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    Apr 6, 2020

    13 Disney Animated Movie Songs Ranked By How Criminally Underrated They Are

    *Disney's VHS opening title card song blares in the distance.*

    Hi, I'm Allie, and I love ranking oddly specific things for absolutely no reason whatsoever. So far, I've showcased my passion for horror movie jump scares, and I've fought for my favorite 21st century movie fight scenes. Heck, even Halloween candy wasn't safe from me.

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    Live footage of me in self-quarantine.

    Still, it's about time I REALLY got some hot takes going, so I've taken it upon myself to rank what I humbly believe are the 13 most OVERLOOKED and UNDERRATED animated Disney movie songs of all time.

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    The Rules: These films must be animated and produced by Walt Disney Studios. Also, like, you won't see "Let It Go" or "Part of Your World" or any of those songs on this list...not because they're NOT great. Ironically, it's because they ARE great and are appreciated the correct amount (and — in some situations — too much...YEAH, I SAID IT).

    So, buckle up, Buttercups...here we go:

    13. "Thomas O'Malley," Aristocats

    View this video on YouTube

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    Some Context: Literally just Thomas O'Malley, an alley cat, introducing himself via song in the most extra way possible.

    Why It's Awesome: Um, I'd like the confidence to write and sing a song I wrote entirely about myself, my life, and how cool I am out loud in front of a total hottie??? Duchess fully falls for it, and I do NOT blame her. The swagger here is incredible. Also, why does no one talk about the size dimensions of these cats? They're huge? They look like lions? What's in the water?!

    12. "Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride," Lilo & Stitch

    View this video on YouTube

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    Some Context: Literally just a beautiful song playing during a beautiful surfing scene in a beautifully underrated film.

    Why It's Awesome: This song is the definition of chill. If you close your eyes and listen, you TOO will feel like you're relaxing on a Hawaiian beach with your new alien BFF. It's like a full vacation in Disney song form, and I love it.

    11. "Dig A Little Deeper," The Princess and the Frog

    View this video on YouTube

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    Some Context: Desperate to break the frog spell thrust upon them, Prince Naveen and Tiana are led to Mama Odie's by Louis, the hilariously large alligator, and Ray, the single best character in the film. Fight me. I'll never be over his fate...spoilers.

    Why It's Awesome: Mama Odie does NOT get the RESPECT she DESERVES. This song has everything we all love about Disney tunes: It's catchy, it's foreshadow-y, and it's fun! IDK why it gets overlooked so often, as it's one of the best moments in the film. Also, Tiana's dedication to her work is iconic.

    10. "When She Loved Me," Toy Story 2

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    Some Context: Jessie reveals to a pompous-as-all-heck Woody what it's like to lose the love of your kid. It's one of the worst, most painful scenes committed to film and marks the beginning of Pixar's need to mess us up permanently.

    Why It's Awesome: HELLO, THIS IS THE SADDEST SONG EVER WRITTEN AND RECORDED. Sarah McLachlan took a break from making us all feel sad about dogs to making us feel sad about toys. Why did no one stop them?! Why was no one like, "This seems like a lot for a kids film, maybe let's pull it back?!" Either way, turn this one on when you feel like having a good cry and no other time. You've been warned.

    9. "Zero to Hero," Hercules

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    Some Context: The entire premise of the song is in the title: Hercules goes from a zero to a hero. In no time flat. Zero to hero. Just. Like. That.

    Why It's Awesome: Listen...the muses are far and away the best part of Hercules (the existence of Meg being a close second). Plus, as you'll learn on this list, your girl LOVES a montage, and this is a PERFECT ONE. We don't need to see scene after scene of Hercules' success, since this song gets it all done in like three minutes.

    8. "Out There," The Hunchback of Notre Dame

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    Some Context: After swearing to the very terrifying Frollo that he will NOT go down into the village for the "Feast of Fools"...Quasimodo considers going anyway (and, ultimately, does) via a song that is relatable to absolutely every introvert. We love a rebel.

    Why It's Awesome: Hunchback has the best soundtrack of any Disney Renaissance-era film (insert Miranda Priestly "no, no...that wasn't a question" gif), and this tops my list of the most underappreciated hero songs in Disney canon. It's beautiful.

    7. "Shiny," Moana

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    Some Context: Attempting to steal back Maui's beloved magical hook, water god Moana is forced to distract the hook's new owner as, essentially, live bait.

    Why It's Awesome: This is, in my opinion, the most underrated villain song in recent memory. It's...great? It's so catchy and filled with exposition about Maui's past without being overly engorged with information. Also, like, whoever pitched the idea of "David Bowie...BUT AS A GIANT CRAB!" deserves a raise and a high five. 11/10.

    6. "Son of Man," Tarzan

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    Some Context: Tarzan, desperate to prove himself to his adoptive father, does everything he can to show that he belongs in their family while growing up into a human man. It's this film's "Simba, Timon, and Pumbaa walking across the bridge during 'Hakuna Matata.'"

    Why It's Awesome: Phil Collins was doing the ABSOLUTE MOST for zero reason on this soundtrack, and I love it. If you don't think this song goes harder than it needs to, IDK what's going on with you. Is everything all right? Do you want to talk about it? Also, once again, we love a montage.

    5. "I've Got a Dream," Tangled

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    Some Context: After a lifetime of socially distancing (though not by choice or government mandate), Rapunzel is tricked into a rowdy tavern by Flynn "My real name is Eugene and I'm a soft boi" Ryder in an attempt to scare her back to her tower. It backfires spectacularly.

    Why It's Awesome: I don't think I'm in the minority in believing that Tangled is aggressively underrated overall as a film. It felt like a true return to form for Disney, despite being one of their first princess films without hand-drawn animation. This song is an EAR. WORM. And I also just really love the message. Like, absolutely everyone you encounter, no matter how unlikely, has a dream and a weird hobby, and we should all be more vocal about it!

    4. "We Are One," The Lion King 2: Simba's Pride

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    Some Context: Simba and Nala got it on (I assume after she made that face during "Can You Feel The Love Tonight") and had precocious baby Kiara. Kiara's not quite as hype about being royalty as Simba was at her age, much to his dismay. He sings this very nice song with her about purpose and whatnot.

    Why It's Awesome: IDK why, but this song makes me cry??? Every time I hear it??? Maybe it's because Matthew Broderick is serving pure vocals? Maybe it's because it's about family? Maybe it's because I'm also a daughter who wants to make her parents proud without sacrificing herself??? Who knows! Either way, it's a great antithesis to "I Just Can't Wait To Be King." Don't send this post to my therapist, thanks.

    3. "Welcome to the Forty Thieves," Aladdin and the King of Thieves

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    Some Context: After a lifetime of orphanhood, Aladdin finally hunts down his father — who is a certified D.I.L.F. — and discovers that he's the literal KING of thieves. He and his comrades sing this wild fun number to welcome Aladdin into their super-secret club.

    Why It's Awesome: This film has a distinct spot on my "This is a fun movie and I will not apologize for liking it" list. I watched it a lot as a kid and it's A GOOD TIME. I also like to imagine that these murderous thieves perform this entire song and dance number for every single person that joins and they, like, rehearse it regularly to keep themselves fresh. Delightful.

    2. "Why Should I Worry," Oliver and Company

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    Some Context: After helping street-wise pup Dodger get a hold of some very tasty looking hot dogs, Oliver gets a lesson in "street savoir faire" when Dodger refuses to share their earnings. Also, fun fact, I'd die for Oliver. He's the cutest little orange fluff ball I've ever seen in my goddamn life.

    Why It's Awesome: This song. Has no business. Going as hard. As it does. But what else would you expect from a Billy Joel song, I guess? Sing us a song, you're the hot dog pup, sing us a song tonight...

    1. "Stand Out," A Goofy Movie

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    Some Context: Max, son of Goofy, is desperate to get his crush Roxanne's attention. He and his buds devise a plan to interrupt the principal's presentation on the last day of school by performing a tune by beloved fictional band Powerline.

    Why It's Awesome: This whole movie is perfect and I will accept absolutely no other comments on that. We all already know that "Eye to Eye" by the illustrious Powerline is ICONIC, but this number is equally great. In my humble opinion, this is the MOST underappreciated musical sequence in all of Disney canon. It is, as the kids say, a bop. Also, sidenote: YO STACYYY, TALK TO ME, TALK TO ME, TALK TO ME, BABY.

    There ya have it, that's my humble ranking — but what's YOURS? What do YOU believe is the most underappreciated animated Disney song of all time? Share your pick(s) in the comments below!

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