So, Frozen, Disney’s most recent animated offering, received an avalanche of critical acclaim. The film won two Academy Awards—Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song—and is being called the best animated feature film since…since what? What are the best animated movies of all time? Where are you failing in the parent (or grandparent) department, if you have deprived the little ones a viewing?
Before we begin, I want to make one thing very clear in what is certainly going to be an unsuccessful attempt to thwart angry emails: This is the white-bread, family-friendly, decidedly American list. There are some glaring omissions from a true fan of animation, but this is my list. So, without further ado…
10) Sleeping Beauty
Really, it’s a draw among the classic three. I just like this one the best.
9) How to Train Your Dragon
It’s a movie about faulty assumptions and embracing the individual. Plus, there’s a dragon.
8) The Nightmare Before Christmas
The King of Halloween tries to understand the foreign concept of Christmas. It’s dark and creepy and brilliant. I expect nothing less from Tim Burton.
The rat who doesn’t want to eat garbage, but rather cook delicious meals, the iconoclast, the rebel.
6) The Little Mermaid
Rather than sit around and wait like The Big Three, this Disney princess gives up her voice to walk on dry land and find her Prince. I want to say the message here is keep quiet and the boys will like you, but I’m sure there’s more going on.
Yes they milked this franchise like an overfull cow, but if you just go back to the original, it was stupendous. Inner beauty is what counts.
4) Beauty and the Beast
This movie is great in every way a movie is supposed to be great. A tortured hero, a strong nurturing partner, a stirring plot and Angela Lansbury.
I defy anyone to watch this movie without getting choked up. A chubby boy scout of indeterminate ethnic origin, a grumpy old man and a long overdue adventure.
2) Toy Story (1-3)
So, I cheated a little. Each of the three really deserves its own spot on the list.
1) The Lion King
It’s perfect—touching and hilarious. The voices are incredible—James Earl Jones, Jeremy Irons, Nathan Lane, Whoopi Goldberg—the list goes on. Hakuna Matata!