The Best Movies You Can Watch on Disney+ That Aren't Marvel or Star Wars

By Tom Pritchard on at

After so much waiting, Disney+ has finally arrived in the UK for our residents to watch without resorting to piracy or VPN trickery. The data speeds may have been reduced thanks to this whole coronavirus lockdown, but it's here, it's working, and it's watchable. The only problem is sifting through the big-ass catalogue and finding something to watch.

But we've had the list for a while, and we've picked some of our favourite Disney movies for you to add to your watch list - giving you something to do over the next three weeks when you're barely allowed outside.

Lady and the Tramp (2019)

The first proper original movie for Disney+, which just so happens to be the first live action remake that doesn't make it to cinemas. It's certainly not the best Disney classic, which might explain the straight to streaming decision, but that doesn't mean it's bad.

In fact it's supposed to be rather good, even if the early trailers make the dogs look a little bit horrifying.

Toy Story 4

Frankly I should have skipped Pixar movies too, because they're all good. Well all the ones not called Cars 2 are good anyway. But on launch day Toy Story 4 is the most recent release, and while it's been available on DVD for months it should be on your watch list.

If only because it's probably the last Toy Story film for a while, and because Keanu Reeves kills it as Duke Caboom.

Big Hero 6

Sure this is based on a Marvel comic, but Big Hero 6 is so unlike its source material that it 100% does not count as one. It's a superhero movie, but it's also incredibly heartwarming and sad - which are both essential ingredients in any Disney flick.

And if you don't come out of this living Baymax, then I have to accuse you of being completely dead instead. How could you not love that marshmallowy hug machine?

Avatar

The biggest film franchise that came with the Fox merger (at least the biggest not related to Marvel), which is due to get several sequels between now and 2027. Assuming production all goes to plan anyway.

Yes the film is definitely just Pocahontas with aliens and technobabble, but it's also pretty stunning from a visual perspective. Granted I haven't seen it in over a decade, but remember how good it looked at the time?

Plus with a sequel tentatively set for next year it's worth rewatching so you can remember what happened.

The Lion King (1994)

Not the remake, despite the great voice cast, we're talking the original Lion King from 1994. One of the last 'classic' animated Disney movies before everything switched over to 3D animation and computers.

Yes this isn't that original either, because it's just Hamlet with lions and bears striking similarity to Kimba the White Lion, but hey it's a great film.

Mary Poppins

When you ignore Dick Van Dyke's atrocious accent, there isn't a lot to complain about with Mary Poppins. It's got songs, cartoon penguins, lessons on the evils of capitalism... All those things you need to get us through all these awkward coronavirus-filled times.

The Muppet Christmas Carol

 

It's not Christmas, so this isn't exactly seasonal, but at time like this there are a few people out there who need to learn how to stop being such selfish gits. If this were written today, Scrooge would be hiking up the price of toilet paper and sanitiser after all.

And the Muppet version of A Christmas Carol is the best adaptation, so this is well worth adding to your watch list - and soon.

Mulan (1998)

The live action remake has been postponed thanks to the coronavirus, but the animated classic is still there for everyone to enjoy. And it has Mushu in it, which is one thing the remake can't top.

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

Before the franchise went totally tits up, we had the original movie. A movie based on a Disneyland ride, which had a lot of people confused. But it worked, and while it was mostly down to Johnny Depp playing Jack Sparrow it still had an awful lot of other good points.

If all else fails, it's still a hell of a lot of fun to watch.

Tron

It's easy to forget that Tron is a Disney movie, but it is, and the original is by far the best. Because let's face it, Tron: Legacy was pretty shit. Great music, but not great everything else.

The original, though? That's something special. It pioneer computer generated effects (of which it was robbed of the best effects Oscar), introduced us to a virtual world that real people could jump into, and more.

Mrs Doubtfire

Robin Williams had a lot of great roles, but one of the most memorable was his take on the father who misses his kids so much he basically becomes an old English nanny to spend time with them.

Plenty of shenanigans ensue, because it's a Robin Williams movie and naturally he's masquerading as someone who is the complete opposite of Robin Williams. But those shennanigans always mean fun.

Wall-E

Which is the best Pixar movie? It's hard to say, but Wall-E is definitely near the top of that list. Or it should be, unless you're an unloving robot - which would be kind of ironic considering how much love Wall-E has for a mere roving trash compactor.

Obviously it has a strong environmental theme, which is more important than ever, though people stuck on a spaceship in chairs may remind you a little bit too much of your own predicament. Maybe it'll encourage you to get out and exercise, since Boris has given us permission to do that once a day.

Bambi

Bambi has been traumatising children for decades, and now that it's on Disney+ it's time to introduce a whole new generation of kids to the horror of watching the hunter shoot Bambi's mum.

Life sucks, kids, and Bambi isn't going to sugar coat that for you.

Hocus Pocus

There's a Disney+ sequel on the way, so what better time to rewatch the original movie than now? It may not arrive for a while, so you have some time.

What happens when Salem-era witches return to the mid-90s hell bent on immortality? Nothing good, that's for sure.

Home Alone 1 & 2

The only good Home Alone movies, even if one of them does include a scene featuring a strangely helpful Donald Trump.

The premise is simple: family goes away and somehow manages to leave a ten year old behind over Christmas. Then the family goes away again and that same ten year old manages to end up on the wrong flight and goes to a totally different part of the country. Man airport security really was a joke before 9/11 wasn't it?

Here's just hope Disney brings back Macaulay Culkin for its upcoming sequel.

Cool Runnings

Feel the Rhythm! Feel the Rhyme! Get on up, it's bobsled time! Cool Runnings!

The totally fictional take on the real-life Jamaican bobsled team, a concept so ridiculous-sounding that you wouldn't think it was based on a real event from the film alone. But the Jamaicans did send a bobsled team to the Winter Olympics, though sadly they didn't bring John Candy with them.

So the movie managed to get one up on actual history.

The Emperor's New Groove

One of the more underrated Disney movies in terms of the movie itself, even though various screenshots and clips have become memes in their own right.

It has magic llamas, an evil witch, John Goodman, and a childish ruler who's about to learn a valuable lesson in what it means to not be a complete tool all the time.

Honey I Shrunk the Kids

Another series coming back via Disney+ in the future, and with Rick Moranis heading back into his acting shoes for one of the first times in decades. But nothing beats the original (suck it, Ant-Man), with the mad scientist Wayne Szalinski accidentally shrinking his kids and sending them on a wild adventure - all centered around their back garden.

Obviously it wouldn't be so much fun if it were real, but it is a kid's movie so obviously things are a hell of a lot more interesting this time around.

Lilo & Stitch

Another movie that's set to get a live action remake sometime in the near future, Lilo & Stitch is one of those movies that people know about but nobody seems to really think about. Hopefully some of you will pay attention and give it a watch over on Disney+.

Because let's be honest, the concept of an alien criminal masquerading as a dog on Earth is as crazy as it is brilliant.


Disney+ is £6 a month or £60 for a whole year. You can sign up on the official website.