Welcome to Week 3 of the Top 30 countdown!  I’m sorry it’s a bit late.  Friday passed me by before I knew it.  I’m going to go ahead and post this to catch up and still plan to get the next installment out this next weekend – even though it’s a holiday.

Without further ado, here are #25 and #24 of my Top 30 Animated Film countdown!

25. Robin Hood (1973)

Yahoo’s #25: Ice Age: The Meltdown

Director:  Wolfgang Reitherman

Studio: Disney

Disney’s Robin Hood is an example of the great kind of ingenuity that has saved the studios time and time again.  The movie had a rock bottom budget and faced seemingly insurmountable odds without either Disney (Walt or Roy) to back up the film since they had both died before the film was made.  So working with what they had, the studio’s animators borrowed inspiration and footage from a bunch of Disney’s previous films, including Bedknobs and Broomsticks, The Jungle Book, The Aristocats, and even Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.  Luckily, the movie was able to take those spare parts and make them its own.  Robin Hood is a loveable movie, even if it is trying to animorph history into something interesting.  Disney had long been in the business of personifying animals, and making them talk and dance, and perhaps the honesty of the film is hard to find under all of its “stolen material” (and hard to see as its own film if you’ve seen The Jungle Book), but it still has some of the most memorable tunes in the history of Disney.  Add to that the memorable characters, and it’s a movie for the ages.

24. Howl’s Moving Castle (2004)

Yahoo’s #24: Ice Age

Director:  Hayao Miyazaki

Studio:  Studio Ghibli

If you’ve seen Howl’s Moving Castle, you’ve seen one of the most imaginative animated films to hit the mainstream.  Based on a book of the same name, Howl’s Moving Castle is an adventure.  Sophie, the protagonist, is cursed and changed into a 90-year-old woman.  She tries to appeal to Howl, who lives in a moving castle.  She finds the fire demon Calcifer inside.  Calcifer makes her a deal that if she can find out what has bound he and Howl together, he will turn her back into her 16-year-old self.  The adventure ensues, and changes all of those involved.

The movie focuses on appearances and how they do not necessarily reveal what lies within.  Sophie is a sweet, beautiful, and kind girl, but her elderly body denies her the reactions that would warrant.  On the other hand, Howl is a beautiful man who is selfish, but finds it within himself to change.  A deep movie that has much to offer in message, animation, and characters, it is a must-see and must-own for any animation lover.

See you next week for #23 and #22!

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