Animals make every movie better. That’s a fact.

Cinema has a long history of using animals in their films, real and animated. Something about an animal protagonist is just inherently more joyous and interesting as we get to inject human emotion on creatures that famously do not speak human, while also playing into their animal behaviours that better serve the story. This week join Tuong and our Furry Friend lovers Justin & Shannon Godelie (Pull the Plug) and Dan Foerster as they go off-leash and rank Top 5 Movies with Animals as Leads.

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Ground Rules

  • The movies nominated must have an animal or animals as the or one of the main characters in the film
  • No monster films (ie Godzilla is not an animal, Sully from Monsters Inc. is not an animal)
  • The nomination is not the character, but it’s the movie itself. (The movie is more important than how awesome the character is)
  • We can nominate the movie series instead of just choosing one if these characters appear in multiple films
  • Anthropomorphic animals in movies count unless it leans too much into monster territory

Group Top 5

5. Lion King (1994)

4. The Planet of the Apes (Matt Reeves trilogy)

3. Homeward Bound

2. Paddington (1&2)


**Spoilers below is our Group Top 5 as well our unordered honourable mentions**


Tuong’s List

I normally don’t write anything for this part of the blog post but I have to chyme in here. I somehow forgot about one of my favourite movies of all time – Fantastic Mr.Fox in a podcast which would have been PERFECT to nominate it and that’s on me. So basically saying this whole podcast would have went different if I said that and I am forever going to live with fucking this up. Anyways here’s my list:

  • Paddington
  • Lion King
  • Kungfu Panda
  • Finding Nemo
  • Fantastic Mr.Fox
  • Ratatouille
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem
  • Puss in Boots
  • Zootopia
  • Airbud
  • CATS (I love hate this movie so much)
  • Rango
  • Porco Rosso

Dan’s List

  • Jaws
  • The Chipmunk Adventure
  • Turner & Hooch
  • Babe
  • Homeward Bound
  • Lion King
  • All Dogs Go To Heaven
  • Junglebook
  • Chicken Run
  • Congo
  • Zootopia

Justin’s List

  • King Kong
  • Paddington
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)
  • Free Willy
  • Fox and the Hound
  • Dunstin Checks In
  • Old Yeller
  • The Adventure of Milo And Otis
  • Ratatouille
  • Stuart Little
  • Babe
  • Homeward Bound
  • DC’s League of Superpets
  • Rise of the Planet of the Apes Trilogy

Shannon’s List

  • Scooby Doo (2002)
  • Air Bud
  • Homeward Bound
  • Monkey Business
  • Barefoot Executive
  • Jaws
  • The Cat from Outer Space
  • Free Willy
  • Black Beauty
  • Never Ending Story
  • Pete’s Dragon (2016)
  • Seabiscuit
  • Beethoven
  • Adventures of Milo and Otis
  • Flipper
  • Lassie
  • Ninja Turtles
  • Paddington
  • King Kong

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