Any of you who are true anime fans have heard of Princess Mononoke. This is the first anime to ever be released in American movie theatres. Let me be the first one to tell you that, yes, this movie lives up to its hype. All of it. This film is a simply stunning combination of beautiful storyline, animation, imagery, music, and, yes, even voice acting. Some big names did voice acting for this movie. Claire Danes as Princess Mononoke, Gillian Anderson,  and Billy Bob Thornton. I thought the voice acting was excellent, with the exception of ol' Billy Bob. He rated about a 0.1 on the emotional richter scale. He was like dry toast. But even that did little to detract from the overall wonder of this film. I saw it four times in the theaters, and I can't WAIT until it hits video.

Visit the Official Princess Mononoke Website

Ghost in the Shell. Probably my all time favorite anime (until I saw Princess Mononoke).  This is a sci-fi film in the tradition of Blade Runner. Major Kusanagi (shown above) is a cybernetic android, and a member of the special forces unit of Section 9 (it's like a country). Her newest enemy is the Puppet Master, a hacker who can actually hack inside a persons mind and control them from a simple telephone line. This movie kicks ass. It's not all explosions and action, there are some very deep moments in which the Major wonders whether in losing her organic brain she has also lost her soul. But don't worry, there are some cool explosions, too. My only negative comment on this film is the sub-par voice acting for Major Kusanagi. If you don't mind reading subtitles, I'd pick up the Japanese version, the emotions of the characters come through much more clearly.