Pixar is one of the most successful studios on the planet. They've made more great movies than just about anybody, but even the best have an off day. While most Pixar movies are solid, there has to be a best, and there has to be a worst. We're going to rank them, from the bottom to the top.
With the release of Cars 3, Pixar has produced 18 feature films. We've included the newest entry in the Pixar universe here, so you can see where it stacks up. Clearly, there will be some disagreement about placement. For the most part, almost everything Pixar has done is pretty good, so in many cases, we're splitting hairs, but either way, decisions have been made. Here are all 18 Pixar movies starting at the bottom and going to the top.
19. Cars 2
We'll start with the low hanging fruit. Cars 2 is frequently cited as the worst of the Pixar flock, and while I would argue that the film is a good deal better than it gets credit for, it probably still qualifies for the bottom of the list. While a Pixar spy movie isn't a terrible idea by any means, it's not clear why anybody thought Cars was the right world to place it in. Now that Cars 3 is out, the sequel looks even more out of place, with it's over the top storyline and focus on a character that not everybody really connected with.
18. The Good Dinosaur
There's nothing inherently wrong with The Good Dinosaur, the fact is that there just isn't a lot to recommend in it, either. The movie went through a much tighter production schedule than nearly anything else Pixar has done, and the result was just a mess of different ideas that told a decent enough story, but utterly lacked the magic that Pixar usually brings. It's saved from the bottom of the list for being one of Pixar's most technically impressive productions, it is truly visually stunning, but that's all the movie has going for it.
17. Monsters University
Monsters University has a unique message among animated films. Namely, the idea that just because you have a dream, it doesn't mean you're actually capable of achieving it. Unfortunately, the good part of the film that gives you this is the end, and the movie that builds to it takes its time getting there. Overall, as a complete movie, this sequel isn't anywhere near the level of its predecessor. The heart that put the original movie much higher on this list is completely missing until the finale, making it difficult to even want to get there.
It breaks my heart a little bit to put Brave so low on the list, as the movie does so many unique things that are worthy of note. It's got a female protagonist to start, the first Pixar film to do that. However, while Merida is a fantastic original character, the story that her movie tells is less so. Ultimately, the film falls victim to one of Disney's great flaws. A female protagonist rebels against her family, learns nothing, and then gets everything she ever wanted. It's not a lesson worthy of Pixar, and it makes the film's finale ultimately hollow.
15. A Bug's Life
Until you saw the picture above, you might have forgotten that A Bug's Life had ever happened. Pixar's second feature isn't bad, but while Toy Story resonated with viewers in a remarkable way, A Bug's Life just didn't. It's an entertaining enough story, and a significant step in Pixar's animation skills from the first film, but in the grand scheme of things, this movie will be largely forgotten outside of the occasional trip to A Bug's Land at Disney's California Adventure. It's an animated version of Three Amigos, only not actually as good as that sounds.