With the announcement that Michael Keaton will be starring in the live-action remake of Dumbo, we’re taking it back to our childhoods here at Tubi TV. After all, we’re suckers for a good animated film, whether we’re watching it with kids of our own, or just taking a solo ride through our nostalgia. Cozy up and spend an afternoon with these ten films that bring out the best of childhood wonder and imagination, without being boring or cliched.
1.Toy Story (1995)
Toy Story tells the story of Woody and his gang of toys, whose comfortable world with their owner is upended with the arrival of the shiny new space toy Buzz. This movie started the long path to Pixar’s domination of the box office and holds a special place in the hearts of both kids and adults. The characters are surprisingly complex and the bonds they form on their wild ride to return home are entertaining and uplifting for everyone from age 5 to 55.
In the distant future, a small waste-collecting robot inadvertently embarks on a space journey that will ultimately decide the fate of humanity. While kids love the adorable WALL-E tumbling in and out of sticky situations as he races to rescue his friend, adults can appreciate the film’s sharp social commentary and witty cultural references.
3.The Iron Giant (1999)
Based on a Ted Hughes novel, Iron Giant tells the story of a young boy in the 1950s who finds and befriends a giant robot from outer space that a paranoid government agent wants to destroy. The simple tale of a boy and his robot is both warmly funny and packs a serious emotional punch. There’s a reason it’s gained such a cult film and become so beloved since it first came out in theaters.
4. Imagine That (2010)
In this movie featuring an early on-screen role for Blackish star Yara Shahidi, a corporate go-getter discovers his daughter’s imaginary world holds the secret to his real-life problems. The relationship between Eddie Murphy’s character and his daughter is one that is relatable for both parents and their kids.
5.Song of the Sea (2014)
A young Irish boy discovers that his mute sister is a selkie who must find her voice and free supernatural creatures from the spell of a Celtic goddess. Song of the Sea has gorgeous imagery and an absorbing story-book narrative that will make you feel transported to another world. There’s a reason this film was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature Film of the Year.
6.Howl’s Moving Castle (2004)
A shy young woman is cursed with an old body by a spiteful witch, the only way for her to break the spell lies with an unpredictable young wizard and his companions in his walking castle. This is arguably Hayao Miyazaki’s most visually stunning work, and anyone of any age will appreciate the endless imagination that goes into every shot.
In the bustling metropolis of Zootopia, a rookie bunny cop and a cynical con artist fox must work together to uncover a conspiracy that’s turning the city upside down. Apart from the truly A+ humor that runs throughout the entire film (who would have guessed there were still fresh jokes to make about the DMV!), the social commentary and ultimate message of the film is challenging and uplifting no matter how old you are.
8.Hey Arnold: The Movie (2002)
A five year-old boy develops a relationship with Ponyo, a goldfish princess who longs to become a human after falling in love with him. In true Hayao Miyazaki fashion, this film is both whimsical and deeply poetic. The visual stunner is perfect for a Sunday movie with the kids that will warm the hearts of adults too.
10. Dumbo (1941)
In this Disney classic, little circus elephant Dumbo is separated from his mother and made fun of for his huge ears– until he discovers that his ears might be the key to something magical. We may be tough, tax-paying adults, but we still tear up at some of this film’s most tender moments.
11. Igor (2008)
In a world filled with Mad Scientists and Evil Inventions, one talented evil scientist’s hunch-backed lab assistant has big dreams of becoming a Mad Scientist himself and winning the annual Evil Science Fair. This movie features both winning humor that kids will love and a cast of names adults will know and love, including John Cusack, Molly Shannon, Steve Buscemi, Sean Hayes, Jennifer Coolidge, Arsenio Hall, Eddie Izzard, Jay Leno, Christian Slater and John Cleese.
What did we miss? What childhood classic or modern family blockbuster have you enjoyed at every age? Watch Family Movies streaming free on Tubi now!