My 5 Favorite Underrated Disney Movies

When you’re a kid, it sometimes feels like you can’t get enough of the things you like, and you’re always looking for new ways to experience it. So we watched a ton of Disney material, no matter how unpopular or obscure.

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The Sartorial Geek blog created 5 Fandom Friday prompts. You can follow along here!

For this week’s 5 Fandom Friday, the topic is favorite underrated Disney movies.

When you're a kid, it sometimes feels like you can't get enough of the things you like, and you're always looking for new ways to experience it. So we watched a ton of Disney material, no matter how unpopular or obscure.

I grew up in some of Disney’s best years (or at least I think so). Classic hits like The Lion King and Aladdin were huge parts of my childhood. I go into a bit more detail about my Disney history on Day 26 of the 30 Day Geek Out Challenge. Check it out!

When you’re a kid, it sometimes feels like you can’t get enough of the things you like, and you’re always looking for new ways to experience it. So we watched a ton of Disney material, no matter how unpopular or obscure. If it was animated or by Disney, we wanted to see it. We saw some pretty lame movies. Anyone remember Jungle 2 Jungle? Cringe.

But there are a few movies that stand out because they weren’t huge hits (at least not that I can remember), but I still love them. Here are my top five underrated Disney movies.

1. Fantasia

This is an oldie but a goodie. My little brother and I watched this one a LOT when we were kids. The combination of visuals with classical music and minimal dialogue may not work for some, but I thought it was so creative.

Fantasia combines beautiful classical music with unique visuals that tell a story, while also being choreographed with the sound. It is like an animated ballet. You can see everything dancing to the music, from floating, abstract colors, dots, and lines, to mushrooms and flowers, to fairies and demons.

Watching the figures move to the music just spoke to me when I was little. My dad is a classically trained pianist and composer, so I had been exposed to Mozart and Beethoven pretty early on. I learned to read music from my dad and played violin seriously up until college. To this day, classical music is one of my favorite genres to listen to.

2. The Rescuers Down Under

I never hear people talk about this movie much, but I watched it many times as a kid. It was a good adventure story with loveable characters.

It didn’t have any serious, meaningful impact on me like some other Disney movies, but I still enjoy the story. It was one of my first exposures to Australian culture, and I still think of this movie when I think of Austraila.

My husband remembers this one fondly from his childhood too, and we watched it together during the early stages of our relationship.

3. The Sword in the Stone

Stories about King Arthur were a huge part of my childhood. My dad is a history and mythology buff who has always been drawn to the Arthurian legends. He wanted to pass that interest to his kids.

I was actually almost named Guinivere, after King Arthur’s queen, but my parents changed their mind because they thought I would get made fun of in school (seriously?). Fun Fact: Jennifer is actually a modernized English version of Guinivere.

It’s no surprise that this movie was added to our VHS collection, and my dad’s enthusiasm stuck. I love this fun account of how Arthur, legendary king of Britain, rose to the throne.

4. Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey

What’s not to love about live-action talking animals?

Homeward Bound is a fun adventure story about pets trying to get back to their owners. It’s funny, sometimes a little sad, and has pretty mountain scenery.

The dynamic between Shadow, Sassy, and Chance was always lively and fun. Michael Jay Fox and Sally Field really made the movie with their voice-acting talent.

5. The Brave Little Toaster

The Brave Little Toaster is like Homeward Bound, except with appliances instead of pets. Toaster, Lampy, Radio, Blanky, and Kirby set out from their country cabin home to find their “master” who lives in the city.

It’s kind of a weird movie, with the goofy appliance personas and the adult humor peppered throughout that I didn’t notice until I was older.

Somehow we ended up with a copy of The Brave Little Toaster on DVD and my three-year-old son has come to love it. It’s currently on regular rotation at our house. He loves to sing along with the “scary” song that the appliances sing in the parts shop.

As the only movie on this list my kids have watched, it’s the one I’ve become intimately familiar with as an adult. Hopefully the kids will stop watching it on repeat before I get sick of it.


Tell me about your favorite underrated Disney movies in the comments!

4 comments on “My 5 Favorite Underrated Disney Movies”

  1. Oh man I tell ya I grew up watching the same movies! I loved loved loved Fantasia, and Homeward Bound the most! But these are the movies I share with my kids, especially now the Disney + is here! Thanks for sharing because I’d bet there are parents who forgot

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love Homeward Bound! It’s such a great choice when your kids want to watch a film that’s not animated. My kids love to watch Tarzan!

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  3. I love this idea. I totally agree on The Rescuers Down Under, Homeward Bound, and The Sword in the Stone. I have made my kids watch all of these because I love them so much!

    Like

  4. I wrote a post about this too! Down Under was my first exposure to Australia as well. I also love The Great Mouse Detective, The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Treasure planet.

    Like

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