While the depth of Disney’s vault onis undeniable, don’t sleep on . The streaming service houses a variety of films that range from blockbuster franchises to DC superheroes to iconic classics. Scroll through any era or genre, and you’ll likely come across some gems that everyone in your family can enjoy together.
Though, we’ve rounded up a series of movies that even your older kids will likely appreciate. Get into some memorable adventures with these selections, and be sure to check our suggestions for , the and the .
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An ’80s classic that everyone deserves to experience, The NeverEnding Story follows Bastian into a magical book that sucks him into the world of Fantasia. Rewatch or get introduced to Falkor, the Child Empress, Atreyu and his horse, and a host of other characters as they all try to save Fantasia. Try not to cry over [spoiler!]’s harrowing death.
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A movie that influenced pop culture and generations of filmmakers, The Goonies is top-tier kids-on-a-quest storytelling that has danger, humor and heart. This was Josh Brolin’s first film, and, long before he became Samwise Gamgee in The Lord of the Rings and Bob in Stranger Things, Sean Astin was Mikey, de facto leader of this crew. Sink your teeth into this treasure.
This animated classic won Hayao Miyazaki an Academy Award, and it distills everything good aboutinto one movie — even Totoro’s soot sprites make a return. In this film, 10-year-old Chihiro stumbles into a magical world of monsters and has to work to free her parents from an evil enchantment.
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Steven Universe stands as one of Cartoon Network’s most beloved animated series. This film takes 16-year-old Steven and the Gems on a musical ride where they face down a new adversary who wants to kill Steven. They deal with life-draining weapons, memory loss and interplanetary action. If you happen to fall down the rabbit hole, binge-watch the TV show while it’s still on HBO Max.
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At first, The Iron Giant may feel like an unassuming E.T.-like clone — just in animated form. But it’s not. You’ll feel something for this mega robot from space and the little boy Hogarth who befriends him as they learn a few life lessons. Fun fact: Vin Diesel voiced the Iron Giant.
Another Studio Ghibli gem from Miyazaki, Ponyo is a tender story of friendship. Ponyo, a magical fish princess (sure, why not), wants to join the human world to be with her BFF Sosuke, but they encounter more than a few obstacles. Matt Damon, Betty White, Cate Blanchett and Liam Neeson are among the English-language voice cast in this anime tale.
It’s a Tim Burton fantasy — and one of his best. Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter star as the main characters in this unfairy tale about love in the land of the living and dead.
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Before Johnny Depp, Gene Wilder embodied the role of Willy Wonka in this Roald Dahl golden ticket of a classic. Wilder plays the eccentric millionaire candy-maker in this fantastical — and funny — adaptation. A chocolate river, bubble gum mishaps and Oompa Loompas — what more do you need on family movie night?
Even if you’re not in the mood for a holiday movie, you may be in the mood for some laughs. The PG-rated 8-Bit Christmas hits you with ’80s nostalgia, Nintendo mania and at times, might remind you of Pixels or A Christmas Story. Neil Patrick Harris stars in this relatable childhood story.
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All the descriptions about his movie nail the “man-boy in a gray suit” part but fail to capture how Pee-Wee Herman launched a temporary dance craze and rap song. It’s a ridiculous yet entertaining comedy about said bowtied man-boy who jumps through hoops to find his stolen bike. Plus, this movie also marked Burton’s first foray into feature-film directing.