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Best Animated Movies - A List of the Best Animated Movies

Updated on March 14, 2013

UP (2009)

Disney Pixar's UP is one animated movie that everyone should have seen. The story is that of an old man, Carl, beset with anger and loneliness after losing his wife, finally fulfilling his life long dream of travelling to South America and seeing the beauty of its wild mountain ranges and jungles. How does he travel there? He quite simply hooks his house up to thousands of multicolored balloons and lets the wind carry him down south.

For companions on his journey he is joined by his loyal dog Dug and, unexpectedly, a young and extremely enthusiastic explorer named Russel. Together the three make it to South America but everything doesn't go as smoothly as grumpy old Carl would like as they encounter talking dogs, an evil explorer, and a colorful bird named Kevin.

This film burst with color from the balloons on the house to Kevin's feathers, and the animation is beautifully done. Full of laughs that you would expect from a Disney Pixar animated movie, what separates Up from the other animated films is how touching a story it is and how seamlessly the emotional side of the narrative fits together with the comedy that we associate with a Disney movie. A great animated movie for all ages: there truly is something for everyone.

Toy Story 3 (2010)

Toy Story 3 has done what most trilogies have failed at: making a third movie that has such an interesting story in its own right that it can be compared to the previous two proudly. Not only can this film claim to do so; it can be said that is perhaps the strongest of the three (According to IMDB's rating system it is the best film of the three as well)

Like the previous Toy Story movies Woody and Buzz Lightyear are the heroes. But this time the threat to their toy existence is perhaps even more perilous than before as they and the rest of the gang are mistakenly dropped off at a day-care center which turns out to be more like a prison. All the toys lose faith, believing they have been abandoned by Andy (who has now grown of age and gone off to college) and accept their fate as once loved throw-aways. However Woody knows in his heart that Andy would never do such a thing and has to convince the rest that they need escape the prison of the day-care and return home.

Entertaining as always, you will not be disappointed by Toy Story 3. Moreover, new characters Barbie and Ken add a great deal of comedy value to an already strong setup. Certainly one of the best Disney animated movies released.

Kung Fu Panda (2008)

This animated movie is the story of Po, a larger than life Panda, who wants to do more with his life than work in his father's noodle soup shop. Having lived in China myself I can understand his lack of enthusiasm for such a career choice. The one real thing that Po is interested in though is one thing he seems to be hopeless at: Kung Fu.

But through sheer luck and determination on Po's part he is selected to join the legendary Furious Five. Moreover, the sagest Master Oogway has determined that Po is the prophesied Dragon Warrior who, despite all his lack of agility or Kung Fu ability, will once and for all bring stability to the Valley of Peace.

This peace is threatened and Po's true powers are tested when the ferocious villain of the plot, Tai Lung, escapes from a maximum security prison and heads straight for the Valley of Peace to seek his revenge.

Dreamwork's Kung Fu really impressed me. It is overall a very funny movie, largely thanks to Jack Black's excellent voice work and a strong script. At the same time the movie creates a very believable world, and while this film is definitely one made in America, there is enough acknowledgment of Chinese culture to make it interesting from that perspective as well. It is also a "tip of the hat to real Kung Fu movies," as HubPages own Shaddie pointed out below.

Despicable Me (2010)

While my opinion was not shared by everyone, i personally found Despicable Me to be a great film with everything you want when you are watching an animated movie, plus is has aspects that will attract audiences both young and old.

Steve Carell does the voice work for the main character Gru: an evil villain who has his heart set on being the best bad guy in the world. While he seems to do nasty stuff on a daily basis to mere pedestrians, he has not yet accomplished anything of real merit. Then along comes a new younger villain who has managed to capture one of the pyramids of Egypt - Vector. With the aim of outdoing Vector, Gru adopts a trio of young orphans with the ultimate aim of accomplishing his life's dream, to steal the moon. But the affection of the three little girls has an effect on this villain that he did not expect.

Ratatouille (2007)

Another animated movie that splits opinion down the middle: some love it, some hate it. I personally love it and believe it is the best animated movie to come out of the Disney Pixar studios.

Remy has a culinary gift and the dreams of becoming a chef one day, however, there is one small problem: he is a rat. This does not deter the young hero though and he soon finds himself inadvertently in Paris, the center of the culinary world. Once there, he realizes there is nothing to stop him from realizing his dreams.

To help him with his aim, Remy teams up with a young kitchen worker named Linguini who shares his dreams, but lacks all his gifts for cooking. Together though they make the perfect team, Remy the brains above controlling Linguini's body movement.

As i said before, Ratatouille is by far my favorite animated movie. The voice work for all the characters is perfect and the Parisian landscape adds a beauty and reality to the movie that others lack. Not only is it funny, but also an inspiring story as well. The all the cooking and presentation of the food makes this a film that leaves you with an appetite, so be prepared!


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    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Awesome choices! I've seen all of them.

    • abidpk profile image

      Abid Shahzad 

      5 years ago from karachi

      in my view king fu panda is best

    • profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago

      Yeah I agree, that was a bad-ass film, ill be sure to add it. Any more suggestions are truly welcome

    • profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago

      Thanks for the correction Shaddie, and the your interesting take on the movie. Appreciated!

    • dailytop10 profile image


      5 years ago from Davao City

      Where's How to train your Dragon? That was a really bad-ass animated movie.

    • Shaddie profile image


      5 years ago from Washington state

      Kung Fu Panda was not created by Disney, it is a strictly Dreamworks produced film, and it is arguably Dreamworks' best (next to Shrek, which revolutionized 3D animation as we know it today).

      Kung Fu Panda worked because it was entertaining, but heartfelt and aesthetic. The music set in time to the fluid animation and the artistic compliment of visually appealing characters versus backgrounds were all like the notes of a melody, working together to create the story on the screen. This is a tip of the hat to real kung fu movies, which strive to maintain a balance of art and action.

      The thing that struck me about Kung Fu Panda as being as unique as it was is because it was so relatable. Many of us feel out of our league in life, ridiculed and shunned because of the way we were born (in Po's case, it was his panda-shaped body, which pandas cannot change). But instead of the movie taking Po, an impossible heavyweight, and morphing him into a lean, mean fighting machine like Tigress or Monkey, they used what he was already born with and honed it to his advantage. This is absolutely brilliant, and it was executed intelligently and sincerely.

      I definitely agree that Kung Fu Panda should be on this list!

      I would also like to add that all the animal species used in Kung Fu Panda were all native to China (yes, even the rhinoceros). I found this to be a really fun fact, and I appreciate Dreamworks' adherence to Chinese culture and fauna.


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