A Not So Short List of What I Think You Should Watch on Disney+ this November
Written by Jenn Noga on October 15, 2019
As I was minding my own business scrolling through Twitter yesterday, my entire timeline was full of Disney movies, TV shows, and miscellaneous other projects. Turns out the official Disney+ account had decided to do a soft release of what’s going to be featured on the new streaming service starting November 12.
As I’m scrolling through this million post thread, my little heart was beating like crazy looking at the plethora of movies I loved as a kid. It wasn’t a million but probably around 700 titles if I had to gander a guess. Now you have your heavy hitters coming to play with the Disney princesses and the animated movies that keep getting remade.
But that’s not what I’m here to talk to you about today.
I’m here to talk to you about what you should be watching on Disney+ after you’ve made your way through your childhood classics. This is going to go in chronological order because I can’t pick a favorite.
This is a spoiler-free recommendation post but I’m warning everyone now that this is going to be a LONG one so strap in.
The Ugly Dachshund (1966)
Suburban couple Mark (Dean Jones) and Fran (Suzanne Pleshette) take their beloved dachshund, Danke, to the vet’s office to deliver her first brood of puppies. Before they leave, Dr. Pruitt (Charlie Ruggles) persuades softhearted Mark to adopt Brutus, a tiny puppy that has been abandoned by its mother. As the puppy grows into a full-size Great Dane that raises a ruckus around the house, Fran tries to convince Mark to find him a new home — until a brave act helps change her mind.
The Cat From Outer Space (1978)
A UFO captained by a cat-like extraterrestrial (Ronnie Schell) is intercepted by the U.S. Military. The spacecraft’s feline pilot, who goes by the human name Jake, reveals to his captors that he must locate a substance called “Org 12” to restore his battered spacecraft and reunite with his mothership. With help from scientist Frank Wilson (Ken Berry), Jake figures out the Earth equivalent of Org 12 — gold — and then activates his collar’s technological capabilities to help retrieve it.
The Great Mouse Detective (1986)
Basil embarks on the greatest case of his career when London’s master toymaker is kidnapped. He ends up pitting his wits against his old adversary, Professor Ratigan, who wants to become `supreme ruler of all mousedom’. (Basically, it’s Sherlock Holmes but with mice. What’s not to love?)
The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)
The Muppets perform the classic Dickens holiday tale, with Kermit the Frog playing Bob Cratchit, the put-upon clerk of stingy Ebenezer Scrooge (Michael Caine). Other Muppets — Miss Piggy, Gonzo, Fozzie Bear and Sam the Eagle — weave in and out of the story, while Scrooge receives visits from spirits of three Christmases — past, present and future. They show him the error of his self-serving ways, but the miserable old man seems to be past any hope of redemption and happiness.
(This is hands down my favorite version of a Christmas Carol out there and I have seen them ALL)
Timon & Pumbaa (1995-1999)
The lovable warthog Pumbaa and his meerkat buddy Timon carry on the “hakuna matata” (no worries) lifestyle, which can get them into plenty of jungle trouble. Watch these two friends from “The Lion King” as they travel on funny African adventures. Simba even stops by for a visit from time to time.
That Darn Cat! (1997)
Bored with her quiet suburban Massachusetts town, bratty Patti Randall (Christina Ricci) is excited when her beloved cat, D.C., comes back to the house with a watch around his neck. After seeing that the timepiece has an appeal for help scratched on the back, Patti realizes it belongs to a recently kidnapped maid. She takes it it to FBI Agent Zeke Kelso (Doug E. Doug), who agrees to try and follow D.C.’s path to the missing woman, despite his skepticism.
The Thirteenth Year (1999)
As a boy (Chez Starbuck) approaches adolescence he grows scales and fins, communicates with fish and breathes underwater. (Imagine going through puberty only to find out you’re a fish. It’s also really hard to give a spoiler-free review for this one)
Smart House (1999)
A boy tries to stop his father from dating by programming their computerized house to be a surrogate mother. (again, spoiler-free reviews are hard for a movie THIS Good. It does, however, star the guy from Luck of the Irish)
Horse Sense (1999)
Heartwarming drama about two cousins who have personal differences but pull together to save the family home. When a spoilt youngster is sent to stay at his cousin’s Montana ranch, the two boys initially fight but unite when they learn the ranch is in danger of being lost.
Alley Cats Strike (2000)
Teen misfits are thrust into the spotlight when their bowling prowess lands them in the midst of an interschool contest.(Hands down one of my favorite movies on this list. Seriously its THAT good)
Mom’s Got A Date with a Vampire (2000)
The Hansen kids have major social engagements planned, but have all been grounded – so they are delighted when their mum gets a date, enabling them to sneak out unnoticed. However, their delight is short-lived when brother Taylor suspects her new boyfriend is a bloodsucker.
Andrew is a red hot motocross rider, and he’s just about to enter a championship race that might net him corporate sponsorship when he breaks his leg. So his twin sister Andrea decides to impersonate him so that he won’t miss out on his big chance, but not everything goes according to plan.
Jumping Ship (2001)
Michael has big plans to show his cousin Tommy a good time aboard a luxury yacht until he discovers that the yacht he’s chartered is actually an old rusted fishing boat. But when modern-day pirates chase the fishing boat, the boys are forced to jump ship, leaving them stranded on a desert island with the boat’s captain, Jake Hunter. (This movie is basically a follow up to Horse Sense)
Double Teamed (2002)
In this fact-based film, twins Heidi (Annie McElwain) and Heather Burge (Poppi Monroe) take an unusual route to becoming WNBA stars. As teens, the girls enroll in a large high school in hopes of being noticed by college talent scouts. Before long, the school’s basketball coach enlists the Burge sisters to play for his team. They begin to shine on the court, but before they succeed, they must learn to accept one another’s differences and deal with their overbearing dad (Nick Searcy).
A Ring of Endless Light (2002)
During the summer as her grandfather is dying of leukemia and death seems all around, 15-year-old Vicky finds comfort with the pod of dolphins with which she has been doing research. (This movie is based off the book by Madeleine L’Engle)
You Wish (2003)
When older brother Alex wishes his annoying younger brother Stevie would disappear, he doesn’t really expect it to happen, but he hasn’t reckoned with a mysterious ancient coin given to him by Stevie, who’d acquired it as a reward for doing a good deed. Suddenly Alex has a vastly improved life – and no Stevie, who’s now the star of his own TV show.
Right on Track (2003)
When the National Hot Rod Association begins a new children’s league, eight-year-old Erica is first in line to sign up – only to be flatly informed that hot rodding is a `man’s’ sport, and that “little girls should stay home with their dollies. Undaunted, and urged on by her supportive father Gregg, Erica persists in her dream to become a champion racer.
Eddie’s Million Dollar Cook-off (2003)
A junior high school student, Eddie Ogden (Taylor Ball) is an aspiring baseball player, but what he truly loves is cooking. Although he receives plenty of athletic encouragement from his father, Hank (Mark L. Taylor), who also serves as his team’s coach, Eddie can’t resist pursuing his culinary skills, and this decision ends up interfering with baseball. Despite the disappointment expressed by his dad and friends, Eddie presses on with his cooking and enters a high-profile competition.
Lilo & Stitch: The Series (2003-2006)
Picking up where the 2002 Walt Disney movie hit left off, this animated series chronicles the further adventures of renegade scientist Dr. Jumba Jookiba’s beloved Experiment 626, who is now living happily as Lilo’s alien buddy Stitch. The previous 625 experiments become activated when submerged in water and, like Stitch, each experiment has its own terrible talent. Lilo and Stitch’s mission is to catch Stitch’s cousins before they fall into the clutches of wrongdoers and redirect them to live productively.
Full Court Miracle (2003)
Lamont Carr, an African American basketball star is forced out of the game after a serious knee injury. By chance, he meets Alex, a young Jewish boy who plays for his academy’s team. Alex loves basketball, but the team is pretty hopeless and has never won a game. He manages to persuade Lamont to coach them, despite the reservations of the academy’s teachers and administrators, and suddenly the team’s fortunes start to look up.
Pixel Perfect (2004)
When Samantha’s band isn’t gaining any recognition, her friend Roscoe uses his father’s technology to create a sensational lead singer who’s really a hologram. They call her Loretta Modern, and she’s a huge success even when people find out she’s not real. However, Samantha starts to get jealous, and eventually, Loretta has to leave, although Sam’s not as good at fronting the band. What will happen to the group?
Lion King 1½ (2004)
This retelling of “The Lion King” is conveyed from the perspective of meerkat Timon (Nathan Lane) and warthog Pumbaa (Ernie Sabella) and shows how the pair became friends. When Timon leaves his colony because he doesn’t fit in, he meets the lonely Pumbaa. Together, Timon and Pumbaa search for a new home, having adventures along the way and eventually meeting up with lion prince Simba (Matthew Broderick), who is in exile from his home and must challenge the evil Scar for the title of Lion King.
Phil of the Future (2004-2006)
The Diffy family left on vacation from the year 2121 but their rented time machine malfunctioned and they were thrown into the year 2004. Now Lloyd, his part-robotic wife Barbara, and his kids Phil and Pim are forced to pretend to be a normal family in suburban Pickford. Phil befriends Keely Teslow to keep their secret and together the siblings deal with school, bullies, and homework without getting found out.
Go Figure (2005)
Katelin’s a 14-year-old girl who’s determined to make it in the world of figure skating. When she discovers that famous Russian skating coach Natasha Goberman is coming to teach at a local private school she’s determined that Natasha will be her coach, even though it’s an expensive school. Katelin decides to try to get a scholarship.
The Emperor’s New School (2006-2008)
Young Kuzco looks forward to becoming emperor — until he learns that to actually ascend to the throne, he must pass every class and graduate from public school. Banished from the royal palace and living with strangers, Kuzco learns the importance of friends and family.
Eight Below (2006)
WARNING: This movie will probably make you cry
The frozen wasteland of Antarctica serves as the background for a tale about the bonds of friendship and loyalty. Three members of a scientific expedition, Jerry Shepard (Paul Walker), his friend Cooper (Jason Biggs) and an American geologist (Bruce Greenwood), must leave their beloved sled dogs behind after a devastating accident and increasingly perilous weather conditions. Alone, the dogs struggle to survive the harsh Antarctic winter.
Two spoilt sisters are made to work in the family business in the absence of their father. When someone empties the company accounts, they must track down the culprit to save the business.
Wendy Wu: Homecoming Warrior (2006)
Wendy Wu is a teenager who seems to have a perfect life: she’s beautiful, popular and one of the two candidates to be voted Homecoming Queen. However, her life is changed when Shen, a monk from China, imparts to her the shocking truth about herself- she is a reincarnated Yin Warrior, whose destiny is to battle the evil Yan Lo.
Jump In! (2007)
A young boxer fills in when a member of his friend’s skipping team drops out at the last minute, and he finds a passion for this new sport. He starts to question whether boxing is what he really wants to do, and has to decide to follow his heart.
Three high school kids invent a time machine intended to save fellow students from embarrassing situations. Unfortunately, they discover that turning back the clock can have its consequences. Now the Feds are after them and there’s the slight problem of a black hole to deal with. (Two words: Grappling Hook)
Melissa has a bad case of sibling rivalry. She’s actually jealous of a teenage spy in the best-seller written by her dad, and when she’s kidnapped by a group of fanatical fans it’s up to her to emulate her rival’s superhero skills to rescue him.
Hatching Pete (2009)
Pete is very inconspicuous at school, unlike his extrovert mate Cleatis who’s happy to don a chicken suit and be the school mascot, but unfortunately, Cleatis is allergic to the suit. When there’s an uproar at the disappearance of the chicken, and Pete is forced into the limelight as the school’s basketball reputation is at stake.
Musicians the Jonas Brothers star in a single-camera sitcom as – surprise! – rock star brothers Kevin, Joe and Nick Lucas of the band JONAS. When the trio is not on tour, the guys live in New Jersey on Jonas Street (the inspiration for the band’s name) with their parents, Tom and Sandy, and little brother Frankie. They attend Horace Mantis Academy and clown around with their childhood friend Stella Malone, who offers the boys endless style tips, and her best friend, Macy Misa, Horace’s star athlete. The program features songs created specially for it by the brothers.
Den Brother (2010)
Suspended from his hockey team, a teenager (Hutch Dano) becomes a substitute leader for his sister’s (G. Hannelius) Girl Scout troop.
Avalon High (2010)
When Allie transfers to Avalon High, she soon realizes that her new classmates are reincarnations of King Arthur and his court, and she must defeat traitor Mordred. (This is based on the graphic novel series of the same name. This whole franchised deserved better)
Kickin’ It (2011-2015)
Run by Sensei Rudy, the Bobby Wasabi Martial Arts Academy is the worst dojo in the nationwide Bobby Wasabi chain and is in danger of closing. But things change when Jack reluctantly joins the dojo and meets his new crew, including tough-guy slacker Jerry and confident martial arts expert Kim. The crew teaches a group of neighborhood goofballs about life, karate and how to “kick it.” Jack and the gang quickly realize their newfound friendship will take them places they’ve never imagined and, united, they can become unstoppable.
Girl vs. Monster (2012)
A tween discovers on Halloween that she is a 5th generation monster hunter. The monsters are out to stop her before she begins her calling.
Girl Meets World (2014-2017)
From 1993 to 2000, viewers followed the relationship of Cory Matthews and Topanga Lawrence-Matthews on “Boy Meets World.” More than a decade later, the couple’s daughter, Riley, is trying to navigate her ‘tween years — and problems that go with them — especially in regard to bonds with family and friends. At John Quincy Adams Middle School in Manhattan, Riley finds being a student more difficult because her dad is a history teacher there, and she’s in his class. Her mom, a lawyer, is involved in her social life and owns a trendy teen hangout. Among Riley’s classmates are best friend Maya, crush Lucas, and quirky Farkle, son of Cory and Topanga’s peer Stuart Minkus.
Tangled: The Series (2017-Current)
Rapunzel is destined to one day assume the role of Princess of Corona, but she’s not ready for that yet. She realizes that there is so much more she needs to learn about both herself and the world before she can take on the responsibility associated with being a princess. So she goes on a journey to ready herself for eventually ascending to the throne and is joined along the way by partner-in-life Eugene, no-nonsense and dutiful horse Maximus, and tough-as-nails friend and confidante Cassandra. “Tangled: The Series” is a follow-up to 2010’s “Tangled” with Mandy Moore and Zachary Levi reprising their roles of Rapunzel and Eugene (formerly Flynn Rider), respectively, from the film. The animated series features music by Oscar-winning composer Alan Menken and Oscar-nominated lyricist Glenn Slater, who both worked on the movie.
Now this isn’t on Disney+ (yet) but I’m really hoping it will be, an honorable mention goes to
House of Mouse (2001-2003)
Disney characters meet at a cartoon club. The show focuses on Mickey Mouse and his friends running a cartoon theater dinner club in the fictional ToonTown, catering to many characters from Disney cartoons and animated movies while showcasing a variety of their cartoon shorts.
This show was not only a favorite of mine but also my little brothers and I hope that we’ll get the chance to rewatch it together.
Did I miss any of your favorites? Which ones are you excited for? Leave me a comment and let me know!