15 Must-Watch Live Action Anime Movies to Your Watchlist!

best live action anime movies

If there is one thing we wish, then it would be to see our favorite anime characters in real life. They’re beautifulhot, and sweet, making us drool over just by looking them pout or making cute faces.

If we say you can see them in reality, would you believe? Well, maybe partially because Live Action anime movies consist similar cast to that of anime.

They might not be as good as anime but still, worth watching if I have to say.

Best Live Action Anime Movies!

15. Your Lie in April

Your Lie in April- Live Action Anime Movies

Kousei Arima is a prodigy in playing piano until his mother passed away. After this incident, he is traumatized and lost the ability to play his beloved piano anymore.

It all changes when a girl named Kaori Miyazono comes into his life and sparks an interest in music once again to make him a better person in his life. Could this turn of events make his life better?

Your Lie in April live-action is a pretty good film if you didn’t watch the anime before. However, if you did watch the anime, you might not find it interesting because they fit 22 episodes of the story in a 2 hr film.

Regardless, you can try it out because I loved the cast and the dialogues, although the other aspects weren’t that impressive. In the end, I had to include it on the list of best live action anime movies.

14. Love 🌟 Com: The Movie

Lovely Complex- Live Action Anime Movies

Ootani Atsushi, a boy who is shorter than the average boy, and Koizumi Risa, a girl who is taller than an average girl, both strive to find their life partners. Unfortunately, both of their crushes fall in love with each other.

When they find similar interests in each other, both get together and eventually form a beautiful and unusual relationship. Could love bloom between this pair which is mismatched right from the beginning?

There aren’t many shoujo adaptations in the industry and had to say this one actually did a pretty good job in adapting the story. However, the characters, screenplay, and some other aspects weren’t that good.

For newbies who hadn’t watched the anime or read manga, this one will be a great watch.

13. Mushi-Shi: The Movie

Mushi-shi: The Movie- Live Action Anime Movies

Mushi are the basic lifeforms that exist without any purpose. To chase out the mystery behind them, Ginko, a wandering researcher sets out to the regions of Japan.

If you have seen the anime “Mushishi,” then you might not be able to enjoy this one, but if you hadn’t, then it is a must-watch for you.

It has a good screenplay, music, and the main character was amazing too. If you’ve come across any negative comments, don’t mind them and watch this film right away.

12. Inuyashiki

Inuyashiki- Live Action Anime Movies

Ichirou Inuyashiki is a kind old man, who goes through a difficult time in his life along with some family issues. Despite all these tough times, he manages to live with his life.

But when he encounters a man in a park, light rains down from the sky and turns him into a mechanized weapon and the opposite person as well. While the other one goes on killing people, he tries to save them.

Inuyashiki live action is a combination of good writingscreenplay, and emotional display. In other words, this movie is amazing and even if you compare it with the anime.

Unlike some failed projects like Attack on Titan live action, this one did a pretty good job. Thus, it is one of the best live action anime movies out there.

11. Blade of the Immortal

Blade of the Immortal- Live Action Anime Movies

Manji is a swordsman famous for his name “Hundred Man Killer,” who took hundred innocent lives. He is immortal thanks to the work of a nun, and to undo this curse, he needs to eliminate thousand evil men from this world.

Thus he embarks on a journey to fulfill this mission, and on his way, he meets Rin Asano, whose parents are slaughtered. Witness the amazing journey of this duo as they desire vengeance.

The original anime and manga both have an amazing script, but unfortunately, this live action adaptation messed it up a little. The story could’ve been portrayed better, and the characters would’ve become much more likable.

However, the cinematography is top-notch, and for it alone, you can try this one out. After all, it is one of the best live action anime movies out there.

10. Ghost in the Shell

Ghost in the Shell- Live Action Anime Movies

The story sets in the near future where technology rises into a new generation, and in this world, Major Mira Killian is one of a kind, a cyborg. She was saved from a crash and enhanced into a human cyborg.

She devotes herself to hunt down the criminals in this cyber age, and in the process, she ends up discovering more about her past.

Truth be told, I watched this film even before watching the original anime. So, I enjoyed it till the end, and the story was very well written, or should I say, they presented it as a replica of the original one.

I’ve also seen a lot of negative reviews here and there, but I think it at least deserves a watch. It wouldn’t be on the list of best live action anime movies if it isn’t impressive.

9. Alita: Battle Angel

Alita: Battle Angel- Live Action Anime Movies

Alita: Battle Angel features Alita, a Cyborg who gets saved by a doctor specializing in cyborg repairs. She can’t remember anything about her past and tries to chase the mystery behind her losing memories.

Watching this movie in the theatre was one of the best things I did in my life. The cinematography is splendid, and throughout the film, you’ll be immersed in an action-packed journey.

If you’re thinking of watching a live action film, then this Hollywood gem might be the one you’re looking for.

8. From Me to You

From Me to You- Live Action Anime Movies

The story follows a girl named “Sadako” whose face resembles the ghost from the movie “Ring” and is feared by her classmates. But when a popular guy in the class, Shota Kazehaya, becomes her friend, her life takes a turn.

Kimi no Todoke anime is definitely a better choice, but you need to watch this live action adaptation too. Although there aren’t that many cute and romantic scenes as in the anime, the film is so heartwarming.

Although there are some minor changes from the anime, you’ll be able to love the characters to your heart’s content. So, it is one of the best live action anime movies.

7. Death Note (Japanese)

Death Note- Live Action Anime Movies

Death Note follows Light Yagami, a genius who stumbles upon a book called “Death Note” and goes on killing criminals over the world. On the opposite side is “L,” a detective with a mastermind brain tries to catch him.

If you have mistakenly watched Hollywood’s live action of Death Note, I feel sorry for you. It is still ok to try watching this one because it is a million times better than that version.

The characters were near perfection, and the story is executed remarkably. People who might have not watched anime or somehow ended up not liking it will surely love this one.

6. Erased

Erased- Live Action Anime Movies

Erased follows Satoru Fujinuma, who finds himself around a phenomenon known as “Revival.” After an incident, he’s sent back to childhood to prevent a tragedy involving one of his classmates.

Not a movie, but a Tv series consisting of 12 episodes, and it is a pretty good watch. It is the best live action adaptation to come out in 2017 and had to admit that it is as good as heaven.

The two characters literally made every episode a fun ride, and you shouldn’t be watching this amazing series even if you have seen the original anime. It is also one of the best Japanese live-action series on Netflix.

5. Edge of Tomorrow

Edge of Tomorrow- Live Action Anime Movies

The story follows a soldier named Cage, who fights against aliens, and every time he dies, he gets to relive the previous days again and again. How will he deal with this phenomenon?

I don’t know if this counts as a live-action film since it is a Hollywood movie, but since it is adapted from the manga “All You Need Is Kill,” I thought it should be on the list.

The blend of Sci-Fi and action is truly appreciable, and you wouldn’t even know how much time has passed while watching the movie. Thus, it should be on the list of best live action anime movies.

4. I Am a Hero

I Am a Hero- Live Action Anime Movies

The story follows a manga artist named Hideo Suzuki, who gets caught up in a zombie apocalypse and eventually realizes that survival isn’t as easy he’d expect.

If you’re a fan of zombie anime/manga/movies, then this one is a must-watch for you. I’d say it is even better than the manga and if you’re thinking of its rating being low on IMDb, then ignore it.

There aren’t any good zombie live action movies in recent years, and this could be the one you’re looking for. So, it needs to be on the list of best live action anime movies.

3. Old Boy

Old Boy- Live Action Anime Movies

Oh Dae-Su was kidnapped and imprisoned in a dark room for fifteen years without any contact with the outside world. After he is released, he sets out to live a normal life, but it seems like his life is going to be hell from now on.

Old Boy is a Korean masterpiece, but it was adapted from the Japanese manga with the same name. It feels too surreal, and violence is out of bounds.

The screenplay alone deserves a lot of praise, and every aspect is honed into perfection. In the end, it is one of the best live-action movies out there.

2. The King’s Avatar

The King's Avatar- Live Action Anime Movies

Ye Xiu is a professional gamer with top-notch skills in an online game named Glory. He is forced to retire after some complications from Jiashi and decides to work in an internet cafe for some time.

He leaves everything behind but takes on a freelancer role in the Glory game that his friend left behind and enters the competition when Glory finally launches a new server.

The King’s Avatar is not a movie but a Chinese drama consisting of 40 episodes. I think even the word “Masterpiece” wouldn’t suffice for it because it is one hell of a drama, and even better than the anime.

It left me speechless the entire time and made me watch it twice. If you haven’t watched it yet, you’re missing something magnificent.

1. Rurouni Kenshin

Rurouni Kenshin- Live Action Anime Movies

Kenshin Himura was an assassin for years, at least until a war that took out countless lives. He makes a vow to never kill anyone again, but later when he finds a home, his commitment is put to test.

Not one or two, but there are five films of Rurouni Kenshin including the upcoming two films, and every part is a gem of live actions. So, if you’re going to watch it, do it in this order.

  • Rurouni Kenshin Part I: Origins (2012)
  • Rurouni Kenshin Part II: Kyoto Inferno (2014)
  • Rurouni Kenshin Part III: The Legend Ends (2014)
  • Rurouni Kenshin: Final Chapter Part I (2021)
  • Rurouni Kenshin: Final Chapter Part II (2021)

A Word from Us!

Live Action anime movies aren’t as bad as people think, except that anime series are a lot better. However, there are cases where live action adaptations are better than anime like The King’s Avatar and Rurouni Kenshin.

If you haven’t found a good live-action film or drama in a while, we’re sure you’ll find one on our list. So, make sure to read the whole article and let us know what you think in the comment section below.

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Posted by
Hanumanth Reddy

Hanumanth is an enthusiastic author who enjoys writing about anime, movies, and TV shows and aims to share his optimistic views with his readers. His favorite franchise is Star Wars, and he aspires to be a Jedi in the future, but he vows not to fall on the dark side.