Kids of the 90s will fondly remember watching their childhood favorites for the very first time in this unique decade. Whether we watched these movies on VHS, in the cinema, or through some other medium, they’ve probably defined our childhood in some way. Even if we rewatch the top Disney movies from that era now, we’d likely be transported back into that golden, carefree time in our lives.
It might be shocking to think that some of the top children’s movies from the 1990s are now more than twenty years old. Some of them have aged quite well, so it might be worth taking a trip down memory lane and discussing these classic movies. The list below might even inspire some to introduce their own kids to some of the best movies from the 90s. With these viewing, these enjoyable children’s movies will probably gain a whole new wave of loyal fan followings:
Home Alone (1990)
Most kids (and adults) in the United States and many other parts of the world probably enjoyed the ‘Home Alone’ movies more than once. The first two movies in this series starred Macaulay Culkin in a memorable and thoroughly enjoyable performance. While the third movie did come out in the 90s, it didn’t manage to make a huge splash like its predecessors—probably because of the absence of Culkin as well as the previous director, Christopher Columbus.
To this date, many 90s kids probably curl up with a bag of popcorn around Christmastime and revisit their childhood with a ‘Home Alone’ and ‘Home Alone 2’ viewing. Even if you haven’t watched these movies in a long time, you probably remember the smart-aleck kid who accidentally gets left behind when his family goes on vacation. With several memorable movie quotes such as ‘Merry Christmas, you filthy animal’, the joy of these movies isn’t likely to fade anytime soon. Of course, the many pranks that Kevin pulls are quite dangerous and (ironically) not to be tried at home.
Hocus Pocus (1993)
This Halloween movie is a cult classic for millennials today while also holding a loyal fan following within other generations. It features familiar names such as Sarah Jessica Parker and Bette Midler along with Kathy Najimy. These play the role of the Sanderson sisters in the movie. With witches being brought back to life, Salem in chaos, and a singing treat from Bette, there’s not much more a 90s child could wish for.
Mrs. Doubtfire (1993)
Robin Williams’ classic humor and natural talent are defining factors for many kids’ movies and cartoons in the 90s. Despite his tragic end, Williams’ name will probably bring a smile to most people who grew up watching his roles and hearing his voice on the screen.
With ‘Mrs. Doubtfire’, Robin Williams had the chance to showcase and flex his acting chops as well as his comedy acumen. The movie itself contains a lot of laughter but also delivers some deeply poignant moments. In a nutshell, Williams dresses up as an old lady to babysit his own kids when his soon to be ex-wife prevents him from seeing them. There are touching dialogues as well as quirky, hilarious ones, so this is one movie you might want to shortlist for the weekend.
Now and Then (1995)
We get to see more familiar names and faces here, including Gaby Hoffman, Demi Moore, Thora Birch, Ashleigh Aston Moore, and Christina Ricci. Overall, this movie is the quintessential coming-of-age tale. Four best friends share all their ups and downs in life, including a parents’ divorce and a small town mystery that they solve together.
The Addams Family (1991)
This movie is based upon a cartoonist’s creation back in the 1930s. However, the advent of the feature films in the 90s makes this family a classic offering from that decade. In this household, every day is turned upside down. These people make a pet out of a walking hand, while the mother insists on the children playing with their food. There are also some surprisingly positive lessons in the film as well, such as the portrayal of a mother and father who obviously love each other very much.
Here we have just another one of the many offerings from Robin Williams in the 90s. In this movie, he again displays his considerable talent by playing a middle-aged Peter Pan who seems to be stuck in a rut far away from Neverland. With his own children being kidnapped, Peter has to return to his past and remember who he was in order to rescue them.
Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989)
This movie is again part of a series, each with about the same level of fun and intrigue. While it was technically released during the very tail end of the 80s, this film became a major box office success I the 90s. Plus, it also gave rise to some equally enjoyable sequels such as “Honey, I Blew Up the Kid” and “Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves” in 1992 and 1997 respectively.
The premise here is about a gifted scientist who manages to invent a shrinking ray. Unfortunately, movies being what they are, he accidentally causes his kids to shrink to below insect size. From there on, the kids navigate the front yard and try to return home in order to warn their father. There are many dangers along the way though, so you might be at the edge of your seat for this one.
Bookworms and introverts have always loved this beautifully made movie, which is again an adaptation of a Roald Dahl novel. A little girl who’s reading up a storm by the time she’s six turns out to be so smart that she can actually move objects with her eyes! The story includes a lovely teacher/mother figure, a horrible caricature of a headmistress, and a happy ending for all the good people. All in all, it’s a must-watch for any child or adult.
The Sandlot (1993)
This is the movie that gave rise to the quote ‘You’re killing me, Smalls!’ This line was probably uttered by every kid in the 90s who had seen this movie during that era. The movie itself is engrossing, with a group of boys trying to recover their ball (which had Babe Ruth’s signature). Eventually, they have to face The Beast, who is a local dog with an ominous reputation. In the usual happy yet thought-provoking ending of a 90s children’s movie, the group makes lasting memories for everyone involved (including the audience).
With the third Jumanji movie coming out recently, ‘Jumanji’ is one movie that’s worth rewatching to revisit the 90s. Robin Williams is the star here once again, though he shares the spotlight with Bonnie Hunt as well as Kirsten Dunst.
The story here revolves around a magical board game that releases a horde of animals and other jungle dangers on anyone who plays it. The players have to keep on rolling the dice and finish the game in order to get everything back to normal. The premise sounds a bit scary, but the shenanigans are hilarious and kid0freidnly to some extent.
You also won’t go wrong by viewing the latest installment of the series, where the board game morphs into a video game to keep up with the times. If you enjoy that, these post-apocalyptic movies might also be of interest.
The Witches (1990)
Roald Dahl wrote both children’s books as well as several works for adults, but the former is probably what he’s most famous for. This movie is based on Dahl’s book of the same name, and is almost as fun to experience as the book itself.
The premise is related to the existence of witches and how they hate children, seeking to eliminate the. However, the witches’ plans are thwarted by the main character that incidentally gets turned into a mouse for his troubles. Still, he manages to prevent the evil planning of the witches and even enjoy life as a mouse.
Space Jam (1996)
In this massive hit of the decade, Michael Jordan is trying to win at basketball in order to help out the Looney Tunes. This was the 90s for you—the hijinks of Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny mixed with some extraordinary basketball talent for one of the most memorable movies of all time. The movie still has a strong fan following, with many folks still hoarding its precious merchandise. There are even a video game and a pinball machine game based on the movie for those who want to indulge their interest further.
The children’s movies discussed above are just part of what made the 90s so special for kids back then. They have heartwarming stories, with a large dose of wholesome fun mixed inside as well. There’s also a wide variety to choose from, so even children from this current age shouldn’t be bored with the movies from the 90s. For another fun movie night theme, you can’t go wrong with the best animated movies ever.