This art form encompasses a wide range of subject matter. Japanese animation is a good medium for showing romantic relationships because of its gentle and dreamlike feel.
The combination of outstanding narrative and top-notch animation can create awe-inspiring, heart-wrenching, and just plain wonderful romances. As a culture, Japanese people have always had a strong sense of romanticism, which has carried over into current anime as well.
So grab a cup of your favorite beverage and a warm blanket and settle in for a good night’s sleep. Check out these 10 Japanese romantic anime films!
1. Doukyuusei (Classmates)
High school lads from diverse backgrounds meet and fall in love in this popular anime romance.
It’s a typical yaoi anime romance narrative, with a lot of the typical angst and heartbreak that you’d expect from a high school relationship.
This film has a distinct visual style that sets it different from the rest. Many people enjoy the novel’s remarkable simplicity, even if it’s unusual for the genre.
2. Kimi no Na wa (Your Name)
In anime and manga, body-swapping is a common comic device. It’s used for romance by Kimi no Na wa, however.
Neither a young man nor a young woman wants to live in Tokyo’s bustling metropolis anymore than they both want to live in the country like a boy.
They find themselves resurrected in each other’s bodies and lifestyles one morning. They begin to search for each other as they get more and more perplexed by the enigma.
This film won the LAFCA Animation Award in 2016 and the Mainichi Film Awards’ Best Animated Film Award in 2017 for its stunning visuals and heartfelt script.
The plot twists and turns in unexpected ways. I recommend this to everyone who like a good romance.
Amazon Prime doesn’t have the best movie right now, but you can view this one and see why it’s one of the best Japanese romance animation flicks. Watch it now!
3. Tamako Love Story
In the mood for a lighthearted romance? In Tamako Love Story, two socially awkward high school students ultimately admit their love for one another and their mutual attraction.
A young man named Mochizo Oji decides to leave for college and tells the ever-naive Tamako about his feelings for him.
An awkward and heartfelt love story is born out of local rivalries and a lot of heart in this small-town tale.
As you follow the escapades of two young people in love, your heart will be warmed and your laughter will be contagious.
4. Mimi wo Sumaseba (Whisper of the Heart)
Whisper of the Heart is a Studio Ghibli production. The animation, as in all of the studio’s works, is stunning.
They keep bumping into each other, and the boy seems to be working hard to make the young songwriter’s nerves frayed. The two begin to get to know each other’s hopes and dreams as they become closer.
It’s not as mythological as some of Studio Ghibli’s other works, but it’s an absolutely stunning piece of art.
It’s a love tale, but it’s also a narrative about chasing your aspirations and figuring out what’s important to you. It’s a must-do.
5. Hotarubi no Mori e (Into the Forest of Fireflies’ Light)
This film, titled “Into the Forest of Fireflies’ Light,” draws on Japanese tradition to convey a tale of love and betrayal.
It’s Gin, a forest spirit, and Hotaru, a young girl who first encounters him as a child while wandering the woods. If Gin comes in contact with a person, he will vanish.
Eventually, as Hotaru matures into a young woman, the two develop feelings for one another. Even though the story has a tragic ending, there is a lovely side to it.
The captivating story is made all the more memorable thanks to the stunning animation.
6. KazeTachinu (The Wind Rises)
Another Studio Ghibli film, this one is based on the life of Jiro Horikoshi, the man who created the Zero fighter jet and is the subject of this film.
Jiro is a man who has had to overcome numerous obstacles in his life, beginning with the discovery that he could not fly an airplane due to his poor eyesight.
The young lady he meets and falls in love with has her own imminent tragedy, and he has encountered her numerous times in passing. Viewers will be thrown for a loop by this heartwarming yet emotionally taxing tale.
7. Kotonoha no Niwa (The Garden of Words)
A young shoemaker and an enigmatic woman are the subjects of this gripping love story.
They happen to run into one other in the park, and neither of them knows the other’s identity.
The story takes a terrible turn as the identities of the characters are disclosed and additional information is divulged.
There are numerous interesting cultural idiosyncrasies sprinkled throughout this serene drama.
Incredibly photorealistic, yet entirely hand-drawn, the image of the park where the couple spends the majority of their time is stunning. It’s a romantic picture that’s full with heart and sentimentality.
8. Howl no Ugoku Shiro (Howl’s Moving Castle)
Famous and beloved, this Studio Ghibli film is loosely based on a western novel by Dianna Wynne Jones.
She was cursed by the envious Witch of the Waste when he accidentally saves the plain and responsible Sophie from oblivion. Howl is renowned and mysterious, and Sophie is drawn to him by happenstance. Her quest for a cure from Howl leads to a series of mishaps.
Beautiful and entertaining, with lots of action and memorable characters, this film delivers on all fronts. Watch Howl’s Moving Castle if you want to spend a little over an hour in a fantastical world!
9. Zutto Mae kara Suki Deshita: Kokuhaku Jikkou Iinkai (I’ve Always Liked You)
High school romance directed by Tetsuya Yanagisawa centers on a group of friends who struggle to confess their crush they have feelings for him. In 2016, the film was released on April 23.
Teenage awkwardness and jealousy abound in this conventional romantic comedy. It’s a good movie to watch in your pjs because it’s entertaining and has great visuals.
When looking for sad romance anime movies to watch, this one is definitely worth a look. You’ll also want to check out the fantastic soundtracks.
10. Toki wo Kakeru Shoujo (The Girl Who Leapt Through Time)
When Makoto discovers that she has the ability to travel back in time, she uses it to repair her own problems, such as repeated tardiness and poor grades.
Things begin to change, however, as she learns that she is hurting people and that her jumps are limited, particularly with her male buddy Chiaki.