I wanted to give a shout-out to some lesser-known animated films. Here are some of my favorites – feel free to comment below with your favorites.
1. Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland (1992) – There’s something about dream sequences that I love, even though the majority will agree that they don’t always make for a good story. Little Nemo works quite well for a movie almost entirely made up of dream sequences. It’s about a little boy who has very vivid dreams, and they take him to an alternate world called Slumberland, where he must rescue the King before the world is wiped out by nightmares. The cast of strange characters, including a flying squirrel and a cigar-smoking clown, really makes this movie a hit.
2. The Brave Little Toaster (1987) – Similar to the Toy Story series, a little boy’s childhood possessions are abandoned and attempt to make their way back to him. I admire any movies that make inanimate objects sympathetic to the viewer.
3. The Secret of NIMH (1982) – By far my favorite childhood movie, the animation of this one was flawless for its time. The characters were well-drawn, sympathetic, and given good backstories. The only issue with the film’s plot was the “deus ex machina” at the end, brought on by fantastical elements that were not part of the book.
4. Once Upon a Forest (1993) – The more I think about this movie, the more I consider it environmentalist/animal rights propaganda. Some scenes may be a bit disturbing for the movie’s intended audience, but overall, it’s a sweet, “woodland creature” movie with some important lessons about friendship.
5. Watership Down (1978) – Despite this movie being animated, I would not recommend it to kids under age 10. It can be a bit violent at times; definitely not an innocent movie about sweet little bunnies. Even so, it’s got a lot of depth behind it – much more than your typical animated film.