Underrated or overrated?

I have to confess, I sort of feel like I never really “got” Fantasia. I’ve seen it several times; heck, I think we own it, having been sucked into the something-or-other superfantastico anniversary edition at some point when I was still bound and determined to own every animated Disney film out there. But it just doesn’t do it for me. Meh. I get it, he’s conjuring things, it gets out of control. Pass the popcorn.

So I felt slightly vindicated, I guess, to read Cartoon Brew’s entry yesterday:

“[FANTASIA] is a mishmash of pedantic narration and erratic tone (the finale’s soul-sucking demon gives the death of Bambi’s mom a run for the money in the childhood trauma department), and, frankly, some of the animated sequences now seem dangerously akin to screensavers.” That’s the assessment according to PREMIERE magazine’s list of the 20 most overrated movies of all time.

Anyway, other than reassuring me that I might still qualify for hipness even though I don’t like Fantasia, the article got me thinking about other kid and family films. We all have our favorites, of course. I was trying to think of other movies I find to be vastly overrated, and mostly was only able to come up with ones I find to be underrated.

By far my most favorite movie that most people haven’t seen is The Wrong Trousers. Oh, sure… Wallace and Gromit went mainstream later on, but all you need to love them is The Wrong Trousers. That movie is perfection.

I’m also a devotee of The Princess Bride, but I think that for the most part, it enjoys appropriate acclaim.

As for overrated… well… don’t throw tomatoes at me, but even though I watch it every year, and make my children watch it, I confess to thinking that A Charlie Brown Christmas is sort of overrated. I know. I’m sorry. It’s a tradition, and not one I’ll eschew any time soon, but every time I watch it I sort of wonder why I’m watching it.

I much prefer A Christmas Story. (“Frag-eel-ay! That’s French!”) But I know some folks who find that to be overrated, so to each their own.

What kid or family movies do you think are either overrated or underrated? I bet I’m missing some great ones.

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2 thoughts on “Underrated or overrated?

  1. Some of my favorites that others may have missed are The Abyss, Dead Again, and The Iron Giant, and The Station Agent.

  2. Underrated, I’d vote for Cats Don’t Dance (very cute and has catchy songs!) and Disney’s Brother Bear (I think it’s a wonderful movie, Phil Collins songs are love and I think this movie seems to have gotten overlooked because of some of the.. er.. lesser-quality stuff that Disney has put out in recent years). And I’ll second The Iron Giant (love that movie!).

    Overrated (please don’t throw too many tomatoes at me) I think are the Shrek movies. I know, I know! I don’t hate them and I laugh at all the jokes, but sometimes I look at them and think that, really, they aren’t as good as everyone and their grandmother praises them to be.

    Also, Watership Down. I’m sorry. But I don’t get why that movie is so loved. I’m rather “meh” about it.

    And, last but not least (again, please don’t throw too many tomatoes), the Harry Potter movies. They’re not horrible, but they just seem (to me) to be lacking… something. And I always feel just a little sad inside when I hear about people who LOVE Harry Potter.. but have never ever read the books. Were I to make a Harry Potter recommendation, I’d recommend the books before the movies every single time.