June 5, 2008

DCMOVIEGIRL'S TOP 30 ANIMATED MOVIES OF ALL TIME

Yahoo! recently put out a user-generated list of Top 30 Animated Movies that is just chock full of fail. There are far too many WTF?! inclusions and glaring omissions.

It just ain't right. I love animated movies, y'all. So, I just couldn't let that slide.

Just take a look at this jacked-up list...

1. Finding Nemo - It's good, but it's not all that.
2. The Lion King
3. The Incredibles
4. Shrek
5. Ratatouille
6. Toy Story
7. Beauty and the Beast
8. Aladdin
9. Spirited Away
10. Monsters, Inc.
11. Cars - NOOOOO.
12. Shrek 2
13. Enchanted
- If we're going with animated mixed with live-action MARY POPPINS WOULD HAVE BEEN THE PROPER CHOICE, PEOPLE!!
14. The Little Mermaid
15. Cinderella
16. Princess Mononoke
17. Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas
18. Lady and the Tramp
19. Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who -
WHAT???!!!
20. Peter Pan
21. Mulan
22. Howl's Moving Castle
23. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
24. Ice Age
25: Ice Age: The Meltdown }
-Both of these get a big NO.
26. The Simpsons Movie - I love The Simpsons, but no.
27. Over the Hedge -
Yahoo users, no. Just... No.
28. Sleeping Beauty
29. The Jungle Book -
Niet.
30. Bambi

See what I mean??

So, here's my proper Top 30 Animated Films list, thank-you-very-much:



30. THE SECRET OF NIMH



Yes, this is a lighter-weight Plague Dogs, but it's still a damn good cartoon.

Don Bluth just doesn't get enough props for his animated movies. From All Dogs Go to Heaven, and Balto to this is my favorite of his, despite the annoying bird, his movies rule.

How many movies, period, have you seen where the single mom is the protagonist on the adventure??

Yeah.


29. MULAN



This is sadly, the only major animated movie I know of where Asians actually have folds on their eyelids. And it happens to be made by the corporation that blazed the trail for non-p.c. kiddie entertainment, Disney. Crazy, Right?

Just try not to sing along to "I'll Make a Man Out of You." And Mulan is easily the strongest Disney "princess" of them all.


28. KIRIKOU AND THE SORCERESS *



I've mentioned this movie a couple of times on the blog and yes, I'm mentioning it again. It warrants it. It's the only series of movies with a mythological base set in Africa. It's a unique style and the tale is a good one. Before The Frog Princess finally blesses American audiences with our first black animated princess, I suggest you check it out.

...And so should Angelina Jolie.


27. THE WINGS OF HONNEAMISE ***



This is the anime film for people who don't like anime. It's a wonderfully mature space opera tale.

It runs a bit long, but it's that kind of patiently told story that could have been just as well-told in non-animated form, but only in the right hands. Yes, it's a 'grownfolks' movie, but without all the stereotypical trappings you'd expect in this genre.

If you think you don't like anime, RENT THIS. NOW.


26. MONSTERS INC



Boo has the distinction of being the only CGI human character who has managed to be cute and not creepy to me. And Boo + Sully, forever. The relationship between her and Sulley is this main reason why I love this film, so.


25. NAUSICAA OF VALLEY OF THE WIND/HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE *



In a country known for it's sexist treatment of women in animation, Miyazaki shines. His films are chock full of strong young female leads, who use their wits (and not their tits) to save the day. Before you stock up on Disney's princess-in-distress flicks, I strongly urge you to make sure your daughter's cartoon collection includes his movies.


24. THE LAST UNICORN/THE FLIGHT OF THE DRAGONS



Bass and Rankin are two other animation legends, who don't get nearly enough accolades for their memorable work. It's fantastic fantasy work done during the height of the 80's fantasy trend. And oh boy, have they been quietly influential.

Seriously
y'all, I'm surprised nobody's said anything about Jackson's borrowing of their set-pieces for his Lord of the Rings movies.


23.THE PLAGUE DOGS **



Remember when I said The Secret of Nimh was a softer version of this?? I wasn't kidding. Here's yet another animation director, he gets no props, Micheal Rosen.

Between this and Watership Down, I think he was trying to make children commit mass suicide. He made a pair of the most depressingly, sad, anthropomorphic tales, ever.


22. ALICE IN WONDERLAND



Alice in Wonderland doesn't get nearly enough props. The fact that when you envision Alice in Wonderland now, that movie's imagery pops in your head, really seals it for me. It was sweet and subversive and a tad chilling (hello, Cheshire Cat!).

It was everything an animated druggie-dream for kids, should be.


21. BAMBI



The reason this isn't higher, is because beyond the mommy murder, the story isn't particularly memorable to me.
Gorgeous and sweet? Yes.
Memorable?...Enough to be semi-remade as The Lion King, some fifty years later, sure. But it's base is the same for many coming of age tales. Still, it earns it's place for the beautiful animation.

20. WATERSHIP DOWN **



This movie messed up as many kids' minds as Poltergeist and Raiders of the Lost Ark. Forget Night of the Lepus. Scariest. Bunnies. EVER.

And I'm not EVEN talking about the General. I'm talking about crazy-psychic-bunny Fiver.

19. CINDERELLA



Love it or hate it, it's the archetype for every young girl's Prince fantasies.

Biba-dee-boba-dee-boo!

18. THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS



The #1 animation for the goth/emo set. Though you really don't have to be either to appreciate it. Dazzlingly seductive vocals, beautiful/ugly details all wrapped-up in a quirky sweet holiday tale, make this a true classic.

17. WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT? *

This video brings the LOLS



Bob Hoskins was ROBBED of an Oscar win for this, y'all. Between nailing an American accent, doing physical comedy (which is HARD), and acting against NOTHING for the majority of the film, this dude pulled a DeNiro in Taxi Driver, here. If not better. Just crazy. acting. skills.

I hope he gets proper credit for this eventually, because he so deserves it.


16. THE INCREDIBLES



This is the movie The Fantastic Four wishes it were. With a underrated score, that should have at least been nominated, a great retro family dynamic and style, and just plain great action set-pieces...This film really is just that, incredible.

I dare you to not feel the exileration Dash feels, as he discovers the full breath of his powers.

15. THE IRON GIANT



This movie is slowly gaining a larger and larger cult audience, with each passing year and that makes me happy. Before The Incredibles, this was Brad Bird's masterpiece. Sadly, nobody went to see it because CGI had just killed American animation in popular culture. There are no wise-cracking CGI donkeys in this so...There was no room for proper promotion.

Still, this is the best work Vin Diesel ever has and probably ever will be part of.


14&13. PRINCESS MONONOKE */ SPIRITED AWAY



And back to Miyazaki. The man rules!! I flip-flop between which of these I like better, but they're both amazing. The former is an eco-myth without the overly-simplistic black-and-white message of "polluters bad, nature good!". While Spirited Away is quite simply the youngest acid-trip of a film, ever. Very few visuals can compete with a child's imagination, but this is one of them.

It's a dream to watch.

12. PINOCCHIO



This movie should have been included in that other list just for containing the signature Disney song. Beyond that, this is the kind of movie-making (along with Snow White) that just isn't done anymore.

11. AKIRA ***!!



The fact that this was not included, was one of the biggest fails on that other list. Akira is so influential in look and style that many anime and live-action film that followed would not exist, right now, but for it. The detailed animation, especially in the mutation scenes, alone warrants it's inclusion in this list.

10. MARY POPPINS



And we're to the correct live-action/animated mix movie. Hello? Julie Andrews? Dick Van Dyke? Feed the Birds? Chim-chim-chi-roo?? Supercala...Yeah, you get the point. You can't deny a classic.

9. SLEEPING BEAUTY



Yes, this movie is BETTER than Cinderella. Aurora is easily the best of the two blond Disney princesses. This movie has the better and more frightening villian and the cooler Prince. Prince Charming did not fight a dragon, for Cindy and his horse is the shiznit, y'all.


8. DUMBO



Forgetting the black crows for a bit, Dumbo is the most efficiently told (I think it's just under 80 minutes) heart-tugger ever. If you don't cry when Dumbo's mom is rocking her baby through the cage, you have NO HEART and we simply cannot be friends.


7. TOY STORY



This movie was just the beginning of Pixar's reign and what a beginning it was. It was back to the basics of what a good animated movie is all about. It's not the hip, wacky, and annoying sidekick formula that has become so exhausted these days, but the good timeless tale.

In case other studios were wondering, that's their secret, folks.


6. THE LION KING

FYI: Naaaaaants!!!! ingonyama bagithi baba!!!!!! = Here comes the lion.

It's not "Look at this beautiful sunrise over the land of the dawn of humanity." as I had imagined.



That opening alone pushed this mighty far up my list. I swear that yell as the sun crests on the horizon STILL gives me chills. The only reason this isn't higher, is because I wonder what could have been. If only this had been about people instead of animals.

I guess the Broadway musical is as close as we're gonna get on that one.

I really hope The Frog Princess will be good.


5. THE LITTLE MERMAID



This is the movie that resurrected Disney animation studios. If it hadn't been the rightful hit it was, we would not have had any of the greats that followed. That alone warrants this position.

Plus, I just plain like Ariel and Eric. Ariel is the realest of the bunch and that cartoon prince is fine, y'all.


4. SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS



The O.G. Disney movie, y'all. It's often imitated but never duplicated. I defy you to find any evil Disney character that's as frightastic as The Queen B, here...Cruella De Vil? Close, but NO.


3. GRAVE OF THE FIREFLIES **



If you don't cry for this movie, then you have an empty black space where your heart should be.

1&2. TOY STORY II/BEAUTY AND THE BEAST



This really was a toss-up. Beautiful music, great characters, involving story, beautiful animation. They have it all. I just can't decide.

They both rule in my book.


All the * indicate movies the require adult discretion. They are not for the wee-tikes.

17 comments:

  1. Dang, you are an expert. I've only seen like half of these...

    ...but still...

    ...where's ALADDIN!??!

    ReplyDelete
  2. These are great, i whole heartedly agree, except, and i admit they are not as well done as most, but i'd give an honorable mention to: The Brave Little Toaster and for combination of animation and live action: Bed-Knobs and Broomsticks
    also,
    HOW GREAT is it that America did the score for The Last Unicorn!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. @Daniel,

    Aladdin is good. But two issues keep it out of the top 30 for me.

    Robin Williams and "It's barbaric, but hey it's home."

    I remember really liking it when it first came out, but it simply did not age well for me.

    ReplyDelete
  4. @Katie


    The Brave Little Toaster was a BIG ONE, that I almost put on the list.

    As was American Pop, from Bakshi, who did the ultimate teen boy fantasy cartoon, Heavy Metal, if just for animation technique.

    They just didn't quite make the cut in my mind. I'm thinking an honorable mention list is in order.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Dumbo is my all time favorite animation. MEMORIES!

    But where, may I ask, is The Fox and the Hound?

    ReplyDelete
  6. @the weird dude

    The Fox and the Hound is the first movie I ever saw, period.

    ...And I haven't seen it since. So, I plea ignorance.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Fair enough. I know it got into a lot of trouble for some of that cultural insensitivity - actually I think they even edited it from future versions - but it's still a favorite of mine.

    What's disturbing, now that I think about it, is that it would probably be even more negatively stereotypical if it were made in today's hyper-insanely-paranoid-of-the-Middle-East culture.

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  8. misha6:10 AM

    Great choices and I cry everytime i watch the part in Dumbo where his mommy rocks him and they are then separated while that heartbreaking song plays!! Oh, I'm tearing up now!! LOL But where is Charlotte's Web??!! That was a beautiful and touching movie and if you didn't cry when Charlotte sang her song to Wilbur before she died, then you truly are a heartless beast!!

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  9. I'm with you on the list i have seen and love ever single movie on your list the only thing that i don't see is Wizards. imo it is the best American animated film of all time but hey thats just me. A+++++ to your list

    ReplyDelete
  10. @misha and andy

    Thanks, y'all! I can barely remember Wizards, so once again, ignorance.

    I'll put it on the Netflix que.

    On Charlotte's Web...Hmm, I think you may be right about that one.

    I knew there was bound to be a few I'd forget.

    Finding Nemo and Shrek aren't that great, but I think I should have found a place for those two as well.

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  11. Anonymous7:13 PM

    Dear DCMovieGirl,

    Love your list. Thanks for not including Shrek like everyone else.

    Other underrated animated features (if I may be so bold):
    Gulliver's Travels (Fleischer Studios)
    Hoppity Goes to Town (Fleischer Studios) - cool art-deco highrise
    Raggedy Ann & Andy: A Musical Adventure (1977) don't pre-judge it
    The Selfish Giant (1971) - not really a feature - 1 hr. - Oscar Wilde fairy tale - very moving
    Anastasia - surprisingly successful
    Sinbad - (Dreamworks) - most beautiful blend of 2D and 3D animation I've ever seen
    ... I'm sure I'll think of others.

    Thanks for your cool site!
    Eric

    ReplyDelete
  12. Oh Man, Grave of The Fireflies.


    I seriously watch that movien once every 3 years. It takes that long for me to remember just how depressed I felt after it, and then the only thing that lingers is how conscious the animation was of human behavior. Particularly that of small children.


    Then I watch it again for that and the knowledge that it is the one film that affects me that strongly. Pan's Labyrinth is close and so was the recent Disney-Pixar movie 'Up' but 'Grave of The Fireflies' will probably always be on top as far as plucking my heartstrings.

    I'm glad you included it :) (And Plague Dogs)

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  13. Anonymous12:45 PM

    Omg grave of the fireflies is sooooo Awsome! I love it too bit best nd saddest film ever!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Anonymous5:14 PM

    BAAAAAD LIST:::: ICE AGE IS AWSOME:::: AND SO IS FINDING NEMO!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Anonymous6:06 PM

    'Howl's Moving Castle' was the best in my book but you forgot 'My Neighbor Totoro' just a wonderful film and good shoutout for 'Charlotte's Web'. I could have done without the rat but Debbie Reynolds at the end had me in tears and I suggest you check out 'James and the Giant Peach' that movie had so much heart and whismy.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Anonymous12:50 PM

    I just stumbled apon your site and I love it. I'm a black male from the bay area (ca) and Have never come across a black, female, film critic. That Donald Duck clip was the shxx! Keep it up, I have given my friends your website adress. All I can say is I hope one day soon you will get your own show on T.V like those 2 guy's that were so anal and had no flavor (LOL). Keep it going SIS, one luv

    tech2803@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  17. I agree with many of your choices, but I still believe The Lion King should be no. 1. I would actually place it higher than Beauty and the Beast and Toy Story, which I actually think 2 and 3.

    Little Mermaid was a pleasant surprise. Definitely a top ten choice for me.

    Two questions: Where's Aladdin? and where's Tarzan?

    ReplyDelete

As always, I appreciate all comments whether you agree or disagree. Just do not be vague, spammalicious, or disrespectful.

Trolling will get you deleted.

Thanks. :)