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Top 9 Kids Movies Of 2013

New: Top 20 Best Kids Movies 2013 - Better late than never, let’s rundown the top 10 best kids movies of 2013. Well actually, top 9. You know it’s been a bad year when there aren’t even 10 entries worthy of the list. Plenty have shamed themselves, I’ve listed those at the end. Even 9th to 4th place are nothing to write home about. At least the top three entries are worth seeking out. Mostly. Anyway, here we go. Prepare yourself for some Pixar bashing.

9th – Planes
Starring: (voices) Dane Cook, Stacy Keach, Priyanka Chopra, Cedric the Entertainer
Director: Klay Hall
top 20 best kids movies 2013

A crop-dusting plane with a fear of heights lives his dream of competing in a famous around-the-world aerial race. ‘Planes’ was intended to be direct-to-dvd (as the cast of Dane Cook, Cedric the Entertainer and Sinbad suggests) but Disney decided it would be a nice earner to put it out theatrically. This is not produced by Pixar, although it was co-written and exec-produced by Pixar’s chief creative John Lasseter, director of the ‘Cars’ films. The problem is it looks like a Pixar movie, and is a spin-off from a Pixar movie, so represents another dent in their previously sublime reputation. The thinly-veiled attempt to sell toys (‘Cars’ merchandise brought in an incredible $10 billion) is part of a trilogy, with Planes II landing 12 months later. Reviews have been mostly poor although a few say it has some low-key charm. [Critics (via Rotten Tomatoes): 26%] [Public (via IMDB): 5.6/10]

8th – Escape From Planet Earth
Starring: (voices) Brendan Fraser, Sarah Jessica Parker, Rob Corddry, William Shatner
Director: Cal Brunker
best family movies 2013

Unfortunately this is not a Snake Plissken movie. Instead it’s about an alien astronaut (Fraser) who’s captured while responding to an SOS on Earth. Imprisoned in Area 51, he finds it’s filled with other aliens being used to invent technology that humans can profit off. Now it’s down to his alien brother to rescue him. Produced by the Weinsteins, their track record on animation is patchy to say the least. The consensus is it’s an uninspired piece of bright animation that virtually cancels out its decent cast with a thin story and lack of laughs. The lawsuit behind the movie is almost certainly more interesting than the movie itself. Well maybe not for children. [Critics: 27%] [Public: 5.9]

7th – Turbo
Starring: (voices) Ryan Reynolds, Paul Giamatti, Michael Peña, Sam Jackson
Director: David Soren
best movies for kids 2013

DreamWorks Animation sports-comedy. A garden snail, who dreams of becoming the fastest in the world, has a freak accident that gives him that power of incredible speed. From there he embarks on an extraordinary journey to achieve the impossible: to race against the best that IndyCar has to offer. The director is new having worked himself up the ladder at Dreamworks (he won an internal ‘pitch an idea’ competition). Critics say its a wholesome, heart-warming ride crafted with polish and skill, but too predictable. Incredibly DreamWorks spent $160 million marketing this movie – talk about turbo-charging a snail. [Critics: 67%] [Public: 6.5]

6th – Epic
Starring: (voices) Amanda Seyfried, Josh Hutcherson, Beyoncé, Colin Farrell
Director: Chris Wedge
best kids films 2013

When a teenager (Seyfried) gets shrunk she finds herself in a secret world within the forest, in the midst a battle between the forces of good and the evil. Banding together with a rag-tag group of whimsical characters she sets out to save their world, and ultimately ours. Based on the children’s book ‘The Leaf Men and the Brave Good Bugs’, this is from the director of the perfectly-decent ‘Ice Age’ and ‘Robots’. It’s somewhere between ‘Ferngully’ and ‘A Bug’s Life’, with a touch of ‘Avatar’. Beyoncé voices a spider queen, badly. The lead couple closely resemble the pair from Disney’s ‘Tangled’. Critics say the enthralling visuals are enough to offset the by-the-numbers, but sweet story. [Critics: 64%] [Public: 6.7]

5th – Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs 2
Starring: (voices) Bill Hader, Anna Faris, Will Forte, James Caan, Andy Samberg
Directors: Cody Cameron, Kris Pearn
top kids movies 2013

Flint Lockwood now works out of town at The Live Corp Company for his idol Chester V. But he’s forced to make a return with his friends when he discovers his infamous machine is still operational and churning out menacing food-animal hybrids – such as tacodiles, shrimpanzees and apple piethons. The original movie was loosely based on the beloved book, but this ignores the book’s sequel to create a separate adventure. The directors of the first went off to make the ’21 Jump Street’ movies so this is helmed by the story artist and head of story from the original. Consensus is it’s not as clever or inventive as its predecessor, but compensates with enough dazzling visuals, and children do love puns. You will literally never experience as many food puns in one movie. [Critics: 70%] [Public: 6.6]

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Best Kids Movies 2013

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