By Laura Huskey - Staff Writer
Whether you like animated movies, children’s movies, or both, it’s always easy to be entertained by gorgeous frames and simple storytelling hidden with important lessons. There are many underrated animated movies across the globe that don’t receive as much attention as they rightfully deserve. Here are 10 gathered together, in no particular order, so you can make a decision for your next movie night.
1. Song of the Sea
This tale, based on Scottish and Irish folklore surrounding selkies, is an adorable and heart-warming movie. The beautiful and wistful animation fits the story perfectly. A young boy and his younger sister travel together on a journey to free the fairy creatures that have been trapped in the bustling modern world. This movie will play with your emotions. Be prepared to cry.
Rated PG. Available on Vudu, Amazon Prime and YouTube.
2. The Breadwinner
Based on the book of the same title written by Deborah Ellis, this film’s simple but stunning animation spins a sad tale about the subtle horrors of war and life under an oppressive power. The movie follows a young girl who must disguise herself as a boy to feed her family. Using different styles of animation for storytelling, this movie will keep your attention and have you on the edge of your seat. A haunting but beautiful tale.
Rated PG-13. Available on Netflix.
3. The Little Prince
This film is based on the book by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. The story follows the life of a young girl who is encouraged to only work and study. She loses sight of what it means to be a kid, before meeting an old aviator who tells her stories of his travels where he met a Little Prince. With gorgeous animation in a range of styles and a beautiful soundtrack, this movie tells a bittersweet tale of growing up while remembering to have fun.
Rated PG. Available on Netflix.
4. Kubo and the Two Strings
Claymation is an incredibly difficult art to master, but Laika Studios worked hard to deliver a seamless animation and story. This movie follows the life of a young boy who takes care of his ill mother. Soon enough, he is hunted by both gods and monsters as he goes on a journey to find a magical suit of armor. Along with a gorgeous soundtrack, this fun adventure will keep your attention.
Rated PG. Available on Vudu and iTunes.
5. Treasure Planet
This early 2000s Disney film is one of the less appreciated movies from the studio. With an incredible blend of fantasy and sci-fi, this movie goes on a fast-paced adventure throughout the galaxies. A boy comes across a map that leads to a legendary treasure that would change his life forever. This story is full of flying pirate ships, imaginative character designs and smooth animation. Dramatic but heart-warming.
Rated PG. Available on Disney+, YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, Vudu and iTunes.
6. The Book of Life
Based on Mexican folklore and culture, “The Book of Life” follows the lives of three children, focusing on one boy in particular. This boy grows up, eventually having to travel through multiple worlds in order to return back to the one he loves. Although the dialogue is more on the silly and humorous side, the animation of the film is styled beautifully and uniquely. An entertaining watch.
Rated PG. Available on YouTube, Google Play, Vudu, iTunes and Amazon Prime.
This story follows three kids as they journey to get a yeti back to its home in the Himalayas. Beautiful scenery, a touching storyline and calming music all come together to create this heart-warming tale. Even if there were some out of the blue character development, it was still a touching movie, obviously made for kids. This is definitely a feel-good movie, but if you’re easily emotional, you just might cry at the end.
Rated PG. Available on YouTube, Google Play, Vudu, Amazon Prime and Hulu.
8. Atlantis: The Lost Empire
A classic Disney film following the adventure of a group of scientists and explorers attempting to find the legendary Atlantis. This film is more on the slow side, but the world and the story are carefully crafted to deliver a dramatic tale. Tentatively, this would be more on the adult side of animated movies. If you like adventure and sci-fi, this is the one for you.
Rated PG. Available on Disney+, YouTube, Google Play, Vudu, iTunes and Amazon Prime.
Two young children journey to recover an item sacred to their people and to the earth. This movie has an incredibly unique animation style that serves its story well. A tale from the perspective of the Indigenous people of the Andes that covers the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors, along with teaching how love for the earth and others remains most important.
Rated PG. You can find this on Netflix.
10. Brother Bear
This movie is a beautiful classic from Disney. One of the top contenders for the most gorgeously animated Disney movies. It follows a young man, intent on finding revenge, but turned into a bear in consequence until he learns what his life is truly about. Along with an incredible soundtrack with tracks from Phil Collins and Tina Turner, this film entertains with an emotional rollercoaster of a story.
Rated G. Available on Disney+, YouTube, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu and Amazon Prime.