Over the past several years, the Walt Disney Company has acquired an insane amount of pop culture staples: Pixar, LucasFilm, Marvel Studios, Jim Henson Productions, and 20th Century Fox, just to name a few. It's gotten to the point where it seems like almost every movie out there is a "Disney Movie." But to anyone who grew up before Disney managed to purchase half of Hollywood, the term "Disney movies" will always invoke the memory of classic cartoons such as Cinderella, The Lion King, and even more recent entries like Moana.
That said, there are a number of films that fall into the old-school Disney movie category that are often overshadowed by their more famous counterparts. So if you're a fan of "Disney movies" but you're looking for something new to stream, maybe you should give these often underappreciated Disney movies another look.
The Emperor's New Groove (2000)
The Emperor's New Groove (2000) isn't nearly as popular as many other Disney films. But this often overlooked cartoon features some hilarious moments and dialogue, as well as a show-stealing performance from actor Patrick Warburton as a dimwitted henchman named Kronk.
The film is set during the heyday of the ancient Incas. Emperor Kuzco is a selfish young ruler who cares much more about his personal pleasure than he does the welfare of his people. He's even willing to destroy a peasant village in order to build a lavish personal water park. But when a treacherous aide named Yzma inadvertently turns Kuzco into a llama during a botched assassination attempt, he's forced to come to terms with his selfish ways and rely on help from the same villagers he was willing to displace.
Meet The Robinsons (2007)
There are certainly no shortage of Disney movies that involve young children searching for their parent/parents. But most of them don't involve memory scanners and time machines. That's why 2007's Meet the Robinsons isn't like most Disney films.
When a brilliant young orphan named Lewis invents a memory scanner in an attempt to track down his birth mother, he is soon visited by a mysterious young man named Wilbur who claims he is from the future. After agreeing to help Wilbur track down his stolen time machine, Lewis soon finds himself in the middle of an adventure involving members of his previously unknown family from the past, present, and future.
The Princess and the Frog (2009)
When you think of Disney princess movies, you probably think of classics such as Cinderella, and more recent blockbusters like Frozen and Moana. But that doesn't mean you should let an often overlooked but extremely enjoyable film like The Princess and the Frog fall through the cracks.
Set in New Orleans during the 1920s, the film follows the story of a struggling waitress named Tiana who dreams of opening her own restaurant. But just when her dreams seem within reach, she becomes ensnared in a voodoo sorcerer's fiendish plot, and finds herself transformed into a frog. In order to set things right, Tiana is forced to team up with an arrogant young prince who has also been turned into an amphibian, and set out on a musical journey from the backwoods bayou to Bourbon Street.
Treasure Planet (2002)
Since it was first published in 1883, there have been many adaptations of Robert Louis Stevenson's classic novel, Treasure Island. Disney itself made its own film based on the book way back in 1950. But the studio's 2002 adaptation stands out because of its unique take on the source material.
Treasure Planet features many of the same characters as the original novel, including Jim Hawkins and Captain Flint. But as the name implies, the film is set in outer space, and deals with pirates hunting spacecraft rather than ships on the high seas. While it's certainly not the most popular Disney movie out there, it is none the less an interesting attempt to update the well-known story.
When it comes to computer animated Disney films, Pixar favorites such as the Toy Story franchise probably come to mind. But Disney's Dinosaur (2000) was an early non-Pixar attempt at computer animation that's definitely worth a watch.
The film follows the story of an Iguanodon who ends up being adopted and raised by a group of lemurs. However, when a meteor shower forces the group to flee their home, they join up with a herd of dinosaurs who are also in search of safety, all while trying to stay one step ahead of viscous dino predators. Not only is it an action-packed adventure, but it's also an interesting look at the early days of Disney's attempts at computer animation.