This sequel surpasses the original by combining fantasy and action with a soul-searching theme as Woody must choose love or fame. While Cruella De Vil's lust for a dog-skin coat may scare little ones, older kids will love her outrageous antics. Check out the Disney animated flick and the live-action version starring Glenn Close. Charlotte's Web ages 4 and up Take a peek at the poignant cartoon that stays faithful to E.
White's lovely and touching book. With the help of a motherly spider, Wilbur the pig puts on a show to avoid becoming bacon. Then, rent the live-action version starring Julia Roberts and Dakota Fanning. Doctor Dolittle ages 4 and up Being able to talk to animals would be a dream come true for most kids. But the vintage movie shows that things can get out of control when a horse wears glasses, a chimp tries to be a chef, and the bizarre Pushmi-Pullyu on the loose.
Catch the Eddie Murphy version released in for even more laughs. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas! Old-time horror star Boris Karloff stars as the holiday grouch. But don't forget to rent Jim Carrey's live-action versioneither. It's over- the-top fun! Seuss, both the tongue-tangling original film and the Mike Myers remake will be true kid classics for generations to come. Where the Wild Things Are ages 5 and up This book-turned-animated classic made new waves in when the film was remade into a live-action blockbuster.
Though the book was first published in and the animated cartoon was released in , the charming story about little monsters will continue to stand the test of time. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory ages 6 and up Charlie's awe of the chocolate factory becomes our own in this wonderfully original classic based on Roald Dahl's novel in the hit starring Gene Wilder.
See the story with a modern twist in the version, "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," starring Johnny Depp. Add singing tableware, and you have one unique musical. The Jungle Book ages 4 and up Set in a jungle full of dangerous animals, the film is cushioned by the lighthearted humor and friendship of an orphaned boy and a bear.
The madcap monkey business is set to jazz, swing, and groovy vocals from bandleaders Louis Prima and Phil Harris. The Lion King ages 6 and up The laws of the jungle meet Shakespeare's Hamlet as a lion cub realizes he must avenge his father's death, claim the throne, and complete the circle of life. It can be heavy stuff at times. But Elton John's music and the vivid animation pack a powerful emotional punch worth experiencing. While Ariel is Disney's first modern leading lady, her dad and Prince Eric still have to rescue her.
Mary Poppins ages 4 and up The sheer joy and wonder of Mary Poppins give the musical its timeless appeal. Julie Andrews is magical as the flying nanny whose adventures fuse live action with animation. With genius songs like "A Spoonful of Sugar," it's a movie kids will watch again and again. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs ages 4 and up This Grimm's fairy tale became the hit that made Disney synonymous with childhood wonder.
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The wicked witch will likely scare tykes, but there are seven jolly reasons and loads of catchy songs to end all worries. The Fantasia Anthology all ages Long before Baby Mozart married classical music and whimsical motion, Disney imagined that folks would enjoy watching stunning visuals set to songs.
With works from Beethoven and Bach, Fantasia takes kids on a magical journey where they can hear the pictures and see the music. Schoolhouse Rock!
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Special 30th Anniversary Edition ages 4 and up This two-disc DVD set is a must-have for '70s-reared parents eager to prove that learning is fun-damental. The three R's meet rock and roll with retro-groovy hits like "I'm Just a Bill. But they'll love seeing Julie Andrews' infectious spirit turn a sad house into a singing house. The Wiggles: Wiggly Safari ages 2 to 6 Crocodile hunter Steve Irwin introduces the Aussie preschool-pop singers to kangaroos, kookaburras, and other kid-pleasing critters.
With backgrounds in early-childhood education, the group creates a combo of giggly songs and dances that teaches tykes about the Outback. Upper-class kittens and bumbling catnappers enhance a romantic rich-cat, poor-cat tale. Babar: King of the Elephants ages 4 and up Skillfully adapted from Jean and Laurent de Brunhoff's endearing stories, this European animated feature maintains the sweetness and warmth of the book's humanlike elephants.
Babe ages 5 and up Not since Charlotte's Web has a pig been so lovable as Babe in this surprise Australian hit. Kids will grow attached to Babe, the swine who beats the odds to work as a sheepdog. Born Free ages 5 and up This real-life story follows a British couple who take in and later set free an orphaned lioness. The film's moving message of respect for animals and their habitats is especially effective. We've found eight family movies -- beloved classics and newer additions -- that can teach your child life lessons.
Plot: An adorable piglet loses his mommy, and several animals on his farm, including a border collie, take over the job of raising him. But tragedy turns into triumph when Babe discovers his true calling in life: to herd sheep! Why Kids Will Love It: Talking animals are endlessly fascinating -- especially one that's cute and scrappy and has a squeaky voice that is as fetching as his little pink piggy snout.
Highlight: Seeing Babe make like he's a sheepherding dog for the first time will be both thrilling and funny for your children -- and you.
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Plus, hearing the lovable piglet sing his happy tune is also pretty great. So be happy with who you are -- even if you're a big, smelly ogre who tends to scare others away. Plot: In this first movie of the series, a grumpy ogre just wants to be left alone in his swamp.
But in order to do that, he must become an unlikely hero and rescue a princess who's trapped in a tower. Along the way, he makes new friends and discovers love that he didn't see coming.
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Why Kids Will Love It: Most of the snarky pop-culture references will go over young kids' heads for now, but they'll love how the movie twists all the classic fairy tales you've read to them. Highlight: Princess Fiona's secret.
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No spoilers here. Your mom and dad may seem like boring ol' grown- ups, but they're really quite, well, incredible Plot: As the parents of three, Mr. Incredible have retired from the superhero business and are living in the suburbs. Before too long, an evil villain decides to destroy the world and they have to suit up the entire family to save the planet.
Why Kids Will Love It: How funny it is to see people with superpowers try to live a normal life while attempting and failing to hide their super strength and ability to fly, not to mention lots of other impressive talents. Highlight: Expect some belly laughs when the dad tries to squeeeeeeeze back into his old costume.
Plot: In Mumble's world, penguins must sing beautifully to attract their soulmate. However, poor Mumble can only dance. Even though he can really shake a tail feather, he's ostracized by his penguin tribe and ends up in a different land with a group of very welcoming feathered friends who are eager to learn his moves.
Why Kids Will Love It: Seeing beautifully animated penguins dancing to soul music is sidesplittingly funny. Highlight: One of Mumble's pals sings a funny rendition of Prince's "Kiss.
But what your kid will pick up: We've only got one planet, so we need to treat it well. Plot: In a distant, bleak future, we've abused Mother Earth so badly that we've had to ditch the planet for life on gigantic spaceships. But one lonely cleanup robot is still plugging away back home and trying to make a difference.
Your child will love Wall-E in the same way that you adored E. Don't fight it. Plot: The classic tale gets a jazzy New Orleans-style makeover. Tiana, a waitress, wants to open a restaurant inspired by her dad, but a big, slimy wrench is thrown into her plan when Prince Naveen who's been turned into a frog by scary voodoo convinces her to kiss him.
Instead of returning him to human form, she changes into a frog. And that's when the real fun begins.
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Highlight: The toothless Cajun firefly may make you cringe at first, but he'll win you over. You're never too old to fulfill a dream. Plot: After many wonderful years with hubby Carl, Ellie passes away, leaving him alone and feeling like his best days are behind him. But he decides to finally take the trip he and his wife had been planning for a long time. Not wanting to ditch a house full of memories, he rigs thousands of balloons to his roof and floats off. Bonus: Your children will enjoy all the funny mishaps that pop up on the journey. Highlight: The hilarious talking dog who says silly things that a mutt actually would utter if he could speak in real life, like "Squirrel!
Through tolerance and acceptance of others, you just might gain a true friend.