Pixar Animation Studios are possibly the most successful division of disney in making films that are both box office successes and critically praised films. For the most part, the Pixar films are ones that are masterpieces in their craft. They're films that resonate with both children and adults alike, and touch into human emotion and character depth like not many other mainstream animated films do these days.
With Finding Dory having just been released in the US on Friday 17th and currently receiving high critical acclaim, with a rotten tomatoes score that currently stands at 95%, I thought it was time to look back at the good, and not so good, of Pixar Animation Studios. Remember, this is my personal list, so if you don't agree with something, that's fine, but this is just my opinion that I wish to share with you. Also, I'm sorry but I haven't actually seen the most recent Pixar film, The Good Dinosaur, so it won't be appearing here. I suppose I should have watched it before making this list, but I honestly wasn't that bothered to. Anyway, without further ado, on with the list.
15) Cars 2 (2011)
Yeah, this movies pretty bad if I'm honest. In fact, I think it's really the only actually bad Pixar film there is. Even though the animation is pretty good to look at, the script relies more on jokes that will pass because kids will probably find them funny, rather than the wit, humour, and emotional charge that really makes these films worthwhile. It kind of makes this film dull, even with the flashy visuals and not bad voice acting. I just swear to god, if someone casts Larry the Cable Guy in another animated film, hollywood really needs to think long and hard about what they're doing.
14) Cars (2006)
Whilst I do think Pixar could have made a number of films better than the Cars films, I don't actually think this first one is that bad. It's surely forgettable and underwhelming as hell, but theres stuff to enjoy in it. The visuals are pretty and the voice acting is pretty solid (minus Larry the Cable Guy). Plus there are actually a few bright moments of emotion that remind us that this is, in fact, a Pixar film. I think the problem here is that the concept is not quite that inventive, the plot is fairly formulaic and generic, and the jokes are kind of just boring and don't quite land. However, I suppose it's slightly worth-watching as it does have some charm and charisma and kids love it, so maybe if you have kids watch it with them and you'll enjoy it a little bit.
13) Brave (2012)
I guess this film is okay, I just really don't like it. I mean it's well animated and has some interesting characters, but the story just feels so forgettable to me. It's quite lazy and uninteresting and occasionally just comes off as stupid. It's just that her mum's a bear, pretty much. And I mean, simple stories can be great sometimes as it allows more time for deeper and more developed ideas, but this one doesn't really go anywhere for me. It's themes didn't really strike anything within me, and I just kind of forgot this film after I walked out of the cinema. I have watched it recently and I still forgot about it even after watching it again.
12) Monsters University (2013)
I do actually really like Monsters University. It's by far not the best Pixar film, but it has the same characters from Monsters Inc that are portrayed perfectly once again, and it is a well written and well paced piece with great emotional moments. I suppose it doesn't hold a candle to the first one, and there are jokes that don't land, aswell as tonal inconsistencies, but there are also some phenomenal character moments which I love. Overall, not the best Pixar film by a long shot, but still a pretty good film and a satisfying sequel.
11) A Bug's Life (1998)
This is a film I watched a lot when I was younger, and I honestly still love it even today. Firstly, the voice cast in this is incredible, especially Kevin Spacey as the evil grasshopper named 'Hopper'. On top of that, I still think this movie is extremely funny and creative. They play with the idea of the world of the insects so inventively, and it's honestly so entertaining to watch. There's such a great sense of adventure and exploration in this one, and if you haven't checked it out, I think you should because I personally think this film is fairly underrated.
10) Ratatouille (2007)
I wish I could put this one higher, I really do, but Pixar have made so many fantastic movies that it's just so damn hard to choose between them. But anyway, this one is Ratatouille, and yeah, it's pretty great. I love the characters, I love the writing, I love the visuals, it's just an all round excellent animated film. Honestly, it would be higher on the list if the studio didn't constantly make masterpieces. Patton Oswalt as Remy is perfect. He really makes this film what it is, and plays a character that I honestly love, making this another brilliant Pixar film to watch with the family.
9) Toy Story (1995)
Okay, okay, I get it. I know that there are some people who would have this at number one, but not me. Do I love this film? Yes, I do. However, do I think there are better films from Pixar? Yes, I do. This film defined the genre. It was the first Pixar film ever, aswell as the first entirely CG animated film ever, so yes, it was a groundbreaking picture. On top of that though it's just an awesome film, introducing audiences to characters they would love for years to come, and speaking of....
8) Toy Story 3 (2010)
Yes, years later (15 years later) the characters still feel as fresh as ever and audiences love them even more than they did when the first instalment was released. Plus, the animation had advanced so much by this time that the visuals were so much more impressive than they were 15 years prior. Somehow, even though there had been an 11 year hiatus between this film and the previous instalment, they managed to bring back the charm and emotional resonance of the franchise in a way that was purely innovative. It's a truly admirable triumph of a film.
7) Inside Out (2015)
Just the imaginative flare on this movie is genius. Inside Out is Pixar's extremely successful film from last year about the embodied emotions inside a little girl's mind and it is endlessly creative and enjoyable. Let the records show that Inside Out, along with other Pixar films, made me cry, and that is a rare feat. But seriously the characters, the voice cast, everything was great. Inside Out captures perfectly what it is like to feel alone and isolated as a young teen, and does so with such fantastic style and charisma. If you're the one person who hasn't checked it out yet, I would seriously suggest you do.
6) Toy Story 2 (1999)
Toy Story 2 is definitely my favourite of the trilogy. By the second instalment, Pixar had mastered the craft of the Toy Story film and managed to make a beautifully paced, hilarious, and relatable animated feature. The emotional moments in this are perhaps more honest and heart-wrenching than those of any of the other films on the list, especially an endlessly upsetting scene with the character of Jessie. It's a well written, fantastically animated, and near perfect piece of cinema and deserves to be hailed as such by many more people.
5) The Incredibles (2004)
The Incredibles is so good that it's sequel is possibly the most requested for the studio. Well luckily, we're getting that sequel in a couple of years, even though it probably won't hold a candle to the original. The film has an almost satirical look on the world of superheroes in pop culture, yet is still extremely entertaining and as fun as any of the other comic book flicks we get nowadays. The characters here are so real and likeable and the family dynamic works perfectly, yet still leaves space for some incredible animated action. This is one of the greatest family films of all time, and definitely should be watched by anyone and everyone.
4) Monsters Inc (2001)
I loved this film growing up. I watched it so many times, and I still do, even though I'm getting much older now. The chemistry between the two main characters is so compelling, and the compassion between the characters of Boo and Sully puts a smile on your face and a warmth in your heart. This film just makes me feel happy. It makes you forget about the bad things that happen around you and transports you to a glorious and caring world of monsters who you feel are your friends. Anyway, now I've realised I'm starting to sound really sad and lonely, on to the next film!
3) Wall-E (2008)
Charming in it's simplicity and visually stunning, Wall-E may be Pixar's most ambitious flick. And the ambition pays off. The first 45 minutes don't have any dialogue and are inhabited entirely by two robots, yet it is so interesting in the way the characters behave and fall for one another, and the character of Wall-E is so sweet and heart-warming that you can't helped be gripped by his relationship with Eva. Then we go to space, and the visuals just begin to burst out of the screen and mesmerise you. It is an excellent sci-fi flick, aswell as an excellent family flick, and an excellent romance flick, and honestly deserves all the praise it gets.
2) Up (2009)
Some people say that it's the first 10 minutes of Up that is brilliant, and not the film as a whole, but I entirely disagree if I'm honest. Whilst the first 10 minutes do carry a gut punch of feels and make me cry pretty much every time, the rest of the film is so vibrant, colourful and well crafted that I can't help but love it. It's so enthusiastic and charismatic, with fantastically entertaining sequences of action and excellent dynamics between characters. Plus, the animation is just gorgeous. The exotic landscapes of Paradise Falls are animated to sheer spectacle and the relationship between Carl and Russel is so truthful and caring. It very much is one of Pixar's best films.
1) Finding Nemo (2003)
One of the best looking animated films of all time, Finding Nemo has heart, and bucket loads of it. It's just as much of an underwater spectacle as it is a witty comedy, and just as much of a witty comedy as it is a tear-jerking drama. It taps into themes and ideas that hit home for so many people, and gets you to think about the love you have for you family in the process. The characters are unique and brilliant, with their personalities playing flawlessly off each other. It's one of the few films that I consider pretty much perfect and really is the best film Pixar Animation Studios has ever released.
So what do you think? What is your favourite Pixar film? Did you agree with this list? Make sure to let me know down in the comments and if you liked this list make sure to go to https:[email protected] for more articles and reviews like it.