top of page
  • Writer's pictureAaron Fonseca

10 Most Memorable Animated Movies From the 90s

This week's Your Nerd Side Show:

Film and TV from the 90s can be remembered for its range of genres, which included a whole catalog of memorable animation films. At the time, there was a notable shift in the genre with a step-up in technology that allowed for cleaner animation and sharper viewing.

Animation can be mistakenly linked to just young audiences, although they make up a large portion of fans. However, animation was just as capable of delivering adult humor, and movies that could appeal to all ages. From animals to robots and humans, the 90s was a great era for animated movies, with a collection standing out as the most memorable.


A Bug's Life drew viewers in to the scenario of Flik summoning an army of other bugs to defend his colony against the grasshoppers. The animation was clear-cut and bright, capturing the attention of audiences straight away. The unique personalities of each character, particularly those from the circus, meant there was something in the movie to suit all preferences.

The story was full of heart and created an exciting adventure for all ages. As with some other Pixar films, at the end of A Bug's Life was a blooper reel. The animated characters could be seen to make mistakes and laugh with their cast mates. It was an added bonus to an already great movie.

The Iron Giant

Hogarth met The Iron Giant in the woods, forming a friendship with the extraterrestrial robot. On the face of it, the premise sounds fairly simple. However, there are obvious reasons that the film is as one of the best kids movies featuring aliens.

The Iron Giant made the story believable and relatable for kids, with the topics of friendship and family. Even though it was centered around a robot, the writers and creators gave depth to their work which made the film well worth watching. The film made something as simple as the Iron Giant feel like a character that people had been in love with for ages.

The Rugrats Movie

The Rugrats started out as a series in 1993, and the movie that followed, The Rugrats Movie, was released in 1998. The show displayed some of the best Nickelodeon friendships and had been a popular hit with its younger audiences, and the movie didn't disappoint.

Up until that point, the show's main children characters were Angelica, Lil, Phil, Chuckie and Tommy, but the film introduced a new brother for Tommy, Dil. There was a real sense of adventure with the group of children, while also expressing their vulnerabilities and fears towards the big, wide world.

Toy Story

The 1996 release of Toy Story marked the beginning of a much-loved franchise that has continued through the years, with the development of Toy Story 5 bringing back Woody and Buzz. Through many films, audiences have grown up with these characters and stories.

Children of the 90s were able to set their imaginations free, buying into a world where their toys could come to life. The humor also catered to older viewers. The crisp animation and plethora of individual characters provided the opportunity for fun and lessons on friendship. The unmistakable voices of Tom Hanks and Tim Allen brought warmth and life to the animated characters, leaving a positive mark on children of the decade.

The Lion King

As one of the biggest 90s box office hits, The Lion King was a breathtaking depiction of the animal kingdom, following Simba's journey to becoming king. The joyous music, which included the creativity of Elton John and Hans Zimmer, guided viewers through a strong but emotional narrative.

The movie became memorable for several reasons. Each character had a clear motive and definite reason for being in the movie, some of them brought humor, while others added to the drama. The colorful scenery and vibrancy of the characters was appealing to watch, and, of course, the songs stuck with fans.

POKEMON: The First Movie

Pokemon: The First Movie immediately stood out in animation for the 3 segments it was split into: Pikachu's Vacation, Origin Of Mewtwo and Mewtwo Strikes Back, with the second part only added to the extended version.

The trading cards of the same franchise came before the series and movies, sparking a following that transferred to the films that followed. The movie brought to life what fans had been envisaging through the games, animating the popular characters and therefore making it memorable for the time period.

Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island

Scooby-Doo has been a household show since 1969, remembered and recommended by many generations. The movie, Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island upheld the high standard of animation that the show had already set, keeping in fans favorite main characters.

The title sums the movie up well, as one of the most iconic TV detective gangs once again ventured into the unknown, filled with mysteries and problems. The film falls under the 'memorable' category because it didn't try to reinvent the franchise, rather, the creators stuck to what the show did best. In sticking with their known structure, the scariest Scooby-Doo movie was born.

James and The Giant Peach

James and the Giant Peach fused both live action and animation, with the latter coming in to play when James entered the peach. Produced by Tim Burton and Denise Di Novi, an orphaned boy lived with his mean aunts, before discovering a giant peach which was accompanied by various insects.

By choosing to keep live action as well as stop-motion animation, the film was able to incorporate human emotion and filter it in with the surrealness of James' life in the peach. The blend itself made the film memorable, almost making the narrative seem possible.

Tom and Jerry the movie

Tom and Jerry was a valued show which started as short films way back in 1940. The originals were later followed by a few series which included 1975's The Tom and Jerry Show. Tom and Jerry the Movie was the franchise's first feature length movie.

The plot line had the same cat and mouse chase excitement, however, the pair also teamed up to help a girl named Robyn to find her missing father. It was a heartwarming movie to watch, as the well-known enemies finally came together on the same side.

Beauty and the Beast:

There are some truly timeless classics in Disney's library of film and Beauty and the Beast is one of the most beloved. One of the highest grossing Disney remakes was the live action version of Beauty and the Beast, which recreated a truly memorable animation of the same name.

It stands as one of the most memorable movies from the 90s because of the combination of magic, love and imagination. The storyline had (and still has) viewers hooked instantly. The upbeat villagers represented the essence of Belle's enchanting personality, which contradicted the eeriness of the beast's life. Making inanimate objects come to life was a wonderful extra layer to ensure Beauty and the Beast would remain in the minds of its fans.

9 views0 comments


bottom of page