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  • Ranking our favorite Disney princess movies of all time.

    March 22, 2022 4 min read

    Disney and princesses were strongly intertwined from the moment Walt Disney animated its first feature film. Between 1937 and 1959, Disney released three films centred on princess characters, and during the Disney Renaissance of the 1990s, we got five more in a single decade which saw incredible success. With modern advances in animation technology, Disney continues to release new princesses themed movies on a regular basis. Infact, The Disney Princess is now one of their official brand names. Seriously, It's a real club, complete with memberships and everything.

    This compelled me to ask, "Which Disney Princess movie is the best?" I decided to research on all Disney's animated princess films and give you my top 5. This list is based on the princesses introduced in the films as well as the overall quality of the film. This isn't about about which Disney Princess is the best; it's about which movie with a princess is the best and if you don't find your favourite damsel in distress on this list, just let's agree to disagree. 

    5. Beauty and the Beast.

    What else can be said about the first animated film nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards? The film is near-perfect. beautifully drawn using the best techniques of both traditional animation and computer animation, and some of the most memorable songs ever created by Disney, a studio known as much for music as it is for animation. There's a reason why the live-action remake was too afraid to change too much from the original.

    Belle has the grace of a classic Disney Princess, but she also has a unique energy and drive. Beauty and the Beast is one of the best examples of hand-drawn animation ever made, and the music is unrivalled to this date.

    4. Moana

    Moana claims she isn't a princess, but as Maui so eloquently puts it, if you wear a dress and have an animal sidekick, you are. Moana is the chief's daughter, so she is essentially a princess. The majority of fans would undoubtedly agree.

    Moana is hard to beat when it comes to modern Disney princess films. The animation is absolutely stunning. The backgrounds in the film are lush and beautiful, and the ocean appears to be as vast as it is in reality. Moana is a more complex princess than most, torn between her duties and her desires, which makes her more compelling, and her adventure is one of the most exciting. When you combine that with the best modern Disney soundtrack, you have a sure-fire winner.

    3. Mulan

    Mulan is unique among the Disney Princesses in that she is not a princess in the traditional sense. She is not of royal blood, and she does not marry anyone who is. However, according to the rules of being a Disney Princess (yes, there are rules), you can also become one if you perform an act of heroism, which Mulan did.

    Mulan is Disney's action hero film among the princess titles, and that, combined with its Chinese history, puts it in a class all its own. Mulan is the most proactive of the princesses, making her a character you truly root for. Eddie Murphy's comedic sidekick is no Genie, but he is hilarious.

    2. Frozen

    Yes, we are all aware of how popular Frozen is. We've all heard "Let it Go" more times than we can count, and if you have children, you're probably still listening to it, but there's a reason for the film's cult status. That's how good it is.

    Frozen is a film that is both a welcome addition to Disney's history of princess movies and a conscious concession to how those earlier films have become, a little more complicated, over time. It's a flawless balancing act. There's a reason why these princesses – yes, there are two – are the first to receive a full-fledged animated theatrical sequel.

    1. Tangled

    Please forgive my bias, but Tangled is a personal favourite of mine. It has pretty much everything you could want from an animated Disney film. It's funny, action-packed, and romantic. What else do you possibly need? The animation on Rapunzel's hair alone is worth watching Tangled for, and while you're at it, enjoy the smoulder.

    The majority of Disney villains have magical abilities that they use to exert their will. Mother Gothel from Tangled is far worse than any of these. Her only talent is the ability to psychologically manipulate Rapunzel in a way that only the worst kind of mother can. Tangled also has the best modern love song in the entire Disney catalogue and don't forget the most badass horse in cinematic history, all hail lord Maximus! And one of the most realistic Disney prince ever.

    The damsels in distress is one of the most well-known and popular archetypes in fiction, whether for their beauty, romantic relationships, or adventures. The majority of these Disney Princesses are so old that they are in everyday lingo of the people. Disney  has largely replaced all others as the definitive version of these centuries-old characters.

    We're sure to see entirely new Disney Princesses in the future, but the ones we've seen before are unlikely to disappear. Every one of these women is someone's favourite, and there is no right or wrong answer.