Upon its US release in the mid-1990s Ghost in the Shell, directed by Mamoru Oshii, quickly became one of the most popular Japanese animation films, or anime, in the country. Despite these accolades, Oshii is known as a contrarian within anime, a self-proclaimed "stray dog", with a unique cinematic vision. Working in both live-action film and animation, directing everything from absurdist comedy to thrillers to meditations on the nature of reality, Oshii defies the confines of genre and form. Stray Dog of Anime is the first book to take an in-depth look at his major films, from the early days working on Urusei Yatsura to Avalon, his most recent feature. Ruh details Oshii's evolution as a director, paying special attention to his personal style and symbolism, resulting in a unique guide that will appeal to anime fans and cineastes of all kinds.