A-Ron’s Film Rewind Presents: The Best Of Disney’s Pixar Studios

Pixar is an American computer animation studio based in Emeryville, California, a subsidiary of Walt Disney Studios. Pixar began in 1979 as part of the LucasFilm computer division, known as the Graphics Group, before its spin-off as a corporation in February 1986, with funding from Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who became its largest shareholder at the time. Disney purchased Pixar in 2006 at a cost of $7.4 billion. 

Luxo Jr., a character from the studio’s 1986 short film of the same name, became the studio’s mascot. Pixar has produced 22 feature films, beginning with “Toy Story” in 1995, which was the first ever computer-animated feature film. As of July 2019, its feature films have earned approximately $14 billion at the worldwide box office, an average worldwide gross of $680 million per film.

“Toy Story 3”, “Finding Dory”, “Incredibles 2” and “Toy Story 4” are all among the 50 highest grossing films of all time, with “Incredibles 2” being the third highest-grossing animated film of all time, with a gross of $1.2 billion; the other three also grossed over $1 billion. Moreover, 15 of Pixar’s films are in the 50 highest-grossing animated films of all time. The studio has earned 20 Academy Awards, 8 Golden Globe Awards and 11 Grammy Awards among other awards and acknowledgments. This Friday (March 6, 2019), Pixar’s newest film “Onward” opens in theaters. In honor of their new film. I ranked Pixar’s 10 best films.

1. Wall • E

*6 Oscar Nominations & 1 Oscar Win: Best Animated Film

WALL-E, short for Waste Allocation Load Lifter Earth-class, is the last robot left on Earth. He spends his days tidying up the planet, one piece of garbage at a time. But during 700 years, WALL-E has developed a personality, and he’s more than a little lonely. Then he spots EVE (Elissa Knight), a sleek and shapely probe sent back to Earth on a scanning mission. Smitten WALL-E embarks on his greatest adventure yet when he follows EVE across the galaxy.

2. Cars (2006)

*2 Oscar Nominations 

While traveling to California to race against The King (Richard Petty) and Chick Hicks (Michael Keaton) for the Piston Cup Championship, Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) becomes lost after falling out of his trailer in a run down town called Radiator Springs. While there he slowly befriends the town’s odd residents, including Sally (Bonnie Hunt), Doc Hudson (Paul Newman) and Mater (Larry the Cable Guy). When it comes time for him to leave to championship is no longer his top priority.

3. Coco (2017)

*2 Oscar Nominations & 2 Wins: Best Animated Film, Best Achievement In Music

Despite his family’s generations-old ban on music, young Miguel dreams of becoming an accomplished musician like his idol Ernesto de la Cruz. Desperate to prove his talent, Miguel finds himself in the stunning and colorful Land of the Dead. After meeting a charming trickster named Héctor, the two new friends embark on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history.

4. Incredibles 2 (2018)

*1 Oscar Nomination 

Telecommunications guru Winston Deavor enlists Elastigirl to fight crime and make the public fall in love with superheroes once again. That leaves Mr. Incredible with one of his greatest challenges ever — staying home and taking care of three rambunctious children. As Violet, Dash and Jack-Jack offer him a new set of headaches, a cybercriminal named Screenslaver launches his dastardly plan — hypnotizing the world through computer screens.

5. Ratatouille (2007)

*5 Oscar Nominations & 1 Win: Best Animated Film

Remy dreams of becoming a great chef, despite being a rat in a definitely rodent-phobic profession. He moves to Paris to follow his dream, and with the help of hapless garbage boy Linguini he puts his culinary skills to the test in the kitchen but he has to stay in hiding at the same time, with hilarious consequences. Remy eventually gets the chance to prove his culinary abilities to a great food critic but is the food good? 

6. Toy Story (1995)

*3 Oscar Nominations 

Woody (Tom Hanks), a good-hearted cowboy doll who belongs to a young boy named Andy (John Morris), sees his position as Andy’s favorite toy jeopardized when his parents buy him a Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) action figure. Even worse, the arrogant Buzz thinks he’s a real spaceman on a mission to return to his home planet. When Andy’s family moves to a new house, Woody and Buzz must escape the clutches of maladjusted neighbor Sid Phillips (Erik von Detten) and reunite with their boy.

7. Finding Dory (2016)

Dory (Ellen DeGeneres) is a wide-eyed, blue tang fish who suffers from memory loss every 10 seconds or so. The one thing she can remember is that she somehow became separated from her parents as a child. With help from her friends Nemo and Marlin, Dory embarks on an epic adventure to find them. Her journey brings her to the Marine Life Institute, a conservatory that houses diverse ocean species. Dory now knows that her family reunion will only happen if she can save mom and dad from captivity.

8. The Incredibles (2004)

*2 Oscar Nominations & 2 Wins: Best Animated Film & Best Achievement In Sound

In this lauded Pixar animated film, married superheroes Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson) and Elastigirl (Holly Hunter) are forced to assume mundane lives as Bob and Helen Parr after all super-powered activities have been banned by the government. While Mr. Incredible loves his wife and kids, he longs to return to a life of adventure, and he gets a chance when summoned to an island to battle an out-of-control robot. Soon, Mr. Incredible is in trouble, and it’s up to his family to save him.

9. Cars 3 (2017)

Blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast cars, the legendary Lighting McQueen finds himself pushed out of the sport that he loves. Hoping to get back in the game, he turns to Cruz Ramirez, an eager young technician who has her own plans for winning. With inspiration from the Fabulous Hudson Hornet and a few unexpected turns, No. 95 prepares to compete on Piston Cup Racing’s biggest stage.

10. Toy Story 2 (1999)

*1 Oscar Nomination 

Woody (Tom Hanks) is stolen from his home by toy dealer Al McWhiggin (Wayne Knight), leaving Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) and the rest of the gang to try to rescue him. But when Woody discovers that he’s actually a valuable collectible from a once-popular television show called “Woody’s Roundup” and is reunited with his horse Bullseye, Jessie the yodeling cowgirl (Joan Cusack) and his faithful sidekick, Stinky Pete the Prospector (Kelsey Grammer), he doesn’t want to leave.

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About Aron Medeiros

Aron Medeiros
Aron Medeiros is the movie critic for Maui Watch. He lives on the beautiful island of Maui and is also a member of the elite Hawaii Film Critics Society and an active cast member of the NerdWatch pod cast. He is a 2003 graduate from King Kekaulike High School. His favorite film of all time is “Back To The Future”. He has worked at Consolidated Kaahumanu Theaters for nearly 13 years as a Sales Associate and making his way up to Assistant Manager. He has loved movies since he was a young boy, where his Grandfather started his love for the movies.

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