The Oscars 2021: Best Animated Feature Film Category Preview

If there is one category I feel confident talking about during awards season, it's usually the Best Animated Feature Film category.  Animated movies are my specialty and it's the one category where I usually know all the nominees.  Take a look with me at the 2021 Oscar nominated movies in the Best Animated Feature Film category and see how I think this competition stacks up. 

Wolfwalkers (AppleTV+) 

Wolfwalkers - Image from AppleTV+

OK - I loved Wolfwalkers and didn't really expect to enjoy it the way I did.  When I watched the trailer, it didn't pull me in and I wasn't sure about the animation style.  Proving once again, that you can't judge a book by it's cover, I gave the movie a chance and my oldest and I really enjoyed it.  The story is intriguing and meaningful; the story creates characters you care about as you watch their tales unfold.  Wolfwalkers definitely wins points in the originality category - in a world of digital animation, this film dared to be different and it paid off.

Read my full Wolfwalkers review and download FREE Activity Sheets!

Onward (Disney / Pixar)

Onward - Image from Disney / Pixar

From an entertainment standpoint, this is my favorite film on the list.  Onward was the last movie we saw in theaters before COVID hit so maybe that plays a role in it holding a special place in our hearts.  Or it could be the fact that it's the tale of two brothers and, watching it as a mom, it's the kind of relationship I hope my boys have with one another.  The movie is funny, but bring the tissues because the end is a real emotional rollercoaster. . .I mean it's Pixar after all!  

Check out my Onward review, favorite quotes from the film, and download FREE activity sheets!

Soul (Disney / Pixar)

Soul - Image from Disney / Pixar

The 2021 Golden Globes winner in this category, I feel like Soul is probably the frontrunner for The Oscars as well.  Another solid film from Disney / Pixar, in my opinion, it wasn't as entertaining as Onward.  I liked the movie - the music, animation, story, etc. were all good.  I felt like the story was "older" than some other Disney / Pixar films over the years and my family just didn't connect in the same way.  We enjoyed it, but this wasn't one that my kids wanted to watch over and over again.  

See my full review of Soul, 30 of the BEST quotes, and download these FREE activity sheets!

Shaun the Sheep: Farmaggedon (Netflix)

Shaun the Sheep: Farmaggedon - Image from Netflix

I actually had to watch this one when the list of Oscar nominated animated films came out because I had missed it.  After tuning in, I can't say I'm sorry I missed it.  A stop motion animated film with no real dialogue is not my type of film.  I'm sure there are people who enjoy it - as evidenced by this nomination - and the Academy probably finds some beautiful artistry and creativity, but I didn't like it.  I felt like it was an animated feature that really could have been a short film.  This is easily last on my list of the nominees, but there have been plenty of Oscar winners in the past that have surprised me.

Over the Moon (Netflix)

Over The Moon - Image from Netflix

I feel like Netflix really seized the opportunity during the pandemic to create and / or acquire really great family entertainment.  After all, the year 2020 was pretty much the year of the streaming service as we all sat on our sofas unable to leave home.  Over the Moon was a really good family film on Netflix.  I enjoyed the representation of Asian culture in the film with beautiful storytelling and an awesome soundtrack.  I don't know that this movie got the love and attention it deserved from mainstream audiences and I wouldn't be disappointed for the Academy to recognize this movie with an award.  

My full review of Over The Moon can be found here!

And MY Oscar Goes To. . .

If anyone in the Academy cares about my opinion, I think my vote would have to go to Wolfwalkers.  With the exception of Shaun the Sheep: Farmaggedon, I enjoyed all of the nominees and would be happy and can justify wins for them.  Wolfwalkers stands out to me for a few reasons.  First, it surprised me.  It's rare that an animated movie does that in my opinion.  There was so much depth and beauty in the story, but it still reached the younger audience that it targeted.  I also feel like this film was something different and the uniqueness of the film deserves to be celebrated.  My runner-up would be Onward with honorable mentions going to Soul and Over the Moon.  

Who would win your 2021 Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film?  Tune in Sunday, April 25, 2021 to see who wins!

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