The Ultimate Family Movie: let the voting begin…

Since February’s Book Club was such a hit I decided to ask the same question, this time with family movies. Growing up I didn’t really watch too much television but I always enjoyed everyone cuddling up on the couch for a Saturday night film. As someone said on Twitter there are almost too many great family movies to pick just one, or even five. But what makes a really good family movie? I’ve tried to narrow it down to three main components…here we go:

1. It holds appeal/is appropriate for the WHOLE family – @siparmaham suggested ‘Little Miss Sunshine’ as the best family movie. Now while this is a film ABOUT a family I don’t know if I’d feel comfortable watching this with my 9 year old cousin. But while some movies are too grown up for the little ones in the family a truly great family film can’t be so young that only the wee ones find the jokes funny. No, the very best family films have a storyline/jokes which the whole family can enjoy.

2. It teaches us something – Whether it’s that telling lies is wrong (think Pinocchio), or the value of family or that our toys really can talk, the best family movies teach us a valuable life lesson in a way that is funny and truthful. Family films with no heart are generally no good so try and avoid them.

3. It’s a little sad/scary – Just like the greatest children’s author of all time, Roald Dahl, understood, the very best family movies also understand it’s okay to give the kids a little fright/make them shed a tiny tear. Now I’m not suggesting letting your kids watch the Matrix aged 10 (I did this and couldn’t sleep for weeks) but an appropriate levels of fright (think the child catcher in Chitty, Chitty Bang, Bang) and emotion (think Mufasa dying in the Lion King) are good for the wee ones and really makes for a great family movie.

Now I’ve tried to sum up (what perhaps really can’t be summed up) what makes a family movie great, I’ll turn things over to YOU for your picks of the very best family movies.

@fromthewilde went with ‘The Goonies, Home Alone I and II, Uncle Buck, The Great Outdoors and Despicable Me’.
@stellabranch agreed with Despicable Me but added ‘The Lion King, Monsters Inc, and Millions’ saying that they’re still favourites with her 17 and 20 year old kids.
@fromthewilde wasn’t the only one to show love for The Goonies, it was a favourite for @mcdarracott and @kimmiesue78 who also picked ‘Chitty, Chitty, Bang, Bang, Bedknobs and Broomsticks and Mary Poppins’ which was also a favourite for @karamina who went for ‘The Polar Express, Peter Pan and all the Harry Potters’.
As you would expect Disney got a lot of love with @gillianetc picking ‘Beauty and the Beast and Anastasia’, @anniebeee going for ‘The Jungle Book’ and @jon_sharpe backing ‘The Lion King’.
Disney Pixar movies ‘Wall-E’ and ‘Cars’ were also popular with @siparmaham and @another_noone who also picked Star Wars as her favourite family movie.
@bunnysamisshape went with ‘all things Disney and Harry and the Hendersons and Cloudy with a Chance on Meatballs’.
@JLArchitect opted for ‘Father of the Bride’, while @emilytronetti choose ‘Beethoven’.

Now that your favourite have been nominated I’ve put them all in a poll (with a few of my favourites) to see which is the ULTIMATE family movie. Get voting!

What's the Ultimate Family Movie

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