Hi everyone. It has been 4 years since I wrote my first blog post on the Disney Wiki. That blog was about my list of favorite Disney classics. But a few things have changed over the years with new Disney films coming out and some that I don't quite like as much as I used to. Besides, it's always good to refresh stuff for new users of the Disney Wiki. So if nobody minds, I am doing an updated countdown blog of my favorite animated films from Walt Disney Animation Studios. And just one more thing; I am not always good at ranking Disney films, so please don't think just because a film isn't on the blog doesn't mean I don't like it. But ok, let's go.
#10: The Rescuers + The Rescuers Down Under
I might as well group these together. I admit I didn't watch either of these films until I was 13, but when I did, I loved them. Most of you know I can't resist mice, and the idea of mice going on rescue missions to save people was a great idea for a movie series. Besides, you don't get a movie series that has both films in the canon very often. Both rescuers films have a sweet endearing level of drama, heart, and emotions like any Disney film should. I love the first film for its dark mysterious environment and the sequel for its more modern action and of course Bianca and Bernard themselves. They are only small mice, yet they are willing to brave any dangers to save innocent children from such horrible crimes. I do admit, there are a couple issues that both films seem to have. The first film's story is great, but the action and music I feel like are not in sync times, particularly during the organ chase scene or when the critters attacked Medusa in the climax. It seems like the conductor hesitates a little too much. The sequel has the opposite problem; the action is great, but I feel like the story needs a little more conflict and emotion to it. If we had a Rescuers film with the endearing story of the first and the action and comedy of the second, we could get something even better. But still, I really enjoy these Rescuers films. Bernard and Bianca are great, the other characters provide decent comic relief, and the adventures are so engaging. Either film is great to watch on its own, but together they work even better.
#9: Lady And The Tramp
Ok, just at quick notification; I have usually placed Lion King before this in the past because I watched it more when I was a child, but certain newer movie cliches have made me feel like I need to switch for today. There done. Now let's talk about the movie.
I love dogs. They are cute, fun, and just so sweet. I have been a popular dog walker in my neighborhood in the eyes of both the dogs and their owners. And it's all thanks to this movie. This movie represents how dogs feel, what we do when we're not looking (in a more sophisticated movie unlike others I know of). Plus, there were a lot of moments I loved watching as a child; specially the Siamese Cat song, the stray dog fight, Tramp's attack on the rat, and Jock + Trusty off on Tramp's rescue. It also taught me that some people just don't really like dogs, so it's always best to leave them with someone who understands and cares for dogs. Dogs may be animals, but they do have feelings too. Infact, every time I watch this movie, I crave spaghetti. You saw that spaghetti kiss. Isn't it cute?
#8: The Lion King
Whenever I thought of classic Disney, I usually thought of the older Disney films, mainly the ones that ended it "The End: (A) Walt Disney Production(s)", while the 2-D CAPS movies I referred to as "Modern Disney". And I call this one my favorite Disney Renaissance film with the CAPS 2-D animation. And since The Lion King is an animal movie, I didn't think it was marketed towards a specific gender. Besides, with all the wilderness, music, emotion, and culture, It wasn't just a Disney film; it was like an epic experience. The characters may be animals in the wild, but the lions fight for their kingdom like any would. I also noticed something else; I watched a little nature featurette on my Movies Anywhere App that said that lions sometimes threaten younger cubs for territory, but they sometimes come back to fight when they are bigger and stronger. That is exactly what happened in the movie. Since The Lion King is loosely based on Hamlet, it worked perfectly! I don't know what else to say. You all know the characters, the songs, the scene, everything! It's just as much a classic now as it was when it debuted on the big screens in 1994.
Zootopia is probably the best example of a "Don't Judge A Book By Its Cover' movie I could ask for. Like I have often said before, the newer shows or movies about anthropomorphic animals have turned lousy or like "mehs"; None as fantastic as Robin Hood or Sly Cooper. This movie managed to pull off something emotionally wonderful! It was an animated film people needed. The themes about discrimination and prejudice was perfectly told for adults while the children could enjoy seeing animals. Initially, I wasn't greatly fond of having a rabbit and a fox as the two main characters because of seeing them almost all the time in North America, but seeing as though the movie is about stereotyping, it really works. Rabbits are usually thought of as cute and cowardly animals, which is probably why Chief Bogo put her on parking duty as opposed to the cool cop stuff. And Nick is a fox, which you have often seem as a sly stereotype who often trick people like Honest John from Pinocchio or the fox who ate the Gingerbread Man. Because of that, Nick was bullied by those prey boy scouts and rejected by animals like that Ice Cream Elephant guy. But with all the emotional moments and the predator issue, it shows that being prejudice and racism hurts people. We need to stop racism, just like how Judy described it in her speech. I thought they pulled off the message so well, I wish it were nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars, not just Best Animated Feature. Zootopia is one of Disney's best "Don't Judge A Book By Its Cover" movies ever.
Speaking of which, the "Don't Judge A Book By Its Cover Message" also leads to the next part of the countdown, Wreck-It-Ralph. The story and emotions do share a lot of similarities with Zootopia, but the only reason I put this over Zootopia is because there's just a slight bit more creativity and emotion to it. The setup with the arcade is very creative; it explains what arcade characters do when we're not playing them, how they are just doing their jobs to survive, some video game cameos in the background like Bowser and Sonic, and so on. I feel like this film has something for everyone; adults can get into the emotion and seeing arcade games from their time in the 80's, teenagers could probably get into Hero's Duty (I know for a fact that my brother LOVES playing those first person shooting games), kids could probably get into the Sugar Rush environment. And I love how Sugar Rush as a lot of creativity to it; an ice cream blizzard mountain, Nesquik sand, Devil Dogs thta behave like actual dogs, a Coca Cola volcano, the list goes on. However, what I really love about this film is the friendship between Ralph and Vanellope. They both have suffered similar problems, but Ralph realizes that it's not the programing that makes him a good or bad guy; it's his own choices and actions. He realizes that Vanellope is in more desperate need than him with her glitch condition and inability to have friends or leave the game. It also leads to one of the most saddest scenes in Disney history; the destruction of Vanellope's kart. Vanellope finally had hope for a better life, but her only friend has to betray her to keep her safe (so he thought at the moment). And of course, Vanellope almost loses her life during the Cybug invasion, but Ralph risks everything to save her, despite the deadly cost of dying out of his own game. Wreck-It-Ralph was different to me than most traditional Disney films, but in a GOOD way. It was creative, emotional, and had something for moviegoers of any kind.
#5: The Jungle Book
I say if there's any Disney film to end Walt Disney's famous career on a perfect note, it's this one. I have read the book but it was way too dark, violent, and full of hate. This movie on the other hand is a great balance for both children and adults. The Xerox animation is good for kids to look at, while the adults can get into the poignant story. That is one of the best things about The Jungle Book. Mowgli has to go live in the Man Village and leave the jungle home he's always known and that is a huge sad change for him. It ends up creating a stubborn relationship with Bagheera and in time Baloo. Bagheera has always known the man cub since he found him as a baby, and he knows that Mowgli going back to his own kind can be a challenge, but he knows it has to be done because there are dangers that threaten Mowgli at every corner, specifically Shere Khan. Baloo is a care-free bear who loves Mowgli like a buddy, who has probably been the only one who has had fun with Baloo long enough. Baloo too is heartbroken at losing the mancub who seems like a cub to him (despite only knowing him for one day). The scene where he talks with Bagheera and then "betrays" Mowgli is emotionally engaing to me, similar to the kart scene I just described in Wreck-It-Ralph. And of course, there are light-hearted fun moments, songs, and characters to make the rest of the movie a fun adventure. The Jungle Book truly is the Bare Necessities of Disney life.
#4: Robin Hood
Now we're talking! This is one of those rare Disney films that are both highly entertaining but not scary for children. I have often watched this with my siblings at my Grandma's house, and I enjoyed every minute of it! Using animals instead of humans for Robin Hood was a highly clever idea and the choices they used were perfect; Robin as a sly fox, Little John as a big brown bear, Prince John and King Richard as lions because of the latter being a "lion-hearted" character (and because lions are considered "kings of the beasts"), the list is endless. There are great action packed scenes like the tournament chase and the climax, and there is even some drama in it. Prince John is cruelly taxing every last gold coin out of Nottingham, draining them of their hope. But the film shows with Robin Hood's robbing and when the mice gave their coin that you can always give hope, even if you can't solve the actual problem itself. The climax is one of my favorites in Disney history; it's quiet and heart pounding at first with all the sneaking around, then it's fast intense action when the cover is blown. I don't what else to say, I just adore this movie now as I did when I was a boy. More views are not far from my future.
I have to be honest, I do like some of the Princess movies like The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast, but it took me until adulthood to conquer issues like certain scary moments and the whole "gender marketing" issue which I often hate. That's why I didn't put either film on this list. Sorry guys, nothing personal. Anyway, Frozen was the first princess movie where I was able to let go of those issues and let myself flow freely. Sure, Frozen has a lot of that marketing merchandise stuff that I often complain about, but there are so many things I love about Frozen that I don't mind much like how I didn't mind Spongebob's huge popularity. For starters, Anna and Elsa are very sweet lovable heroines. They love to have fun together and their relationship is what's really important to them, despite the challenges they face, mainly Elsa's habit of shutting people out and Anna's desire to marry a prince she just met, which leads me to another thing. Some Disney fans have felt like it insulted their love for the past Disney Princess movies (I of course think a certain ALIEN MOVIE ALREADY DID THAT), but in this film it truly works. Much like how people quickly make friends with people they don't really know well on the social media, it can lead to getting hurt badly both mentally and physically. Also, this is the first computer animated musical that I thought the songs were done fantastically-not that I thought most the Tangled songs were bad, but they seemed more like silly Broadway songs. For The First Time in Forever and of course Let It Go are my two favorites. Also, a lot of people complain about the snowy weather, but Frozen gives us a chance to laugh at it, make some ice jokes, and take our minds off the weather issues. I will NOT let my love for this movie go!
Despite certain dark flaws that no one could possibly tolerate in reality, I have always considered Pinocchio my favorite Disney film with Walt Disney's personal touch. Most of my praise is centered on Pinocchio himself, Jiminy Cricket, and the song When You Wish Upon A Star. Pinocchio is just so cute and innocent, it's so difficult not to love this guy. He's the complete opposite of that jerk we read about in Collodi's book. He's naive, sweet, and just so cheerful even though there's danger at practically every turn. Jiminy is a smart guy. He's a more positive "babysitter" figure than characters like Sebastian who grumble, complain, or make sarcastic remarks. Those kind are funny, but still. Of course there some unjust moments here and there, mainly how the villains never get punished, but unfortunately that is life sometimes. There are bad things in the world, but the star wishing aspect teaches us that there can be good things that come our way too when you least expect it. Something like that.
#1: The Great Mouse Detective
I'm not going to bother with the buildup. I have gotten too obvious in showing that The Great Mouse Detective has always been my favorite Disney film. Since I have talked about it SO MANY times, I will try to keep it short. When I was a little kid, I ADORED mice, they were like everything to me. The Great Mouse Detective was the staple of childhood animated films to me. There's no marketing nonsense that could dry out this masterpiece, it's kept to the point; a Sherlock Holmes mouse trying to solve a mystery and stop a nasty villain. I will admit, even I can't look at 4 particular "in your face" moments from Fidget and Ratigan, but most of the time, they are fun villains and Basil is a really fun mouse. He's smart, but his smarts are questionable like with the lady mouse at the end. How he knows off the top of his head, no viewer may ever know. The movie has so many other great moments I love watching such as The World's Greatest Criminal Mind, the toy store chase, the bar mouse song, and of course the Big Ben Climax. The Big Ben scene It was the very first time computer animated graphics were shown in an animated film (or at least the first time shown in an an animated movie of praise). The music built up greatly, the action was intense, and it showed Ratigan's true colors. I have noticed that after Basil foiled his plan that Ratigan was slowly losing his cool. Examples would be silencing Olivia and throwing poor Fidget overboard. At this point, his beaker has spilled and he just couldn't take it anymore. There's not much more I can say. I've talked about everything else so many times. But hey, we all love to talk about what we love.
Thank you very much for reading. You are still welcome to go back to my 1st blog of my Disney countdown, but this list represents my Disney present. See you next time.