10 Great Pixar Movies That Are Always On Everyone's Must-Watch List

After making many commercials and shorts, in 1995, Pixar released a feature-length 3D animated movie, "Toy Story", that was considered a new alternative to traditional 2D animated films.
Pixar’s follow-up "A Bug’s Life" took three years to arrive in theaters and grossed an incredible box office. But it was 1999's "Toy Story 2" that established Pixar as the one to take the animation to the next level in the new century. After that, Pixar released a string of box office successes and hits, including "Monsters, Inc.", "Finding Nemo", "The Incredibles", "WALL-E", and "Up",... Since then, the studio has made its mark on animation with more than two dozen movies that have become an important part of pop culture.
With their cheerful humor and kooky characters carrying meaningful messages about family, love, and life, their movies have consistently appealed to both kids and adults. So, grab your popcorn and try the 10 best Pixar movies below.

#1 Toy Story (1995)

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Despite all of their later achievements, there’s still nothing that can compare to the dopamine rush of their very first film. The first totally computer-animated movie, its candy-colored visuals signified both a new dawn and a vision of the future for both itself and filmmaking in general. "Toy Story" had a big influence on defining its style: combining frantic, kid-friendly camerawork with a mournful nostalgia for a boomer childhood. For many people, the cheerful human-scale drama of "Toy Story" lives forever, and it makes us want to watch it over and over again.

#2 Toy Story 2 (1999)

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Although it received worldwide acclaim upon its release in 1999, "Toy Story 2" seems to have been overshadowed by both the volume of great Pixar movies and the consistency of the "Toy Story" franchise. But if you want something pure Entertainment that feels comfortable, then Toy Story 2 is the best choice. In the movie, Buzz Lightyear leads a group of fellow toys on a mission to help Woody, who is stolen from his home by a toy dealer. But when Woody discovers that he's actually a valuable collectible from a once-popular television show called "Woody's Roundup" and is reunited with his horse Bullseye, Jessie the yodeling cowgirl, and his faithful sidekick, Stinky Pete the Prospector, he doesn't want to leave. Jessie the Cowgirl's lament, which is followed by the tearjerking song "When She Loved Me," covers some emotional terrain in "Toy Story 3" in addition to its impressive joke hit rate and set pieces. If in some later Pixar movies the machinery behind laughter and tears became louder and clearer, then "Toy Story 2" gives the company's engineering a perfect, fittingly plastic gleam.

#3 Finding Nemo (2003)

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"Finding Nemo" is a joyous, comical, and thrilling adventure, about a clownfish father (Marlin) in a desperate cross-continental quest to find his stolen child (Nemo). The 2003 film feels like Pixar is coming of age, a time when the young studio behind "Toy Story" and "A Bug's Life" took their computer animation to a whole new level and moved closer to how Disney's classic storytelling. The talking animals, the death of a parent trope, and the true emotional weight of "Finding Nemo" are all supported with joy, hilarity, and astonishment. At the same time, it also challenged the Pixar animators to pay attention to how light flows, reflects, and is lost in the water, which allows for an amazing image.

#4 The Incredibles (2004)

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This is the first time Pixar focuses on human characters. Up until that point, all of the studio's productions dealt with mature emotional experiences such as tested friendships and parent-child separation. But writer-director Brad Bird has brought the Parr family into a new theme while keeping the light of tension with mid-century whiz-bang superheroes. They are a special family with a brute-force dad, a flexible mom stretched thin, a shy daughter who can disappear into thin air, and an inexhaustible ball of energy for a son. They not only confront the annoyances of middle age or the tribulations of puberty but also participate in the fight to protect the good. Even though it's one of the few original superhero pictures to capture the exuberance of the comic book medium, it's filled with adult fears that are scarier than any villain.

#5 Ratatouille (2007)

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The 2007 film "Ratatouille" is the very best kind of Pixar film that leaves you slack-jawed at just how brilliantly it all hangs together. A rat with dreams of culinary greatness helps a kitchen worker to impress the gourmet elite of Paris. It’s an underdog story told that is delivered with true affection for friendship, cuisine, and the alluring pull of creativity. It felt like the studio at its purest and least calculated with its stringy lightness, limited humor, and scarce opportunity for a sequel. But it's interesting to watch a rat pull a man’s hair to make the perfect meal, a three-course feast that leaves no room for seconds.

#6 Wall-E (2008)

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"Wall-E" is considered the biggest turning point of Pixar's creative heyday: a sci-fi comedy about a sentient trash compactor cleaning up ruins of an abandoned Earth. The opening half-hour remains an almost wordless masterclass in purely visual storytelling. However, as the movie goes on, it changes into a wild cruise ship adventure with influences of the great Jacques Tati and a vision of materialistic creature comfort. Bridging these tonal disparities is Wall-E himself, a lovely Chaplinesque invention who serves as a mechanical archaeologist of the lost humanity. The film seems to be a sad premonition of the future of the world, as well as a throwback to a time when Pixar was still attractive to all ages.

#7 Up (2009)

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If the first ten minutes of "Up" don't touch your heart, it's safe to assume that you're a robot. This wordless prologue recaps the marriage between Carl and his late wife Ellie. It's an utterly heartbreaking but good opening. In addition, "Up" is full of delightfully lovely touches: a giant flightless bird named Kevin, a golden retriever with a collar that translates his thoughts, and a misfit boy scout. They played an important part in Carl's life after the death of his wife. "Up" is a beautiful exploration of grief and hope.

#8 Toy Story 3 (2010)

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Of the four "Toy Story" movies, "Toy Story 3" definitely stands out. In this part, Andy is preparing to go to college and the toys know they won't be played with anymore. They go to Sunnyside Nursery, where they find themselves under the rule of an evil strawberry-smelling teddy bear. One of the most emotionally powerful scenes in the movie is Woody watching Andy drive away because it reminds us of our childhood friends.

#9 Soul (2020)

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Like all of the best Pixar movies, "Soul" reminds us of the meaning of life. This heartwarming movie follows the existential adventure of jazz pianist Joe Gardner to get back into his own body after his death. He goes through the Great Before, where he meets 22 and eventually learns a powerful lesson about the meaning of life. Not only is it a visually pleasing movie, but it's also a wonderful musical performance with Joe's piano when he’s lost in the euphoria of a jazz solo. This movie won the Best Animated Feature Oscar.

#10 Turning Red (2022)

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No one tackles the complex mother-daughter bond quite like Pixar. In "Turning Red", we follow Mei Lee, a teenage Chinese girl from Toronto who must confront her family's "curse." Her mother soon reveals that whenever a family member feels a strong emotion, they transform into giant red pandas. In fact, the panda is actually a symbol of maturation, generational trauma, and coming puberty. In addition, the movie brings you back to the 2000s with boy bands, Tamagotchis, and butterfly clips,... In short, "Turning Red" is a good Pixar movie for the family.
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