What did I do the whole month after Disney+ was realised in November? I binge-watched all my fave classic Disney movies! I’m a massive Disney nerd. I challenge you to ask me anything about the old animated movies and I guarantee I’ll know it all.
You’re never too old for Disney IMO – and many people agree with me; ten million people signed up to the subscription service on the release date of Disney+ alone.
So now that every fantastically magical Disney movie is at our fingertips, which should you re-watch? A lot of people go to the cult classics like The Lion King, Frozen and Toy Story (yes, I know Toy Story is Disney Pixar, do not come for me), but I personally prefer the more underappreciated movies. Below is a list of my favourite underrated Disney movies you can watch on Disney+ and why they’re worth a watch from both the new generation and nostalgic millennials who may need to be reminded of some key life lessons in the current socio-political climate.
Hunchback of Notre Dame 1996
This movie has strong classist themes, pitting the lower-class citizens and the antagonist (who is a white man in a position of power) against each other in a fight for justice. This storyline is very relevant in a society that feels the ruling class do not have their best interests at heart. This movie teaches that you can find comfort in your friends and to not judge people based on preconceived perceptions or appearances. There is also the theme of ‘you are not who raised you’, a cruel and heartless man raised Quasimodo who has a heart of gold shows us we can rise above villainy in our everyday lives.
Atlantis: The Lost Empire 2001
Baby Boomers and Gen X often tell Millennials and Gen Z to give up on our dreams because they’re unrealistic, whether that be owning our own home, travelling the world or becoming a CEO. This story of a man’s burning passion to discover Atlantis is truly inspiring. It is a fantastic reminder that people can achieve their dreams and prove the naysayers wrong. This movie provides a little reminder that there are happy endings in life and encourages us to appreciate the little things, such as memories of ones we have lost.
Treasure Planet 2002
Society wants to divide us and that’s why stereotypes abound everywhere. The story of juvenile delinquent Jim Hawkins highlights that often delinquents are victims of circumstance. More importantly, with the right support and love, they can rise above it. As the cyborg Silver says, “You’ve got the makings of greatness in you, but you gotta take the helm and chart your own course! Stick to it no matter the squalls.” This movie is especially important for those of you who feel like an outcast or feel misunderstood. This movie promotes hope for a better future and self-discovery!
The Great Mouse Detective 1986
This story is based on the illustrious Sherlock Holmes of 221B Baker Street (but imagine he’s a mouse named Basil). This is a wonderful tale which reminds us that even though there are people (and personal anxieties) that are powerful and use fear tactics to get what they want through intimidation and cruelty, our best friends are common sense and our intelligence. With those two trusty tools, we are able to overcome even the most terrifying of obstacles. After all, once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth! This is a fact that has often snapped me out of fear-based thinking.
Oliver and Company 1988
This film is loosely based on the classic novel Oliver Twist. The protagonist is a sweet orange stray Tabby cat who makes some unlikely friends with a gang of dogs on the tough streets of New York City. The individual characters are odd and they all fit together in a strange mismatched family with love at its core. The message it portrays is that you get to choose your own family if the one you were born into doesn’t accept or love you for who you are. Someone out there will love every part of you!
Rescuers Down Under 1990
Besides being one of the only Disney movies based in Australia, this story promotes helping Australian wildlife and the environment through biodiversity protection. We follow a little boy named Cody who lives in the outback and his journey to protect his animal friends from illegal poaching at the hands of (the most underrated villain ever) Percival McLeach and his equally underrated pet goanna Joanna. Stories like this are so important in today’s reality of climate change and mass extinction due to human actions. We must protect our wildlife and environment at all costs, not just because we are dependent on them, but because who would want to live in a world without wildlife?
Let us know what your favourite underrated Disney movies are in the comments!
Images via Giphy