12 Great Family Movies From The 2000s You Totally Forgot

For those who grew up in the 2000s, one can agree that it was a much simpler time. Streaming wasn’t a thing yet, so going to the cinema or renting a car from Blockbuster would do the trick when it came to watching movies. Children and their families of the 2000s were fortunate to have a wide range of fantastic kid-friendly films released during this decade.

When audiences look back, successful and popular children’s films of the 2000s like Shrek, Find Nemoor Harry Potter are among their favourites. Lots of other 2000s movies you’ve forgotten were popular back then but don’t get talked about that often. They may not be as well known and remembered, but just as well.

Updated April 7, 2023 by Hannah Saab:

There’s no shortage of awesome childhood movies you forgot from the 2000s, including the stop-motion classic, chicken racewhich is getting a long-awaited sequel titled this year Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget (Premiering on Netflix November 10).



12 “Zathura: A Space Adventure” (2005)

Josh Hutcherson in Zathura
Image via Sony Pictures

Zathura: A Space Adventure is a sci-fi adventure about two young brothers playing an ancient board game that transports their house into space. The only way to make it back to earth is to win the game, and the boys will have to face multiple galactic threats and challenges.

The film is based on the children’s book by Chris van Allsburgwho, unsurprisingly, also wrote jumanji. This may be the better-known film, Zathura is an underrated classic thanks to its cosmic setting, funny humor, impressive practical effects and even some thrills.

11 “The Water Horse” (2007)

Alex Etel in The Water Horse.
Image via Columbia Pictures

In the charming fantasy film The water horse, young Angus discovers an egg that hatches into a “water horse” and eventually becomes the Loch Ness Monster. The two form a special bond, and Angus must protect the creature from outsiders trying to harm it.

The film takes the mythical monster and uses it to create a heartwarming story with a beautiful central friendship, stunning locations and wondrous visual effects. Its emotional themes also make it a film that is enjoyed by children and adults alike.

Watch on HBO Max

10 “The Spiderwick Chronicles” (2008)

Freddie Highmore in The Spiderwick Chronicles
Image via Paramount Pictures

Based on the children’s book series The Spiderwick Chronicles follows twin brothers Jared and Simon and their sister Mallory as they move to the Spiderwick Estate. They discover a field guide to fairies and soon realize their home is surrounded by mythical creatures.

Although there are five short books in the series, the film manages to squeeze them all into one film, and does so successfully. The story is magical with many twists and turns and a fantastical world full of fairies, griffins, goblins and ogres is beautifully brought to the big screen.

Watch on HBO Max

9 “Nanny McPhee” (2005)

Emma Thompson in Nanny McPhee
Image via Universal Pictures

Nanny McPhee is the story of a widower who hires a new nanny to look after his seven ill-behaved children who have driven away all previous nannies. However, this is no ordinary nanny – she has magical powers.

The film offers a delightful performance by Emma Thompson, hilarious slap-stick comedy and one of the big food fights in film. It also offers valuable lessons on how appearances can be deceiving and the beauty of kindness. It’s not just her Mary Poppins Opposite who should get all the attention.

Watch on Hulu

8th ‘Surf’s Up’ (2007)

Cody Maverick and Chicken Joe in Surf's Up
Image via Sony

A great comedy in its own right Surfing is hip follows the up-and-coming Cody Maverick as he competes in the Penguin World Surfing Championship. It presents its narrative through a unique and comedic mockumentary format as a camera crew follows Cody and his competitors.

The film is packed with witty humor and innuendos that adults can appreciate too, as well as a lot of heart. The MVP is certainly Chicken Joe, Cody’s offbeat and spiritual sidekick, voiced perfectly by him Napoleon dynamite‘S Jon Heder.

7 ‘Bear Brother’ (2003)

Kenai and Koda

A film that certainly deserves to be higher in the ranks of Disney classics, brother bear is a story about revenge, love, nature and spirituality. After killing the bear that killed his brother, Kenai turns into a bear and befriends a young boy.

The film has beautiful, natural landscapes and strong, poignant themes at its heart. It’s very funny, but also one of Disney’s more emotional and mature films. Just like he did with Tarzan, PhilCollins also features a wonderful soundtrack.

Watch on Disney+

6 “Meet the Robinsons” (2007)

Lewis and Wilbur

One of the best family movies of the 2000s Meet the Robinsons follows Lewis, a young inventor and orphan who plans to build a time machine to find his mother. He then meets a boy named Wilbur Robinson who takes him to the future to meet his larger than life family.

This lesser known Disney animated film is a wild and whimsical time travel adventure film with lots of wacky characters and fun elements like a pet dinosaur. It’s a touching film with an inspiring message and deserves as much love as the most beloved Disney films.

Watch on Disney+

5 “Chicken Coop” (2000)

Image via Aardman Animation

In a prison-like egg farm in Yorkshire chicken race is a classic stop motion comedy from Aardman Animations. It centers on a group of anthropomorphic chickens who believe that the arrival of a rooster (named Rocky Rhodes) signals their chance to escape the horrible conditions on the farm. Will they make it in time or be made into meat pies?

Despite being one of the most popular blockbusters in the early 2000s, the popular film has slowly faded into the background over the years. Until the surprise announcement of the sequel, which premieres later this year.

4 “Bridge to Terabithia” (2007)

AnnaSophia Robb in Bridge to Terabita

Certainly one of the saddest children’s films of all time Bridge to Terabithia follows Jesse and Leslie as they create the magical world of Terabithia to escape from reality and deal with trauma.

While marketed as a fantasy film, the story is very much based in the real world as it deals with family, friendship, bullies, grief and loss. It shows the wonders of a child’s imagination and the power of friendship even in the darkest of times. A reminder to the audience – remember to bring tissues.

Watch on Disney+

3 ‘Treasure Planet’ (2002)

Jim Hawkins and John Silver

One of Disney’s most visually stunning films and a notable eye-catcher among children’s films of the early 2000s. Treasure Planet is a science fiction adaptation of the classic novel treasure island from Robert Louis Stevenson. The film follows Jim Hawkins on an intergalactic journey in search of pirate treasure.

While the film retains elements of the historical setting and style of the source material, it completely changes the setting to outer space. This clever fusion of contrasting worlds and genres makes for incredible animation and proves why this is such a unique and special film.

Watch on Disney+

2 August Rush (2007)

Freddie Highmore in August Rush

One of many forgotten childhood movies of the 2000s, Peak activity in August tells the story of young musical prodigy Evan who runs away from his orphanage to find his birth parents. Little does he know that his mother is looking for him while his father is looking for her.

With a great twist from a boy Freddie HighmoreThis film celebrates the power of music – how it surrounds everyone and how it can help people find a connection. It’s an unabashed crowd favorite and also features a performance of Robin Williams as one of his rare likable characters.

Watch on Hoopla

1 ‘Hachi: A Dog Story’ (2009)

Richard Gere and Hachi in Hachi A Dog's Tale
Image via Sony Pictures Entertainment

Based on a heartbreaking true story of a real Akita dog, Hachi: A Tale of a Dog shows the bond between a dog and a man who adopts him. As Parker and Hachi form an inseparable bond, the dog begins to follow him to the train station every day on his way to work. One day Parker doesn’t come home and Hachi waits for his return at the same spot in the train station.

Most fans probably remember Marley & I, so it’s easy to overlook this timeless classic. The heartbreaking movie is a great choice for adults who want a good sad movie and for kids who will learn to appreciate their pets even more.

Watch on Netflix

NEXT:The best kids and family movies on Netflix right now

Dustin Huang

Dustin Huang is a 24ssports U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Dustin Huang joined 24ssports in 2021 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: dustinhuang@24ssports.com.

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