Top 10 Animated Features of the 2000s
While the 2000s also saw Lilo and Stitch from Disney Feature Animation, it also saw some low points like Home on the Range. So what did Disney do? They went to the men who revitalized animation at Disney once before -- Little Mermaid directors Ron Clements and John Musker. The result brought class back to Disney 2D animation and gave the world one of Disney's most inspiring princesses ever. For Tiana, the first African-American princess, simply wishing on a star is not enough to reach her dreams. Driven by New Orleans inspired jazz music, this story is inspired by the best of past princess tales and skewers all the negative elements. Time's Richard Corliss went as far as to name it the best film of the year, animated or live-action. The Princess and the Frog proves that technique doesn't matter when the story is great.
Directed by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud, based on Satrapi's graphic novel, this French production proves that animation doesn't have to be kid's stuff. Designed in stark black & white, the story follows Marji's life growing up during the Islamic Revolution in Iran, her time living as a foreigner in Vienna and her return to Iran, a country that no longer resembled the one she left. While it's a personal story, it still has universal appeal. Marji deals with the same issues of alienation that many kids feel, however her environment complicates her problems. Many teens rebel by listening to metal music, but when you’re a teen in Iran and you can be imprisoned for it, you risk a lot more. Through the evocative use of its simple visuals, Persepolis is great example of what animation can accomplish as cinematic art.
Brad Bird's The Incredibles is one of the best superhero movies ever made. Forget Fantastic Four, Mr. Incredible, Elastigirl, Violet, Dash and Jack-Jack are the first family of superheroes. Mr. Incredible is forced to hang up his spandex when superheroes are outlawed, but he can't stay away. Now, out of shape, the once great crime fighter must get back to top form for a mysterious client. On a grand scale, the story pokes fun at suburban life and the pressures of balancing work with family. The winner of Best Animated Feature at the Academy Awards also skewers the superhero genre, while remaining a thrilling example of it at the same time. And thanks to Edna Mode, we know why capes are not a good costume accessory.