My Favourite Non-Disney Animated Films

So, I’m flattered that a lot of people enjoyed my article about Disney films I like that are terribly underrated. But what about any animated films that aren’t made by Disney?

I must have had a post for this in the back of my mind until I saw Michelle’s post that made me remember. Here they are:

The Secret of NIMH

My all-time favorite. This movie doesn’t get enough attention and that boggles my mind.

It’s the darkest animated film I’ve ever seen and truly portrays that life as a mouse can be scary. Cats appear to be vicious than they really are, and imagine how scary a tractor is to all the animals that live in the field. The soundtrack during that scene truly makes it feel that way. Also it’s the first animated film where I’ve seen characters wounded or killed and it’s not covered up.

I love all the characters, both good and evil. Jenner is practically a serial killer, it doesn’t take long for you to notice the Great Owl and Nicodemus look the same, and Mrs. Brisby may not be the bravest mouse, but she’ll do anything to protect her family.

Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron

I was drawn to this movie for its music and it was a memorable experience seeing it in theaters. While you’ve got Bryan Adams to provide you with songs, there’s also the fantastic score by Hans Zimmer.

What makes this movie so iconic is how much story and emotion is put into it without the usage of talking animals. The landscapes are also beautifully done too. If you love horses, this is a movie for you.


Another one of Don Bluth’s creations. She’s a princess in her own way. Another great animated film with a beautiful soundtrack, I can’t get enough of Once Upon a December. I wish there was an extended version of it.

When I was a kid I didn’t understand at first why Dimitri was eager to find a clone of Anastasia to bring back to her grandmother, he was just in it for the money until he realized the latest girl he had was the real deal, recovering from amnesia.

Rasputin is a rather interesting villain, who gets his own song just like a Disney one and the film may not be historically accurate, but it never gets old for me.

Shrek 2

I know what you’re thinking, why am I only saying the second movie in this series? Well I like the first one as well, the third one was okay, and the fourth I never saw.

The second has always been my favourite for its soundtrack and story. It had a lot of twists that I didn’t expect; like how many of you thought the Fairy Godmother was going to be on our side until she reveals herself to be a breaker of true love to only make people’s happy endings the way she sees fits. But any creature can have a happy ending, including ogres.

I also like how we learn more about Fiona’s backstory, now we know she wasn’t abducted by some hooded stranger and locked in that tower!

Happy Feet

Last but not least, I need to put some cute penguins in this post! I find that this movie is about accepting differences.

The penguin culture revolves around singing to attract a mate, but Mumble was born unable to sing, and finds himself a talent in tap-dancing that is shunned and ridiculed by his family, peers, and even the elders.

I never understood why he still had the physical features of a baby penguin by the time he reached adulthood. Was this a way of distinguishing him from the others? Did Gloria forgive him and they got together?

Regardless of the questions I have, this movie has so many cool moments and music that makes it worth rewatching.

What are your favorite non-Disney animated films?


13 thoughts on “My Favourite Non-Disney Animated Films”

  1. I’ve always held a certain soft spot for Titan AE, not the prettiest title by today’s standards but was a little different from everything else and enjoyed the subverted bittersweet undertones.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The Secret of NIMH was one of my favourite animated films when I was a kid! Along with An American Tale and Rover Dangerfield – but I haven’t seen any of them in years. My sister used to love a film called Once Upon A Forest, which I don’t hear anyone mention these days either. Happy Feet is one of my favourites too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Secret of NIMH definitely deserves more love. If I could watch only one of these for the rest of my life, it would be the one


  3. Interesting list. I remember seeing Anastasia in theaters when I was a kid. The backlash recently has been stupid with people calling it a Disney ripoff. I wouldn’t call it the greatest movie ever, but it doesn’t deserve that tag.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Why would it be a Disney ripoff? Because there’s songs? A story about royalty? Any movie by any company can be like that and it’s not something that Disney owns and can only pull off successfully. I liked it as a kid and I didn’t care who it was made by.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah, it’s just a stupid assumption. Back when I used to watch Nostalgia Critic, I remember him calling that an “expensive Disney ripoff” in his Top 11 Villain Songs list even though it’s SUPER hypocritical in hindsight when one other song on that list was literally sung by a legitimate ripoff character **cough** Be Prepared! **cough**.

        There are things worth critiquing about when it comes to Don Bluth, but the hate towards that movie is egregious. It’s cool that you don’t blindly bash something like that just because it’s cool to hate any non-Disney animated studio in Western animation. I do respect that.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. People need to relax. I don’t dislike something because its bandwagon. If I don’t like something I will give a valid reason, but Anastasia I enjoyed.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Understood. Liking or disliking something because it’s supposedly cool to do so is just lame. Sadly, I used to be like that when I was younger like when I followed Rotten Tomatoes near religiously.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. That’s good. It’s a shame that I used to follow those sites in order for my tastes to be taken more seriously by others. I stopped years ago and began to make my own opinions especially with my review blog. Some of my opinions have definitely been contrary to what most of the critics say and I don’t do this for controversy.

        Liked by 1 person

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