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The best kids movies on Disney+ right now

Considering the company’s primary audience, Disney+ is easily the best major streaming platform for kids movies. That might hold the service back from having consistently exciting new originals, but the appeal of what’s already there is broad. And when it comes to finding fun and suitable content for the family, that’s all you need. If you find yourself needing help in picking something out for the little ones or the entire family, be sure to check through this consistently updated guide on the best kids movies available to stream on Disney+ right now.

In addition to all of this family entertainment, the Disney Bundle is more than worth consideration if you’re not already subscribed. It nets you access to Disney+, Hulu’s basic ad-based plan, and ESPN+ for a respectable price. It’s an excellent combined value for your streaming dollars, especially in a market packed with similar platforms.

We’ve also rounded up the best kids movies on Hulu, the best kids movies on Netflix, and the best kids movies on Amazon Prime Video if you don’t find what you’re looking for on Disney+.

Recently added to Disney+
Peter Pan & Wendy (2023)
Peter Pan & Wendy
Genre Family, Fantasy, Action, Adventure
Stars Alexander Molony, Ever Anderson, Jude Law
Directed by David Lowery

The latest Disney+ original movie, David Lowery’s Peter Pan & Wendy is a live-action adaptation of the classic 1953 animated movie — which, in turn, is based on the original play known as Peter and Wendy. As nostalgic fans would come to know, Peter Pan & Wendy revolves around the titular duo traveling to Neverland along with the equally beloved character Tinker Bell.

Along the way, the group comes to face off against the villainous Captain Hook. Lowery’s live-action version doesn’t measure up to the original, but it’s a solid modernized rendition to engage the younger ones in the family.

Finding Dory (2016)
Finding Dory
Genre Adventure, Animation, Comedy, Family
Stars Albert Brooks, Ellen DeGeneres, Ed O'Neill
Directed by Andrew Stanton

The original Finding Nemo was a critically-acclaimed classic of the early 2000s, still standing as one of Disney Pixar’s greatest animated movies to date. Thirteen years later, Finding Dory lived up to its predecessor’s reputation, with Ellen DeGeneres and Albert Brooks returning to reprise their roles as Dory and Marlin.

The story sees the titular amnesiac fish lose herself on a journey to reconnect with her parents. Finding Dory should satisfy those who grew up on the first movie and new viewers all the same, as it was equally praised for its heartfelt story and clever humor.

Toy Story 3 (2010)
Toy Story 3
Genre Animation, Family, Comedy
Stars Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Joan Cusack
Directed by Lee Unkrich

The Toy Story franchise is still one of Pixar’s most beloved properties, and 15 years after the original movie, Toy Story 3 still successfully tugs at the heartstrings. The third movie in this series follows Woody, Buzz, and company as they’re accidentally donated to a daycare center after a now 17-year-old Andy moves out to college.

From there, the various iconic toys are forced to decide where they belong and how to get back to their home. Toy Story 3 is a massive payoff of what the 1995 classic started, representing a coming-of-age theme packed with emotion.

Chang Can Dunk (2023) new
Chang Can Dunk
Genre Family, Comedy, Drama
Stars Bloom Li, Dexter Darden, Ben Wang
Directed by Jingyi Shao

Disney+ every so often releases delightful, small-scale original movies that are charming for the whole family. Chang Can Dunk follows the story of the titular 16-year-old high schooler (played by Bloom Li), who makes a bet that he can dunk a basketball by Homecoming. However, that’s quite the challenge given the fact that he’s 5 feet, 8inches tall. But Chang’s determination to do so results in so much more than he imagined.

He ends up going through some self-discovery along the way, learning the importance of overcoming obstacles, maintaining a sense of identity, and having a strong support system. A timeless series of messages make Chang Can Dunk a worthwhile coming-of-age dramedy for the whole household.

Finding Nemo (2003)
Finding Nemo
Genre Animation, Family
Stars Albert Brooks, Ellen DeGeneres, Alexander Gould
Directed by Andrew Stanton

There’s little that can be said of Finding Nemo that hasn’t been already, as the 2003 movie was one of animation and Disney’s best theatrical achievements that decade.

The movie revolves around an overprotective clownfish father named Marlin as he and his bubbly yet forgetful friend, Dory — a regal blue tang — embark on an ocean-wide journey to find his lost son. Its brand of charm, genuinely clever humor, and visual spectacles have hardly aged, and its themes ensure that Finding Nemo will forever be a Disney Pixar classic all ages can get behind.

The Peanuts Movie (2015)
The Peanuts Movie
Genre Comedy, Animation, Family
Stars Noah Schnapp, Bill Melendez, Marleik 'Mar Mar' Walker
Directed by Steve Martino

The Peanuts characters are pop culture icons, and the 2015 animated movie beautifully and lovingly put that on display for the modern age. The film sees the beloved Charlie Brown and Snoopy go off on their respective exploits, with the former continuing to try to win the affection of the Little Red-Haired Girl, while Snoopy aims to write a book about him as a World War I flying ace going on a daring rescue mission.

The Peanuts Movie earned high critical praise, largely for its vibrant art direction that still stays faithful to the tone of the comic strips, while effectively catering to both the new generation and the older, nostalgic fans who grew up with Peanuts.

Toy Story 2 (1999)
Toy Story 2
Genre Animation, Comedy, Family
Stars Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Joan Cusack
Directed by John Lasseter

The Toy Story series is one of the most critically acclaimed and iconic Disney Pixar creations of all time, and the 1999 sequel still holds up as well as the rest. Following up a beloved original is always a tall order, but Toy Story 2 satisfied on all fronts, introducing new and lovable characters alongside an equally emotional story.

Following the shocking events of Woody being stolen by a crazed toy collector, Buzz Lightyear and the rest of the toy gang go on a daring mission to rescue him. But when Woody meets Jessie, the former is tempted by the thought of “immortality” in a museum. Toy Story 2‘s character-driven story earned widespread acclaim, and is arguably superior to its predecessor.

Wreck-It Ralph (2012)
Wreck-It Ralph
Genre Family, Animation, Comedy, Adventure
Stars John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer
Directed by Rich Moore
Video game adaptations may have a mostly rocky track record, but Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Wreck-It Ralph is a fun and refreshing spin on the medium. Taking a sort of meta approach with video games and the characters that star in them, John C. Reilly plays Ralph, a video game antagonist who’s become disillusioned with his job as a villain. Along with his quest of changing his image to being a video game hero, he befriends another character, Vanellope von Schweetz (voiced by Sarah Silverman), who’s a glitch in her own game. Wreck-It Ralph strikes the right balance of endearing themes with colorful nostalgia, making the movie a modern classic in its own right.
Ice Age (2002)
Ice Age
Genre Animation, Comedy, Family, Adventure
Stars Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary
Directed by Chris Wedge
While the likes of Shrek released to critical acclaim in the same time period, 2002’s Ice Age was a solid venture in its own right. It has a fun and creative premise to boot, with the movie taking place during the prehistoric age of the mammals and following the unlikely exploits of a woolly mammoth named Manny (Ray Romano), a giant sloth named Sid (John Leguizamo), and a saber-toothed cat named Dieg o(Denis Leary) as they venture across the tundra to reunite a lost infant human with his tribe. Ice Age is an entertaining family-friendly romp filled with charm and a heartwarming core theme of the found family.
The Incredibles (2004)
The Incredibles
Genre Action, Adventure, Animation, Family
Stars Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter, Sarah Vowell
Directed by Brad Bird
The superhero genre has blown up in the theatrical space, but Disney Pixar Animation Studios’ early 2000s spin on the premise will have always have a special place in the now-packed crowd. The Incredibles manages to feel like a fun twist on the formula while also drawing from what makes superheroes and comic books as fun as they are as it seemingly takes a page from the likes of Marvel Comics’ Fantastic Four. The movie focuses on the story of the titular family as they’re mandated by the government to hide their abilities, until Mr. Incredible’s insatiable drive to help others eventually exposes them to the public — and to a dangerous fan-turned-supervillain.
Big Hero 6 (2014)
Big Hero 6
Genre Adventure, Family, Animation, Action, Comedy
Stars Scott Adsit, Ryan Potter, Daniel Henney
Directed by Chris Williams, Don Hall
Loosely based on the Marvel Comics series of the same name and produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios, Big Hero 6 is another Disney animated feature that takes a unique spin on the superhero genre. Set in a futuristic city called San Fransokyo, the story sees 14-year-old robotics prodigy Hiro Hamada form a superhero duo with his late brother’s health care robot to confront the villain responsible for his death. Fans of superheroes and anime should also feel right at home with this charming adventure, as Big Hero 6 pays homage to the likes of mecha anime.
Encanto (2021)
Genre Animation, Comedy, Family, Fantasy
Stars Stephanie Beatriz, María Cecilia Botero, John Leguizamo
Directed by Byron Howard, Jared Bush
One of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ most recent animated musicals, Encanto was widely praised when it released in 2021 for its refreshing premise and soundtrack. The movie takes an exciting new cultural approach, focusing on a multigenerational Colombian family with a vibrant fantasy twist. It follows the Madrigal family, each member of which has magical abilities that help them serve their rural community. But Mirabel, who hasn’t been bestowed with a magical gift, finds out that their family is losing their magic, and she sets out on a mission to find the root of this dilemma. Encanto is a delightfully colorful celebration of a slice of Latino culture with emotionally poignant themes of coming of age and familial structure.
Lilo & Stitch (2002)
Lilo & Stitch
Genre Animation, Family
Stars Daveigh Chase, Chris Sanders, Tia Carrere
Directed by Chris Sanders, Dean DeBlois
An animated Disney classic of the early ’00s, Lilo & Stitch is a delightful sci-fi-themed comedy that holds up today. Set in Hawaii, the story follows young Lilo Pelekai and the older sister Nani who raises her spontaneously coming in contact with a runaway alien experiment. Dubbed “Stitch” by Lilo, the toothy extraterrestrial is adopted as their pet dog, despite being engineered as a destructive weapon. Lilo & Stitch is an endearing family comedy with timeless and touching themes regarding the family dynamic and Hawaiian culture.
Soul (2020)
Genre Animation, Family, Comedy, Fantasy, Drama
Stars Jamie Foxx, Tina Fey, Graham Norton
Directed by Pete Docter
A Disney+ original movie, Soul is both a visual treat for the eyes and poignant family-friendly adventure. Led by actor Jamie Foxx, Souls follows the story of a part-time teacher named Joe Gardner who dies in an accident just before his breakout performance as a professional jazz musician. From there, Joe goes on a spiritual journey to rejoin his soul with his body — all the while joined by a colorful cast of souls. Soul masterfully strikes the balance of resonating nuance that doesn’t overwhelm its young target audience.
Better Nate Than Ever (2022)
Better Nate Than Ever
Genre Music, Family, Comedy
Stars Rueby Wood, Lisa Kudrow, Joshua Bassett
Directed by Tim Federle
Though the musical genre isn’t as prominent in mainstream pop culture as it used to be, it’s being helped to stay alive in the form of Disney+ originals. Better Nate Than Ever is a charming coming-of-age musical comedy that centers around the titular young boy. Nate Foster, a 13-year-old middle schooler living in Pittsburgh, has grandstanding ambitions of being a star in Broadway musicals. After dealing with mocking classmates and being passed up on roles in school productions, Nate and his supportive best friend Libby take the bold opportunity of sneaking away on a bus to New York City to audition for Broadway’s adaptation of Lilo & Stitch. Bolstered by its heartwarming message of acceptance and self-affirmation, Better Nate Than Ever is sure to be a fun mix of the old and the new for families with an interest in the genre.
Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971)
Bedknobs and Broomsticks
59 %
g 117m
Genre Adventure, Fantasy, Comedy, Family, Music
Stars Angela Lansbury, David Tomlinson, Roddy McDowall
Directed by Robert Stevenson

The late Angela Lansbury may be better known for lending her voice to the animated Beauty and the Beast, but Bedknobs and Broomsticks is truly her Disney movie. She headlines the cast as Miss Eglantine Price a woman in 1940s England who is learning to be a witch through a correspondence course in the hopes of saving her country from the Nazis. Miss Price reluctantly takes in three orphans: Charles (Ian Weighill), Carrie (Cindy O’Callaghan), and Paul Rawlins (Roy Snart). When the siblings discover that Price is a witch, she swears them to secrecy. They also accompany Price when she goes on a magical journey alongside Emelius Browne (David Tomlinson), a con man who also comes to care for the makeshift family.

Under Wraps 2 (2022)
Under Wraps 2
Genre Family, Fantasy, TV Movie
Stars Malachi Barton, Christian J. Simon, Sophia Hammons
Directed by Alex Zamm
A horror movie for kids? Don’t worry, there are no real scares in Under Wraps 2. One year after the events of the first movie, Marshall (Malachi Barton), Gilbert (Christian J. Simon), and Amy (Sophia Hammons) discover that an evil mummy, Sobeck (T.J. Storm), has been resurrected. And Sobeck plans to get revenge on the friendly mummies Harold (Phil Wright) and Rose (Rryla McIntosh). So the trio of kids awaken the couple from their eternal slumber and attempt to hide them in plain sight while preparing the spooky-themed wedding of Rose’s two dads. But the trio’s friendship is threatened when Marshall realizes that Gilbert and Amy have been pulling away from him.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid (2010)
Diary of a Wimpy Kid
56 %
pg 92m
Genre Comedy, Family
Stars Zachary Gordon, Robert Capron, Steve Zahn
Directed by Thor Freudenthal
In the first-ever adaptation of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books, Zachary Gordon stars as Greg Heffley, a wildly unpopular sixth grader who would do anything to become beloved by his peers. And so Greg drags his friend, Rowley Jefferson (Robert Capron) into one harebrained scheme after another. Unfortunately, Greg’s single-minded pursuit poisons his relationship with Rowley, leaving him alone as he attempts to make it through the year. There are lessons to learn, to be sure. Yet Greg’s inability to learn from his mistakes sometimes makes him his own worst enemy.
A Wrinkle in Time (2018)
A Wrinkle in Time
53 %
pg 109m
Genre Adventure, Science Fiction, Family, Fantasy
Stars Storm Reid, Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon
Directed by Ava DuVernay
A Wrinkle in Time takes Madeleine L’Engle’s famous young adult novel and updates it for a new generation. Meg Murry (Storm Reid) and her adoptive younger brother, Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe), suffer after their father, Dr. Alexander Murry (Chris Pine), disappeared under mysterious circumstances. One day, three enigmatic women, Mrs. Which (Oprah Winfrey), Mrs. Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon), and Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling), tell the children and their friend, Calvin O’Keefe (Levi Miller), that Dr. Murry needs their help somewhere across the universe. And through the power of the women, Meg, Charles, and Calvin go on the journey of a lifetime.
Ron's Gone Wrong (2021)
Ron's Gone Wrong
65 %
pg 106m
Genre Animation, Science Fiction, Family, Comedy
Stars Zach Galifianakis, Jack Dylan Grazer, Ed Helms
Directed by Sarah Smith, Jean-Philippe Vine
A brilliant weigh-in on humanity’s love-hate relationship with A.I., Ron’s Gone Wrong follows down-and-out middle schooler Barney (Jack Dylan Grazer), a boy that comes into the possession of a sentient bot buddy named Ron (Zach Galifianakis). Designed to help humans make friends, Ron isn’t like the rest of the automaton lineup — specifically because he came damaged out of the box. Learning to accept and appreciate Ron’s faults, he and Barney form a unique companionship, a bond that will be tested when Ron’s designers come looking for the malfunctioning robot.
Luca (2021)
71 %
pg 95m
Genre Animation, Comedy, Family, Fantasy
Stars Jacob Tremblay, Jack Dylan Grazer, Emma Berman
Directed by Enrico Casarosa
A love-letter to perfect childhood summers, Luca follows the titular character (voiced by Jacob Tremblay), a mythic sea creature capable of taking on a human form when on land. Best friends with Alberto (Jack Dylan Grazer), Luca and his new pal spend their days perusing the illustrious coastal town of Portorosso, a kaleidoscopic villa packed with plenty of things to do. But it turns out that Alberto is a sea monster, too. Together, the two youths do what they can to lead their best lives while protecting their oceanic secret.
Toy Story (1995)
Toy Story
95 %
g 81m
Genre Animation, Adventure, Family, Comedy
Stars Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Don Rickles
Directed by John Lasseter
Did you ever wonder what your action figures were up to when you weren’t around them? Well, according to Pixar’s Toy Story, they’re leading very busy lives of their own. In the company’s stunning feature debut, Tom Hanks is the voice of Woody, a beloved cowboy doll and de facto leader of Andy’s menagerie of play-things. Life in the boy’s bedroom is pretty great for all — that is until a shiny new space-ranger named Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) is gifted to Andy for his birthday. Truly believing himself to be a commando from a galactic star-fleet, Buzz’s glitz and do-gooder attitude is a direct challenge to Woody’s esteemed position as Andy’s favorite toy. But both cowboy and space cadet must join forces when they find themselves in the hands of the maniacal bully-boy from next door.
Cruella (2021)
59 %
pg 134m
Genre Comedy, Crime
Stars Emma Stone, Emma Thompson, Joel Fry
Directed by Craig Gillespie
Although Cruella was initially only available on Disney+ via Premier Access, the film is now available to all subscribers. In this live-action reboot/prequel to 101 Dalmatians, Emma Stone steps into the leading role of Estella Miller, the young woman who is destined to become Cruella de Vil. In the ’70s, Estella is an orphan who makes her way as a thief alongside her friends, Jasper (Joel Fry) and Horace Badun (Paul Walter Hauser). Estella’s gift for fashion eventually catches the attention of Baroness von Hellman (Emma Thompson), a designer who takes Estella under her wing. But when Estella discovers that the Baroness has branded Estella’s late mother as a thief, she turns against her mentor and carves her path to fame.
Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (2014)
Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
54 %
pg 81m
Genre Family, Comedy
Stars Kerris Dorsey, Jennifer Garner, Dylan Minnette
Directed by Miguel Arteta
Now here’s a movie with an unwieldy title: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. The film is based upon Judith Viorst’s children’s book of the same name. Ed Oxenbould stars as Alexander Cooper, the put-upon middle child of Ben (Steve Carell) and Kelly Cooper (Jennifer Garner). After suffering a series of humiliating and soul-crushing events, Alexander wishes that his family could understand what he’s going through. Unfortunately for both Alexander and his family, the wish comes true as Ben and Kelly as well as their children face some hilarious setbacks in their lives.
Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made (2020)
Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made
60 %
pg 99m
Genre Family, Mystery, Comedy, Fantasy
Stars Winslow Fegley, Ophelia Lovibond, Wallace Shawn
Directed by Tom McCarthy
Meet Timmy Failure (Winslow Fegley), an 11-year old kid with a wild imagination. In the Disney Plus original movie, Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made, Timmy and his imaginary polar bear friend, Total, have a detective agency called Total Failure. Timmy doesn’t realize that his teacher, Frederick Crocus (Wallace Shawn), and his rival, Corrina Corrina (Ai-Chan Carrier), aren’t actually his enemies. Regardless, he tends to blame them and “the Russians” whenever anything goes wrong. The school counselor, Mr. Jenkins (Craig Robinson), is one of the few adults that Timmy feels he can trust. However, Timmy’s continual mishaps threaten to disrupt both his home life and his school life.
WALL·E (2008)
95 %
g 98m
Genre Animation, Family, Science Fiction
Stars Ben Burtt, Elissa Knight, Jeff Garlin
Directed by Andrew Stanton
WALL-E is another Pixar masterpiece, but this is a movie unlike any other in the studio’s library. In the far future, WALL-E (Ben Burtt) is the last functioning waste disposal robot left on Earth. He’s had so much time to himself that WALL-E has become sentient, and he has a longing for companionship and romance. That’s when EVE (Elissa Knight) enters his life. WALL-E becomes smitten with the new robot when she is sent to Earth to find evidence that the world can be reinhabited by the surviving humans who have been living on a giant spacecraft in deep space for centuries. Although reluctant at first, EVE welcomes WALL-E into her heart. But when EVE’s mission forces her to leave, WALL-E accompanies her on an outer space adventure that will determine humanity’s future.
White Fang (1991)
White Fang
62 %
pg 107m
Genre Action, Adventure, Drama, Family
Stars Klaus Maria Brandauer, Ethan Hawke, Seymour Cassel
Directed by Randal Kleiser
In the 1991 adaptation of Jack London’s White Fang, Ethan Hawke stars as Jack Conroy, a young man who takes part in the Klondike Gold Rush in 1896. To fulfill his father’s last wish, Jack convinces an older prospector, Alex Larson (Klaus Maria Brandauer), to come with him and stake his family’s claim. Along the way, Jack encounters White Fang, a wolf-dog hybrid who is mistreated by his master, Beauty Smith (James Remar). After freeing White Fang, Jack becomes determined to tame and befriend him. The bond they come to share is very powerful, and it helps Jack decide what he wants out of life and where he should be.
Holes (2003)
71 %
pg 117m
Genre Adventure, Family, Drama, Comedy
Stars Shia LaBeouf, Khleo Thomas, Sigourney Weaver
Directed by Andrew Davis
Shia LaBeouf stars in the adaptation of Louis Sachar’s Holes as Stanley Yelnats IV, a teenager who is unjustly convicted of theft. Afterward, Stanley is sentenced to 18 months of hard labor at a juvenile detention camp. The warden, Louise Walker (Sigourney Weaver), is forcing the kids in her care to dig holes because she’s looking for a treasure hidden over a century before by the legendary outlaw, Kissin’ Kate Barlow (Patricia Arquette). While serving his time, Stanley befriends Hector “Zero” Zeroni (Khleo Thomas), and he comes to realize that he has a personal connection to the treasure that the warden wants so badly.
Raya and the Last Dragon (2021)
Raya and the Last Dragon
75 %
pg 107m
Genre Family, Fantasy, Animation, Action, Adventure
Stars Kelly Marie Tran, Awkwafina, Izaac Wang
Directed by Don Hall, Carlos López Estrada
Set in the mythic world of Kumandra, Raya and the Last Dragon follows Raya (Kelly Marie Tran), a member of the great Heart tribe, governed by her father, Chief Benja (Daniel Dae Kim). When a horrific horde of creatures known as the Druun return to Kumandra after they were thwarted 500 years before, the monsters wreak havoc, leaving Raya estranged as her home falls to ruins. It’s up to Raya to take on the greatest quest of all: To search near and far for a dragon known as Sisu, a powerful being that is the only hope against the swarms of Druun. A mesmerizing adventure-epic featuring a lively ensemble of voice actors, Raya and the Last Dragon is a welcome addition to the bountiful archive of Disney films.
A Goofy Movie (1995)
A Goofy Movie
53 %
g 78m
Genre Romance, Animation, Family, Comedy, Adventure
Stars Bill Farmer, Jason Marsden, Rob Paulsen
Directed by Kevin Lima
It’s a road trip for the ages when Goofy (Bill Farmer), the lovable but slightly overbearing father of the year, decides to take his teenage son, Max (Jason Marsden), on a fishing trip to Lake Destiny, Idaho. The surprise excursion is thanks to a major musical stunt that Max pulled off at school — a disruptive act that Max’s principal believes may land the boy “in the electric chair” someday. Goofy takes the news seriously and wants to do everything in his power to help his son realign his moral compass, but when “everything” turns into Bigfoot sightings and plummeting toward a demise by waterfall, the father-son duo must band together to beat the odds. A standout film that explores the deep connection between parents and their children, with plenty of Goofy hijinks to pad out the runtime, A Goofy Movie hits just as hard nearly 30 years after its initial release.
Onward (2020)
61 %
pg 103m
Genre Family, Animation, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy
Stars Tom Holland, Chris Pratt, Julia Louis-Dreyfus
Directed by Dan Scanlon
Ian and Barley Lightfoot (Tom Holland and Chris Pratt, respectively) are mythical elf brothers residing in the magical community of New Mushroomton. Living with their mother, Laurel (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), Ian receives the opportunity of a lifetime when, on his 16th birthday, Laurel delivers a gift to her son from his late father. Amongst the host of artifacts, one of the presents is a letter with the promise of a “visitation spell” to resurrect Ian and Barley’s dad for a single day. Ian and Barley set off on a mythic journey to carry out the spell, facing down hordes of fantastical foes on their epic pilgrimage. Another knockout for Pixar, Onward delivers breathtaking animation, a heartfelt sibling dynamic, and plenty of laughs along the way.
Cinderella (1950)
85 %
g 74m
Genre Family, Fantasy, Animation, Romance
Stars Ilene Woods, Eleanor Audley, Verna Felton
Directed by Hamilton Luske, Wilfred Jackson, Clyde Geronimi
Based on the Charles Perrault fairy tale of the same name, Cinderella follows the titular character (Ilene Woods), a descendant of royalty turned scullion for her wicked stepmother and stepsisters. When news of a royal ball comes around, Cinderella is banished from attending by her malicious heirs. Thankfully, an endearing Fairy Godmother (Verna Felton) arrives just in time, bestowing the saddened Cinderella with regal attire and transforming her animal companions into members of her royal entourage. The repressed Cinderella has one evening to enchant the handsome Prince Charming before the magic wears off at midnight. An epic Disney feature packed with memorable music, rich hand-drawn animation, and delightful characters, Cinderella is a masterpiece that has stood the test of time.
Zootopia (2016)
78 %
pg 109m
Genre Animation, Adventure, Family, Comedy
Stars Jason Bateman, Ginnifer Goodwin, Idris Elba
Directed by Byron Howard, Rich Moore
Zootopia is Disney’s amusing take on the buddy cop comedy subgenre, an experiment in animated, anthropomorphic animals (say that ten times fast) that more than delivers. The duo in this feature is a bunny rabbit cop named Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) and a fox named Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman). When news of missing creatures hits the streets of Zootopia, Judy is tasked with getting to the bottom of a crime with much deeper roots than she’s expecting. Added to her plate is the stress of needing to break the case in two days or she’s out of a job. A funny neo-noir told through state-of-the-art Disney animation, on top of a narrative interlaced with plenty of cultural and political metaphors, Zootopia delivers on more than one level.
The Muppets (2011)
The Muppets
75 %
pg 103m
Genre Family, Comedy, Music
Stars Jason Segel, Amy Adams, Chris Cooper
Directed by James Bobin
Penned by actor Jason Segel, The Muppets reunites the classic Jim Henson ensemble of felt with a new player, the sheepishly amusing Walter (Peter Linz), a longtime fan of the Kermit-led brigade. Vacationing with his best friend Gary (Jason Segel) and Gary’s girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams), Walter unearths a plot from the scheming Tex Richman (Chris Cooper) that involves demolishing the Muppet Studios for fracking. It’s up to Walter, Gary, and the reunited Muppet cast to thwart Richman’s proposed drilling operation. A loving return to the silver screen, The Muppets sticks to the heart and schtick of the original films, TV series, and specials, with a modern flourish (thanks to Segel’s sharp writing) to grab audiences both old and new.
Into the Woods (2014)
Into the Woods
69 %
pg 125m
Genre Fantasy, Comedy
Stars Meryl Streep, James Corden, Emily Blunt
Directed by Rob Marshall
Into the Woods is Disney’s adaptation of the 1986 James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim Broadway musical. A musical melting pot of fairytale characters, the film follows a baker (James Corden) and his wife (Emily Blunt) as they venture into the titular woods in search of artifacts that will vanquish a curse bestowed upon them by a witch (Meryl Streep). A seamless blend of family-friendly narrative beats with plenty of showstoppers and earnest performances from the main ensemble, Into the Woods is just as big and dazzling as its original Broadway version.
A Bug's Life (1998)
A Bug's Life
77 %
g 95m
Genre Adventure, Animation, Comedy, Family
Stars Dave Foley, Kevin Spacey, Julia Louis-Dreyfus
Directed by John Lasseter
Flik (Dave Foley) is the laughing stock of his entire ant colony. An animated inventor that goes the extra mile to make work easier for his brethren, Flik’s many creations tend to fall by the wayside. When one of his latest contraptions goes haywire, the all-important food storage of the colony is vanquished. More like ransom money, most of the bug-grub was meant for a villainous grasshopper named Hopper (Kevin Spacey). When the angry insect learns that his sacrifice is gone, he demands the ants work overtime to deliver double the supply. With the colony in terror, Flik heads off on a journey to recruit a defense team for his stomping grounds. Packed with laughs, state-of-the-art CGI (for the time), and an emotionally gripping story, Pixar’s A Bug’s Life is an awesome weekend watch for kids and parents alike.
Beauty and the Beast (2017)
Beauty and the Beast
65 %
pg 129m
Genre Family, Fantasy, Romance
Stars Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans
Directed by Bill Condon
Belle (Emma Watson) is the enchanting and intellectual heartthrob of her small French villa, a home she tires of. When her father, Maurice (Kevin Kline), is taken by prisoner by a wretched beast (Dan Stevens), Belle’s dreams of adventure are answered posthaste. Arriving at the beast’s castle to rescue her father, she offers herself for imprisonment over her father. Accepting her offer, the beast leaves Belle to wander the castle, where she begins befriending its wily cast of characters — servants and keepers hexed into anthropomorphic furniture by the same witch’s curse that morphed the beast from a handsome man into his hairier savage appearance. As time passes, Belle learns to see past the beast’s rough exterior, finding kindness and a heart of gold in the cursed prince. A majestic blend of CGI, heartfelt performances, and excellent music make this a fantastic addition to Disney’s lineup of reimagined classics that include such films as The Lion King, Aladdin, and The Jungle Book.
Descendants (2015)
63 %
g 112m
Genre Family, Music, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, TV Movie
Stars Dove Cameron, Cameron Boyce, Booboo Stewart
Directed by Kenny Ortega
Imagine if Disney had a shared universe before connected franchises became all the rage. That’s essentially the starting point for Descendants, which follows the journey of four teenagers whose parents include Maleficent, Cruella de Vil, the Evil Queen, and Jafar. Mal (Dove Cameron), Carlos (the late Cameron Boyce), Jay (Booboo Stewart), and Evie (Sofia Carson) accept the invitation of Prince Ben (Mitchell Hope) to attend Auradon Preparatory away from the influence of their evil parents. But the Disney villains have plans to escape their prison, and they want their kids to follow in their evil footsteps. However, once the teenagers experience life in Auradon, they’re no longer sure where their loyalties lie.
High School Musical (2006)
High School Musical
g 98m
Genre Comedy, Drama, Family, Music, Romance, TV Movie
Stars Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Tisdale
Directed by Kenny Ortega
The original High School Musical movie not only kicked off a franchise, but it also made Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens into stars. Within this film, Efron and Hudgens play Troy Bolton and Gabriella Montez, respectively. Troy and Gabriella are immediately drawn to each other when she transfers to his school. Collectively and separately, the duo works up the courage to audition for the school musical despite their athletic and academic callings. However, their fellow student, Sharpay Evans (Ashley Tisdale), schemes to keep them out of the musical in order to maintain her own place in the spotlight. Fortunately for the lovebirds, they have some very loyal friends.
Mulan (2020)
66 %
pg 115m
Genre Adventure, Fantasy, Drama
Stars Liu Yifei, Tzi Ma, Donnie Yen
Directed by Niki Caro
Over two decades ago, Disney successfully adapted the legend of Mulan as an animated film. For the inevitable live-action adaptation, there is no talking dragon. But there is a witch. Yifei Liu stars as Mulan, the young woman who goes to war disguised as a man named “Hua Jun.” Under the tutelage of Commander Tung (Donnie Yen), Mulan finds her inner warrior. She also makes a strong connection with Chen Honghui (Yoson An) as they prepare to take on the forces of Böri Khan (Jason Scott Lee). The fate of the kingdom is in their hands.
Pete's Dragon (2016)
Pete's Dragon
71 %
pg 103m
Genre Adventure, Family, Fantasy
Stars Oakes Fegley, Bryce Dallas Howard, Wes Bentley
Directed by David Lowery
Although the original Pete’s Dragon is very charming, the 2016 remake is ultimately the stronger of the two films. Bryce Dallas Howard stars as Grace Meacham, a forest ranger who discovers Pete Haley (Oakes Fegley), a 10-year-old boy who has spent half a decade in the wild following a terrible tragedy. Pete’s loyal companion is Elliot, a dragon who can sometimes become invisible. Once the town gets wind of Elliot’s existence, Pete and his surrogate family go to great lengths to protect the dragon just as he had protected Pete for years.

Editors' Recommendations

Movie images and data from:
Guillermo Kurten
Freelance Writer, Entertainment
A University of Houston graduate in Print Media Journalism, Guillermo has covered sports entertainment and practically all…
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