney+.

New movies to stream at a glance
The Magician's Elephant (2023)
The Magician's Elephant
Genre Animation, Adventure, Family, Fantasy
Stars Noah Jupe, Mandy Patinkin, Brian Tyree Henry
Directed by Wendy Rogers
Netflix just took home the Oscar for Best Animated feature for Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio, and it’s already got another strong animated flick out this week. The Magician’s Elephant adapts Kate DiCamillo’s novel of the same name, and it tells the story of a young orphan named Peter (Noah Jupe). Peter’s only wish in life is to find his missing sister, Adele (Pixie Davies), Through a fortune teller, Peter is told that he has to find a Magician (Benedict Wong), who will summon an elephant.
The Summit of the Gods (2021)
The Summit of the Gods
Genre Animation, Adventure, Mystery
Stars Éric Herson-Macarel, Damien Boisseau, Elisabeth Ventura
Directed by Patrick Imbert

This gorgeously animated French-language film from director Patrick Imbert chronicles a Japanese photojournalist’s quest for the truth regarding a mysterious mountain climber and his connection to one of the first teams to attempt to climb Mount Everest.

A Cannes Film Festival darling praised for its beautiful visual achievement and compelling story, The Summit of the Gods is the rare adaptation of a Japanese manga series that does right by its source material — which was itself based on a 1998 novel by Baku Yumemakura. Fascinating and emotional, the film makes it tough not to be pulled along on the characters’ epic journey.

The Sea Beast (2022)
The Sea Beast
Genre Animation, Adventure, Family, Fantasy
Stars Karl Urban, Zaris-Angel Hator, Jared Harris
Directed by Chris Williams

Chris Williams, the co-director of Disney’s Big Hero 6 and Moana, takes the helm on this animated high-seas adventure about a young girl who stows away on a famous monster-hunting ship, only to discover that everything she thought she knew about monsters and hunters might be wrong.

Zaris-Angel Hator portrays aspiring monster-hunter (and stowaway) Maisie, while Karl Urban voices legendary hunter Jacob Holland in this all-ages feature that’s exciting, funny, and much deeper than its premise suggests.

Bubble (2022)
Genre Animation, Adventure, Science Fiction
Stars Jun Shison, Riria, Alice Hirose
Directed by Tetsuro Araki

This animated feature from Attack on Titan director Tetsuro Araki is set in a postapocalyptic Tokyo where a mysterious event has affected the laws of gravity, leaving strange bubbles and urban debris floating throughout the city. Skilled racers compete in parkour-like competitions for food and supplies, and when one gifted young man encounters a strange girl while exploring the epicenter of the gravity-twisting “bubble event,” their relationship changes the lives of everyone around them.

A gorgeous spectacle of sights and sounds, Bubble begs to be seen on a high-end entertainment system, as it delivers remarkably detailed scenes of the characters traversing the city and a powerful score that accentuates its most thrilling — and quietest — moments.

Corpse Bride (2005) new
Corpse Bride
83 %
pg 77m
Genre Romance, Fantasy, Animation
Stars Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Emily Watson
Directed by Tim Burton, Mike Johnson
Tim Burton gets extra creative in this stop-motion, animated fantasy about a young man in a 19th-century European whose parents have arranged for him to be married. Victor (Johnny Depp) is having some doubts about this whole thing when he is suddenly whisked away into the underworld and served up to marry a Corpse Bride (Helena Bonham-Carter). Now, Victor must find his way back to the surface to his bereft living bride.
How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014) new
How to Train Your Dragon 2
77 %
pg 102m
Genre Fantasy, Action, Adventure, Animation, Comedy, Family
Stars Jay Baruchel, Cate Blanchett, Gerard Butler
Directed by Dean DeBlois

If you caught the first How to Train Your Dragon on Netflix already, it’s time to move onto the next film, which might be even better. Five years after Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) and his dragon Toothless broke down the barriers between Vikings and dragons, the pair now soar beyond their island to chart unmapped territories and explore new worlds.

But when they stumble across a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of wild dragons and a mysterious Dragon Rider, they accidentally reveal the refuge to a power-hungry warlord who is determined to bind all dragons to his will.

How to Train Your Dragon (2010)
How to Train Your Dragon
75 %
pg 98m
Genre Fantasy, Adventure, Animation, Family
Stars Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson
Directed by Chris Sanders, Dean DeBlois
The Vikings in the village of Berk pride themselves on their dragon-slaying abilities. The chieftain’s son Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) isn’t quite as keen on the barbaric activities, preferring science and engineering instead. When Hiccup stumbles across an injured dragon in the forest, his special talents come in handy as he helps the dragon recover. But this newfound friendship will not be looked on kindly by the village.
Puss in Boots (2011)
Puss in Boots
65 %
pg 90m
Genre Animation, Adventure, Comedy, Family
Stars Antonio Banderas, Salma Hayek, Zach Galifianakis
Directed by Chris Miller
The Shrek universe expands a little on Netflix with this spinoff starring everybody’s favorite feline foilist. This prequel tells the bold, daring tale of Puss’ rise from ordinary kitty cat to the legendary Puss in Boots. With help from mastermind Humpty Dumpty and the savvy Kitty, Puss sets out to steal the famed goose that lays Golden Eggs.
The Willoughbys (2020)
The Willoughbys
68 %
pg 92m
Genre Animation, Comedy, Family
Stars Will Forte, Maya Rudolph, Alessia Cara
Directed by Kris Pearn

A family tale made for those who wish they could get away from their family, The Willoughbys is a Netflix original that has gone somewhat under the radar.

When the four Willoughby children are abandoned by their selfish parents, they must adapt to a contemporary world. Their old family was very old-fashioned, and now they have one mission in life: Become the ultimate modern family.

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (2009)
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
66 %
pg 90m
Genre Animation, Comedy, Family
Stars Bill Hader, Anna Faris, James Caan
Directed by Phil Lord, Christopher Miller

A Seussian kind of tale, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs takes us to Swallow Falls, an island town experiencing such hard times that everybody can only afford to eat sardines.

Fortunately, inventor Flint Lockwood soon builds a machine that can convert water into food, resulting in tasty delights literally raining from the heavens. But when his machine spins out of control, all that falling food threatens to bury the town.

Monster House (2006)
Monster House
68 %
pg 91m
Genre Animation, Comedy, Family, Fantasy
Stars Mitchel Musso, Sam Lerner, Spencer Locke
Directed by Gil Kenan

Everybody has a childhood story about the scariest house in the neighborhood, but DJ Harvard’s is probably better than yours. The house across the street from DJ’s is actually a monster. Or, rather, it’s possessed by a malevolent entity that needs to feed on the energy of the living.

As Halloween draws near and the house looks forward to feasting on all of the neighborhood children, it’s up to DJ and his friends Chowder and Jenny to discover the source of the house’s power and defeat it before it’s too late. More of a comedy with some spooky animated elements, Monster House is a fun film that will engage viewers of all ages.

Lupin the Third: The Castle of Cagliostro (1979)
Lupin the Third: The Castle of Cagliostro
72 %
Genre Family, Animation, Adventure, Comedy, Crime
Stars Yasuo Yamada, Eiko Masuyama, Kiyoshi Kobayashi
Directed by Hayao Miyazaki

The Castle of Cagliostro is the debut film of animation legend Hayao Miyazaki, and an entry in the Lupin III franchise. For those not familiar with the franchise, The Castle of Cagliostro follows the thief Arsène Lupin III, grandson of Maurice Leblanc’s iconic gentleman thief. After Lupin and his partner, Jigen, rob a casino, they discover that the cash they stole is counterfeit.

They trace the money to the country of Cagliostro, whose ruler, Count Cagliostro, is planning to marry Princess Clarisse to consolidate absolute power over the country and its hidden treasure. The action dances smoothly along scene to scene with Miyazaki’s characteristically ebullient touch and stands as an enjoyable watch for fans of Studio Ghibli and its founder.

Klaus (2019)
65 %
pg 96m
Genre Animation, Family, Adventure, Comedy
Stars Jason Schwartzman, J.K. Simmons, Rashida Jones
Directed by Sergio Pablos

Netflix’s first original animated feature film, Klaus is an alternative and entertaining Santa Claus origin story. When a selfish young postman is assigned to a remote Scandinavian town, his unlikely friendship with a recluse leads to the accidental creation of an incredible (and familiar) toymaker.

Klaus features the voice talent of Jason Schwartzman (who really carries the film), J.K. Simmons, Rashida Jones, Norm MacDonald, and Joan Cusack. The film earned a 2020 Oscar nomination for Best Animated Feature.

A Silent Voice: The Movie (2016)
A Silent Voice: The Movie
78 %
pg-13 130m
Genre Animation, Drama
Stars Miyu Irino, Saori Hayami, Aoi Yuki
Directed by Naoko Yamada

Not all animated movies are for children and A Silent Voice is certainly one anime film geared toward an older audience. The film follows Shoya, a young man haunted by the guilt of bullying a deaf student named Shoko Nishiyima until she changed schools. Although he didn’t act alone, the other bullies turn on Shoya, marking him as an outcast and putting a target on his back.

Years later, Shoya is overwhelmed by a need to make things right, so he learns sign language and seeks out Shoko to atone for his past sins. Through honest, painful communication, the two form a strong friendship as well as a community around them. With lush animation, deeply complicated themes, and flawed-yet-relatable characters, A Silent Voice is a riveting, soul-searching, and provocative film.

The Little Prince (2015)
The Little Prince
70 %
pg 108m
Genre Adventure, Animation, Fantasy, Family
Stars Jeff Bridges, Mackenzie Foy, Rachel McAdams
Directed by Mark Osborne

Another beneficiary of Netflix’s acquisition arm, The Little Prince received a limited release before Netflix snatched up the streaming rights, making it available for an even broader audience. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s famous novella comes to life with breathtaking animation and a faithful retelling of the classic tale in Mark Osborne’s 2015 adaptation. Classic characters like The Fox, The Snake, and The Rose all make appearances in different, contrasting animation styles that juxtapose the original drawings and computer-generated graphics.

This visual technique helps frame the adapted story of the famous prince, which itself exists within a story of The Little Girl (Mackenzie Foy) and her uptight Mother (Rachel McAdams). Widely considered one of the best film adaptations of The Little Prince, this film is a joy for fans of the novella as well as newcomers.

Editors' Recommendations

Movie images and data from:
Nick Perry
Nick Perry is a freelance writer who bounced from Hollywood to Silicon Beach to pajama pants. His work has been featured on…
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