The past years have been great for animated movies with Disney, Warner Brothers and other companies producing excellent ones that attract both to kids and adults alike.
So if you’re looking for the next film to add to your movie marathon list, here’s a list of the 10 best animated movies of all time.
Top 10 Best Animated Movies Of All Time
My Neighbor Totoro (1988)
My Neighbor Totoro (1988) is a quintessential Studio Ghibli film and one of Hayao Miyazaki’s greatest works.
The film is a light fantasy story which connects a world filled with magical creatures to supernatural occurrences backed by feelings of maternal longing. It’s well-loved and remembered for its main characters: an adorable woodland creature and the two lonely sisters that enter its world. The story itself centers on the sentimental tale of how the sister copes with the hospitalization of their mother by finding solace in nature.
Inside Out (2015)
Inside Out (2015)’s success is proof that Pixar is one of the best animated film studios around. The film follows the story of five emotions humanized as they run the control board in the brain of a little girl. With the characters, Joy, Disgust, Sadness, Fear, and Anger, the film shows how a child reacts to very difficult challenges that come her way.
More than just entertaining, the film tells a moving story about the importance of sadness and has also become the top-rated animated movie on review aggregator site, Rotten Tomatoes.
The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
Is it a Christmas movie, is it a Halloween movie? It doesn’t matter because it’s a great movie.
Give it to Tim Burton himself to make the world fall in love and have sympathy for what literally is a bag of bones personified in the character of Jack Skellington, Halloweentown’s best character seeking to bring in Christmas to his macabre town. What results is a quirky, fish out of water comedy horror film that audiences loved.
A trivia: did you know that the producers were concerned the film was going to be too scary for children to watch? Boy, were they wrong.
The Iron Giant (1999)
Based on a children’s book written by Ted Hughes, The Iron Giant (1999) tells the story of a boy who becomes friends with a giant robot from space. The film is acclaimed director Brad Bird’s most personal work but is unfortunately often overshadowed by his other, more financially-acclaimed works.
It would eventually get the attention it deserves and become a cult favorite among serious animated movie fans because of how it turned a simple story into a heartwarming testament to heroism.
Wall-E (2008), a story about a robot left behind on Earth, was first conceptualized during Pixar’s early days as an animated film studio. According to director Andrew Stanton, “I just thought that was the saddest character I had ever heard of, and I just loved that”.
The concept would of course later on come to life as one of Pixar’s most ambitious project ever and we’d have an offbeat yet poignant love story between two mismatched robots who meet on earth after humanity left it.
Duck Amuck (1953)
Kids today might not be familiar with this classic but it still remains to be one of the best animated movies ever made.
Duck Amuck (1953) is a deconstructionist film that features the breaking of the fourth wall when Daffy Duck begins interacting with his creator. The film plays with the concept of existence and being making viewers realize how they’ve sympathized with a character who, at the end of the day, is just some lines on celluloid.
The further testament of its excellence is its preservation in the US National Film Registry by the Library of Congress because of its artistic significance.
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) was Disney’s ticket to international fame and its first feature-length animated movie. It is one of the best animated movies of all time.
Disney captivated audiences with a tale filled with loveable sidekick dwarfs, handsome princes, terrifying witches and who would be Disney’s first princess. What more, the film’s technical aspects hold up well today making all the risk Disney took to make it very much worth it.
The film has also been honored with preservation by the US Library of Congress as one of the best films ever made.
Fantasia (1940) is considered by many to be Disney’s greatest creative and artistic achievement. It features eight sketches which excellently combines classical music with image and sound. The film ended the debate of whether cartoons can be art before it even began. And at the time of its release, it was just the third of Disney’s feature-length animated films.
The film also ranked as the 22nd highest grossing film of all time (inflation rates considered and adjusted).
Spirited Away (2001)
Another excellent film from Studio Ghibli and the wonderful mind of Hayao Miyazaki, Spirited Away (2001), is a part fantasy part metaphor film about a young girl forced to work in a bathhouse filled with ghosts and demons. Sounds terrifying, right? Don’t worry that’s just the magic of Japanese imagination. We promise you, the film isn’t as horrific as it reads on paper.
At its core, the film is a poignant story of a kid finding out the complexity of living in a world that is fast-changing as she makes the inevitable transition to adulthood.
Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009)
Known for his quirky live-action films centering around unusual characters with severe familial issues, everybody was surprised Wes Anderson’s animated adaptation of a Roald Dahl novel turned out as good as it did.
Anderson impressed viewers with his intricate use of the stop-motion animation technique which effectively told the exciting tale of a Fox family and its ingenious patriarch. It also benefits from excellent voice performances by decorated actors like Meryl Streep and George Clooney.
The film has then become a cult classic and holiday film staple among more discriminating families looking for a film with the substance that every member could enjoy.
Were your guesses of which animated films would top our best animated movies list correct? Itching to read more articles like this? Check out our other top 10 best movie lists.