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9 Disney Movies For Toddlers To Watch With Your Little Ones

disney movies for toddlers

Disney movies combine entertainment with life lessons about friendship, love, loss, good, evil and the importance of family. We made a list of animated Disney movies for toddlers that adults and kids can watch together, check it out. 

Even with a million Disney movies out there, it’s a constant struggle to find movies that are appropriate and engaging enough for 1-3-year-olds. My list consists entirely of animated Disney movies because I truly believe every single one of them is a quality watch and effectively tells a moral story. In a world where we as parents choose to show our toddlers movies that aim to be more educational, inclusive and empowering, we really hope you will enjoy the movies that I chose in the list below. 

List of Disney Movies for Toddlers

  1. Toy Story
  2. The Lion King
  3. Cars
  4. Frozen
  5. Bambi
  6. Up
  7. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  8. The Incredibles
  9. Finding Nemo

1. Toy Story (1995)

IMDB ratings: 8.3/10

Cast: Tom Hanks, Laurie Metcalf and Nathan Lane

Director: John Lasseter 

Toy Story is an animated movie set in a world where toys come alive. The story of this Disney movie focuses on the toys of a boy called Andy Davis and centres on his favourite toy Woody, a pull-string cowboy. Andy takes Woody everywhere he goes. With a new toy Buzz Lightyear, Woody worries he will be replaced by Andy as his favourite toy.

Toy Story is hands down one of my favourite childhood movies, it’s humorously entertaining and heartwarming. The first Toy Story was so successful that 3 more sequels were made, Toy Story 2, Toy Story 3 and Toy Story 4. The animation of the first movie may seem a bit dated but there are very few movies that can translate the importance of friendship the way Toy Story does. I still get emotional listening to the heartwarming song ‘You’ve got a friend in me’.  Toy Story movies are a great option if you are looking for Disney movies for toddlers.

2. The Lion King (1994)

IMDB Ratings: 8.5/10

Cast: Matthew Broderick, James Earl Jones and Jeremy Irons

Director:  Rob Minkoff, Roger Aller

The animated movie The Lion King is an epic story of a Lion called Simba. Lions are known as the kings of the jungle for their strong ability to dominate the habitat. The story establishes the jungle as a kingdom where all the other animals respect and follow king Mufasa (Simba’s father)  and the young Simba is his shining heir.

Simba’s wicked uncle, Scar plots to steal the throne by killing both Mufasa and Simba. Only the young and vulnerable Simba survives. The movie teaches very important life lessons like Hakuna Matata which means “no worries,” it reminds kids and parents alike to not sweat the small stuff and live life to its fullest. Simba learns to forgive himself, be courageous and face his fears. The Lion King is thrilling and filled with lovable musical moments. You should give The Lion King a try if you are in search of great musical Disney movies for toddlers.

3. Cars (2006)

IMDB Ratings: 7.2/10

Cast: Owen Wilson, Paul Newman and Larry the Cable Guy. 

Director: John Lasseter

The Cars movie is exactly about what you would think, cars and racing. But hold on, it is so much more than that, the story follows a world where humans are reimagined as cars, and the main character of the movie, Lightning McQueen is an overconfident and selfish race car. McQueen is on his way to a race to compete and win the prestigious Piston Cup. 

McQueen takes a detour and enters a once famous, now long-forgotten town (based on the real-life Route 66, US), where he meets cars that challenge his ego and humble him. The story is very simple and easy to understand. Macqueen is arrogant at first but learns to be more caring and loving. In my opinion, the characters are hilarious and very unforgettable. Cars is definitely a fantastic movie that everyone in your family will enjoy. Suppose you’re searching for Disney movies for toddlers, then be sure to watch this one.

4. Frozen (2013)

IMDB Ratings: 7.4/10

Cast: Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel and Josh Gad

Director: Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee

There are many princess fairy tale movies out there, but Frozen is among the highest-grossing of them all. The song ‘Let it Go’ was so popular that children and adults alike were obsessed with it and it also won the Academy Award for Best Original song. The movie is funny, entertaining, thrilling and importantly one that chooses to not centre romantic love between a boy and a girl but on the bond of two sisters. This movie appeals to all ages and the characters of Elsa and Anna are very empowering.

Elsa is the elder sister with magical powers who keeps herself isolated in fear of hurting anyone after she accidentally freezes her sister’s mind. Anna is saved by trolls and she now has no idea of Elsa’s powers. Frozen has a sequel and a few shorts, one centring the beloved character Olaf (Anna and Elsa’s snowman). If you are in search of Disney movies for toddlers then Frozen should surely be on your list. 

Also Read: Movies like Super 8

5. Bambi (1942)

IMDB Ratings: 7.3/10

Cast: Donnie Danugan, Sterling Holloway and Peter Behn

Director: David Hand

Bambi is a certified Disney classic that chronicles the adventures of a young deer called Bambi. In the film, Bambi’s father is revered as the Great Prince of the forest and he is guided through his life by his mother and his diverse group of friends including a rabbit called Thumper. The movie is based on the book ‘Bambi: A Walk in the Woods’ by Felix Salten.

This movie is very sweet and poetic, kids love to watch the gorgeous animated scenes. The story also deals beautifully with the difficult emotions of losing one’s mother.  Bambi’s songs like ‘Little April Shower’ are fantastic. This movie is not just appropriate and entertaining for toddlers but also a fun and heartwarming watch for the rest of the family. Bambi is a great choice if you are searching for Disney movies for toddlers.

6. Up (2009)

IMDB ratings: 8.4/10

Cast: Edward Asner, Jordan Nagai and Christopher Plummer

Director: Pete Docter

The movie Up centres around the character Carl Fredricksen who wants to fulfil his and his late wife’s dream of an adventure to go to Paradise Falls. He lives in a small humble home which is threatened to be demolished when the area is filled with modern tall buildings. Carl ties thousands of balloons to his house and flies away in search of Paradise Falls when he discovers a boy scout kid named Russell on the front porch of his house. 

Up is stunning, funny and emotional to watch. It teaches one that no one is ever too old to live an adventure. The loss that Carl faces is enough to make a grown-up cry and it brings out such beautiful deep emotions of love. If you are in search of Disney movies for children, Up is one of the best options for you. 

7. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh  (1977)

IMDB ratings: 7.5/10

Cast: Sterling Holloway, John Fielder and Sebastian Cabot

Director: John Lounsbery, Wolfgang Reitherman and Ben Sharpsteen

Pooh is a good-natured, yellow-furred, honey-loving teddy bear who often embarks on eccentric journeys. His companions include Piglet, Eeyore, Owl, Tigger, Rabbit and more. The Pooh family embark on happy and fun-loving journeys and The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh is a wonderful movie for toddlers to watch. 

The movie was created from previously made shorts of Winnie the Pooh. These charming stories are filled with timeless happiness in the Hundred-Acre Wood. Pooh’s silliness and ability to say the most heartful words make this one of the sweetest movies out there. If you are looking for Disney movies for kids, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh should be on your watchlist.

8. The Incredibles (2004)

IMDB ratings: 8/10

Cast: Bob Parr, Holly Hunter and Sarah Vowell 

Director: Brad Bird

The Incredibles is probably the best children’s action movie to be released in the early 2000s. In this animated movie, Mr Incredible and his wife Elastigril are forced to live normal lives as Bob and Helen Parr after the government bans all superhero activity. They have 3 kids out of which two also show signs of superhero powers. Bob misses his old days of action.

Kids love superheroes because they always seem so cool, but The Incredibles being a kid’s movie doesn’t blindly romanticise heroes (to an extent). The characters are extremely well-written and the movie is extremely entertaining to watch. Though rated PG for all the action, this movie celebrates family and shows how double lives and hateful revenge are not the right way. Check out the classic The Incredibles and its sequel The Incredibles 2 if you are looking for Disney films for Toddlers. 

9. Finding Nemo (2003)

IMDB ratings: 8.2/10

Cast: Alexander Gould, Ellen DeGeneres and Andrew Stanton

Director: Andrew Stanton

Finding Nemo is about a Clownfish Marlin and his Son Nemo, who live secluded in a safe place in the warm tropical waters of the Great Barrier Reef.  Marlin is fearful of all the dangerous possibilities of the ocean and tries everything in his power to protect his son.

When Nemo is unexpectedly taken and thrust into a dentist’s fish tank, Marlin with the help of the optimistic and ditsy Dory tries everything in his power to save his son. Now I’ll admit the movie may be a bit scary for the kids (the few scenes of the sharks) but if your toddler is daring then it’s a great film for children and parents to understand each other better. You should consider Finding Nemo if you are looking for Disney films for toddlers. 

Honourable Mentions 

Here are a few Disney movies for toddlers that didn’t make the list, but you can also check them out:

  1. Kung Fu Panda
  2. Wall-E
  3. Ice Age
  4. Ratatouille
  5. Dumbo

When Lost aired over a decade ago, its successful narrative created a pop culture impact and changed the landscape of television. If you are a fan and want to watch shows like Lost then you can have a look at this list we made just for you.


The hugely successful television series Lost aired in 2004. The premise, as we know, deals with a group of people surviving a commercial passenger plane crash on a remote island. The show masterfully explores supernatural and sci-fi elements on this mysterious south Pacific island.

The use of cliffhangers at the end of each episode of Lost kept the viewers on the edge of their seats, desperately craving for the next episode to come. Even though it's a large ensemble cast, most of the characters receive a justifiable personal arch. Lost was inspired by the movie Castaway and became one of the most expensive pilots to be shot at the time! Lost continues to be appreciated for its originality in storytelling and dynamic character arcs. 

List of TV Shows Like Lost

  1. The Leftovers
  2. Manifest
  3. Lost Room
  4. Twin Peaks
  5. The Prisoners
  6. Battlestar Galactica
  7. The New People
  8. Flight 29 Down
  9. Fringe
  10. Alcatraz
  11. Under the Dome
  12. Dark

1. The Leftovers (2014)

IMDB ratings: 8.3/10

Cast: Carrie Coon, Justin Theroux, Amy Brenneman and Margaret Qualley

Creator: Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta

The director of Lost, Damon Lindel also created a supernatural drama series called The Leftovers. The show begins 3 years after an unexplainable global event called ‘Sudden Departure’  where almost 2 per cent of the population, nearly 140 million people, disappear. The Leftovers isn't about WHY people are gone, it's about how the ones who remain dealt with their loss, people often try to comfort themselves with dreams, angels, gods, or even death.

The Leftovers will leave you with so many questions but beyond words, you have to feel it and savour its unanswered questions to find peace. The Leftovers is an incredible television series that starts incredibly well but loses its way by the series's end. I have to say though, Carrie Coon has brilliant moments in the end. The Leftovers is so weird, fragmented and nonsensical at times that it reminds me of Lost. If you are looking for shows like Lost, I recommend that you give The Leftovers a try.

2. Manifest  (2018) 

IMDB ratings: 7.1/10

Cast: Melissa Roxburgh, Josh Dallas and J.R. Ramirez 

Creator: Jeff Rake

The Manifest is a supernatural drama show about a bunch of people who discover that they lost 5 years of their lives when they landed in New York after their aeroplane faced severe turbulence. All the people on the plane were presumed to be dead. Now, these people have to find a way to adjust themselves to a new life around their loved ones. Mild spoiler! They learn their loved ones and the rest of society is not as they left it.

I found that the show’s premise was very intriguing and the actors give a very convincing performance. The narrative details of the show, however, in my opinion, are a bit sloppy and inconsistent. The writers surely have room for improvement but their concept is incredibly thrilling. Every episode of Manifest keeps you on your toes. Manifest has completed 3 seasons up until now and continues to be on air. Manifest is a pretty good choice if you want to watch TV shows like Lost.

3. Lost Room (2006)

IMDB ratings: 8.1/10

Cast: Peter Krause, Julianna Margulies and Peter Jacobson

Creator: Christopher Leone, Laura Harkcom

This lesser-known show The Lost Room is an American Sci-fi television miniseries which only had 3 episodes of 90 mins each and no follow-up seasons. The show was based on a very unique idea where the room in question (known as the ‘Lost Room’) and the objects in the said room had supernatural powers. This strange room is set in a 1960s motel along the iconic U.S. Route 66.

One day the protagonist (Peter Krause) Joe Miller’s daughter disappears inside the room. Joe, with the help of objects present in the room, tries to find his daughter Anna (Elle Fanning). The story of Lost Room was intensely engaging. I found the direction and the actor’s performances to be absolutely brilliant. It baffles me that the creators did not return to make another short season within the same concept. If you have been searching for TV series like Lost then I can assure you that Lost Room will be worth a watch.

4. Twins Peaks (1990) 

IMDB ratings: 8.8/10

Cast: Kyle MacLachlan, Mädchen Amick, Sherilyn Fenn and David Lynch

Creator: David Lynch

David Lynch, the well-known director of weird and captivating films such as Eraserhead and Blue Velvet created an iconic show called Twin Peaks. It is a hauntingly eccentric show about the investigation of the mysterious murder of a small-town homecoming queen named Laura Palmer. Believe me, as odd as the show may seem at first, you will grow to love it, after all, it is considered to be one of the best mystery shows ever created.

With the mysteries, the supernatural elements and the list of bizarre characters, Twin Peaks has it all. In my opinion, the cinematography of the show was truly ahead of its time. Kyle’s Dale Cooper was especially entertaining. Twin Peaks’ experimental formula of the satirical soap opera is extremely unsettling yet rewarding to watch, I must warn you, it’s not for the faint-hearted!  If you are in search of TV shows like Lost then Twin Peaks won’t disappoint you.

The Prisoners (1967)

IMDB ratings: 8.5/10

Cast: Patrick McGoohan, Angelo Muscat and Geroge Markstien

Creator: Patrick McGoohan

The Prisoner centres around an unnamed British agent (Patrick McGoohan) who tries to flee his country after abruptly quitting his high-ranking government job. He is abducted and held captive in a strange ‘sea-side’ village that is isolated from the rest of the world. This village is a highly secure and monitored place filled with weird technology. There are only 17 episodes to this late 60s show but it manages to bring up such surreal surprises, it's sure to leave a great impact on the viewer.

The Prisoner’s unique concept influenced many popular shows including Lost. The creators of Lost even cited the show. I was very impressed by how ahead of its time The Prisoners proves to be. If you want to watch more shows similar to Lost the Prisoners should definitely be on your list.

6. Battlestar Galactica (2004)

IMDB ratings: 8.7/10

Cast: Katee Sackhoff, Edward James Olmos and Tricia Helfer 

Creator: Glen A. Larson

The 2004 Battlestar Galactica is a reboot of the original 1978 miniseries of the same name. Do not be mistaken by the title, the show is not related to Star Trek.  Battlestar Galactica is set in the 7th millennium AD and follows Cylons, the robot enemy of humanity that resurfaces to destroy the 12 colonies of Mankind. Only a few survive and are able to escape on ships led by a powerful warship called Battlestar Galactica. Mankind struggles to fight the Cylons and work their own political agendas and disputes while finding their long-lost 13th colony Earth.

The show is a dark, intense and gritty socio-political commentary with EPIC cinematic value. The script is especially clever and as a huge fan of sci-fi shows, this show ticks the boxes in all the right categories. When the show was released, it blew the viewers and critics away. As far as an obsessive and gripping story goes, Battlestar Galactica is one of the most similar to shows like Lost. 

7. The New People (1969)

IMDB ratings: 7.3/10

Cast: David Moses, Zooey hall and Tiffany Boiling

Creator: Larry Gordon Aaron Spelling

The New People is an American Tv series that aired only for 1 season and is focused on a couple of college students who survive a plane crash. The incident takes place while they were returning from a trip to Southeast Asia, their plane crashes on an island in the south of the Pacific ocean. 

By now this show must already be sounding a lot like Lost to you, and it surely is. The remaining group of people discover an unusual truth about the island: there’s an above-ground unused nuclear test site filled with supplies for the survivors. If you want to see more plane survival stories like Lost then The New People should definitely be on your list.

8. Flight 29 Down (2005)

IMDB ratings: 7.2/10

Cast: Allen Alvarado, Halle Hirsh and Corbin Bleu

Creator:  Stan Rowgow D. J. MacHale

The show Flight 29 Down is a drama series about a group of pre-teens/teens who are stranded on a South Pacific island after their plane crashes in a tropical storm while they were flying from an eco-adventure camping trip in Palau. The show is in many ways a younger version of the Adult-centred show Lost but sans the supernatural elements. I’d say that the show draws inspiration from the show The New People.

Flight 29 Down uses the technique of a video diary as a plot device for the viewers to keep up with the story of these children. It was very engaging to watch young intelligent characters finding their way on the island. The first two seasons of the show are quite engaging but I seemed to lose interest in its 3rd and final season. Regardless, Flight 29 Down is a really good series to watch if you want to see TV shows like Lost.

9. Fringe (2008)

IMDB ratings: 8.4/10

Cast: Anna Torv, John Noble and Joshua Jackson

Creator: J. J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman, and Roberto Orci

Fringe is a popular Sci-fi crime drama television series. It may seem like a standard procedural drama at first, but the show actually explores the parallel universe, alternate versions of people filled with crazy scientific experiments. I personally had a great time watching this show.

Fringe is actually inspired by shows like Lost, The X-files and The Twilight Zone. The 3 main characters of the show work with a special division called Fringe. There are so many brilliant twists and turns in Fringe that in my opinion, the show is at the top of its category. If you are searching for TV series like Lost, I strongly recommend you watch Fringe

10. Alcatraz (2012)

IMDB ratings: 6.9/10

Cast: Sarah Jones, George Garcia and Jonny Coyne 

Creator: Elizabeth Sarnoff, Steven Lilien, Bryan Wynbrandt

This American fiction show is based on the infamous Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary built on Alcatraz island in San Francisco Bay. The prison is now closed but once kept some of the most dangerous criminals of America. The show takes the liberty to make a show around the conspiracies of the place.

In the interesting premise we see that under unknown circumstances, 256 inmates and 46 guards of the prison disappear without a trace. Later the disappeared ones start to appear one by one without ageing a day and resume their criminal activities with no realisation of disappearance. A special government unit is dedicated to finding and putting those criminals back in prison. If you are looking for mystery shows similar to Lost, try watching Alcatraz. 

11. Under the Dome (2013)

IMDB ratings: 6.5/10

Cast: Alexander Koch and Rachelle Lefevre

Creator: Stephen King

Based on a novel written by the sci-fi legend Stephen King, Under the Dome tells the story of the residents of the fictional small town called Chester's Mill, when a huge, transparent and indestructible dome suddenly cuts them off from the rest of the world.

Now the trapped residents try to find a way to discover the truth, origin and purpose of these domes. This journey forces them into situations where they learn more about each other than they ever knew. Under the Dome may not be on the top of this list but it’s quite a decent watch if you’re looking for mystery shows similar to Lost

12. Dark (2017)

IMDB ratings: 8.7/10

Cast: Louis Hofmann, Lisa Vicari and Gina Stiebitz

Creator: Baran bo Odar, Jantje Friese

The German-language Netflix series Dark is an interesting blend of Science fiction and Mystery. Truly a compelling and mind-bending story to watch. At the beginning of Dark, many children suspiciously start disappearing in the German town of Winden. The dark past of generational mysteries of 4 families living in the town namely, Kahnwald, Nielsen, Doppler, and Tiedemann is brought to light.

After the discovery of a wormhole, the lives of the families intertwine more than one can imagine. I believe every element of the show is top-notch, especially Dark’s cinematography, which is a TRUE masterpiece. If you are looking for TV series similar to Lost then the intense and gripping story of Dark is sure to keep you engrossed.

Honourable Mentions

Here are a few TV shows like Lost that didn’t make the list, but you can check them out nonetheless: 

  1. Carnivale
  2. Yellowjackets
  3. Game of Thrones
  4. Black Mirror
  5. Flashforward
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