Disney has been making animated movies since 1937, but it was only relatively recently that they started releasing sequels And after Kat Sweet ranked the Revival Era movies from Disney, I’ve been thinking about the sequels we don’t talk about much. I’ll be honest, I don’t tend to love most of the sequels. However, one of my favorite Disney movies happens to be a sequel that everybody forgets exists. So, I decided to rank all of Disney’s animated sequels, of which there are way more than I remember.
Since there are so many, I won’t be including “midquels,” prequels, or Pixar sequels.“Midquels” are sequels that are set during the events of the original film, so don’t expect the two sequels to Beauty and the Beast. I also won’t be including Fantasia or Fantasia 2000 because I haven’t seen them recently enough to remember them.
And now, without further ado, is my definitive ranking of Disney’s animated sequels.
‘Pocahontas II: Journey to a New World’
I’m pretty sure it’s a near-unanimous opinion that Pocahontas II: Journey to a New World was one of the worst Disney movies so far. The story fell flat, the songs weren’t memorable, and it just felt like they were trying to ruin what was already a fantastic ending.
The 1998 sequel to Pocahontas takes the historical approach and follows her accompanying John Rolfe to England to negotiate peace. Throughout the film, she butts heads multiple times with various people. The ending sees her travel back to Jamestown with John. There, I saved you an hour and twelve minutes.
‘The Return of Jafar’
I might be in the minority, but I couldn’t stand any of the Aladdin sequels or the television show. The first film ended perfectly; why drag it out any longer? That said, out of the two sequels that came out, The Return of Jafar was worse.
One year after Aladdin defeated Jafar and released Genie, the villain has returned to Agrabah. Aladdin has made another enemy in the year between the films, and now he has to go up against both villains that have found their way to each other. Iago also redeems himself at the end of the movie.
‘Aladdin and the King of Thieves’
Much like The Return of Jafar, this Aladdin threequel just wasn’t it. And honestly, I wish I could forget most of it. The only reason it’s ranked above The Return of Jafar, though, is that the songs were so much better. The story was just dull, so it’s lower than most Disney sequels.
The movie was based on the tale of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. In it, Aladdin meets his father while he and Jasmine are preparing for their wedding. It takes Aladdin back to his roots as a street rat while trying to bond with and rescue his father, who he thought was dead for most of his life.
‘An Extremely Goofy Movie’
I don’t know what Disney was thinking, but they should have left A Goofy Movie alone. It might not have been my favorite, but I will concede that the ending was good. It ended nicely, wrapped up the story, and had father and son reconcile.
Goofy has just lost his job and decides to go back to college with Max to receive a degree to get another job. Max, on the other hand, is gearing up for a skating competition with his friends. But once Goofy arrives, things start to go a little awry.
‘Atlantis: Milo’s Return’
Atlantis: The Lost Empire was excellent, and I’m glad it did well enough for a sequel. That said, Milo’s Return should not have happened. There were plans for a spinoff series with Milo and the team finding other cryptids and mythological creatures. But since the movie basically bombed, they were scrapped.
Kida is doing her best to fix Atlantis with Milo by her side as her husband. But when their friends return, the couple is whisked away to stop a creature wreaking havoc on the surface. Two more stories follow as the film was originally the first three episodes of the scrapped series.
‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame II: The Secret of the Bell’
I’ll be honest, I thought this sequel was cute. But I don’t think it was needed. The Hunchback of Notre Dame II: The Secret of the Bell didn’t add much to the story. And it felt like they were just reaching for more money by giving Quasimodo a love interest. The whole point of the first movie was him discovering self-love.
The Secret of the Bell takes place six years after the first film. A circus troupe is in town for a celebration, but they have devious reasons for the visit. Quasimodo bonds with one of the troupe members, a trapezist Madellaine. Phoebus is also investigating a series of robberies In the end, there’s tons of love proclaimed around the city.
‘Mickey’s Twice Upon a Christmas’
I barely remember this movie, but I did rank it higher than the ones above because it’s Christmas-themed. From what I do remember, it was a fun watch, but it didn’t leave an impression. I think Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas should have been left as is.
Five stories make up Mickey’s Twice Upon a Christmas. The first is “Belles on Ice” and stars Minnie and Daisy. The second, “Christmas: Impossible”, is basically Ducktales but Christmas-themed with Scrooge. “Christmas Maximus” is the third and follows Goofy and Max hosting Christmas for Max’s girlfriend, Mona.
The fourth short is “Donald’s Gift” and follows Donald trying to have a quiet Christmas when his family shows up and ruins his plans. “Mickey’s Dog-Gone Christmas” is the last and stars Micky trying to make Christmas perfect while Pluto is adopted by Santa as an honorary reindeer.
‘101 Dalmatians II: Patch’s London Adventure’
Patch’s London Adventure was a fun watch. Does that make it good? No. But at least we got to see Patch being the hero after being kidnapped by Cruella de Ville in the first movie. Overall, it didn’t give much to the story, and I definitely prefer the live-action films over this sequel.
It’s been a year since Patch and the other dalmatians were reunited with the Radcliffes. Patch’s television hero, Thunderbolt, comes to town and wants to prove his heroism by saving the day. What better time than when Cruella de Ville is back in town stealing puppies again?
‘Leroy & Stitch’
I love Lilo & Stitch more than anything, but I have to concede that the sequels weren’t up to par with the rest of the list. Leroy & Stitch was the last film in the franchise and served as the ending to the television show. Because you had to watch the show to understand it, I did have to rank it lower than the other Lilo & Stitch sequels.
Hämsterviel, the main antagonist of the television series, has somehow made an evil clone of Stitch to conquer the galaxy, and that experiment is now causing chaos on Earth. It’s up to the group to save the other experiments and the universe before Hämsterviel gets his way. The ending wraps up the story nicely, but a lot of fans still want to see more of Lilo and Stitch all grown up.
‘Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch’
Moving on to the third Lilo & Stitch movie, we have the one that had me sobbing for so long. This movie really tugged on the heartstrings and gave us insight into Stitch’s genetics. Even better, you don’t have to watch the television show to be caught up in the story, unlike Leroy & Stitch.
Stitch has been having nightmares recently, but Lilo tries to convince him there’s no need to worry. Over time, Stitch starts having behavior problems that infuriate Lilo. Jumba and Lilo work together to fix Stitch before his glitches take over.
‘Lady and the Tramp II: Scamp’s Adventure’
I prefer this movie over the last few on the list because the songs were pretty fun to listen to. I’m pretty sure if I listened to the soundtrack today, I’d still remember the lyrics. The story was also fine, if not overly memorable. I just don’t think it was as interesting as the rest on the list.
Nearly fifty years after the release of Lady and the Tramp, fans meet the couple’s son, Scamp. The movie is basically a gender-swapped retelling of the original story, with Scamp being the house dog longing for freedom while Angel is the street-smart dog. It’s similar, but the changes make it fresh.
‘The Jungle Book II’
I couldn’t bring myself to put this movie any lower, but I could interchange Lady and the Tramp II with this one. While I loved the songs more in the prior listing, I prefer the story of this sequel. That said, I think The Jungle Book ended almost perfectly.
Mowgli is back in the jungle against his adoptive father’s warnings. Not to mention Shere Khan is back and hungry for revenge. Shortly after going back to the jungle, Mowgli’s friends Shanti and Ranjan come after him. But it’s not all fun and games when Shere Khan finally finds Mowgli.
‘Tarzan & Jane’
Not to be confused with the Netflix show of the same name, Tarzan & Jane was the last movie in Disney’s Tarzan franchise. It was made up of three episodes from The Legend of Tarzan, the television series following Tarzan and Jane after the first movie. I honestly could’ve done without it, but the movie itself was enjoyable.
The story tells three stories of Jane and Tarzan’s relationship after the first film. In the present day, Jane is trying to think of what to get Tarzan for their anniversary. Each short story within the film is cute and shows how much the couple loves each other despite the struggles they faced in the beginning.
‘Brother Bear 2’
Many of these sequels weren’t needed, but Brother Bear 2 upped the ante compared to the past listings. It continued the story without seeming forced, and it had music that lived up to the first film’s soundtrack. I wish I could watch this for the first time again.
Now that Kenai is a bear full-time after the first movie, he and Koda are living their lives as brothers. But Kenai is struggling with dreams of Nita, a girl from his past. After a sign from the Spirits, Nita goes on a quest to find Kenai to destroy the amulet he gave her so she could marry another man.
‘Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue’
I don’t know why, but everyone seems to love Great Fairy Rescue most out of the Disney Fairies franchise. But it’s my least favorite. Yes, I liked the storyline, but it fell flat compared to the other movies. I think it might have been because it was the only movie not set in Never Land.
The fairies are helping bring summer to the Mainland. While there, Tinker Bell is captured by a young human girl, and her friends go on a rescue mission that keeps going haywire at every turn. Tink sparks a friendship with the girl and eventually helps her rekindle the relationship they had before the movie.
‘Planes: Fire and Rescue’
Even though the Planes series was a spinoff of a Pixar franchise, Pixar had no hand in making the films. Honestly, I could tell. The first Planes movie never quite lived up to the Cars franchise, but the sequel was a bit better. Honestly, I would watch this again on a rainy day.
Dusty Crophopper is retiring from racing after his gearbox is damaged. He returns to crop-dusting before deciding to train as a firefighter. Though he struggles, he and his new friends make it through training and become official firefighters.
‘Ralph Breaks the Internet’
I had a hard time getting on the Wreck-It Ralph train until this movie came out. When Vanellope met the Disney princesses, I knew I had to watch both films. And I’m so glad I did. The story was fun, the cameos of various characters were terrific, and I love the soundtrack so much.
Vanellope’s game is being shut down after the machine breaks, so she decides to try her luck in the online universe. Ralph, sad to see his friend go, decides to follow her despite being not allowed to. The friends end up working together to save the internet, which Ralph accidentally broke in the first place.
‘Stitch! The Movie’
Even though the third movie in the Lilo & Stitch franchise is Lilo & Stitch 2, Stitch! The Movie is actually the first sequel. It might not have been tugging at my heartstrings, but the story was solid compared to the other sequels in the franchise.
Stitch! The Movie is basically the prequel to the television series, setting up how Gantu came to work for Hämsterviel and how the experiments ended up all over Hawaii. It also introduces us to Experiment 625, Stitch’s equal that is obsessed with sandwiches. It’s a great way to start a show, and Disney did it justice.
Most people forget this movie exists. But I will never forget the songs that came from this movie. While I loved the ending of Mulan and wouldn’t change a thing about it, I did enjoy the sequel. It showed how far Mulan had come since the first movie. The only downside is Mulan and Shang’s relationship struggles.
Mulan and Shang are recruited into a mission accompanying the Emporer’s daughters across the country. While they travel, the princesses try to come to terms with their arranged marriages while also falling in love with Ling, Yao, and Chien-Po. When the mission goes awry, Mulan tries to take the place of the princesses, offering herself up in exchange.
‘The Pirate Fairy’
I may have loved this movie, but I think Disney dropped the ball slightly. The Pirate Fairy seemed to be missing something, but I can’t put my finger on what exactly. It also didn’t have the best score and soundtrack than the other sequels, so that’s why it’s the second-lowest in the Fairies series.
When most of Pixie Hollow is put under a sleeping spell, Tink and her friends have to chase down a rogue fairy to recover the blue pixie dust that they require to fly. The fairy, Zarina, ends up swapping their powers with her special pixie dust.
Throughout the movie, they learn to control their new abilities and understand the struggles of each other. When Zarina’s pirate cronies turn on her, the other fairies help her get the blue pixie dust back and return it to Pixie Hollow, and they put on an excellent show for the waking fairies.
‘Tinker Bell and the Lost Treasure’
The Lost Treasure is one of my favorite movies of all time because we get to see Tinker Bell really struggle with teamwork. In the first movie, everything seemed to come quickly to her, except other “talents.” But now, we see that she’s got some flaws.
In The Lost Treasure, Tinker Bell is tasked with making a scepter for the blue pixie dust ceremony. After accidentally breaking the important moonstone, she goes on a journey to find the one thing that could possibly fix it. When that doesn’t work out, she heads back to Pixie Hollow with a new plan.
‘Secret of the Wings’
Tinker Bell got a sister – a twin, actually – in Secret of the Wings. I loved everything about this movie, but I think it was missing something. Again, I can’t place what exactly I wanted more of. Secret of the Wings is above The Lost Treasure because we get to see a bit of Queen Clarion’s backstory, which I always wondered about.
Tinker Bell’s curiosity gets the best of her after helping Fawn take some animals to the winter border. Even though she’s not supposed to cross over, her shimmering wings take her farther inward to her unknown sister. After trying to explore the rest of Pixie Hollow, an invention they created causes the Pixie Dust tree to almost freeze over.
‘Tinker Bell and the Legend of the NeverBeast’
The last (sadly) of the Disney Fairies franchise is arguably the best. Even though it was advertised as Tinker Bell-centric, we didn’t have much of her. But I think that’s why I enjoyed it so much; we got to see more of Fawn and other talents that we didn’t in the past films.
Fawn has a knack for trying to help animals that fairies aren’t supposed to hang around with, like hawks. This happens again when the NeverBeast shows up, and she names him Gruff. Despite everyone warning her away from him, she can’t help but be fascinated by the creature that shows up every thousand years to protect Pixie Hollow from a massive storm.
‘The Rescuers Down Under’
I barely remember the first Rescuers movie. In fact, I grew up thinking this was the only movie until I was probably twelve years old. So, I think that says a lot about how well it was made, both in story and animation. It might even be better than The Rescuers in terms of storytelling.
Bernard and Miss Bianca are back on the case. This time, they’re heading to Australia to save a young boy and golden eagle from a poacher. While traveling to the young boy, they meet Jake, another mouse who joins them. The movie ends with Bernard and Miss Bianca getting engaged.
‘Return to Never Land’
I don’t know how this movie goes unnoticed so often. It’s one of the best sequels from Disney and helps us understand Peter, Hook, Tinker Bell, and the Lost Boys better. We even get to know the Lost Boys’ personalities that were glossed over in Peter Pan. Peter even got to see Wendy again, which made my heart happy.
In Return to Never Land, Wendy is all grown up with two kids of her own. One night, Captain Hook shows up and mistakes Jane, Wendy’s daughter, for Wendy and takes her to Never Land as leverage against Peter Pan. After being rescued, Jane is distraught because she can’t fly home.
She butts heads with everyone, and she eventually makes a deal with Hook to get her home. After spending time with the Lost Boys, she regrets her decisions, but it’s almost too late. She reconciles with Tinker Bell, and together, they save the Lost Boys and get Jane home.
‘Cinderella II: Dreams Come True’
After 52 years, we finally got to see more of Cinderella, her prince, and her mouse friends. Cinderella II: Dreams Come True is a film comprised of three storylines and takes place after the third Cinderella movie. However, all three storylines come together and provide a nice ending for the princess.
The first story follows Cinderella as she tries to help plan a banquet. Jaq-Jaq is the star of the second story, being turned into a human to try to be helpful to Cinderella. The third story follows Anastasia, Cinderella’s step-sister, who finds her one true love in a baker.
‘Kronk’s New Groove’
If I had to choose between The Emperor’s New Groove, The Emperor’s New School, and Kronk’s New Groove, I would always choose the third option. Kronk is one of the funniest characters Disney has made so far, so it’s no surprise his movie is ranked as the fifth-best Disney animated sequel.
Kronk is now running his own pizza place in the village after cutting ties with Yzma. However, just when Kronk is trying to get his life together for his father, Yzma shows up and wreaks havoc. In the end, it all works out, and Kronk has a new lady in his life that keeps him on the good side.
‘The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea’
This is one of my favorite movies of all time, but I couldn’t rank it any higher because the next three films have a much more solid storyline. However, this sequel’s soundtrack still slaps, and the story is pretty good. I still watch this when I need a pick-me-up.
Ariel and Eric’s daughter Melody is twelve and has just discovered that she isn’t a normal human – her mother was a mermaid before she was born. Feeling betrayed by this secret, she runs away, and Morgana, Ursula’s sister, manipulates her into stealing the triton from King Triton.
Melody accepts the quest and is turned into a mermaid. On the journey, she befriends a penguin and walrus, and they help her steal the triton. However, once Morgana gets the triton, Melody realizes her mistake and must fix everything before it’s too late.
‘Cinderella III: A Twist in Time’
This movie is set between Cinderella and Cinderella II: Dreams Come True. I honestly didn’t like it when it first came out, but I’ve grown to appreciate it over time. It took the story we knew and loved so well and gave the prince a personality he didn’t have before.
It’s Cinderella and Prince Charming’s first anniversary, but Lady Tremaine has stolen Fairy Godmother’s wand. She turns back time and uses the wand to make Anastasia the mystery girl from the ball. Over time, the prince realizes something is wrong, and Anastasia goes against her mother to save the day.
Frozen II really stepped up the danger, drama, music, and story from Frozen. And I know almost all Frozen songs are overplayed, but you have to give it to the writers – they did a fantastic job. I especially loved that Elsa finally became the free soul she always needed to be.
A couple of years after Frozen, Elsa has started hearing a singing voice seemingly calling her. Once she finally answers the call, it’s up to her, Anna, Kristoff, Sven, and Olaf to save Arendelle and the Enchanted Forest. While in the Forest, Elsa separates from Anna, and they both have their own quests.
‘The Lion King II: Simba’s Pride’
We’ve finally reached the end of Disney’s animated sequels that’s come out so far. The Lion King II took another Shakespeare play (Romeo and Juliet) and made it better. I’m not kidding – who knew the tragic love story could be so heartwarming when Disney made it about lions.
The Lion King II: Simba’s Pride follows Simba’s daughter, Kiara. She finds herself in a forbidden romance with an outcast lion, Kovu. After years of strife, the two young lions work to bring the two prides together. Though it’s hard, they won’t stop until they accomplish their task.