The Best Rotoscope Movies

List Rules
Vote up the movies which utilize rotoscoping best.

What are the best rotoscope movies? Rotoscoping is an animation technique that animators use to trace over motion picture footage, frame by frame, to produce realistic action. Originally, animators projected photographed live-action movie images onto a glass panel and traced over the image. This projection equipment is referred to as a rotoscope, developed by Polish-American animator Max Fleischer, and the result is a rotograph. This device was eventually replaced by computers, but the process is still called rotoscoping. So what are the best rotoscope animation movies? What rotoscope movies do you love?

When it comes to rotoscoping movies, American film director Richard Linklater has mastered the form. The Keanu Reeves rotoscope movie A Scanner Darkly is considered one of the best examples of utilizing the rotoscope style in a narrative format in modern day. Linklater also made two more rotoscope movies Waking Life and Apollo 10.5 - which is one of the best animated movies of 2022. In recent years, many great rotoscope movies have come out, like I Lost My Body, The Spine of Night, and Loving Vincent.

Many of the early Disney classics were created using rotoscoped animation, such as Cinderella, Snow White, Pinocchio, and Sleeping Beauty, among others. However, controversially in the late '10s and early '20s, the Mouse company introduced the practice of digitally remastering (read: ruining) the original films by erasing many of the details of the early animation techniques.

Vote up the best rotoscope movies of all time! Then, check back as more movies that use rotoscoping are released every year!

Ranked by
  • A Scanner Darkly
    Keanu Reeves, Robert Downey, Woody Harrelson
    22 votes
    • Released: 2006
    • Directed by: Richard Linklater
    In the near future, as America virtually loses the war on drugs, Robert Arctor, a narcotics cop in Orange County, Calif., becomes an addict when he goes under cover. He is wooing Donna, a dealer, to ...more

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  • Apollo 10½: A Space Age Childhood
    Jack Black, Bill Wise, Lee Eddy
    9 votes
    • Released: 2022
    • Directed by: Richard Linklater
    A man narrates stories of his life as a 10-year-old boy in 1969 Houston, weaving tales of nostalgia with a fantastical account of a journey to the moon.
  • Renaissance
    Daniel Craig, Catherine McCormack, Romola Garai
    6 votes
    • Released: 2006
    • Directed by: Christian Volckman
    Avalon Corp., a purveyor of eternal youth and beauty, worms its way into every facet of life in 2054 Paris, a closely monitored city. When Ilona (Romola Garai), one of Avalon's most promising ...more

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  • Piercing I

    Piercing I

    Liu Jian, Zuoxiao Zuzhou
    6 votes
    • Released: 2010
    • Directed by: Liu Jian
    Piercing I is a 2010 Chinese animated film directed by Liu Jian. Due to the financial crisis, many factories in China are forced to close their doors in late 2008. Zhang Xiaojun loses his job in a ...more
  • Demon Wind
    Stephen Quadros
    6 votes
    • Released: 1990
    Demon Wind is an American 1990 horror film directed by Charles Philip Moore. The film concerns a group of friends who travel to an old farm, and soon find they can't leave as a mysterious fog sets in.
  • American Pop
    Ron Thompson, Mews Small, Jerry Holland
    14 votes
    • Released: 1981
    • Directed by: Ralph Bakshi
    This animated trek across the musical landscape of the 20th century begins with young immigrant Zalmie (Jeffrey Lippa) arriving in New York City. He's addicted to show business, but an accident ruins ...more

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