For students, fans, and scholars alike, this wide-ranging primer on anime employs a panoply of critical approaches Well-known through hit movies like Spirited Away, Akira, and Ghost in the Shell, anime has a long history spanning a wide range of directors, genres, and styles. Christopher Bolton's Interpreting Anime is a thoughtful, carefully organized introduction to Japanese animation for anyone eager to see why this genre has remained a vital, adaptable art form for decades.Interpreting Anime is easily accessible and structured around individual films and a broad array of critical approaches. Each chapter centers on a different feature-length anime film, juxtaposing it with a particular medium—like literary fiction, classical Japanese theater, and contemporary stage drama—to reveal what is unique about anime's way of representing the world. This analysis is abetted by a suite of questions provoked by each film, along with Bolton's incisive responses.Throughout, Interpreting Anime applies multiple frames, such as queer theory, psychoanalysis, and theories of postmodernism, giving readers a thorough understanding of both the cultural underpinnings and critical significance of each film. What emerges from the sweep of Interpreting Anime is Bolton's original, articulate case for what makes anime unique as a medium: how it at once engages profound social and political realities while also drawing attention to the very challenges of representing reality in animation's imaginative and compelling visual forms.