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    43 Of The Best Movies To Stream On Disney+ In August

    Cruella, Mrs. Doubtfire, Jungle Cruise, and more great titles you'll want to stream this month.

    We hope you love the shows and movies we recommend! Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of revenue or other compensation from the links on this page. Oh, and FYI: Platform, prices, and other availability details are accurate as of time of posting.

    1. Ant-Man (2015)

    Paul Rudd in "Ant-Man"
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Ant-Man is not the most important member of the Avengers, and when it comes to saving the universe from Thanos's unique form of population control, he's mostly delegated to the B team (until he coincidentally ends up in the quantum realm exactly when "the Snap" occurs). But his mid-tier status in the MCU actually benefits the Ant-Man movies, which don't feel as if they exist mostly to move the larger narrative forward. Instead, we just get to enjoy watching Scott Lang (Paul Rudd), a cat burglar with a heart of gold, accidentally end up becoming a superhero after swiping the Ant-Man suit, which allows him to shrink and grow at will. Rudd obviously brings his unmatched charm to the role, and the rest of the cast is every bit as great, especially Michael Peña as Luis, Lang's fast-talking former cellmate. But what really makes this possibly the most underrated film in the MCU catalog is the special effects. Director Peyton Reed perfectly utilizes Ant-Man's shrinking and growing powers to create some of the most awe-inspiring and hilarious battle sequences in the entire superhero genre.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    2. *Aquamarine (2006)

    Sara Paxton, Jo Jo, and Emma Roberts talking.
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Best friends Claire (Emma Roberts) and Hailey (JoJo) are shocked when they discover a mermaid named Aquamarine (Sara Paxton) washed up on shore. And things get even weirder when Aquamarine tells them she only has three days to prove to her father that true love exists or be forced into an arranged marriage with a merman she does not love. This mostly forgotten early '00s teen movie is by no means a masterpiece, but it is a fun, lighthearted adventure that features a great early performance from Roberts, who has since established herself as one of Hollywood's best up-and-coming actors.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    3. Avatar (2009)

    Zoë Saldana standing on a cliff
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Avatar is a movie that certainly has its issues. The plot is basically FernGully in space with a dash of Pocahontas (including the unfortunate "noble savage" trope). But I would argue this movie is still worth watching because it doesn't pretend to be a groundbreaking piece of storytelling or anything resembling "high art." It's pure entertainment, and to state the obvious, Avatar looks absolutely incredible. Seriously, it looks significantly better than most of the big-budget blockbusters that have been made in the 12 years since its release. From the moment Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) enters his Na'vi avatar and starts exploring Pandora, you share his constant sense of awe and wonder, as director James Cameron used groundbreaking visual effects to build a planet that is nonstop eye candy.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    4. Bend It Like Beckham (2003)

    Parminder Nagra and Keira Knightley being hoisted up by their teammates as they hold a trophy
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Jesse (Parminder Nagra) loves soccer (or football, as they call it everywhere except here), but her parents, who are conservative Indian Sikhs, don't allow her to play. However, she is eventually convinced to secretly join a local team by her friend Jules (Keira Knightley) and soon finds herself leading a double life. This is a movie that easily could have aged terribly for so many reasons, but Bend It Like Beckham manages to walk a fine line in terms of allowing Jess to explore her independence without using her family or cultural identity as a cheap punchline. Honestly, the only part of this movie that doesn't really hold up is the central love triangle between Jess, Jules, and Joe (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), their coach. And that's mainly because Jules and Jess are both way too good for Joe, who kind of sucks.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    5. Black Widow (2021)

    Scarlett Johansson looking away mysteriously
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    After more than a decade in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) is finally getting her own movie. Set after the Avengers' split-up at the end of Civil War, Black Widow gives us a look at what Natasha was up to when she went on the run after spilling all of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s secrets. And it turns out she took a trip down memory lane, visiting her spy "family," which includes Red Guardian (David Harbour) and fellow Black Widows Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh) and Melina Vostokoff (Rachel Weisz). The highly anticipated film is expected to give us a deep dive into how Natasha became the international sleuth we all know and love, as well as serving as a proper farewell to Johansson in the MCU.

    Watch it on Disney+ with Premier Access.

    6. Captain America: Civil War (2016)

    Elizabeth Olsen, Chris Evans, and Sebastian Stan looking ready for a fight
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Superhero movies are packed with destruction, and the MCU is no exception to that, with New York City and the fictional country of Sokovia both experiencing massive damage and casualties in the first two Avengers movies. Typically, heroes aren't held accountable for the hell they've raised, but in Civil War, the Avengers are forced to face the fact that while many people see them as heroes, just as many people see them as doing more harm than good. Civil War's true secret weapon is Helmut Zemo (Daniel BrĂŒhl), who manages to sow the seeds of discord among the Avengers by exposing the growing philosophical divide between Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) and Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.). The duo's diametrically opposed views, along with the revelation of who really killed Stark's parents, eventually tear the supergroup apart, arguably making Zemo the only villain to defeat the Avengers until Thanos.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    7. Cinderella (1997)

    Brandy Norwood singing while Veanne Cox and Natalie Desselle Reid dance
    ABC / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Fans had been clamoring for Disney+ to make Cinderella available since the streaming platform launched in 2019. And early this year, the 1997 TV movie based on the Rodgers & Hammerstein musical finally landed on the streaming service, causing fans to lose their minds. The film’s biggest strength is its absolutely killer cast, led by Brandy in the titular role and Whitney Houston as her Fairy Godmother. The two legends are unsurprisingly phenomenal, and the movie reaches its zenith when the two finally get to share the screen, peaking with their soaring rendition of "Impossible." And the rest of the surprisingly star-studded cast is every bit as good, with Whoopi Goldberg, Bernadette Peters, and Jason Alexander all lending their talents. Cinderella manages to separate itself entirely from the animated version as it delivers its own take on the classic story.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    8. Coco (2017)

    Miguel (voiced by Anthony Gonzalez) smiling nervously with his deceased family members.
    Pixar / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Miguel (voiced by Anthony Gonzalez) dreams of being a world-famous musician, but his family strictly forbids it. On the Day of the Dead, he takes a guitar from his hero Ernesto's mausoleum and becomes cursed to interact only with the dead. He needs a blessing from one of his deceased relatives by sunrise or he will not be able to return to the Land of the Living. Sounds pretty dark, right? While death is a central theme in Coco, the movie is never morbid and instead becomes a celebration of life, family, and chasing your dreams. The best Pixar movie of the 2010s will have you laughing one moment and crying the next with its fantastic songs and its simple but heartwarming story. And by now, Pixar is already well known for its groundbreaking computer animation, but it reaches a whole new level with Coco; the Land of the Dead is the most impressive visual design the studio has ever done.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    9. *Cruella (2021)

    Emma Stone looking disheveled.
    Disney / Courtesy Everett Collection

    The latest Disney villain to get the origin story treatment is Cruella de Vil, with Emma Stone taking on the titular role that explores what she was like before she decided to try to kidnap 101 dalmatian puppies to make a few coats. It turns out Cruella starts out as an aspiring fashion designer and catches her big break when she is hired by legendary designer Baroness Von Hellman (Emma Thompson). But Cruella's mentor soon becomes her enemy, and they engage in a high-stakes fashion industry war. Is the exact timeline of this movie confusing? Sure. Does it actually make sense as a prequel to 101 Dalmatians? Not really (especially considering the end credits scene). Is it kind of weird rooting for someone who we know ends up becoming an aspiring dog murderer? Absolutely. But honestly, you're best off ignoring all of that overthinking and just enjoying the Emmas duke it out in increasingly extravagant outfits.

    Watch it on Disney+ August 27.

    10. *Dan In Real Life (2007)

    Steve Carell and Juliette Binoche talking about books.
    Buena Vista Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Dan Burns (Steve Carell) is a newspaper advice columnist who is just trying to keep it together as he raises his three daughters after the death of his wife. Finding love is the last thing on his mind until he meets Marie (Juliette Binoche) in a bookstore during an annual extended family gathering. The only problem? It turns out Marie is dating his brother Mitch (Dane Cook). Carell's attempt to leave his comedy roots behind to chase Oscars has delivered mixed results, but this is one of his better semi-serious performances, as he is able to effectively play Dan's grief and fear of connecting with someone again without getting melodramatic. Dan in Real Life also has a great soundtrack by Norwegian singer Sondre Lerche, who even makes a brief cameo toward the end of the film.

    Watch it on Disney+ on August 27.

    11. Emperor's New Groove (2000)

    Pach (voiced by John Goodman) and Kuzco (David Spade) are fighting while suspended by ropes
    Buena Vista Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Emperor's New Groove rarely gets mentioned when people are discussing the best of Disney, as the movie lacks a lot of what has come to define Disney animation, with heart-stopping romance and Oscar-winning songs nowhere to be found. But what the movie lacks in melodramatic ballads, it more than makes up for with its joke-a-minute script and a weird but lovable cast of characters. Seriously, it is not at all a stretch to say that Emperor's New Groove is the funniest animated Disney movie ever made. Stuffed with hilarious and absurd one-liners, it will keep you laughing as Emperor Kuzco (voiced by David Spade) is turned into a llama by his treasonous adviser, Yzma (voiced by Eartha Kitt). The real star of the movie is Kronk (voiced by Patrick Warburton), Yzma's sweet but dim-witted assistant who can talk to squirrels, make delicious spinach puffs, and solve moral quandaries with the help of a tiny devil and angel on his shoulders.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    12. The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

    Mark Hamill giving Yoda a piggyback ride.
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    The Empire Strikes Back's reputation precedes it at this point, as it is widely considered the best of everything Star Wars has to offer. It's true that the movie serves as an encapsulation of what makes this franchise so beloved; it also separates itself from the rest of the Star Wars filmography in one very distinct area: the romance between Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher). In the prequels, you get angsty Anakin awkwardly trying to woo Padmé by discussing his hatred of sand, and in the sequels, the connection between Rey and Kylo Ren is powerful but honestly gets less interesting when it becomes romantic. Meanwhile, in Empire, you can feel the growing sexual tension between Han and Leia as they sling insults back and forth to hide their true feelings for each other. And when Leia finally declares her love for Han just as he is about to get frozen in carbonite, he manages to deliver the greatest "I love you" reply in movie history.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    13. Ever After (1998)

    Drew Barrymore looking charmed as Dougray Scott holds her hand
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    The story of Cinderella has been told time and time again, but Ever After manages to give the familiar story some fun twists by reimagining the fairy tale being inspired by the real love story between Prince Henry (Dougray Scott) and Danielle de Barbarac (Drew Barrymore) in 16th-century France. The movie certainly isn't a history lesson, and it takes countless dramatic liberties for the sake of the story, which itself is entirely fictional other than the people being real. But the movie has a blast with this relaxed approach to historical fiction, even sprinkling a few well-known figures from the time, including Leonardo da Vinci (Patrick Godfrey).

    Watch it on Disney+.

    14. Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009)

    Kylie (voiced by Wally Wolodarsky), Mr. Fox (voiced by George Clooney), and Ash (voiced by Jason Schwartzman) staging a heist
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Mr. Fox (voiced by George Clooney) is happy with his life as a mischievous thief, but when his wife, Felix (voiced by Meryl Streep), tells him she is pregnant, he gives it all up to become a respectable family man. The entire voice cast — which includes Wes Anderson staples Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, and Owen Wilson — is stellar, but it's the stop-motion animation that really shines here. It's utilized as much more than a lazy gimmick or nostalgic throwback, with the frenetic stop-motion pacing and reactions juxtaposing perfectly with Anderson's deadpan sense of humor. As the movie industry increasingly shifts toward computer animation, Fantastic Mr. Fox is a gorgeous reminder of just how fun it can be to watch really well-executed stop-motion. And while the movie ultimately disappointed at the box office, earning only $21 million domestically against a $40 million budget, it was beloved by critics, earning Anderson an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Feature.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    15. Finding Nemo (2003)

    Nemo (Alexander Gould) and Marlin (Albert Brooks) swimming together.
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    For its first several years, Pixar was defined almost entirely by Toy Story and Toy Story 2. The other movies from the studio were solid but not quite spectacular. Until Finding Nemo. The under-the-sea adventure follows Marlin (voiced by Albert Brooks) as he tries to track down his son Nemo (voiced by Alexander Gould) after he gets grabbed by a scuba diver. Along the way, Marlin crosses paths with a variety of colorful (literally and figuratively) aquatic characters, including Crush, the ultra-chill turtle; Bruce, the pescatarian shark; and, of course, Dory (Ellen DeGeneres), the regal blue tang with short-term memory loss who ended up getting her own spinoff, Finding Dory. The movie never loses its balance between the fun, high-energy pacing and its emotional stakes, making it a highly rewatchable movie for people of all ages. Finding Nemo also has one of the saddest scenes in all of Pixar's legendarily sad filmography. Because no matter how many times you've seen it, that opening scene remains an absolute emotional gut punch.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    16. The Force Awakens (2015)

    John Boyega and Oscar Isaac having a tense discussion
    Walt Disney Studios / Courtesy Everett Collection

    In terms of plot, The Force Awakens openly borrows pretty heavily from A New Hope, but where it sets itself apart is with its new cast of characters. Trying to replace Luke, Leia, and Han Solo is an extremely tall order, but Finn (John Boyega), Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac), and Rey (Daisy Ridley) prove to be up to the job. From Finn giving up his life as a stormtrooper to help Poe escape the First Order to seeing Rey overcome her fear of using a lightsaber for the first time, getting to know this new trio as they get to know one another is about as close to recapturing the magic of the original movies as any follow-ups have gotten. And they have a perfect adversary in Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), as his failure to hide his internal struggle to fully commit to the Dark Side demonstrates the more complex and fluid approach to the light-dark paradox of Star Wars mythology.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    17. Freaky Friday (2003)

    Lindsay Lohan and Jamie Lee Curtis looking shocked on the stairs
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    The body-switch premise is a tried-and-true formula in Hollywood, and this remake happily follows that formula every step of the way. Teen rebel Anna (Lindsay Lohan) and her responsible, slightly overbearing mom, Tess (Jamie Lee Curtis), wake up to find they have switched bodies, and they learn some valuable lessons about themselves and each other as they try to figure out how to return to their bodies. There are parts of this movie that have not aged well (the entire body-switch sequence via a magical fortune cookie at a Chinese restaurant feels, at best, culturally insensitive), but as a comfort watch, Freaky Friday absolutely delivers. And the remake manages to transcend its more generic qualities, thanks to Lohan and Curtis. Rather than rest on their laurels for cheap laughs, both actors fully commit to their roles and find both humor and pathos in portraying a teen stuck in a middle-aged woman's body (and vice versa).

    Watch it on Disney+.

    18. Hercules (1997)

    Hercules (voiced by Tate Donovan) putting his hands in cement with Pegasus
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    At the time of its release, Hercules was considered the beginning of the end of the Disney Renaissance because of its disappointing box office earnings and good but not great reviews. But in the decades since, it has become a cult favorite, and it's not hard to see why. This screwball comedy reimagining of the Greek myths is a little strange at first but ultimately a lot of fun. The movie is also packed with iconic characters, including the Muses, Meg, and the quite possibly best Disney villain ever in Hades, as James Woods brings a slightly unhinged, mile-a-minute energy to his performance as the lord of the underworld. And the music. Even by Disney's unreasonably high standards, the Hercules soundtrack is unbelievably good. From "Zero to Hero" to "Go the Distance" to "I Won't Say I'm in Love," there really is not a bad song in the movie ("One Last Hope" is just okay, but Danny DeVito makes it work).

    Watch it on Disney+.

    19. High School Musical (2006)

    Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens singing karaoke
    Disney Channel / Courtesy Everett Collection

    On paper, High School Musical sounds like a terrible movie, and even upon rewatch, you can't help but notice the awful dialogue delivered by generic characters who mostly exist to keep the plot moving. So why is it worth watching 15 years later? Two reasons: 1) The overqualified cast. Disney Channel Original Movies are typically filled with actors whose careers are peaking right before your eyes, but Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, and Ashley Tisdale are all doing fantastic work in their respective roles. 2) The songs absolutely rule. A made-for-TV musical has no right to have this many genuinely great songs. We all, of course, remember "Breaking Free" and "Get Your Head in the Game," but there are just as many phenomenal deep cuts, including "Stick to the Status Quo" and "Bop to the Top." In fact, other than Hudgens' bland solo ballad, every song in this movie still holds up improbably well, which is a big reason why it spawned High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, a mockumentary series set in the "real world" (which means it does not take place in a reality where characters spontaneously sing about their inner feelings) that focuses on a high school production of the movie and stars Olivia Rodrigo.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    20. Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989)

    Rick Moranis and Marcia Strassman looking at the shrunken kids.
    Buena Vista Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Is there anything better than a movie that explains its entire plot in the title? Everything you need to know about Honey, I Shrunk the Kids is right there in those five words. Give comedy legend Rick Moranis the starring role and you have a guaranteed hit on your hands. Moranis plays Wayne Szalinski, an inventor who creates a shrink ray that accidentally ends up, you guessed it, shrinking his kids without him or his wife realizing it. The movie turned out to be a massive box office hit, making it the highest-grossing live-action Disney movie ever for several years. The unexpected success of Honey, I Shrunk the Kids spawned an entire franchise that includes two sequels (with a third on the way) and a spinoff television series. Not bad for a movie that was almost titled Teeny-Weenies.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    21. The Jungle Book (2016)

    Baloo (voiced by Bill Murray) standing next to Neel Sethi
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    For the most part, the live-action remakes of classic, animated Disney movies have been underwhelming, with critics dismissing most of them as hollow remakes of the animated versions. But The Jungle Book is the exception that arguably proves the rule, as it actually manages to improve upon the original. While the remake keeps many of the original characters and even some of the songs from the 1967 animated film, it also expands on the plot and dives deeper into exploring the characters. On a visual level, the film is simply stunning to look at, as director Jon Favreau brilliantly utilized CGI to bring Mowgli's jungle friends to life. The voice cast is also perfect, with Bill Murray bringing his dry charm to the role of Baloo and Idris Elba making Shere Khan straight-up frightening.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    22. Jungle Cruise (2021)

    Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt looking slightly concerned on a jungle cruise
    Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Dr. Lily Houghton (Emily Blunt) enlists the help of riverboat captain Frank Wolff (Dwayne Johnson) as she heads into the Amazon jungle in order to find the mythical Tree of Life and the healing power it is rumored to possess. Along the way, they have to survive encounters with wild animals while also being in a race with a rival expedition that has some nefarious motives. Johnson and Blunt are obviously the marquee-name draws, but Jungle Cruise features a killer supporting cast as well, with Paul Giamatti, Jesse Plemmons, and Veronica Falcón lending their talents to the film. Movies based on rides have a mixed track record, but Jungle Cruise looks more like Pirates of the Caribbean than The Haunted Mansion.

    Watch it on Disney+ with Premier Access.

    23. The Little Mermaid (1989)

    Ariel (voiced by Jodi Benson)
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Nearly everything about The Little Mermaid is iconic. It's got the perfect villain whom you can't help but root for a tiny bit; the perfect conflict that doesn't totally make sense, but you go with it because the movie is that good; and the perfect song that makes you want to stare longingly out into the distance dreaming about the life you know you'll lead one day. The Little Mermaid is so fantastic that it literally saved Disney animation from extinction, since the studio was in the middle of a skid that had lasted several decades when the story of Ariel giving up her voice to become human became a global sensation and sparked the Disney Renaissance.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    24. Lilo & Stitch (2002)

    Stitch (voiced by Chris Sanders), Nani (Tia Carrere), and Lilo (Daveigh Chase) riding a wave
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Another overlooked member of the Disney animated family, Lilo & Stitch ditches the princess/fairy tale formula in favor of a story that feels more grounded despite featuring an alien crashing onto the island of Kaua'i after escaping prison in outer space. Lilo & Stitch is among the funniest Disney movies, but what's really made it a lasting favorite in the Disney catalog is the bond that is slowly formed between the titular duo. It is ridiculously heartwarming to watch Lilo (voiced by Daveigh Chase) teach Stitch (voiced by Chris Sanders) about family and the importance of caring about people (or aliens) other than yourself, as "Experiment 626" has never been shown any kindness or compassion by the people who created him. You'll probably find yourself reaching for a tissue by the time Stitch explains the true meaning of "Ohana" to his extraterrestrial captors.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    25. Moana (2016)

    Moana (voiced by Auli'i Cravalho) happily looks into the distance
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    With all due respect to Frozen, this is actually the best Disney movie of the modern era. Moana may not have the breakout sidekick or the Oscar-winning anthem (even though "How Far I'll Go" is better than "Let It Go"), but the movie makes up for any shortcomings with its tremendous lead character. Moana (voiced by Auli'i Cravalho) proves herself to have all of the qualities you could want in a hero: She is full of ambition but does not let that blind her to her sense of duty to her family and her people. She is brave, resourceful, and kind, yet she is certainly not perfect, and her willingness to learn from her mistakes and preconceived notions about things and people is part of what makes her such a beloved figure. As she leaves her home island for the first time to try to discover why the vegetation is dying, it's impossible not to cheer her on while she encounters dangerous obstacles, teams up with Maui (voiced by Dwayne Johnson), and eventually discovers who she truly is and where she belongs.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    26. *Mrs. Doubtfire (1993)

    Sally Field and Robin Williams holding up clothes.
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Daniel Hillard (Robin Williams) is a struggling voice actor who is in danger of losing custody of his kids after his wife files for divorce. When a judge says that the only way he can share custody is if he gets a steady job, he makes the logical choice of disguising himself as the elderly Mrs. Doubtfire in order to secretly become his kids' nanny. In the years since its release, some have criticized the film as being transphobic, and there are certainly a few jokes that have aged poorly. But overall, Mrs. Doubtfire remains a hilarious, heartwarming family film that features one of the best performances of Williams' career, earning him a Golden Globe. The movie was a smash hit at the box office, earning more than $200 million domestically against just a $25 million budget. 

    Watch it on Disney+ on August 6.

    27. Mulan (1998)

    Mushu (voiced by Eddie Murphy) does not like getting held by Mulan (voiced by Ming-Na Wen)
    Buena Vista Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

    There's a lot to love about Mulan, but one thing that really makes it stick out in comparison with other Disney animated films is the romance between Mulan (voiced by Ming-Na Wen) and Shang (voiced by BD Wong). Even in the most beloved Disney classics, relationships are rarely built on substance. Half the time, the couple haven't even spoken to each other before they fall in love. But Mulan and Shang actually get to know each other and slowly learn to respect and admire each other as they prepare to fight the Huns. And sure, Shang is a jerk at first when he discovers Mulan was a woman disguised as a man, but he eventually comes around, and together, they are able to defeat Shan Yu and protect the Emperor. Shang is not intimidated by the prospect of dating an unapologetically powerful woman, and they easily form Disney's number one power couple. Plus, they actually represent a romance that doesn't teach kids confusing lessons about falling in love and maintaining a relationship.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    28. The Muppets (2011)

    Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy singing a song together
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    By 2011, Jim Henson's beloved puppet creation was in danger of being left in pop culture's rearview mirror, but Kermit, Piggy, and the rest of the felt crew shot right back into relevance with The Muppets. The movie features the Muppets' trademark brand of slightly absurdist, extremely silly humor (with a dash of edge that people underestimate) while also getting meta about the franchise's diminishing relevance; the characters are well aware that the Muppets are not the hot commodity they once were as they try to put on a show to save their old theater. But this level of self-awareness never goes overboard, thanks to Jason Segel, who cowrote and stars in the film. Segel was mostly known for his roles in raunchier Judd Apatow comedies up to this point, but he proved to be a perfect match for the Muppets, with his goofy energy and unbridled enthusiasm making him a natural fit. Fans agreed, as The Muppets earned $165 million at the worldwide box office, which is more than twice as much as the next-highest-grossing film in the franchise.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    29. Newsies (1992)

    Max Casella and Christian Bale having a laugh
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    This '90s movie musical really has it all: an inspiring story (loosely) based on the real-life newsboys' strike of 1899, a soundtrack that simply does not have a skippable track, and an early leading man performance from Christian Bale. Sadly, Bale was reportedly embarrassed by his performance, so much so that he refused to talk about the movie in interviews for several years. I'm afraid I'm going to have to disagree with the Oscar-winning actor's assessment here, as he already delivers some of that movie star charisma as Jack Kelly, the roguish cowboy with a heart of gold who is just trying to get by selling papers in late-19th-century New York City. Newsies bombed upon initial release, but it eventually became a cult classic and was later adapted into a Tony Award–winning musical. Even Bale eventually came around and has learned to embrace his newsboy past, though he still insists his performance leaves much to be desired.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    30. The Parent Trap (1998)

    Lindsay Lohan talking with Lindsay Lohan at a table
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    That's right. This list has not one, but TWO remakes starring Lindsay Lohan, in honor of her playing dual roles here. If you're a millennial, you're probably already familiar with this film's basic premise: Annie (Lohan) and Hallie (also Lohan) are twins who discover each other's existence at a summer camp and decide to switch places in order to get to know the parent they never knew existed. If you haven't seen this movie since you were a kid, it's a lot of fun to rewatch and slowly realize that Annie and Hallie's parents are either complete idiots or just pretty awful people. Divorce can be messy and complicated, but that doesn't mean you decide to separate your daughters from each other and then not even let them know about each other's existence. Have they never heard of coparenting?

    Watch it on Disney+.

    31. Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl (2003)

    Johnny Depp looking through a spyglass while Orlando Bloom stares ahead
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Basing an entire movie on a theme park ride is generally a bad idea, but the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie is the massive exception to that rule. After all, who doesn't love pirates? And this movie features arguably the greatest cinematic swashbuckler of all time, since Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) is just the right mix of suave, reckless, and possibly drunk to make viewers want to join his crew on the Black Pearl (once he gets it back, of course). Depp is so good as Sparrow that he rightly earned an Oscar nomination for the role, and honestly, he totally deserved to win over Sean Penn in Mystic River, a movie nobody has thought about since 2003 (although Depp versus Penn is not the hill anyone should die on). One piece of advice: Don't bother with the sequels, which increasingly abandoned character-based storytelling in favor of incoherent CGI nonsense. Just pretend that the franchise ends with Jack and his crew sailing away with the Black Pearl while Will (Orlando Bloom) and Elizabeth (Keira Knightley) live happily ever after.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    32. Princess Diaries (2001)

    Larry Miller, Anne Hathaway, and Julie Andrews talking
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Mia (Anne Hathaway) is a shy, slightly dorky teen living in San Francisco with her mom when her grandma Clarisse (Julie Andrews) visits to reveal that she is the queen of the fictional country of Genovia and Mia is the rightful heir to the throne. The movie is in capable hands with Garry Marshall, who directed Pretty Woman and Runaway Bride, and Andrews is a slam dunk choice to play the queen. But the real reason this movie is still so beloved 20 years later is Hathaway, whose great performance is even more impressive when you realize this is her first movie role ever. It would have been easy for a newcomer to get overshadowed by a legend like Andrews, but Hathaway perfectly conveys Mia's awkward social demeanor while also demonstrating why she would make a good queen for Genovia.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    33. Ratatouille (2007)

    Remy (voiced by Patton Oswalt) and Skinner (voiced by Ian Holm) chat while Linguini (voiced by Lou Romano) looks shocked
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Right off the bat, it's important to acknowledge that Ratatouille might be the single greatest concept for a movie ever. A rat named Remy (voiced by Patton Oswalt) loves cooking so much that he teams up with a bumbling chef to create delicious culinary concoctions by hiding under his chef's hat and controlling him like a puppet master? Chef's kiss. A thousand chef's kisses. But despite having an incredibly goofy premise (even by kids animation standards), Ratatouille delivers all of the emotional depth that you'd expect from a Pixar production. It may not have a moment as tragic as Up's opening montage or Andy saying goodbye to Woody, Buzz, and the rest of his toys in Toy Story 3, but Ratatouille does manage to yank at your heartstrings with a message about the need to find passion in your life. And that lesson culminates perfectly when jaded food critic Anton Ego (voiced by Peter O'Toole) tastes Remy's ratatouille and is transported back to a moment in his childhood. The entire sequence is a masterly tribute to discovering what you truly love in life and serves as a perfect thesis statement for the entire movie.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    34. Raya and the Last Dragon (2021)

    Sisu (voiced by Awkwafina) and Raya (voiced by Kelly Marie Tran) share a knowing look
    Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Dragons and humans once coexisted in harmony in the fantasy world Kumandra until the dragons sacrificed themselves to save Kumandra from evil spirits known as the Druun. Five hundred years later, the Druun have returned, and it's up to Raya (Kelly Marie Tran) to try to find Sisu (voiced by Awkwafina), a dragon who is rumored to have survived the previous battle, to defend Kumandra for good. The latest Disney Animated Studios film has been universally praised by critics, with many praising the performances of Tran and Awkwafina, as well as the animation style. The movie was previously on Disney+ through Premiere Access (meaning you had to pay to watch it), but now subscribers can watch Raya and the Last Dragon for free.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    35. Revenge of the Sith (2005)

    Ian McDiarmid looking menacingly at Hayden Christensen
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    The prequels are, in basically every conceivable way, vastly inferior to the original Star Wars trilogy. But pretty much everything good about the prequels outside of Darth Maul can be found in Revenge of the Sith: Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) making his pitch to Anakin (Hayden Christensen) with the Darth Plagueis monologue. The execution of Order 66. Almost no Jar Jar Binks. And the moment the entire trilogy had been building toward: Anakin and Obi-Wan facing off. It's a showdown that had been hyped for nearly three decades, and against all odds, it actually lived up to expectations. The lightsaber fighting on Mustafar rules, but even more importantly, the emotional stakes actually pay off. When Obi-Wan (Ewan McGregor) tells Anakin he was his brother, the heartbreak is palpable and even adds some extra depth to their final battle in A New Hope.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    36. Rogue One (2016)

    Felicity Jones looking very heroic
    Walt Disney Studios / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Despite the fact that the word "war" is literally in the title, Star Wars never really had a war movie until Rogue One, which tells the story of the group who stole and delivered the Death Star plans to Princess Leia to set off the events of the original trilogy. Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones), Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), and the rest of the crew know they are likely putting their lives on the line in order to give the Rebel Alliance a chance to stop the Empire, and that underlying knowledge creates an uncomfortably dark tone for the film that was unfamiliar to the beloved fantasy franchise up to this point. Rogue One is like no other Star Wars movie ever made, focusing on the enormous cost of war rather than making the fighting feel like background noise for whatever drama the Jedis are dealing with at that moment.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    37. The Sandlot (1993)

    Patrick Renna calling his shot
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    The Sandlot's legacy is mostly based in its string of memorable quotes ("You're killing me, Smalls!"), but it does not get enough appreciation as the perfect summer movie. After all, Smalls (Tom Guiry) moves to a new town and quickly bonds with Bennie (Mike Vitar) and the rest of the boys over a variety of quintessential summer activities. While the movie is technically set in the early '60s, this coming-of-age story feels timeless, and every generation of viewers will recognize aimlessly wasting summer days and nights by hanging by the pool, watching fireworks, and roasting 'mallows at sleepovers. The Sandlot flawlessly captures the freedom and harmless innocence of summer as a kid, which has allowed the movie to remain beloved for the almost three decades since its release.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    38. The Simpsons Movie (2007)

    Marge (voiced by Julie Kavner) and Homer Simpson (voiced by Dan Castellaneta) riding on a motorcycle
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    After nearly two decades on television, America's favorite animated family finally made the jump to the big screen with The Simpsons Movie. Considering how popular and adored the show is, you might have expected show creator Matt Groening and the rest of The Simpsons team to pull out all the stops for their cinematic debut. But rather than relying on gimmicks, the movie essentially feels like an extra-long episode of the show (in a good way). Sure, the entire town of Springfield may end up trapped in a dome because Homer caused an unnatural genetic mutation by dumping his pet pig's waste into the lake, but for the Simpsons, that's just a standard week. And while some fans may complain that the movie isn't as good as the golden age Simpsons, that's an impossibly high bar. The movie is still packed with just the right balance of humor and heart that made the show such a cultural behemoth in the first place.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    39. Sister Act (1992)

    Whoopi Goldberg singing her heart out
    Buena Vista Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Deloris Van Cartier (Whoopi Goldberg) is a lounge singer in Reno, Nevada, who ends up having to pretend to be a nun after witnessing her mob boyfriend commit murder. Goldberg was at the peak of her powers, and her talent is on full display here, as she elevates the fish out of water with her hysterical performance. The fact that this comes only two years after her Oscar win for Ghost speaks to Goldberg's one-of-a-kind versatility as a performer. And any doubt that Goldberg was a legitimate movie star went right out the window here, as Sister Act turned out to be a massive hit, earning $231 million at the global box office with only a $31 million budget.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    40. The Sound of Music (1965)

    Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer having a conversation
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Everyone knows the songs, but when is the last time you really sat down and watched this nearly three-hour-long movie? A brief refresher: A young nun named Maria (Julie Andrews) is sent to be the governess for the widowed Captain von Trapp (Christopher Plummer) and his seven children. At first the Captain does not approve of Maria's free-spirited, fun-loving ways, but eventually he warms to her and the two begin to fall for each other. Oftentimes, "classic" movies like this can be a bit of a bore, but The Sound of Music completely holds up, in large part thanks to Andrews, who earned an Oscar nomination for her role. Plummer is every bit as good as the stern but kindhearted captain, and he gets bonus points for ripping up the Nazi flag like a total badass (foreshadowing his 2005 role in the thriller Remember).

    Watch it on Disney+.

    41. Toy Story 2 (1999)

    Buzz Lightyear (voiced by Tim Allen) watches Woody (voiced by Tom Hanks) watching TV
    Buena Vista Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Sequels tend to suck, but Toy Story 2 is the rare follow-up that is every bit as good as the original. Part of what makes the movie so great is the stellar new characters that join the original gang, including Jesse, Bullseye, and Mrs. Potato Head. But what really makes Toy Story 2 a uniquely spectacular sequel is how it builds on the foundational existential crisis of the original in such an interesting way. In the first Toy Story, Buzz Lightyear is forced to reconcile with the fact that he is a toy, as opposed to the space ranger he believed himself to be. But this time, it's Woody who is asking the tough questions about his purpose. After meeting the rest of Woody's Roundup Gang, he realizes that someday Andy will outgrow him and he will likely be thrown away, living out the rest of his days in a box or, even worse, incinerated at the dump. It's the type of existential dread that would make Sartre or Camus proud. But unlike those two French sad boys, Toy Story 2 ultimately delivers a life-affirming message about how the relationships we have are what make life worth living.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    42. We Bought a Zoo (2011)

    Matt Damon staring down a tiger
    20th Century Fox / Courtesy Everett Collection

    As the title so eloquently explains, We Bought a Zoo tells the story of Benjamin Mee (Matt Damon), who decides to buy a zoo after the death of his wife. It's a feel-good, low-stakes movie that is more than happy to keep things light and breezy. The real secret to We Bought a Zoo's success is the wise decision to allow the simple, charming story to be elevated by its massively overqualified cast, which features Scarlett Johansson, Thomas Haden Church, and J.B. Smoove. So turn off that pesky brain for a couple of hours and just enjoy watching Damon interact with a plethora of wild animals. What more can you really ask for?

    Watch it on Disney+.

    43. Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)

    Bob Hoskins and Roger Rabbit (voiced by Charles Fleischer) trying to break out of handcuffs
    Buena Vista Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

    In a world where kids movies are increasingly snarky and self-aware and above it all, Who Framed Roger Rabbit's sincerity feels like a breath of fresh air. Nobody is "in on the the joke." Instead, everyone acts as if whatever is happening to them is actually happening to them, no matter how silly or cartoonish circumstances get. Whether it's down-on-his luck private eye Eddie Valiant (Bob Hoskins) dealing with the death of his brother via falling piano or Roger Rabbit's inability to resist finishing the "shave and a haircut," the stakes are taken seriously. And the result is that when you see Judge Doom (Christopher Lloyd) drop a cartoon shoe into dip (a substance that can kill toons), it's genuinely disturbing to watch. It's this level of commitment to keeping the emotional stakes grounded that makes Who Framed Roger Rabbit feel as groundbreaking today as it did 33 years ago.

    Watch it on Disney+.

    * Denotes title has been newly added to Disney+ for August.

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