The summer school holidays are just around the corner, and with it comes the challenge of keeping your kids entertained for the duration of the break. You might plan day trips, playdates, or trips to see the family, however, the weather isn’t always reliable, so sometimes you’ll need to have back-up plans for fun activities which involve staying at home.

With this in mind, we analysed IMDB data in a bid to discover the top-rated child-friendly animated movies. Read on to find out more…

Research and analysis

Our research focused on the top 150 suggested films on IMDB with certification of U or PG for the phrase “animation”. Using this list of 150 films, each film’s IMDB user rating and IMDB metascore were analysed to determine which are the ‘top-rated’ overall. Where either the IMDB rating or IMDB metascore was not available for a film, these were removed from the research.

Looking at the IMDB data, we discovered the following:

Rank Film Year Duration (mins) Animation type Certification IMDB user rating IMDB Metascore
1 The Lion King 1994 88 2D U 8.5 88
2 WALL-E 2008 98 CGI U 8.4 95
3 Spider-Man:
Into the Spider-Verse
2018 117 CGI PG 8.4 87
4 Coco 2017 105 CGI PG 8.4 81
5 Toy Story 1995 81 CGI PG 8.3 95
6 Toy Story 3 2010 103 CGI U 8.3 92
7 Up 2009 96 CGI U 8.3 88
8 Inside Out 2015 95 CGI U 8.2 94
9 Finding Nemo 2003 100 CGI U 8.2 90
10 Klaus 2019 96 2D PG 8.2 65
11 Ratatouille 2007 111 CGI U 8.1 96
12 Beauty and the Beast 1991 84 2D U 8.1 95
13 The Incredibles 2004 115 CGI U 8.1 90
14 Aladdin 1992 90 2D U 8.1 86
15 Soul 2020 100 CGI PG 8.1 83
16 Monsters, Inc 2001 92 CGI U 8.1 79
17 How to Train Your Dragon 2010 98 CGI PG 8.1 75
18 Zootropolis 2016 108 CGI PG 8 78
19 Toy Story 2 1999 92 CGI U 7.9 88
20 Shrek 2001 90 CGI U 7.9 84
21 Big Hero 6 2014 102 CGI PG 7.8 74
22 Tangled 2010 100 CGI PG 7.8 71
23 Fantasia 1940 125 2D U 7.7 96
24 Toy Story 4 2019 100 CGI PG 7.7 84
25 The LEGO Movie 2014 100 CGI U 7.7 83
26 Wreck-It Ralph 2012 101 CGI PG 7.7 72
27 Snow White and the
Seven Dwarfs
1937 83 2D A 7.6 95
28 The Little Mermaid 1989 83 2D U 7.6 88
29 Moana 2016 107 CGI PG 7.6 81
30 The Incredibles 2 2018 118 CGI PG 7.6 80
31 Kung Fu Panda 2008 92 CGI U 7.6 74
32 Despicable Me 2010 95 CGI U 7.6 72
33 Mulan 1998 88 2D PG 7.6 71
34 The Jungle Book 1967 78 2D U 7.6 65
35 Pinocchio 1940 88 2D U 7.5 99
36 Frozen 2013 102 CGI PG 7.5 75
37 Luca 2021 95 CGI U 7.5 71
38 Ice Age 2002 81 CGI U 7.5 61
39 Robin Hood 1973 83 2D U 7.5 57
40 Sing 2 2021 110 CGI U 7.5 49
41 The Emperor’s New Groove 2000 78 2D U 7.4 70
42 Alice in Wonderland 1951 75 2D U 7.4 68
43 The Land Before Time 1988 69 2D U 7.4 66
44 Onward 2020 102 CGI U 7.4 61
45 Dumbo 1941 64 2D U 7.3 96
46 Bambi 1942 70 2D U 7.3 91
47 Cinderella 1950 74 2D U 7.3 85
47 Sleeping Beauty 1959 75 2D U 7.3 85
49 101 Dalmatians 1961 79 2D U 7.3 83
50 The Simpsons Movie 2007 87 2D PG 7.3 80
51 Tarzan 1999 86 2D U 7.3 79
52 Lady and the Tramp 1955 76 2D U 7.3 78
53 Finding Dory 2016 97 CGI U 7.3 77
54 Peter Pan 1953 77 2D U 7.3 76
55 Encanto 2021 102 CGI PG 7.3 75
55 Shrek 2 2004 93 CGI U 7.3 75
55 The LEGO Batman Movie 2017 104 CGI U 7.3 75
58 Hercules 1997 93 2D U 7.3 74
59 Lilo & Stitch 2002 85 2D U 7.3 73
60 The Adventures of Tintin:
The Secret of the Unicorn
2011 107 CGI PG 7.3 68
61 Monsters University 2013 104 CGI U 7.3 65
61 The Fox and the Hound 1981 83 2D U 7.3 65
63 Megamind 2010 95 CGI PG 7.3 63
64 Despicable Me 2 2013 98 CGI U 7.3 62
65 A Bug’s Life 1998 95 CGI U 7.2 77
66 Rango 2011 107 CGI PG 7.2 75
67 Winnie the Pooh 2011 63 2D U 7.2 74
68 Cars 2006 117 CGI U 7.2 73
68 The Great Mouse Detective 1986 74 2D U 7.2 73
70 Kung Fu Panda 2 2011 90 CGI PG 7.2 67
71 The Sword in the Stone 1963 79 2D U 7.2 61
72 Treasure Planet 2002 95 2D U 7.2 60
73 Wish Dragon 2021 98 CGI PG 7.2 59
74 Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron 2002 83 2D U 7.2 52
75 Turning Red 2022 100 CGI PG 7.1 83
76 The Princess and the Frog 2009 97 2D U 7.1 73
77 Brave 2012 93 CGI PG 7.1 69
77 Arthur Christmas 2011 97 CGI U 7.1 69
79 Kung Fu Panda 3 2016 95 CGI PG 7.1 66
79 The AristoCats 1970 78 2D U 7.1 66
79 The SpongeBob
SquarePants Movie
2004 87 2D U 7.1 66
82 Anastasia 1997 94 2D U 7.1 61
83 Sing 2016 108 CGI U 7.1 59
84 Hotel Transylvania 2012 91 CGI U 7.1 47
85 The Hunchback of
Notre Dame
1996 91 2D U 7 74
86 Ralph Breaks the Internet 2018 112 CGI PG 7 71
87 Snoopy and Charlie Brown:
The Peanuts Movie
2015 88 CGI U 7 67
88 Cloudy with a Chance
of Meatballs
2009 90 CGI U 7 66
89 The Croods: A New Age 2020 95 CGI U 7 56
90 The Rescuers 1977 78 2D U 6.9 74
91 Bolt 2008 96 CGI PG 6.9 67
92 Rio 2011 96 CGI U 6.9 63
93 Madagascar 2005 86 CGI U 6.9 57
94 The Lion King 2019 118 CGI PG 6.9 55
95 Atlantis: The Lost Empire 2001 95 2D U 6.9 52
96 The Road to El Dorado 2000 89 2D U 6.9 51
97 Horton Hears a Who! 2008 86 CGI U 6.8 71
98 The Rescuers Down Under 1990 77 2D U 6.8 70
99 Frozen 2 2019 103 CGI U 6.8 64
100 Meet the Robinsons 2007 95 CGI U 6.8 61
101 Madagascar 3:
Europe’s Most Wanted
2012 95 CGI PG 6.8 60
102 Brother Bear 2003 85 2D U 6.8 48
103 Over the Hedge 2006 83 CGI U 6.7 67
104 The Good Dinosaur 2015 93 CGI PG 6.7 66
104 Vivo 2021 95 CGI U 6.7 66
106 Surf’s Up 2007 85 CGI PG 6.7 64
107 Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa 2008 89 CGI U 6.7 61
108 Cars 3 2017 102 CGI U 6.7 59
109 Oliver & Company 1998 74 2D U 6.7 58
109 Pocahontas 1995 81 2D U 6.7 58
111 Hotel Transylvania 2 2015 89 CGI U 6.7 44
112 Flushed Away 2006 85 CGI U 6.6 74
113 Monster House 2006 91 CGI PG 6.6 68
114 The LEGO Movie 2 2019 107 CGI U 6.6 65
115 The Polar Express 2004 100 CGI U 6.6 61
116 Back to the Outback 2021 95 CGI U 6.6 58
117 Home 2015 94 CGI U 6.6 55
118 Curious George 2006 87 2D U 6.5 62
119 The Secret Life of Pets 2016 87 CGI U 6.5 61
120 Monsters vs. Aliens 2009 94 CGI PG 6.5 56
121 Trolls 2016 92 CGI U 6.5 55
122 Recess: School’s Out 2001 82 2D U 6.5 43
123 Happy Feet 2006 108 CGI U 6.4 77
124 Robots 2005 91 CGI U 6.4 64
125 The Black Cauldron 1985 80 2D U 6.4 59
126 Minions 2015 91 CGI U 6.4 56
126 Dinosaur 2000 82 CGI PG 6.4 56
128 The Lorax 2012 86 CGI U 6.4 46
129 Shrek Forever After 2010 93 CGI U 6.3 58
130 The Grinch 2018 85 CGI U 6.3 51
131 The Boss Baby 2017 97 CGI U 6.3 50
132 Despicable Me 3 2017 89 CGI U 6.3 49
133 Pete’s Dragon 1977 126 2D U 6.3 46
134 The Angry Birds Movie 2016 97 CGI U 6.3 43
135 Cars 2 2011 106 CGI U 6.2 57
136 PAW Patrol: The Movie 2021 86 CGI U 6.2 50
137 My Little Pony 2017 99 2D U 6.2 39
138 Rugrats in Paris 2000 78 2D U 6.1 62
139 Shrek the Third 2007 93 CGI U 6.1 58
140 Bee Movie 2007 91 CGI U 6.1 54
141 Troll World Tour 2020 90 CGI U 6.1 51
142 Shark Tale 2004 90 CGI U 6 48
143 Hotel Transylvania: Transformania 2022 87 CGI PG 6 46
144 Gnomeo & Juliet 2011 84 CGI U 5.9 53
145 The Boss Baby 2: Family Business 2021 107 CGI PG 5.9 39
146 The Addams Family 2019 86 CGI PG 5.8 46
147 The Wild Thornberrys Movie 2002 85 2D U 5.6 69
148 Scoob! 2020 93 CGI PG 5.6 43
149 The Addams Family 2 2021 93 CGI PG 5.4 37
150 The Emoji Movie 2017 86 CGI U 3.3 12

*All figures correct as of 16/03/2022

The Lion King Animated Movie

Based on a combination of both IMDB metrics, the top three included The Lion King (1994), WALL-E (2008), and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018). Making up the top 10 included Coco (2017), Toy Story (1995), Toy Story 3 (2010), Up (2009), Inside Out (2015), Finding Nemo         (2003), and Klaus (2019).

For those on a time-crunch, 65 of the 150 films analysed were 90 minutes or less. Looking at these, the top-rated films included The Lion King (1994 – 88 mins), Toy Story (1995 – 81 mins), Beauty and the Beast (1991 – 84 mins), Aladdin (1992 – 90 mins), Shrek (2001 – 90 mins), Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937 – 83 mins), The Little Mermaid (1989 – 83 mins), Mulan (1998 – 88 mins), The Jungle Book (1967 – 78 mins), and Pinocchio (1940 – 88 mins).

Looking at the main production company involved with each film, SPA Studios films tended to have the highest average IMDB user rating (8.1), whereas 20th Century Studios films had the highest average IMDB metascore (80), although both of these companies only had one film in the list in which they were the lead production company.

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Methodology:

  • Research focused on the top 150 suggested films on IMDB with certification of U or PG for the phrase “animation”
  • Using this list of 150 films, each film’s IMDB user rating and IMDB metascore were analysed to determine which are the ‘top-rated’ overall
  • Where either the IMDB user rating or IMDB metascore was not available for a film, these were removed from the research.

*All figures correct as of 16/03/2022