Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Top Animated Films

Yahoo readers give us a very disappointing top 30 list of the all-time best animated films. Finding Nemo was number 1. Now, I liked Finding Nemo (once or twice) and my kids still like it. But number 1?! It’s cute and tells a warm and fuzzy family story (except for the ever-popular Disney theme of the death of the mother!) . . . but the Dad is sort of a neurotic head-case . . . a hapless hero. Is that what inspires our children today? I hope not.

Further, inexplicably and notably, the brain-dead Enchanted towers over the masterful and artistically gorgeous Sleeping Beauty (long my daughter’s favorite movie). When I remember the innocent and moving "love scene" between Princess Aurora--where the Prince is captivated not only by her beauty but also by the purity of her spirit and sets about a plan to marry her despite her "lowly" status--and contrast it to the bumbling and awkward romance of the (very phony--to the point where she is a literal cartoon) Princess of Enchanted and remember that she only lands her Prince by becoming hardened and "real" (and, of course, appropriately whimpifying him) . . . I sigh. At least Beauty and the Beast still ranked high . . . that girl loved virtue and books!

And should I be embarrassed that there were only 5 films on this list that my kids and I have not seen (and most of them more than once!)? Probably. But, still, I’m not.

Discussions - 8 Comments

The dad in Finding Nemo is a bit of a goof, but he did risk all to go save his child. As a secondary teacher, I could see how for some kids that would mean more than the goofiness and haplessness.

Like you, I have seen all but five. I think my favorite would have to be either Lion King or Little Mermaid...that is a tough one.

This is a silly list: No Fantasia, Dumbo, Song of the South, Lady and the Tramp, for examples. Students today (consider those who will be going to college ten years from now) have no knowledge of film classics (how many will have seen a John Wayne film?) and therefore no real grasp of the medium and how profound a great director can make mere entertainment. A sophisticated foreign student scoffed when I praised John Ford as the greatest American director. She changed her mind after she saw "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance."

Where is the claymation epic Curse of the Were Rabit?

Think claymation and animation are different? The Academy saw differently.

Ken, Lady and The Tramp is #18 on the list.

Fantasia does seem to be a glaring omission, though, I'll agree.

I can't say I'm surprised that someone would promote Song of The South here at NLT but, controversy of the film aside, less than a third of it is animated anyway, so it hardly belongs on such a list.

Any survey restricted to users of "Yahoo" is bound to suffer from some systemic omissions. Now, if the survey had been conducted by a more traditional organization, say.... Google, or Face Book, then we would certainly have seen a more representative list!

Nemo's a great movie, if for nothing else, his neurotic father succeeds by overcoming his neuroses and exhibiting real virtue. But the class of animated movies is clearly "The Incredibles" - there's really no argument about that, is there? Of the movies on the list, I'd axe Shrek most of all - it's really quite lame, but maybe I'm just too much an old man to appreciate it...

Fung, representative of what?

That Fantasia is not on the list is a sad omission.

However, Pixar studios has really been a roaring success. I am also guilty of having seen most of what is that list, including the Japanese anime.

For those of you who appreciate the childish, The Electric Company is out on DVD.

Kate: That last is fantastic news! I became enamored of Morgan Freeman's acting ability as a very young child watching him on Electric Company. And it probably taught me how to read--I know it taught me phonics. I was sad to see that it did not continue as Sesame Street did on PBS . . . as I always considered that it was far superior. Thanks for the heads up!

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