Childhood Faves: Family Movies

Last week I listed some of my favorite childhood Saturday morning cartoons. So, this week, I wanted to take a trip down memory lane again with my favorite childhood family movies! These are movies that I used to watch all the time. Some I’ve completely forgotten the plot for, some I still watch to this day — I will show all of them to my future children.

*These are all family friendly movies. There are more that I loved when I was younger but I’ll be doing another list of other childhood favorite movies like romantic comedies, horrors, etc.

*I’m not including classic Disney animated movies like the princess movies. If I did, this would be even longer. For reference, though, The Lion King is my all time fave, I love The Little Mermaid, Hercules, Peter Pan, 101 Dalmatians, Alice in Wonderland, Pocahontas, Sleeping Beauty and so many more of those classic Disney movies!

Motocrossed – It was because of this movie that I used to want to ride dirt bikes. I got out of that phase real quick.

The Lizzie McGuire Movie – What 90’s girl didn’t love Lizzie McGuire? I was part of the Hillary Duff fan club, too. Hey now, Hey now! This is what dreeeeams are made of!

The Luck of the Irish – So, I used this Disney movie as an example to represent all the random Disney channel movies that I loved. I used to wait for them to be on, pop in a VHS, and record them on it so I could just rewatch them all the time. (This was before DVR and streaming, even YouTube)

Halloweentown – Halloween wasn’t complete until this movie came on.

Zenon: Girl of the 21st Century – 32 more years and we’re there folks.

Thumbelina – One of the most underrated animated movies of the 90’s. This one deserves all the love.

Oliver and Company – Ok, I know I said no Disney animated films,  but I don’t feel like this qualifies under the typical classics/princess ones. Singing, talking animals, and the beginning always made me sad (to this day, I always worry that a box on the side of the road is full of baby animals).

The Land Before Time – Dinosaurs. ‘Nuff said.

Anastasia – Ah, just perfection.

Treasure Planet – I was obsessed with this when it first released. I think I even purchased the soundtrack to it. Pirates in space? Heck yes.

The Fox and the Hound – Again, this is a Disney film, but I don’t think this one falls into the typical Disney category. Anyways, this movie makes me cry, it’s so freakin’ cute.

The Thief and the Cobbler – This movie is so bizarre – not the story, but the animation. Did you know it took 31 years for this one to even release? It broke the World Record of longest production time. It’s also inspired by Mulla Nasrudin, and a collection of stories curated by Idries Shah called Exploits of the Incomparable Mulla Nasrudin.

Balto – Fun fact that I just learned about this movie: it is loosely based on a dog named Balto who helped save children from the diphtheria epidemic in the 1925 serum run to Nome. Look at our children’s movies getting deep and historical. But for me, it had dogs, which was enough.

All Dogs Go To Heaven – Again, dogs.

The Secret of Nimh – You know, I don’t think I really knew what this movie was about when I was younger. For some reason, I just really enjoyed it and would watch it quite often. I also don’t think I ever got more than 30 minutes into it before falling asleep. But, boy, did I love that beginning  😆

Jurassic Park – Alright, do I need to explain? I mean, who didn’t like Jurassic Park growing up?

Spy Kids – I loved Spy Kids so much. I don’t even really know why. I suppose I thought it was cool that kids were fighting the bad guy and it wasn’t a cartoon? Oh, and hey, I just realized it’s a movie with an interracial family.

Babes in Toyland – This was a movie I always watched around Christmas time. Basically, 11-year-old Lisa (Drew Barrymore) is transported to Toyland where all sorts of drama is happening between Mary Contrary, Barnaby Barnacle, and Jack Nimble. It’s just a fun movie because of the fairytale/whimsical setting.

Shiloh – I loved this book and the movie. It made me cry every time. I also had a beagle at that age, so of course, I related to it because I was 6 and how cool that my dog was on TV, right?

The Dark Crystal – This isn’t really animated or live-action, but for simplicity, it’s going in this category. If I’m being completely honest, I don’t remember a thing about this movie except for the fact that I watched it all the time.

Jumanji – No explanation necessary.

Napoleon – Okay, you’ll probably make fun of me for this one (well, you’ll make fun of me for a lot that is on this list, but especially this one). It’s about a puppy who wants to run away from his home to be a wild dog. At a birthday party, he jumps into a basket and the balloons carry him away from home. When he lands, he encounters friends and foe (animals) and learns some lessons along the way…..ah, who am I kidding, this movie had a cute puppy and talking animals. I loved it.

Anything Mary-Kate and Ashley  – I was in the Mary-Kate and Ashley fan club. No joke. I was in it. I even had the Mary-Kate and Ashley Licensed to Drive video game on Gamecube (I was 9, okay!). Anyways, I loved Holiday in the Sun, Our Lips are Sealed, Winning London, When in Rome, Passport to Paris, Getting There, Billboard Dad, and so many more. It’s also because of their movies that I started to really want to travel, so ha!

Bring It On – I could probably still recite the cheers from this movie.

The Parent Trap – My mom is a twin, so I thought this was hilarious.

  • The Pagemaster
  • The Parent Trap
  • Air Bud
  • Flubber
  • Matilda
  • Space Jam
  • Stuart Little
  • Iron Giant
  • The Secret Garden
  • A Little Princess
  • Hocus Pocus
  • A Troll in Central Park
  • Annabelle’s Wish
  • What a Girl Wants

If you’re an early 90’s kid, did you see any of your favorites on here? If not, what are some of your favorite childhood family movies? (I’ll be doing a list for non-family like romcoms etc.)

  • I haven’t thought of so many of these in such a long time! Anastasia is probably my all-time favorite animated movie. Balto was another favorite that we still watch/talk about often, haha. Once Upon a Forest was another animated movie I loved! I definitely loved anything Mary-Kate and Ashley too, even their earlier detective movies.

    • I’ve never seen Once Upon a Forest! I’ll have to check it out 🙂

  • The Parent Trap was definitely a fave of mine. I’m still a teen but I used to watch Land Before Time when I was younger and WELL, I don’t know how you like it – it bored to death, literally. Spy kids was meh, but that’s because I didn’t exactly grow up with them.

  • I haven’t seen all of these, and many of them I’ve seen but not until I was older. But yes to Anastasia, Jumanji, Matilda, and The Land Before Time! I’ve probably seen all of those many, many times lol.

    • I watched a lot of TV, especially Disney Channel >.< Also, just a ton of marathons of MK & Ashley movies. haha but I DO love the ones you have seen!

  • I loved Jumanji, and I remember my dad taking all of us to see Jurassic Park. I will still watch Bring It On whenever it’s on tv! We used to watch The Goonies a lot, and I’m pretty I have all of the dialogue memorized to The Sandlot.

    • AHHH I totally forgot about The Goonies and The Sandlot. How did I forget those !?

  • I think The Parent Trap both versions is one of my favorites! Great post!

    • I haven’t seen the original version before >.< hahah

  • I love Anastasia and The Parent Trap (but more so the older version). Somehow I haven’t seen loads of these, so I must remember them for my next Netflix binge. Especially The Fox and the Hound, I can’t believe I’ve never seen it.

    • I haven’t actually ever seen the older version of The Parent Trap haha. ALSO YES. Watch The Fox and the Hound. I love that one <3

  • You literally just put my entire movie childhood in one post. This brought back so many memories. I need to go rent some of these right now. Fantastic list!

    • AH YESSS. That’s amazing. hahah it’s so fun to go down memory lane every now and then 🙂

  • Michelle

    Were we friends in our childhood? Because I think we definitely could have been. I think you picked out every single one of my top Disney Channel movies, and Thumbelina was pretty much my favorite movie ever. I may or may not have run around the house singing “Let Me Be Your Wings” on a near constant basis 🙂

    • That’s awesome! We SHOULD have been friends haha Apparently, according to my mother because I have no memory of this, I used to sing Part of Your World from The Little Mermaid and flip my hair all dramatically like I was coming out of the ocean. Being a kid was awesome, because we’d probably never do either of these things now hahaha

  • Ahhh I love this post so much, Molly! The Lizzie Mc Guire movie is everything ahah, I loved that movie and the show so, so much. <3

    I watched all of the Mary-Kate and Ashley movies just as well, they made me want to travel SO badly 🙂 I think my favorite one was Our Lips are sealed, it was such a fun movie and, well…Australia, I want to go there since that movie ahah 🙂

    • I LOVED the travel movies for Mary-Kate & Ashley. I was obsessed. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve watched Holiday in the Sun – I wanted to go to Atlantis for my birthday that year and BEGGED my parents to take me. It didn’t happen, but still haha

      • Hahaha oh I wanted SO badly to go there as well. A little too far for me though, I never dared asking my parents to go ahah. Someday we both will 😛

        • I mean, that younger kid night club looked COOL back then lol

  • Greg Hill

    Ooh some good stuff here. 🙂 LOVED The secret of NIMH as a kid (heck I still love it) and Jurassic Park naturally. 🙂 Spy Kids are pretty awesome although I always get them mixed up- I think the one you pictured there I saw in a movie theater a couple years ago on vacation and they were having 25 cent showings. That was fun on the big screen (the one where Jessica Alba is pregnant I think)?

    I remember liking the Disney Robin Hood too where they’re all animals.

    • See, I loved NIMH too but I don’t know why? I don’t think I EVER made it to the end because I’d fall asleep or something haha. Thanks for stopping by!

  • There are some classics on there. I mean, Anastasia is obviously one of my favourites and I was full on obsessed with Land Before Time. I watched it on repeat because I thought it was amazing. First you get me wanting to watch old school cartoons and now I want to rewatch childhood favourites.

    • heheheh 😀 I wanted everyone to just remember HOW GOOD visual media was when we were kids haha