Starring such amazing actors as Robin Williams, Julie Andrews and Miss Piggy, these 22 greatest non-animated kid’s movies are perfect for playing to your class as a treat at the end of term. Make the day even more special with freshly popped popcorn.
1. The Wizard of Oz (1939) – When a tornado rips through Kansas, Dorothy and her dog, Toto, are whisked away in their house to the magical Land of Oz. They follow the Yellow Brick Road toward the Emerald City to meet the Wizard, and en route they meet a Scarecrow that needs a brain, a Tin Man missing a heart, and a Cowardly Lion who wants courage. The wizard asks the group to bring him the broom of the Wicked Witch of the West to earn his help.
2. The Princess Bride (1987) – A fairy tale adventure about a beautiful young woman and her one true love. He must find her after a long separation and save her. They must battle the evils of the mythical kingdom of Florin to be reunited with each other. Based on the William Goldman novel “The Princess Bride” which earned its own loyal audience.
3. Mary Poppins (1964) – When Jane and Michael, the children of the wealthy and uptight Banks family, are faced with the prospect of a new nanny, they are pleasantly surprised by the arrival of the magical Mary Poppins. Embarking on a series of fantastical adventures with Mary and her Cockney performer friend, Bert, the siblings try to pass on some of their nanny’s sunny attitude to their preoccupied parents.
4. The Muppet Movie (1979) – After Kermit the Frog decides to pursue a movie career, he starts his cross-country trip from Florida to California. Along the way, he meets and befriends Fozzie Bear, Miss Piggy, Gonzo and rock musicians Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem. When Kermit is offered a job by Doc Hopper to advertise the fried frog legs at his restaurant chain, Kermit turns Hopper down. However, Hopper refuses to relent and pursues Kermit and his companions to a final showdown.
5. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968) – While truant from school, young siblings Jeremy and Jemima meet the beautiful Truly Scrumptious, who falls for their widowed father, Caractacus Potts, and his various oddball inventions, including the family’s noisy rebuilt car, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. One day at the beach, Caractacus tells Truly and the children a fanciful fable about the villainous Baron Bomburst and his evil designs on the Potts family car.
6. Babe (1995) – Gentle farmer Arthur Hoggett wins a piglet named Babe at a county fair. Narrowly escaping his fate as Christmas dinner when Farmer Hoggett decides to show him at the next fair, Babe bonds with motherly border collie Fly and discovers that he too can herd sheep. But will the other farm animals, including Fly’s jealous husband Rex, accept a pig who doesn’t conform to the farm’s social hierarchy?
7. Free Willy (1993) – When maladjusted orphan Jesse vandalizes a theme park, he is placed with foster parents and must work at the park to make amends. There he meets Willy, a young Orca whale who has been separated from his family. Sensing kinship, they form a bond and, with the help of kindly whale trainer Rae Lindley, develop a routine of tricks. However, greedy park owner Dial soon catches wind of the duo and makes plans to profit from them.
8. The Goonies (1985) – When two brothers find out they might lose their house they are desperate to find a way to keep their home. They find a treasure map and bring some friends along to find it. They are all out looking for the “X” and trying to get away from a group of bad guys who also want the treasure.
9. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971) – The last of five coveted “golden tickets” falls into the hands of a sweet but very poor boy. He and his grandpa then get a tour of the strangest chocolate factory in the world. The owner leads five young winners on a thrilling and often dangerous tour of his factory.
10. Home Alone (1990) – When bratty 8-year-old Kevin McCallister acts out the night before a family trip to Paris, his mother makes him sleep in the attic. After the McCallisters mistakenly leave for the airport without Kevin, he awakens to an empty house and assumes his wish to have no family has come true. But his excitement sours when he realizes that two con men plan to rob the McCallister residence, and that he alone must protect the family home.
11. Home Alone 2 (1992) – After snarky youth Kevin McCallister loses track of his father at the airport, he mistakenly gets on a plane headed for New York City — while the rest of the McCallisters fly to Florida. Now alone in the Big Apple, Kevin cons his way into a room at the Plaza Hotel and begins his usual antics. But when Kevin discovers that the Sticky Bandits are on the loose, he struggles to stop them from robbing an elderly man’s toy store just before Christmas.
12. Jumanji (1995) – A magical board game unleashes a world of adventure on siblings Peter and Judy Shepherd. While exploring an old mansion, the youngsters find a curious, jungle-themed game called Jumanji in the attic. When they start playing, they free Alan Parrish, who’s been stuck in the game’s inner world for decades. If they win Jumanji, the kids can free Alan for good — but that means braving giant bugs, ill-mannered monkeys and even stampeding rhinos!
13. Hook (1991) – When his young children are abducted by his old nemesis, Capt. Hook, middle-aged lawyer Peter Banning returns to his magical origins as Peter Pan. Peter must revisit a foggy past in which he abandoned Neverland for family life, leaving Tinkerbell and the Lost Boys to fend for themselves. Given their bitterness toward Peter for growing up — and their allegiance to their new leader, Rufio — the old gang may not be happy to see him.
14. Annie (1982) – An orphan in a facility run by the mean Miss Hannigan, Annie believes that her parents left her there by mistake. When a rich man named Oliver “Daddy” Warbucks decides to let an orphan live at his home to promote his image, Annie is selected. While Annie gets accustomed to living in Warbucks’ mansion, she still longs to meet her parents. So Warbucks announces a search for them and a reward, which brings out many frauds.
15. Oliver (1968) – In this award-winning adaptation of the Broadway musical based on the Charles Dickens novel, 9-year-old orphan Oliver Twist falls in with a group of street-urchin pickpockets led by the Artful Dodger and masterminded by the criminal Fagin. When Oliver’s intended mark, Mr. Brownlow, takes pity on the lad and offers him a home, Fagin’s henchman Bill Sikes plots to kidnap the boy to keep him from talking.
16. Mrs. Doubtfire (1993) – Troubled that he has little access to his children, divorced Daniel Hillard hatches an elaborate plan. With help from his creative brother Frank, he dresses as an older British woman and convinces his ex-wife, Miranda, to hire him as a nanny. “Mrs. Doubtfire” wins over the children and helps Daniel become a better parent — but when both Daniel and his nanny persona must meet different parties at the same restaurant, his secrets may be exposed.
17. Matilda (1996) – This film adaptation of a Roald Dahl work tells the story of Matilda Wormwood, a gifted girl forced to put up with a crude, distant father and mother. Worse, Agatha Trunchbull, the evil principal at Matilda’s school, is a terrifyingly strict bully. However, when Matilda realizes she has the power of telekinesis, she begins to defend her friends from Trunchbull’s wrath and fight back against her unkind parents.
18. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (2001) – Adaptation of the first of J.K. Rowling’s popular children’s novels about Harry Potter, a boy who learns on his eleventh birthday that he is the orphaned son of two powerful wizards and possesses unique magical powers of his own. He is summoned from his life as an unwanted child to become a student at Hogwarts, an English boarding school for wizards. There, he meets several friends who become his closest allies and help him discover the truth about his parents’ mysterious deaths.
19. The Sound of Music (1965) – A tuneful, heartwarming story, it is based on the real life story of the Von Trapp Family singers, one of the world’s best-known concert groups in the era immediately preceding World War II. Julie Andrews plays the role of Maria, the tomboyish postulant at an Austrian abbey who becomes a governess in the home of a widowed naval captain with seven children, and brings a new love of life and music into the home.
20. Miracle on 34th Street (1947) – In this Christmas classic, an old man going by the name of Kris Kringle fills in for an intoxicated Santa in Macy’s annual Thanksgiving Day parade. Kringle proves to be such a hit that he is soon appearing regularly at the chain’s main store in midtown Manhattan. When Kringle surprises customers and employees alike by claiming that he really is Santa Claus, it leads to a court case to determine his mental health and, more importantly, his authenticity.
21. The Love Bug (1968) – Race car driver Jim Douglas and his philosophical mechanic, Tennessee Steinmetz, find themselves in possession of a white Volkswagen Beetle that seems to have a mind and spirit of its own. Calling the car Herbie, Jim and Tennessee become the talk of the California racing circuit — much to the displeasure of sport-scar dealer Peter Thorndyke, who tries to use his assistant to come between the friends and their car.
22. Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971) – During the Battle of Britain, Miss Eglantine Price, a cunning witch-in-training, decides to use her supernatural powers to defeat the Nazi menace. She sets out to accomplish this task with the aid of three inventive children who have been evacuated from the London Blitz. Joined by Emelius Brown, the head of Miss Price’s witchcraft training correspondence school, the crew uses an enchanted bed to travel into a fantasy land and foil encroaching German troops.