When it comes to discussing Disney movies, there is no doubt that Disney has provided some of the most iconic and legendary characters and movies. However, at the same time, there were other gems as well that were relatively less known.
Several reasons contribute to these projects not being able to live up to the hype. For years, Disney has kept its viewers and fans on its toes with exciting projects. Let’s look at some of the little-known Disney gems, which the public has forgotten. And if you want to know some of the most popular Disney Channel Original Movies, click here.
A Goofy Movie
The first amongst forgotten Disney films is “A Goofy Movie”. It was an animated movie that deserved better. It followed the Goof Troop cartoon series, featuring Goofy trying to maintain a healthy relationship with his adolescent son Max who seems to be more interested in his crush, Roxanne.
Disney’s objective behind the project was to come up with something that is a simple road movie but including a spectacular tracklist of musical numbers and laughs. As a result, at the time, when the movie was released, it was enjoyed by almost all age groups.
However, the critics either bashed the movie or never gave it the attention it deserved. Today, this “forgotten classic” has a cult following around the world.
Treasure Planet is second on the forgotten Disney animated movies list, which is basically science fiction. It was directed by Disney legends John Musker and Ron Clements. In addition to that, the movie featured advanced animation techniques such as 2D character animation of 3D computer-generated backdrops to create some of the most stunning Disney visuals to date.
Furthermore, the movie hired a splendid voice cast such as Joseph Gordon-Lewitt, Emma Thompson, and David Hyde Pierce along with the music of Googoo Dolls. The movie received a positive response from the critics and was nominated for Best Animated Feature at the Oscars.
However, it performed badly at the box office. It was termed and considered one of the biggest flops of Disney and has rarely made an appearance in the world of Disney.
Although the premise of the film is somewhat bizarre but it was surely one of the best Disney gems of its time. The movie is based on two mice who are employed at the Rescue Aid Society, responsible and trained for assisting victims of abduction, spring into action to save a young girl from the evil money-hungry Madame Medusa.
The year 1977 saw the release of the film but took several years to complete back when the project was initiated in 1962. Finally, it was released and received a positive response from both critics and viewers.
Moreover, the film was such a success that a sequel was planned, approved, and released in 1990. Despite the film being adventurous and standing the test of time, it is still considered a forgotten Disney classic.
Fox and the Hound
Fox and the Hound is yet another Disney animated film making it to the Disney gems list. The movie was based on heart-warming animal characters with a blend of grown-up themes. It is based on a story of two cubs that are destined to grow up into adversaries.
Their childhood friends including Tod the fox and Copper the hound dog must accept their roles in society as they progress and develop from youthful friends to their prescribed destinies. Fox and the Hound was released in 1981 and was praised.
Even though the film was largely ignored, it surely highlighted Disney’s ability to explore adult themes such as societal pressure and innocence loss. As a result, it stands as one of Disney’s greatest achievements to date.
Atlantis: The Lost Empire
Atlantis: The Lost Empire remains an outlier. It was released in 2001 and utilizes a combination of both 2D and 3D animation to tell a story of a gang of mercenaries who manage to find their way to the lost city of Atlantis. A major feature of the movie was that it was made for a slightly older audience and highlights one of Disney’s attempts at science fiction.
Back then, the movie was a disappointment at the box-office level but today has a cult following. It also features some of the most stunning Disney visuals. In addition to that, it actually proved to be a grown-up, action-heavy work movie settling well amongst the targeted fans. Plus, it does deserve a second look.
The Great Mouse Detective
The Great Mouse Detective is one of the Disney gems that received both commercial and critical success upon its release in 1986. It is based on a mouse representing the great detective Sherlock Holmes. While the film is long forgotten today but the fans have a lot to thank Basil and his mystery-solving adventures.
This was a time when Disney had experienced the failure of “The Black Cauldron”, which nearly bankrupted the studio. However, observing the success of The Great Mouse Detective, the executives thought that animation was worth exploring the commercial route.
With legendary figures such as John Musker and Ron Clements on board, this movie delivered what was intended but was soon forgotten.
Home On the Range
Home on the Range was released in 2004 at the tail end of the Disney Renaissance. It is considered a fine example of Disney’s waning quality at the time. Actually, Disney was shifting its attention to computer animation with Home On the Range (the last 2D animated film) until 2009’s Princess and the Frog.
Critics and viewers criticized the film for not being able to stand up to Disney standards. However, if you go back in time, you shall realize that the movie was one of the best of its time. With wacky characters and music from Disney stalwarts, you can bet that the movie has a lot going for it.
Dinosaur was the fifth-highest grossing film in 2000, at the time of its release and was well-liked by the critics as well as the audience but soon it ventured into obscurity. The movie featured stunning visuals and technical wizardry that was way ahead of its time.
Upon its release, Dinosaur was considered a technical marvel with CGI dinosaur characters and live-action backdrops with no other film achieving it until now. Despite the fact that it was known for technological achievements, the audience and critics found both the story and characters somewhat forgettable.
Dinosaur paved the way for animation techniques used today. However, it failed to make its way and stand up to the expectations of its predecessors.
Considering the little-known Disney gems mentioned above, Disney explored and ventured into projects that carried many risks. And, while most of them failed to deliver commercially, they paved the way for future Disney gems. This perhaps is the main reason all these films deserve some recognition.