Disney Pixar has created the most magical films to ever hit the theaters. While all of their films have done extremely well and captured our hearts, some have done this more so than others. No Disney movie can be a “bad” movie, so I have ranked the Disney Pixar movies from least magical to most magical.
17. “Cars 2”
With the worst rating on Rotten Tomatoes of any Disney Pixar film, (39%), “Cars 2” was a bit of a flop. The problem I had with “Cars 2” was that it lost its original flavor. “Cars” was a homey tale of a car learning humility in a small town on Route 66, but “Cars 2” was fast, action packed (or attempted to be), filled with forced humor and had a less stunning moral.
16. “A Bug’s Life”
I am sorry Heimlich! Really, it shows how amazing Disney Pixar is that an exceptional movie like this one can rank so low on a list. Not only is the movie well done and humorous, but in California Park in Anaheim, Disney took it to new heights with “A Bug’s Land.” The movie, however, was more popular with critics than fans. It just was not as memorable. The characters often were disappointing (such as Francis, the male ladybug, being not that funny). The best part of the movie was Heimlich, the caterpillar.
If the rankings were strictly off of adorableness, “WALL-E” may be in first. This cute little robot is left by himself cleaning the abandoned and rotting earth each day. When him and EVE fly around outer-space with a fire extinguisher, my heart melted. While most people rank “WALL-E” as one of Pixar’s best movies due to its incredible use of limited dialogue, amazing animation and important message, “WALL-E” did not touch me in the same way other Pixar films do. The movie was slow at times instead of laid-back like “Cars.”
14. “The Good Dinosaur”
This movie was visually stunning and absolutely adorable. The sad but sweet story of a dino and his human friend (dog?) was thoroughly enjoyable to watch and rewatch. Seeing it in theaters made it that much better.
13. “Finding Dory”
Baby Dory is absolutely adorable, and Disney nailed it with the sequel to the beloved “Finding Nemo.” I was nervous to see this movie because I didn’t know if it would live up to the original, but it definitely did. I loved the new characters like Destiny and Bailey, and the wave of nostalgia that came over me from seeing the old ones was more than enough to make me happy with this film.
Picking the best Disney Pixar movies is like picking a favorite child – it is impossible. There are so many great qualities about “Up” and it is perhaps one of my favorite films. It gets put in twelfth place on my list though due to its antagonist. The villain of the story, Charles Muntz with his dogs, seemed out of place. While the rest of the movie was charming, heartbreaking and humorous, Muntz was not Pixar’s best antagonist.
Leave it to Disney Pixar to make a disgusting rodent adorable. This film scores huge points in the category of originality. Two contrasting and repellent concepts, rodents and food, are combined for an amazing story.
I cannot begin to say how much I loved this movie. It contained a beautiful lesson about humility and friendship. The simplicity of “Cars” and the tried and true lesson it taught grabbed my heart. “Cars” emphasized loyalty and friendship in profound ways. Pixar perfected the laid-back feel of the movie while still creating a sense of urgency as the time for Lightning McQueen’s race grew closer and closer.
I know having “Brave” this far up is probably different than every other Disney Pixar movie ranking, but Merida is a heroine that rivals even Mulan in terms of strength. She is an independent and determined young lady, but Disney Pixar shows the limitations a person like Merida can have. While embodying feminist ideals, Merida shows that someone who fully embraces those ideals is not without flaws. With her independence, comes her willingness to take matters into her own hands, and this leads her to turn her mother into a bear. With her strength, comes her inability to see beyond her own needs. This is an august bildungsroman and that is why it ranks nine on my list. And, less technically, that hair though.
8. “Finding Nemo”
Everything about this movie was clever and, actually, relatable. From an overbearing and overprotective father to a shark’s version of AA meetings, to a forgetful friend – there was at least one thing in “Finding Nemo” that anybody could relate to. “Finding Nemo” was an unprecedented success.
7. “Monsters, Inc.”
Similar to “Ratatouille,” only Disney Pixar could make monsters both scary and endearing at the same time. In fact, the premise of “Monsters, Inc.” revolves around this idea. The antagonist is clever and unpredictable and Mike and Sulley are perhaps the best Disney friend pair since Buzz and Woody.
6. “Monsters University”
I know what you’re thinking, how can I put a prequel above the original “Monsters, Inc.”? However, Monsters University blew me away. I was so pleasantly surprised at how wonderful this movie was. The movie was full of surprises, like who Mike’s roommate originally was to the bigger plot twists. While “Monsters, Inc.” was incredibly creative, “Monsters University” may have been even more so. It connected with me personally as a college student, and it was so fun to watch one of the greatest friendships in Disney history develop.
5. “Toy Story 3”
Out of all the Toy Story movies, the 3rd one was the most emotional. Andy has grown up and is faced with figuring out what to do with his beloved toys. “Toy Story 3” retained the original feel of the other two movies and was just as moving.
4. “The Incredibles”
“The Incredibles” prove that superheroes are not just reserved for DC and Marvel; Disney Pixar does a pretty great job too. I am always shocked to see how low people rank this film. “The Incredibles” features a totally normal and relatable family (minus the fact they have super powers), an “incredible” plot, a devious and well developed villain and, as all superheroes must have, a great backstory. “The Incredibles” deals with real issues and themes while still allowing people of any age to enjoy it. The story of the Parr family turned superhero beats the story of the Avengers any day.
3. “Toy Story”
This is the story of perhaps the greatest duo to ever exist: Woody and Buzz. “Toy Story” put into a film what every child believes their toys are actually like – alive, completely devoted to them, basically human and unable to let their owners know that they are alive.
2. “Toy Story 2”
Both “Toy Story” and “Toy Story 2” were flawless. However, the addition of Jessie and Bullseye bring “Toy Story 2” over the edge. Sid was cool, but the shout outs to “Star Wars” with Emperor Zurg and Buzz and the humor provided by Al beat out Sid for the villain award.
1. “Inside Out”
I have never been more impressed and blown away by a movie. “Inside Out” was thorough, detailed, moving, completely original and funny. The concept for the movie was remarkable and the characters were ingenious. I have cried each time I have watched it. Disney Pixar received help from the two leading psychologists in the study of emotions, making the film detailed and remarkably accurate. It also was accessible to all age groups. Adults will get the mature jokes, such as when the facts and opinions get mixed up and they all look the same. Children find humor in the emotion, Fear, and in Bing Bong’s silliness. If any movie could be considered perfect, this one is it.
While I ranked these movies in a particular order, Disney Pixar’s films are so amazing that even “A Bug’s Life,” which I ranked as second least magical, could be put higher up. With that in mind, how would you rank your favorite Disney Pixar movies?