Top 10 Fantasy Anime of 2002
1. Millennium Actress
When Studio Gin'ei commissions filmmaker Gen'ya Tachibana to make a documentary in commemoration of its 70th anniversary, he travels to a secluded mountain lodge to interview the idol of his youth, the enigmatic Chiyoko Fujiwara, who was the studio's leading lady from the 1930s until the 1960s. As Chiyoko reminisces about her life, Tachibana and his cameraman suddenly find themselves on a rich and dazzling journey through time. Chiyoko's films and personal memories intertwine with present events and stretch the boundaries of reality.
(Source: Anime News Network)
2. Princess Tutu
In a fairy tale come to life, the clumsy, sweet, and gentle Ahiru (Japanese for 'duck') seems like an unlikely protagonist. In reality, Ahiru is just as magical as the talking cats and crocodiles that inhabit her town - for Ahiru really is a duck! Transformed by the mysterious Drosselmeyer into a human girl, Ahiru soon learns the reason for her existence. Using her magical egg-shaped pendant, Ahiru can transform into Princess Tutu - a beautiful and talented ballet dancer whose dances relieve people of the turmoil in their hearts. With her newfound ability, Ahiru accepts the challenge of collecting the lost shards of her prince's heart, for long ago he had shattered it in order to seal an evil raven away for all eternity.
Princess Tutu is a tale of heroes and their struggle against fate. Their beliefs, their feelings, and ultimately their actions will determine whether this fairy tale can reach its "happily ever after."
Princess Tutu aired in two parts. The first part included 13 25-minute-long episodes, while the second part consisted of 24 12-minute-long episodes with a 25-minute-long final episode for a total of 38 episodes.
3. Hunter x Hunter: Yorknew City
After reuniting with Gon and his friends, Kurapika explained to them the risks he bears because of his abilities. Believing that his target of revenge is no longer alive and the search for his fallen comrade's eyes could truly begin, Kurapika soon after receives a message informing him that all the Spiders still lived. After much discussion between his friends, Gon, Kurapika and company decided to hunt after the one Spider member who's ability could ultimately result in Kurapika's defeat and death. Based on the manga by Togashi Yoshihiro.
4. Haibane Renmei
A dream of falling from the sky... and then birth. Rakka is born from a large cocoon into the Old Home, greeted by a group of females with small wings on their backs and shining halos above their heads. Soon Rakka’s own wings grow, a halo is placed on her head and she is told that she must work in the nearby town of Grie. She soon realizes that the town and the entire world they live in are confined behind the Wall, a tall, impenetrable wall that none except the mysterious Toga are allowed to exit.
(Source: Anime News Network)
5. The Twelve Kingdoms
Nakajima Youko is your average somewhat timid high school student. One day, a strange man named Keiki appears before her, swearing allegiance. Before she could properly register what was happening, demon-like creatures attack Youko and her friends, after which they are pulled into a different world. A world unlike what she has ever known. Separated from Keiki, Youko and her friends must do whatever they can if they wish to survive in this new world.
6. The Cat Returns
The Cat Returns is something of a loose spin-off of "Whisper of the Heart" as it features two characters from that film: Muta (the cat from "Whisper") and the Baron (the cat statue from "Whisper"). There is no other connection between the two movies and this is not a sequel. The story is based on Neko no Danshaku (Baron of Cat) by Hiiragi Aoi.
The main character of the story, Haru, is a clueless, ordinary 17-year-old girl. She has no special abilities and neither is she an extraordinary beauty. When faced with reality, she is unable to make decisions for herself, thus often sways to others' opinions to avoid challenge. One day, Haru saves the life of a cat without considering her own safety. The cat turns out to be the Cat Prince from the Kingdom of Cats, however as a result, Haru is trapped in the world of cats. Can Baron and Muta rescue Haru who has wandered into the world of cats?
(Source: AniDB, edited)
7. InuYasha the Movie 2: The Castle Beyond the Looking Glass
Inuyasha and company have finally destroyed Naraku. And each start to go in their separate ways. Sango going to find her younger brother Kohaku; Miroku back to his old home; Inuyasha, Kagome and Shippou go to gather the rest of the Shikon shards. Unfortunately this peace is not to last. Shortly afterwards the full moon rises, and just keeps rising each night bringing with it the promise of danger. Kagura and Kanna go in search of a mirror, where locked inside is the ruler of the eternal night, Kaguya. To set her free they must gather five items and drop them into the five lakes of Fuji. Setting her free means the worst danger for Inuyasha and the others. Who are forced to face this new threat.
8. Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi
Imamiya Satoshi, "Sasshi" to his friends, has grown up in the Abenobashi Shopping Arcade in Osaka, along with his childhood friend, Asahina Arumi. Now, all that was stable in his life is in ruins. His family's bath house has closed and been torn down, and Arumi's family is moving to Hokkaido - and taking her with them. In the midst of all this, something happens to the framework of reality, and Sasshi and Arumi slip into a weird parallel world. It's still Abenobashi, but not their Abenobashi. Strange things are afoot, and Sasshi must find out their meaning, in order to reach a goal that he barely understands.
9. Digimon Frontier
Takuya Kanbara is an average city kid who receives a text message from an unknown source instructing him to "board a train towards his destiny". Taking up the Call to Adventure, he finds the train in question and is whisked off to the Digital World, which is currently under threat from the malevolent Cherubimon. Cherubimon and his minions are consuming the very building blocks of the Digital World (its "Fractal Code") to increase their own power, and if nothing is done then the entire Digital World will be devoured.
All is not lost, however. Takuya and the other "chosen" children who boarded the train inherit the power of the Ten Legendary Warriors that saved the Digital World in the distant past, allowing them to transform themselves into Digimon. With their new powers, they fight to take back the stolen Fractal Code and restore the fractured Digital World to its former glory.
(Source: TV Tropes)
10. Pokémon Advanced
After participating in the Johto League, Ash decides to begin anew in yet another journey; this time by himself and Pikachu, in the land of Hoenn. Though he isn't alone for long, as 10-year-old May (whom dislikes Pokemon, but just wants to come along to see the world) travels with him after Pikachu destroys her bicycle. Ash also meets up with his old companion, Brock, and May's younger brother, Max. Together, they travel along in Hoenn, battling Gym Leaders, entering Contests, and other events on the way to the Hoenn League.
(Source: Anime News Network)