The Top 5 Disney Cartoon Movies of All Time

Cartoon movies are not just for children – if anything, no one needs an escape from reality as much as us grown-ups do. The older you get, the more likely you can pick up on the complex nuances in Disney cartoon movies.

Whether you’re going under the sea, discovering a whole new world, or feeling the love tonight, it’s an embraced indisputable reality that Disney movies are truly magical. 


If you’re looking for beautiful stories or visually stunning animation, whether you have kids or going solo, here are the Top 5 Disney cartoon movies of all time.

The Top 5 Disney Cartoon Movies of All Time
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The Lion King

The Lion King was released on June 15, 1994, with a preliminary $766 million worldwide gross to a favorable response from audiences who lauded the movie for its music, plot, themes, and animation.

It narrates Simba’s tale, a young lion to succeed his father, Mufasa, as King of the Pride Lands. After Mufasa’s murder by Simba’s paternal uncle Scar, Simba is tricked into believing that he was guilty and ran away into isolation.


After growing up in Timon and Pumbaa’s carefree company, Simba gains good insight from his childhood friend, Nala, and his shaman, Rafiki, before coming back to defy Scar to end his rule and take his spot as the true king in the Circle of Life.

The Little Mermaid

Disobedient mermaid Ariel, 16, is intrigued by life on land. She falls for a human prince on one of her surface visits, prohibited by her controlling father, King Triton.

Ascertained to be with her new romance, Ariel is making a risky bargain with Ursula, the sea witch, to become human for three days. 


But the king must make the greatest sacrifice for his daughter when the plans go haywire for the star-crossed lovers.

On November 17, 1989, The Little Mermaid was released to theaters for critical praise, receiving acclaim for the animation, music, and story. 

It was also a commercial success, earning $84 million after its initial release at the domestic box office and $233 million worldwide in overall lifetime gross.

The Top 5 Disney Cartoon Movies of All Time
Image source: Vanity Fair


Aladdin was released to critical and commercial success on November 25, 1992, becoming the highest-grossing 1992 film with a worldwide box office revenue of over $504 million. 

Aladdin is a poor street urchin who spends all his time stealing stuff from Agrabah’s marketplace. His adventures begin when he encounters Princess Jasmine, who is forced by her wacky yet estranged father to get married.

The luck of Aladdin shifts suddenly when he gets a mystical lamp from the Cave of Wonders. What he is unintentionally getting is a fun-loving genie who just wants his freedom. 

Little do they know is that the evil adviser to the Sultan, Jafar, has his own intentions for Aladdin and the lamp.

Beauty and the Beast

On September 29, 1991, Beauty and the Beast made its premiere at the New York Film Festival as an unfinished film. 

At the box office worldwide, it grossed $425 million and was met with positive reviews from critics for its romantic storyline, animation (especially the ballroom scene), characters, and musical score.

A proud, young prince and his castle’s servants fell under the spell of a wicked enchantress, who transformed him into the hideous Beast until he learns to love and be loved in return. 

After he imprisons her father, Maurice, the fiery, strong-willed village girl Belle enters the Beast’s castle. Belle starts dragging the cold-hearted Beast out of his loneliness with his magical servants’ aid. 

The Top 5 Disney Cartoon Movies of All Time
Image source: Vox

Toy Story

The story focuses on the relationship between an old-fashioned pull-string cowboy doll named Woody and an astronaut action figure, Buzz Lightyear. 

It takes place in a world where anthropomorphic toys come to life while humans are absent.

They grew from competitors vying for their owner’s affections, Andy Davis, to friends working together to reunite with him after being separated from him. 

On November 19, 1995, Toy Story premiered and was the highest-grossing film during its opening weekend, successfully earning more than $373 million at the worldwide box office.

It was lauded by critics and viewers, who praised the 3D animation’s technical creativity, the screenplay’s humor and thematic depth, the musical score, and Hanks and Allen‘s vocal performances.


Beasts and beauties, mystical lamps, animals, and toys – for nearly 100 years, Walt Disney Animation Studios has been making exquisite groundbreaking animation

What was once considered a cinematic diversion for children has evolved into a format that is as dynamically rich and emotionally engaging as any 18-and-over crowd-oriented live-action films.