With awards season now in full swing, it’s time once again for our site’s annual look back at the year that was, with our staff’s favorites from what the world of entertainment had to offer, along with your picks for what you chose as the best animated movies of 2019 from our Reader’s Choice poll.

2019 represented the end of an era in many ways, not only for the obvious reason as the conclusion of the 2010s, but also as an extended goodbye to many of the biggest media franchises of the last several years. Whether they were film sagas or TV shows, it was perhaps the most appropriate time for “the end” to arrive for them (even if, in many cases, they are bound to eventually make a comeback).

Of course, the 2010s saw more changes to the movie industry than many would have ever anticipated. This was especially true when it came to The Walt Disney Company. When 2010 began, Disney had yet to finalize their purchase of Marvel Studios, hadn’t bought Lucasfilm from George Lucas, and it would have been a fantasy to assume they would one day own all of 20th Century Fox (the Mouse House taking over The Simpsons? Madness!). Even their feature animation division was in a completely different state, with their last film, The Princess And The Frog, struggling to even make it past the $100 million mark, causing then-creative executive John Lasseter to declare that Disney was “done with fairy tales.”

Of course all of that turned out differently. Disney’s purchase of Marvel Studios helped lead them to become a box office juggernaut the likes of which the world had never seen, with 2012’s The Avengers setting the bar higher than it had ever been before in terms of how much money a summer blockbuster could make. The acquisition of Lucasfilm the same year lead to the release of no fewer than five Star Wars movies, including Episode VII, something which most fans never thought would actually happen.

Just as notable in many ways was Disney reclaiming their mantle as the powerhouse of animated movies. With Tangled making a healthy $200 million when it opened in 2010, a string of critical and financial hits followed, including a little film called Frozen which became the studio’s biggest pop culture phenomenon since The Lion King.

Towards the end of the 2010s, the merger with 20th Century Fox was met with a mixed reception, as some of the properties they acquired through the massive move felt “at home” with the company (Avatar), while others didn’t fit into the shoes quite as snugly (Fight Club is now officially a “Disney movie”). But with Netflix having changed everything in terms of how people view television and movies at home (back when the decade began, they were best known for shipping DVD rentals by mail), Disney wanted to ensure they had plenty of content in order to be a worthy streaming competitor, finally resulting in the launch of Disney+ last November. In many respects, this allowed for Disney to have an efficient way of using all of the purchases they had made over the past ten years, starting with the premiere of the first live-action Star Wars TV show, The Mandalorian [above, top right], the rare event in which fans of the franchise collectively enjoyed something together instead of arguing about it non-stop.

Granted, the 2010s weren’t only eventful for Disney. DreamWorks Animation, after years of going back and fourth between various distributors, finally found a permanent residence once Comcast took them over in 2016. Many thought that might mean the end of the studio, but after the triumphant release of How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World [above right] last February, they appear to be in good hands now.

Pleasing audiences and critics alike, tying up all of the loose ends in a way rarely seen in animated movies, it was a definitive ending to the series (recent holiday TV special aside), and sets the stage nicely for what will hopefully be a bright future for DreamWorks.

Similarly, Avengers: Endgame — though not an “ending” by any stretch as the MCU looks to be an unstoppable force for an indefinite amount of time — seemed to thrill most moviegoers going by the insane amount of money that it made, even if it arguably didn’t feel “big enough” compared to Infinity War as it saved almost all of its fireworks for the final reel (although, to be fair, they were very good fireworks). This one was a bit of a risk-taker as well, killing off two of the franchise’s most popular characters, including the MVP, Tony Stark. Normally one might expect for such a move to lead to a collective outcry from the fanbase, but the reaction was just the opposite, with people seeming to agree that it was an appropriate “conclusion” to the story (and hey, Black Widow is already coming back to theaters this summer, so it’s not like these superheroes are “gone” forever).

Such universal praise was not given to the final season of Game Of Thrones [above right], the biggest TV show…ever, which seemed to had taken over the planet since its premiere in 2011, even with it being a premium cable series which was strictly for adults. Far more than anything else on television, Game Of Thrones had the ability to somehow keep surpassing itself. It always managed to surprise in some way, to push the envelope to the absolute limit of what was possible with a television budget, with production values which might have been second-to-none. And how else was such a series going to end? Game Of Thrones was never going to have an ending that made everyone happy, so it made sense for it to finish off in a way which was controversial, spectacular, tragic, yet still hopeful. In other words, everything which made it such a huge success in the first place.

Also central to many an online debate was Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker, which found itself facing the uneasy task of trying to do damage control after the many divisive moves made by The Last Jedi while still trying to work as a continuation of that movie. For the most part, it managed to pull the right heartstrings, even if the new trilogy might end up going down as a somewhat uneven affair. The Last Jedi behaved as a sequel which more or less hated The Force Awakens, throwing entire plot threads away and twisting others around in a cynical manner. This left The Rise Of Skywalker to be stuck as a relative which wasn’t overly fond of The Last Jedi, but tried to be polite about it, and most fans will probably be grateful that the saga ended on the “traditional” note that it did (well, at least until Disney inevitably announces Episode X in a few years).

On the small screen, many more popular TV shows wrapped themselves up. After nearly ten years on the air, Hasbro closed the curtain on My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic [above right], probably one of the more shocking breakout hits of recent memory, in that it exceeded any and all expectations that anyone had for the franchise when it first premiered, becoming an easily accessible cartoon which viewers of all ages could enjoy. Disney pulled the plug on Star Wars Resistance a tad prematurely (though it still has a handful of episodes yet to air), no doubt to make more room for the upcoming new season of The Clone Wars. For grown-ups, Orange Is The New Black — one of the pioneering series of the streaming ere — finally completed its sentence, while Veep ended its political career just as it was possibly becoming more relevant than ever.

As is sadly always the case, the year saw so many passings that they could never all be properly mentioned in a single article.

Among the more notable were Richard Williams [right], the Oscar-winning master animator behind The Pink Panther and Who Framed Roger Rabbit; Russi Taylor, the veteran voice actress who had been playing Minnie Mouse since Who Framed Roger Rabbit; and Carol Spinney, who had been a prominent figure in the childhoods of several generations as the man who brought both Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch to life on Sesame Street for nearly 50 years.

So with all of that being said, we thank you — our readers — for sticking with us for as long as you have. Our site is continuing to go through exciting changes, and we look forward to giving you even more new content to enjoy in 2020. In the meantime, allow for us to present to you The Best of 2019: And Then It Was Over!

Ben’s Picks

The year kicked off with catching up on a couple of holdovers from the previous one: the magical, marvellous Mary Poppins Returns, which continues to blow me away each time I see it, and the touching Stan & Ollie which, as a Laurel & Hardy nut, I felt managed to really nail the essence of The Boys. It was a great thrill to welcome my Animated Views cohort Randall Cyrenne and his family over to vaycay with us and share that latter film in our theatre (as well as many others!) with an appreciative audience [below right], the real way that any movie should be experienced, of course.

While we hand the Cyrennes here in London, we also took in the closing weeks of Disney’s Aladdin on stage, a production that we largely found lacking if still entertaining, though it was interesting to see before eventually getting around to running this year’s remake, which I kind of felt the same about, with some good moments marred by some odd creative choices. Likewise, the “live-action” CGI Lion King totally failed to impress in anything but its photorealism.

Much better was another Disney redo, and one that got a lackluster box-office reception but actually did everything right, taking the original film as inspiration but then soaring in its own new direction: Tim Burton’s Dumbo [below]. Seemingly an inspired choice initially, before the box-office made us unnecessarily wary, the film turned out to easily top the list of the Studio’s remakes and proves that these are best when they attempt their own thing rather than slavishly following an original, and it was another title that we enjoyed with Rand during his stay with us.

We also took in the Stanley Kubrick exhibition that saw many props and production artefacts on display in London, although poor Rand missed out, by just a few days, on the almost as equally impressive — especially since it was, incredibly, free! — Dark Crystal exhibit installed at the BFI to promote Netflix’s Age Of Resistance prequel series. The Kubrick show also included Jack’s infamous typewriter fromThe Shining, which got both a 40th anniversary 4K makeover this year as well as an eventual sequel in Doctor Sleep which, if one truly “gets” the first film on its many levels, not only lived up to nervous expectations but ultimately surpassed them.

Indeed, this felt like the Mary Poppins Returns to The Shining‘s original Poppins, if you follow my drift, creating a totally different kind of film to Kubrick’s, but in the exact same way and making the same kinds of changes to the source novel, combining elements from both film and book to bring everything into alignment with impressive skill.

Elsewhere on the big screen, Avengers: Endgame, Joker, Once Upon A Time…In Hollywood and, most disappointingly, Star Wars Episode IX: The What Of Who (!?) all underwhelmed for various reasons, though I found much to admire in moon mission documentary Apollo 11 (impressive on the biggest screen you can see it on) and perhaps my favorite film of the year, Elton John biopic Rocketman [below], a creatively brave and bonkers movie that I’m so glad is getting awards attention, especially for the excellent Taron Egerton.

On the books front, John was also the subject of an autobiography, Me, as was Julie Andrews, in the hugely enjoyable reminiscence of her Hollywood years, Home Work, and for animation fans there was JB Kaufman’s engrossing volume on The Making Of Fun & Fancy Free (which Rand got signed for me at D23 — thanks!) and Walt Disney’s Ultimate Inventor: The Genius Of Ub Iwerks, by his son Don, a wonderful new addition to the Disney bookshelf and companion tome to the Disney+ Imagineering Story series.

Ahh, yes, Disney+. Unfortunately, the UK has to wait until April to point our remotes and select that juicy new programming, frustratingly so after being the country that trialed the initial DisneyLife app (and in sharing the English language!) and not only delaying our look at the new Lady And The Tramp but having the surprise of a Baby Yoda totally wrecked for us!

Still, at least a Brit distributior did manage to score the home entertainment release of the year in The Complete Monty Python’s Flying Circus Blu-ray set for the show’s 50th anniversary, with astonishingly restored material that went above and beyond what should normally be possible with such elements.

In animation, sequels ruled and mostly only proved so-so, although I felt Toy Story 4 was a better film than the third, which overly recycled bucketloads from the first two, and became the continuation we didn’t even know we needed and, while I am still to see the onslaught of yeti-type movies, the good word around Laika’s Aardman-esque Missing Link has me eager to run that, as well as the Aardman-authentic new Shaun The Sheep sequel, picked up by Netflix, and the streamer’s own Klaus.

As the year rounds out, and in addition to who Dacey has already mentioned in our intro, I’d like to give a shout out for some much-missed people we have lost in the past year, including some genuinely cherished names for me in Doris Day, Stanley Donen, Neil Innes, Clive James, Dick Miller, Hal Prince, Caroll Spinney, Richard Williams (yes, he’s worthy of two mentions!) and, in a shock that hit me hard, my good personal friend, editor Terry Rawlings.

RIP to all these fine practitioners in the business of show that we all continue to get so much enjoyment from. I look forward to seeing what new delights await us over the coming months!

Dacey’s Picks

2019 proved to be a pretty big year for sequels, which absolutely dominated the animated marketplace. The picks of the crop were How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World and Frozen II [right], providing what fans were hoping for while still delivering a fresh experience for them. The Hidden World, I would argue, was a crowning cinematic achievement on virtually every level, ending the trilogy in a fully satisfying (not to mention tear-jerking) manner. Frozen II, meanwhile, saw the return of Queen Elsa — who has quickly become one of Disney’s most beloved female heroes — in grand fashion, giving her a strong, moving story and two breathtakingly beautiful musical ballads for good measure. Both movies were great-looking as well, setting the standard for what modern animation is capable of.

The sequel talk doesn’t end there, though. Toy Story 4, despite all of the (perhaps justifiable) complaining when it was first announced, proved once again that people should never bet against Pixar. Of course it wasn’t as good as Toy Story 3 (how could it be?), but it was still an emotionally rich and warmly funny outing for Woody and the gang. The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part may have actually been underrated, building on the original’s cheeky sense of humor while throwing in some catchy songs and a subtle level of poignancy.

Once again, the year gave us plenty to enjoy in terms of superhero blockbusters, but the best of the batch wasn’t a Marvel release as has become the norm, but Alita: Battle Angel [below], a jaw-dropping action epic with some potentially game-changing special effects (on multiple occasions I literally went “wow” outloud, simply in awe over what they were able to accomplish with the film’s fully computer-generated heroine).

On a much more “grown-up” note, I was floored by the fall’s brilliant Joker, a bold, daring, provocative, disturbing, and even exhilarating comic book drama which broke many rules of the genre. Also going against typical standards — and equally not suitable for children — was Brightburn, a surprisingly tragic, thrilling tale of horror which effectively imagined what would’ve happened if young Clark Kent hadn’t been a force for good.

Back on the more family-friendly side of things, Disney returned to their vault of classic movies once again, producing remakes which functioned essentially as re-releases but played like sequels as far as financial returns were concerned. Even Aladdin, which many had been eager to write off as a bomb, ended up being a $1 billion hit, pleasing audiences everywhere with its sheer likability even if I didn’t personally find it quite as magical as the recent Beauty and the Beast. Nevertheless, it proved to be a lot of fun — especially for us 90’s kids! — and Will Smith ended up being a pretty great Genie.

Similarly, The Lion King dazzled with its spectacular visuals, but it would’ve been nice if something new could’ve been added to the story, while Dumbo was more or less a quasi-continuation of the original cartoon feature, exploring what exactly happens once a circus has a flying elephant in their hands. It was almost a great movie, with Michael Keaton clearly having the time of his life playing the slimy bad guy, even if it gets brought down a peg for being almost laughably politically correct with its ending. Finally, the (wrongly titled) Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil deserves a mention simply because of how nuts it got, making it one of the most all-out crazy adventures Disney has released in quite some time.

There were also some non-sequel, non-remake titles that came out in 2019. For whatever reason, I haven’t gone to any of Laika’s movies on the big screen since Coraline (which is ironic, since I loved that one enough to go to it four times in theaters!), but I did very much enjoy Missing Link when I recently caught it on disc. With its gently naughty comedy and the overall “British” nature of its tone and voice cast (although, yes, Hugh Jackman is Australian), you’d be forgiven for mistaking it for an Aardman film. Even more delightful — and absolutely hilarious — was Spies In Disguise, one of the year’s most pleasant surprises, and Blue Sky’s best movie in years.

And speaking of unexpected delights, who would’ve thought that The SpongeBob Musical: Live on Stage [above] would’ve been as terrific as it was when it aired on Nick last December? With a perfect cast, wonderful songs, and social commentary that never felt overbearing, it was able to capture the show’s signature offbeat charm, and showed the best out there how to do a live TV stage musical the right way.

Of course, every year has one or two letdowns in it. For me the biggest disappointment by far was Terminator: Dark Fate, one of the most frustrating reboots/sequels I’ve experienced in a long time, not only killing off a lead character before the opening titles even appeared, but also feeling the need to “update” something which was already perfectly modern and feminist to begin with.

Dan’s Picks

Critical Role [right], the live internet stream of animation voice actors playing Dungeons & Dragons, once again tops my list. They had a big 2019, having one of the most successful Kickstarter campaigns in raising over $11 million to fund an animated series adaptation with Amazon Prime taking on distribution and ordering an additional season. The year also saw them become their own media company, launching new content, more live shows, and an art exhibition at Gallery Nucleus. All the while continuing to produce an outstanding, dramatic narrative to their game.

The animated features that stood out for me this year were Frozen II and How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World. With Frozen II, I really liked what Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck did in expanding the mythology against magnificent visuals, some really good songs, and further developing a fantastic character in Elsa. With How To Train Your Dragon, Dean DeBlois brought the franchise full circle with a compelling narrative, beautiful animation, and perhaps the most heart-warming final several minutes any series could conclude with.

On the live-action front, my favorite singular feature was Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. I really love Quentin Tarantino films, and this one saw him continue to bring out the best in his actors while telling a unique story that was unconventional and enjoyable. But I will concede that the Marvel Cinematic Universe as a whole was amazing. Captain Marvel was fun, Avengers: Endgame was epic, and Spider-Man: Far From Home was awesome. That each grossed over $1 billion is a testament to how good and how beloved Marvel Studios has become.

The stand-out of the year for me was the independently produced animated television pilot Hazbin Hotel [right]. Funded primarily through the subscription-based crowdfunding service Patreon, it is definitely not family-friendly given its setting in Hell, as well as an over-the-top amount of seriously adult content. And yet Vivienne Medrano assembled a crew to create an incredible show featuring high quality animation, wonderful characters, and catchy show-tunes. Backed by a dedicated fanbase, I strongly believe we’ll see more episodes made in the future.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the groundbreaking Monty Python’s Flying Circus, Network Distributing released my packaged media pick with the “Norwegian Blu”-ray edition of the complete television series. Not satisfied with just remastering the footage, which looks quite lovely really, they went the extra mile in restoring deleted and censored content, both live-action and animated, to present the episodes as close as they could to how they were first broadcast. It’s been an absolute joy watching one of my favorite shows in a new light.

On the subject of Terry Gilliam, a shout-out for his finally making The Man Who Killed Don Quixote. As exemplified in the 2002 documentary Lost in La Mancha, this project had plagued him for roughly 30 years now. To see it realized on the big screen delighted me to no end. Sure it was far from his best film, but it nonetheless showed that he still had a penchant for incredible, dazzling visuals. Combined with some really fine performances by Jonathan Pryce and Adam Driver, this was as much of a heart-warming experience for me as any other in 2019.

Among the events I went to included a few at Gallery Nucleus for Frozen II, How To Train Your Dragon, and Star vs. The Forces Of Evil as well as the San Diego Comic Con. But Disney’s D23 Expo took the cake, once again providing a remarkable experience that was fun and magnificent.

This year’s show was made all the more enjoyable in that I got to hang out with Rand throughout and we had an absolute blast attending the big presentations for Disney Studios and Disney+ as well as checking out anniversary panels for The Little Mermaid and Tarzan, among others [including the upcoming Jungle Cruise movie, above].

Lastly, there was Disney’s streaming service Disney+. To me they started very strong with hundreds of quality programming from the past 90 years available, even if it’s not everything at their disposal. Furthermore, the original shows released so far have been great. The highlights for me were the excellent Star Wars series The Mandalorian, the outstanding National Geographic show The World According to Jeff Goldblum, and the wonderful documentary series The Imagineering Story. I’m looking forward to what they offer over the next few years.

Rand’s Picks

Theatrically speaking, I found this year’s crop of films to be fairly dismal. The one bright spot was Missing Link [below right], easily my favorite animated film of the year — a delightful surprise from Laika whose joys could not be adequately captured in its mildly underpowered trailer. It is truly a must see!

And what else was out there? Lots of sequels, that’s what. Okay, Toy Story 4 was respectable, though I didn’t love it, and I’m still not sure how I feel about the ending; overall, I would have been fine letting the series end at a trilogy.

I’ve just seen Frozen II and actually liked it quite a bit. It built nicely on its predecessor, which I appreciated, since I always thought Frozen was merely a good film with great songs. I welcomed Frozen II and was pleased to find that it fleshed out the story, answered some questions, and succeeded in being a compelling adventure of its own. I actually look forward to Frozen III, which I hope gets announced. Still, I would have preferred to see a fully original story from Disney this year, following last year’s mediocre Ralph sequel.

The third How To Train Your Dragon film was somewhat unsatisfying (and weakly plotted) to me, surely a film series with diminishing returns after a promising start. Films like Abominable and The Addams Family have their fans, but those films didn’t really set the world on fire or add anything to animation history either. Lego Movie 2 was…weird, though it did grow on me as it unfolded. I hope I never have to see such films as Ugly Dolls or Wonder Park — who goes to see films like those? And, after the mediocrity of The Secret Life Of Pets, did we really need a second one?

Meanwhile, to keep going the notion that Hollywood is out of new ideas, we have the Disney live-action remakes. Okay, I actually liked Aladdin [below right]; despite finding many faults in it, it won me over with some good casting, a new, strong song (even if it’s staging was so odd), and a few new bits added to the story.

Truth to tell, I also really enjoyed Dumbo, though reaction out there seems to be mixed at best. I was at least glad that Dumbo was only part remake, taking the story forward in what I thought was an exciting and well-realized way. (And compared to the debacle of the 2017 Beauty And The Beast, this year’s crop of remakes looked positively fantastic.) And then there’s The Lion King, sometimes mistaken for being live-action, partially due to Disney’s own marketing, when it’s a fully-animated CGI production. I did not hate the new movie, but it was surely an unnecessary film. From a perspective of technical achievement, however, it was really pretty amazing.

If any company out there could potentially make me happy over the next few years, it is Netflix. The streaming company, eager to create new content to compete with new services such as Disney+, is going into animation production in a big way, supporting a large array of upcoming projects. Their Klaus [below], released late in 2019, was a revelation — a hand-drawn, fully animated film with a unique look (and enhanced computer coloring), and a pretty good story as well. For me, Klaus delighted me more than any theatrical film this year, aside from Missing Link. Soon, Netflix will be streaming Aardman’s Shaun The Sheep Movie: Farmageddon, after it debuted in other territories already in 2019. What follows promises to be a string of interesting and original films that I can’t wait to see.

Home video did manage to please me this year, in particular the folks at Warner Bros. Between Warner Home Video and the Warner Archive, we got high definition issues of such classics as 1940s Popeye cartoons, Hanna-Barbera series The Jetsons, Jonny Quest, and Scooby-Doo, and “Timmverse” show Batman Beyond, the latter two being offered in deluxe sets initially.

Even Shout! Factory managed to surprise us cartoon fans, with a release of The Plague Dogs that included the long-lost extended cut of the film. It’s also wonderful to see Shout! and GKids continue to distribute foreign animated films on home video in the US.

Of course, for me the true highlight this year was a summer filled with travel, beginning with a trip to visit Ben, my oldest Animated Views pal, and ending with a trip to D23 to meet newer AV colleague Dan for the first time in person. We had a terrific time, basking in all the pomp and ceremony that Disney could muster. It was a joy to share in such a unique experience with fellow Disney enthusiasts from around the world.

Theatrical Review: James’ Picks

Another year over, another year where nothing on the big screen wowed me. That said, there was a lot of entertainment out there this year that, while definitely not great, was at least pretty good. With no stand-outs, this was probably the toughest year I’ve ever had trying to narrow down my annual top three theatrical releases list. And even when I had the three I was going to go with, ordering them them was a hard decision as well. Before I reveal my picks, a few notes.

First up, sorry to all those who were hoping for a Sasquatch sweep of the top three. One of the recently released yeti films made my list, another did not, and the third actually came out last year so wasn’t eligible anyway!

Second, two movies missing from my list that many others might have ranked are Frozen II and How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World. As I mentioned previously, a lot of films were of a similar quality in my mind which made choosing three difficult. Here’s a very quick explanation on why I decided to leave these two popular picks off. In the end I felt How To Train Your Dragon 3 was just too similar to How To Train Your Dragon 2. And Frozen II I thought had a much too convoluted plot, and overall felt like a sequel rushed out in order to make money rather than because they had a story they wanted to tell.

Lastly, in the past when there were far fewer animated movies to choose from in a year, I’d occasionally name the top two films and rank an “honorary” #3 pick that was worthy of some note for surprising viewers by coming out of nowhere to impress or surpassing low expectations. If I were to do that this year, I’d probably pick Playmobil: The Movie — a film that has been treated almost as a joke since it was announced, but ended up being well made and enjoyable.

Now, without further ado, here are my top three animated theatrical releases of 2019.

#1: Toy Story 4
I was one of the many naysayers, proclaiming before the film was released that there was no reason to make a fourth edition of Toy Story after things ended perfectly in the third outing.

What I and those many others missed, however, was that while Toy Story 3 ended Andy’s storyline nicely, Woody is the protagonist of this series. And while not a better film than the last, Toy Story 4 does send off Woody in Pixar’s usual emotionally-gripping style.

#2: The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
The Lego Movie 2 is very different in many ways from the original. It’s probably not as funny. It’s not coming out of nowhere to knock your socks off. And it’s not as profound as the first. But it has all the heart and the same emotional punch — maybe more!

That’s an impressive feat since the first movie did it so stealthily while here there were no secrets. Just goes to prove that like there’s no one right way to play with Legos, there’s more than one way to build an awesome Lego movie.

#3 Missing Link
For the longest time, I was not of fan of Laika’s films. Kubo And The Two Strings was the first I actually enjoyed. Missing Link makes it two in a row for me. The plot is a solid but no-frills affair with a leisurely pacing. Even the excellent voice acting has a more deliberate feel.

All of which makes Missing Link seem like a breath of fresh air compared to the fast-paced, break-neck impression left by most other films. And with that all wrapped up with Laika’s usual incredibly detailed and fluid animation, Missing Link is a film to be savored.

Readers’ Choice Results

Now it’s your turn to tell us what you thought with our Readers’ Choice Poll. For just the third time in the eight years we’ve been asking Animated Views readers to rank the best animated movies of the year you’ve chosen a Pixar film.

Toy Story 4 earned the top spot on the list with a score of 56 out of a perfect 100. It received 36% of the first place votes and appeared on an impressive 74% of all ballots.

Frozen II was the second choice with a score of 39/100. It got 26% of the first place votes and showed up on 49% of all ballots.

Third place went to How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World with a score of 36/100. It actually was on more ballots than Frozen II with 57%, but fewer people had it as their top choice, at 13%. Missing Link came in fourth with a score of 25/100. It was on 36% of the ballots and received 14% of the first place votes. And The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part took the fifth spot with a score of 7/100, getting 1% of the top votes and appearing on 15% of all ballots.

Well, that about wraps it up for now. Be sure to be on the lookout for our upcoming expanded “Best of the 2010s” animated movie poll, which should go live in the next couple of weeks. In the meantime, here’s wishing everyone a happy new year, and…”stay tooned”!

Dacey and the entire Animated Views Team