There is just something so classic about enjoying a feel-good animated movie on a chilly winter’s day. While they appear suitable for kids, many cartoons carry heavy meanings that stay with us throughout our lives. Here 16 iconic animated movies to beat the winter blues and will give you major nostalgia.
Bet you even forgot some of these existed!
READ MORE: 15 Winter Movies for A Cozy Night In
Rocky, a rooster and Ginger, a chicken, band together to lead their fellow chickens in a great escape from the chicken farm, where they live. They put differences aside to fight against the evil farm owners, Mr. and Mrs. Tweedy and their plot to kill the chickens – for pies!
The Polar Express
A young boy slips out of bed on Christmas Eve and board the magical Polar Express. He then embarks on a journey to the North Pole to meet Santa Claus. Things become a little topsy-turvy when he encounters a number of eccentric characters that teach him about bravery, friendship and the ~spirit of Christmas.
You either really love this movie, or were a little disturbed by it – I am the latter. A young dinosaur is raised by a family of prehistoric lemurs. Their world is thrown into chaos when meteors strike the planet. The family teams up with a herd of herbivores to travel to the Nesting Ground, where running rivers flow and lush vegetation grows.
Kung Fu Panda
The 2008 movie follows the tale of Po, a panda raised by a single father and noodle shop owner – who is also a duck. One day, Po is chosen as the legendary Dragon Warrior, who is the embodiment of Kung Fu. But everyone, including Po himself, questions this. The unlikely hero sets on a journey of self-discovery to make him a formidable foe against the powerful villain, Tai Lung. This franchise is so popular there is even a rumoured 4th film set for 2024!
The Tigger Movie
Tigger is on the hunt for someone to bounce with him. But all his friends are hustling to get ready for the coming winter. Tigger then decides to search for his family of Tiggers, to bounce with him. After some failed attempts to contact his lost-relatives, his friends write him letters of kindness, signing it ‘your family’. A sweet story that makes you realise that a family is more than just biology ❤️
Howl’s Moving Castle
If it’s Studio Ghibli – it’s going to be beautiful, breath-taking and inspiring! The 2004, Howl’s Moving Castle followings the partnership between Sophie and Howl, a wizard helping her with a curse that turns her into an old woman. It’s full of fantasy and magic. 19 years later, it still doesn’t disappoint.
Bolt is a super-dog with super powers, who fights against bad guys and faces all kinds of danger – until the cameras stop rolling…He is accidentally shipped from Hollywood to New York City where he has to embark on his biggest journey yet! Bold teams up with a cat named Mittens and a hamster named Rhino, to trek across the country to get back to his owner and co-star Penny. You don’t need super powers to be a hero!
Lilo & Stitch
A young parentless girl, named Lilo, adopts a ‘dog’, unaware that it is actually an alien science experiment hiding on Earth! This film carries a beautiful message that Ohana means family, and how that bond extends beyond blood. The visuals are just stunning and there are so many heart-warming and funny moments too.
Roddy is an ‘upper society’ pet rat enjoying the posh life in Kensington. Until sewer rat, Sid, comes spewing out of the bathroom. Roddy tries to trick him back into the pipes by luring him to the edge of the toilet, but ends up getting flushed away himself. Here he meets an entire city of animals living in the sewers, who soon need to be saved from the villainous Toad who is plotting to – literally – ice every rat and mouse!
A coming-of-age film about a young girl, Chihiro, trying to save her parents who get turned into pigs after eating cursed food of the spirits. It is an intense story about friendship and perseverance. But on the more grown-up side of the film, it teaches about the damage of greed, and how sometimes kids are left to parent their parents. The beautiful animation is a film that can inspire young and old.
The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie
I’m a Goofy Goober, ROCK! This 2004 release does a great balancing act of keeping the charm of our favourite SpongeBob characters, while they journey through the sea. Not forgetting the hilarious David Hasselhof cameo!
Think Little Red Riding Hood – but with a ~twist. This story starts at the end. Furry and feathered police officers are investigating a domestic disturbance at Granny’s home. It involves a girl, a wolf and an axe. There are charges of breaking and entering, intent to eat and wielding an axe without a license. And does it link to the elusive Goody Bandit who has been making the rounds, stealing recipes of goody shops everywhere.