During this crazy time of social distancing and being anxious about the state of the world, we're all looking for ways to escape and remain calm. Now while
Tiger King may work for many of us, if you're looking for something a little more kid-friendly, these movies to watch on Disney+ will calm everyone down and help banish some anxiety in your household.
You may notice some of the Disney classics are not mentioned here. In my experience, some of the classics can be a bit intense for little kids, and also a little stressful to watch. Some of these villains are evil, guys. We have enough to worry about with our own real lives than worrying about whether or not the princess will rise above the evil folks in her life and find Prince Charming. And being stressed out about the witches trying to kill people? Forget about it. Plus, I've been hearing a lot about folks crying during the
Frozen movies and I'm not here to make anyone cry right now.
Whimsical escapism, humor, feel-good stories, and beautiful illustrations are what we're going for here. Plus, the
really old Disney movies that aren't even animated can provide a bit of escapism, bringing the viewer back to a simpler time. So sit back, breathe, and enjoy a family movie night (or day). 1 'Cool Runnings'
I think I watched this movie every single day for an entire summer when I was a kid. In that way, it's comforting to me, but for others who may not have been quite as obsessed, we could all use a feel-good story about the first Jamaican bobsled team with a ton of humor right? The vibrant personalities and scenes from Jamaica will have you feeling warm and fuzzy, and when the first Jamaican bobsled team has that epic finish at the end of the bobsled race, you'll be cheering right along with the rest of the world. Plus, who couldn't use a little bit of John Candy goodness right now?
2 'Rookie of the Year'
Disney always provides a good coming-of-age sports story. We have
The Mighty Ducks, The Big Green, Angels in the Outfield, and this movie, Rookie of the Year. The entire family will be laughing out loud when pre-teen Henry Rowengartner (best last name ever) suddenly has the best pitch in the Major Leagues. 3 'The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, & The Wardrobe'
This movie will transport you to another world and you won't even have to climb through the wardrobe to find it. This movie is calming in that it's so whimsical and just darn beautifully filmed that you'll instantly be transported to Narnia and away from the stress going on right now.
Need a confidence booster that everything will be OK? Moana's got you covered. It's beautiful to watch, and you'll feel inspired and ready to tackle life thanks to Moana's strong, fearless character.
5 'Winnie The Pooh'
Not only is Winnie the Pooh super lo-fi and relaxing, but the stories and characters are just so lovely you'll instantly feel calm as soon as you hear the intro, "Winnie the Pooh, Winnie the Pooh, chubby little cubby all stuffed with fluff..." Ahhhh.
6 'High School Musical'
Nothing screams light-hearted like singing and dancing kids. If you're feeling anxious, you'll be reminded how you can do anything if you follow your dreams and your heart. Even if it's just making it through this quarantine sane. We can do this y'all.
7 'The BFG'
Talk about a magical and whimsical movie,
The BFG is perfect for a calming night in. There's an unexpected friendship, adventure, fantasy, and more. 8 'Fantasia'
Classical music is typically calming in my book, and if you add in whimsy illustrations? You'll be sinking into your couch in no time.
9 'Toy Story' 1 & 2
I didn't include
Toy Story 3 or Toy Story 4 in this list because to be honest, I sobbed through most of those two. And I vowed to never let my kid give up his toys ever again. I'll make sure to always take care of them.
But seriously, the original
Toy Story and Toy Story 2 is a super fun watch and talking toys will make anyone happy. Even Sid. Plus, Tim Allen and Tom Hanks are comedic gold in this movie. 10 'The Emperor's New Groove'
This is one of the funnier animated Disney movies in my opinion, and David Spade as an emperor-turned-llama is hilarious. Plus who doesn't love Kronk? His one-liners are legendary.
11 'The Absent-Minded Professor'
This 1964 classic about a bumbling professor is light-hearted and humorous. And the most evil person in this movie is the corrupt businessman. I mean, that is pretty scary, but you'll be so entertained by the "flubber" you'll be OK. Maybe this movie will inspire your kids to invent their own creations while quarantined?
12 'Inside Out'
Young kids (and some adults) need help expressing their feelings sometimes. And this movie definitely offers a wide array of emotions of which to relate. Hopefully by the end of it you're more like the character Joy rather than Sadness, Fear or Anger.
13 'The Shaggy Dog'
People just acted so gosh darn happy back in the '50s, and throw a talking dog into the mix? You've got a fun, feel-good movie. Plus, who hasn't secretly wished they'd transform into a dog sometimes?
14 OG 'Alice in Wonderland'
The Tim Burton remake of Alice in Wonderland may not be the most calming movie to watch in it's bizarreness, but the OG Alice in Wonderland is just bizarre enough with it's psychedelic scenery and whimsical storyline. You may go down the rabbit hole and just forget about the world's problems for a while.
15 OG 'Mary Poppins'
I can speak for the new one as I haven't seen it, but the OG Mary Poppins with Julie Andrews is definitely a calming watch. She's magical, whimsical, cheerful, and will remind everyone that a "spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down," and that includes everything we are going through right now.
16 'The Santa Clause'
I know it's not Christmas time as of now, but this movie is just so damn magical it will definitely bring a smile to everyone's face and give them hope as they're transported to the gloriously fantastical North Pole and Santa's workshop. Plus, Tim Allen is always hilarious and we could all use a laugh.
17 'Cheaper By The Dozen'
I love Steve Martin and something about him always brings a smile to my face. This
Cheaper by the Dozen remake might make you realize that maybe you being stuck at home with a few family members isn't so bad — it could be 12 people. Plus, there are definitely some hilarious and heartwarming scenes in this movie. 18 'Diving With Dolphins'
This documentary "chronicles the making of Disneynature's
Dolphin Reef," per the description. Watching things float along underwater is definitely soothing. And who doesn't love a good dolphin movie? 19 'The Incredibles'
We all need a feel-good story right now, and
The Incredibles just may inspire you to feel brave enough to face your fears and conquer the world (once we can leave our homes). Plus, this movie has some really great writing and funny moments. 20 'The Love Bug'
An adorable VW bug with a mind of it's own in a "comedy classic" set in the '60s? Sounds pretty fun and relaxing to me.
The Love Bug is a wonderful family movie to keep everyone relaxed and perhaps even a little nostalgic. What Parents Are Talking About — Delivered Straight To Your Inbox