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Comfort Food Movies: 10 Great Films For Tough Times

We're living through some pretty strange and scary times. And as we are all told to stay home, many of us will look to entertainment for comfort. In times like these, the escapism provided by animation can be just what we need. You probably have a list of go-to movies that you return to again and again, the movie equivalent of "comfort food".

We've put together a list of films that are, in our opinion, ideal movies for times like these. There's no definitive list, of course, but pick any of these and you can't go wrong. What are your favourite comfort movies? Let us know in the comments or via our usual social media channels, and you might be featured in the post




My Neighbour Totoro

If you're looking for a slice of pure escapism in the Ghibli catalogue you won't find better than Totoro. There's something about its sun-dappled view of a simpler time, with its lush bucolic setting and its child-eye view of the world that makes you feel somehow everything is going to be OK. And of course, Totoro himself and the mighty Catbus have to be some of the most beloved creations in animation- they can't fail to put a smile on your face. With its laid-back pacing and gentle tone, it's basically the movie equivalent of a warm hug.





WATCH IT:  DIGITAL(US) | NETFLIX (EXCEPT US, CAN & JAPAN | BLU-RAY AND DVD

 

Shaun The Sheep Movie

In the UK, anyone born in about the last 40 years has grown up with Aardman animation. Wallace and Gromit's specials are an institution, shown basically every national holiday- and from them sprung Shaun The Sheep, starring in his own spin-off TV show and then this 2015 movie (and its 2019 sequel). Aardman's gloriously old-fashioned stop-motion animation has an unmistakable charm, that will give many Brits the warm fuzzies. In this film, Aardman are at their most ingenious, with Shaun's first big-screen adventure oozing cuteness and visual inventiveness, all without a line of spoken dialogue.




WATCH IT: AMAZON PRIME (UK)| BLU-RAY, DVD, 4K & DIGITAL

 

Song Of The Sea


When you need to be swept away into a world of magic and legends, Tomm Moore's Oscar-nominated fantasy is perfect. With its lilting soundtrack and beautifully stylised animation, it's an ideal way to shut out the real world for 90 minutes. Thanks to its mythical tone and Cartoon Saloon's trademark art-style, it has a real classical feel. It's almost like being read the world's greatest bedtime story.





WATCH IT: AMAZON PRIME (UK) | STARS(US) | BLU-RAY, DVD & DIGITAL

 

How To Train Your Dragon

You could probably pick any one of the trilogies, but  Hiccup and Toothless's relationship is where the heart of these films lies. Anybody who has ever owned and loved a pet will be able to identify with their bond- and the first film does a great job of making you care for Hiccup as well. Beyond the emotional beats though, the film's most iconic scenes are the flight sequences. Accompanied by John Powell's legendary score, they'll whisk you away from your troubles.





WATCH IT:  NETFLIX (UK) |  | BLU-RAY, DVD, 4K & DIGITAL

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time

Mamoru Hosoda's breakthrough feature may have a sci-fi premise, but you never really get the impression that that's where the director's interest lies. Instead, its recreation of a teenage summer with its friendships, school worries and crushes does a sublime job of capturing a real moment in time. You don't need to have grown up in Japan to feel it- it'll transport you back to your own high-school years. The specifics may be different, but the themes are universal. A sunny slice of nostalgia that's perfect for when you need a lift.





WATCH IT: FUNIMATION NOW | BLU-RAY, DVD, 4K & DIGITAL

The Lion King

Everyone has their favourite Disney movie- and it's often related to when you were born. For a lot of the millennial generation, the original Lion King is untouchable. It's got everything that makes for a classic Disney film- beautiful hand-drawn animation, killer tunes, dastardly villains and comedy sidekicks. It's also got that sequence- but what's a Disney film without parental mortality? The remake could never compete with the original's colourful and character-filled animation. Hakuna Matata!


 

WATCH IT: DISNEY+ | BLU-RAY, DVD, 4K & DIGITAL

Kiki's Delivery Service

When people are talking about their favourite Studio Ghibli films, Kiki's Delivery Service is often overlooked. Which is a shame, as its easily Hayao Miyazaki's most accessible film. This story of a young witch breaking out on her own is perfect escapist material. Kiki and her faithful cat Jiji took to her broomstick long before a certain mister Potter was even a twinkle in Ms Rowling's pen. With its gorgeous recreation of an alternate circa-1950's Europe, soaring flight sequences (a Miyazaki trademark) and gentle tone, it's like taking a mini holiday. And oh boy, does that bread ever look delicious!




WATCH IT:  DIGITAL(US) | NETFLIX (EXCEPT US, CAN & JAPAN | BLU-RAY AND DVD



Paddington

Are we cheating including a not entirely animated movie? Shut up, it's our list we'll do what we want. Besides, the big-screen adaptation of Michael Bond's beloved books features an animated character at its heart. Heart is something this film has got an awful lot of- it's just a big fuzzy bear-hug of a movie that you would have to be made of stone to resist. Queue up this and its equally charming sequel for a double-bill and have a real feel-good day.




WATCH IT: AMAZON PRIME (UK) | BLU-RAY, DVD & DIGITAL

 

Spider-Man: Into The Spiderverse

The popularity of super-hero films in the 21st century can probably at least partially be put down to their escapist qualities in a time when the real world can be a confusing and often scary place. They provide action set-pieces and entertainment and in the end, good always triumphs over evil (eventually). Animated super movie Spider-Verse provides all that- and a lot more besides. Its unique visual style is combined with a crazy multi-verse spanning story to create a truly dazzling experience to make your head spin- in a good way.





WATCH IT: NETFLIX (US) | NOW TV (UK) | BLU-RAY, DVD, 4K & DIGITAL




Finding Nemo 

Pixar's incredible winning streak of critical and box-office smashes was still unbroken when Andrew Stanton's film swam into cinemas. Its portrayal of the beautiful undersea life makes it ideal for times when you want to shut out the world outside.  The world beneath the waves is full of colourful characters, all of whom are based on real aquatic life. It combines a relatable, very human story with a fun road movie/buddy movie adventure structure to make it a classic. And its message is one we can all take to heart... just keep swimming!




WATCH IT: DISNEY+ | BLU-RAY, DVD, 4K & DIGITAL


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