It’s not surprising that Walt Disney has won an incredible 22 Academy Awards. Every movie that the Disney Corporation puts their name to is fantastic: funny, meaningful, beautifully illustrated, and designed to make you think about the human relationships we share with those around us. Disney films have a magical ability to appeal to adults just as much as they appeal to children, making them the ultimate family films, and ones that groups from all generations can enjoy together.
To celebrate our love of Disney, and our love of the Disney figurines by Britto, here is our pick of the best Disney moments ever. Prepare for a hearty dose of nostalgia and be warned: you may need tissues!
Ariel Singing in The Little Mermaid
There’s a reason the Ariel Disney Traditions Figurine is my favourite. Mermaids may be bang on trend for 2018, but nothing made me want to become mermaids more than the original mermaid herself: Ariel in The Little Mermaid. When Ariel sang that she wanted to be a part of our world, thousands of little girls longed to grow tails and join her world instead. Far from the stereotypical Disney princess we were used to, Ariel wanted to escape her overpowering father and create a life of her own, and on her own terms. With a beautiful singing voice, plenty of comedy, and a host of complicated family relationships, Ariel remains one of the most important and iconic Disney princesses of all time.
Dumbo Saying Goodbye to His Mother
I can’t think of any animated scene more heart breaking or tear inducing than Dumbo saying goodbye to his mother as she sang ‘Baby mine’ whilst locked inside a cage from which she can’t escape. Walt Disney lost his own mother at a relatively early age, so the concept of parental loss is one that appears regularly in his movies (we still haven’t gotten over the death of Bambi’s mum) Nothing captures the tender bond between mother and child, and the bitter despair when this bond is broken, better than the relationship between Dumbo and his mother. I defy anyone to watch that movie scene and not cry: it is definitely one of the saddest Disney scenes…so far.
The Lantern Scene in Tangled
The lantern scene in Tangled is truly a masterpiece of illustration. Thousands of hand drawn lanterns floating past just for the princess, as she sits beneath them with her new love is sure to make your heart soar. But the story behind the lantern scene is almost as beautiful as the scene itself: inspired by the lantern releases that are so popular in South East Asia, the lanterns were also a tribute to one of the animators, who lost his young daughter and chose to release lanterns at her funeral. This is a truly iconic scene that defines the movie, and it is so beautiful it deserves a place as one of the all time greatest Disney moments too.
Meeting the Genie in Aladdin
The Genie is technically considered to be a supporting character in Aladdin, although of course, he completely steals the show. This makes him the greatest Disney supporting character of all time! He’s loud, he’s funny, he’s charismatic and he steals every single scene he’s in. The power of the larger than life Genie lies in the clever casting: Robin Williams was the perfect choice to voice the character, and he injected much of his trademark mania into the Genie. Whilst ‘Part of Your World’ is undoubtedly a great song, it is the Genie you think of when you think of Aladdin. After all, “you ain’t ever had a friend like him” but we all wanted one!
The Siamese Cats in The Lady and The Tramp
Some people might think the relationship between the Lady and the Tramp (the clue is in the title) is the most significant part of the film, and the romantic scene where the two pups share spaghetti is certainly adorable. But for me, the stand out scene from that movie is the one in which the Siamese cats sing “We are Siamese”. When viewed through modern eyes, this scene could now be viewed as orientalism, but it’s still funny as hell. Who wouldn’t laugh out loud at a pair of sneaky cats trying to frame a cocker spaniel for stealing a baby’s bottle? The cats provide some much-needed light relief in what is a film that is pretty low on humour. And the tune is so catchy that I guarantee if you hum it now you’ll be singing it all day.
Meg Realising she’s fallen in Love With Hercules
Love is a complicated business, and very few of us find our handsome prince without getting our fingers burnt once of twice along the way. That means that whilst we might want the romantic path of Cinderella, Snow White, and the other classic princesses, it is actually Meg from Hercules that we most relate to. She’s had her heart broken in the past, so when she sings “I won’t say I’m in love” you can really feel her pain, her confusion, and ultimately her hope for a happier future. I like to think there is a little bit of Meg in all of us, which makes this one of my favourites, and the most relatable, Disney love songs.
The Witches in Hocus Pocus
When we think of Disney films, most of us immediately think of beautifully animated movies. But we shouldn’t forget that Disney have also created a range of brilliant, and iconic, live action movies too. One of the best of these is Hocus Pocus, starring Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy as a trio of sister witches, planning on putting a spell over the whole town of Salem. When Bette Midler sings ‘I’ll Put a Spell on You” her comedic timing means that not only is this a brilliant Disney movie moment, but also one of the greatest and most iconic film moments of all time. As an added bonus, who doesn’t snigger when Max offers to let Allison light the black candle and she coyly declines. This is because only a virgin can light the black flame candle: the first reference to virginity in any Disney movie.
Be Our Guest in Beauty and the Beast
Who doesn’t want to visit Paris so that they can be serenaded by a candle stick and a clock? Be Our Guest in Beauty and the Beast is considered to be one of the best Disney songs of all time, and Lumiere and Cogsworth are wonderfully funny and animated, particularly given they are supposed to be inanimate objects. This is a song that makes you want to sing, dance and kick your legs. And of course, to try the grey stuff…apparently it’s delicious. The live action remake has brought the magic of this movie to a whole new generation of Disney fans, and the song remains just as popular today as it was 20 years ago: a sign of a true classic.
Wall-E and Eve Dancing in Wall-E
Finally, Wall-E is a movie that finds true beauty and burgeoning love in what is effectively a post-apocalyptic nightmare. When Wall-E and Eve are finally able to spend some time together, floating in space, we see them dance together and Eve finally succumbs to Wall-E’s affection, where the duo finally share a kiss. They may well only be robots, but the story of Wall-E proves that love really is the most important emotion of all, and it really can conquer all challenges and obstacles. It is a beautiful and uplifting moment that gives renewed faith in the human spirits, despite the fact there isn’t actually a human lead in the film. And if anything is going to make you think about your consumption and start recycling, a second viewing of this movie will do it.