Today, I’m going to be taking a look at some of the best Disney films available to watch on Disney + from the 1940’s. The 1940’s was a break-out decade for Disney, with film production in full-swing pre-war (pre-war for the US, anyway), and continuing throughout WW2 to raise morale for civilians. The fact that some of the Disney films made in the 40’s stood the test of time and are still family favourites today is a testament to the quality and talent of the animators and film creators at Disney back in the day. Let’s take a look at some of the best Disney films of the 40’s:
5. The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (1949)
This is actually the newest film on the list, coming out right at the end of the 40’s. Personally, I appreciate the mash-up of two classic stories, The Wind in the Willows and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. With narration from two legends in their own right – Bing Crosby and Basil Rathbone – this film is heart-warming, entertaining and an all-round good movie.
4. Dumbo (1941)
I still haven’t seen Tim Burton’s live-action remake of Dumbo, and I really don’t want to. Negative reviews aside, this film is a huge part of the childhood’s of millions of people, and has been for generations – my grandparents, my parents and I all watched this beautiful film growing up when we were kids, and I don’t want to tarnish that by watching a CGI Dumbo.
3. Bambi (1941)
Despite the horrifically sad events that take place in Bambi, it’s an incredible film. It’s visually stunning, the characters are loveable, and yes, you will cry at a cartoon deer.
2. Fantasia (1940)
Simply put, Fantasia is excellent. It is so incredibly innovative, and the fact that this film came out in the 40’s is mind-blowing. This film is a visual and auditory spectacle, and it is an absolute masterpiece.
Fantasia is near-perfect, but for me, Pinocchio will always be the top of this list. It’s simply perfect. It’s full of optimism, hope and magic, like all good Disney movies. Sadly, it flopped at the box-office at release due to several factors, mainly WW2, and it initially garnered mixed reviews, however, Pinocchio has gone on to become the favourite Disney film for potentially millions of fans.