Hey Guys. Gerawallstar here, and I am here to do my ranking of the top 8 dark age Disney films. This era is a mixed bad for me. This was at a time where Disney animation company was going south with their films being either modest success or flat out critical/box office flops. This was when Disney was cutting costs, and reusing animation in most films. So without further ado, here is my lists of the top 8 Disney Dark Age movies.
8. The Aristocats
Since I already put this film on my top 5 worst Disney movies list I will be very brief about this one. I really don’t like this movie at all. I think it’s very forgettable, bland, and a very weak Disney Movie. The cats are annoying, and the animation style is not that pleasing to look at. As the last film greenlited by Walt Disney before his death, the ideas about making a movie about cats wasn’t a good choice. It’s just a weak movie, and I completely understand why this film started the Disney dark age.
7. The Black Cauldron
The biggest bomb from Disney at the time since Sleeping Beauty, and a critical disaster makes this film easily forgotten. But that doesn’t mean that the film is that bad. There are some good things about the film. The animation is really good. I even liked the darker aspects of the film as well. However, the story is bland, and the characters especially Taran and Gurgi are very frustrating to sit through. The villain barely does anything in this movie, and the ending was just kinda stupid. This film is okay, but not a good film.
6. The Rescuers
This film was the critical/financial successful film of the era. I really don’t hate this movie, but I do think that it’s very underwhelming. Let’s start with what I like about this film. I like the animation here. The backgrounds and the Xerography are smoother this time compared to the other films before this one. I love Bernard and Miss Bianca. They are my favorite Disney couple. They’re chemistry is what I love about this film. I even liked the darker and dramatic aspects of the film, that makes it very emotional. Unfortunately there are some problems. My first problem with the film is that there’s barely any action in this film, resulting in some dragged out scenes, and slow pacing. It makes the film boring to me. Another problem I have is the villain Medusa and her husband Mr. Snoops. Medusa is an awful villain. I hated her motivation of getting the diamond, and she is definitely inferior version of Cruella Deville. Snoops is very forgettable. Lastly, while I do feel bad for Penny when she was abused, I find her to be very annoying at times. This film does have some good stuff but there are also some problems that makes it not so good. And seriously, what is up with those horrible beady eyes from the mice?
- Oliver and Company
This is the last film of the Dark ages, and it has gotten a negative reputation since it came out. To be honest, I felt that same exact way at first when i watched the film, but after seeing it many times, I actually kind of liked it. This movie is a guilty pleasure. Don’t get me wrong: this movie does have some problems. Most of the songs are forgettable. I liked that the songs and the movie has that 80s feel to it, and the issue with that is that it makes the movie feel like a marketing tool than a movie. I do like about this film though is the catchy song “Why should I worry?” And “Once upon a time in New York City. ” I liked a lot of these characters. They got some charm to them, and they’re very likeable. The animation is charming with the sketchy feel. Another thing I liked about this film is the climax between the pets and the Villian Bill Sykes, as well as the death scene from him. This is the last dark age film, and a decent sendoff.
4. Robin Hood
I kinda like this film. This film is very fun and action heavy. Robin Hood and Little John are very enjoyable characters. Prince John is an entertaining villian. I loved how he throws a tantrum like a baby when he doesn’t get his way. The action scenes, including the one in the third act are the best action scenes from a Disney movie. There are two problems I have with this film: The songs are forgettable, and there is a lot of recycled animation in one of the songs that is recycled from film such as Snow White, Jungle Book, and The Aristocats. They even recycled the animation from The Jungle Book in a scene where I think Hiss the snake gets hypnotized. This is an enjoyable and entertaining movie from the dark ages.
3. Fox and the Hound
This film is very underrated. I loved the darker tone that this film brought us compared to the kid-friendlier movies from the 70s. The animation is so good that it reminds you a little bit of the animation from the golden/silver age. The bear scene is animated beautifully. I thought that Todd and Copper are cute, and I loved the subliminal message of racism in the film where Todd and Copper were not allowed to become friends due to societal standards. I even loved Big Mama in here, as well as her performance by the late Pearl Bailey. This film isn’t perfect though. There are three problems that I have: Dinky and Boomer are almost unnecessary comic relief characters, the songs are forgettable, and I honestly think that the film would’ve been more impactful and powerful if the chief died. But aside from those nitpicks, this is a good movie, and an underrated one for that matter.
2. The many adventures of Winnie the Pooh.
This was my favorite film as a child. I love this film even to this day. This is probably the most well-known Disney film of the era. And there are some reasons why: the characters such as Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, and Christopher Robin are so memorable. The songs are so catchy. Thanks Sherman Brothers. The animation is so cute that this is one of the rare films where I don’t mind seeing beady eyes, where I despise films that do have that. Looking at you The Rescuers. Don Bluth, thank you for the animation. And lastly, the ending is emotional. This movie is so simple, innocent, and sweet. It will really remind you of your childhood when you’re watching this as an adult. This is a great movie for kids, and toddlers. I’d definitely recommend this film to them, because of its simplicity and innocence.
1. The Great Mouse Detective
This is a fun movie. With the film that saved Disney from the box-office disaster of The Black Cauldron, they really did deliver making a solid movie. It’s all action packed. This is a really good adaptation of Sherlock Holmes. Basil is a great character. I loved his rivalry between him and the villain Ratigan. Hes really smart too, and not that arrogant. Dawson is a good character. Olivia is a great child character. I felt bad for her when her dad was abducted. Ratigan is an awesome villain. Vincent Price did an amazing job voicing him. He is very underrated. The animation is great, but it gets breathtaking during the climax scene where they utilized some CGI for the first time during the Big Ben Chase scene. The Great Mouse Detective is an underrated movie, and one of my favorite movies from the Dark Ages.