Remember the simpler times before college stress? You woke up early on Saturday mornings to sit with a bowl of cereal and watch your favorite cartoon or movie. Everyone remembers watching movies like Monsters Inc. and adoring Boo. Who could forget the courage and relentlessness of Simba who fought to take back his kingdom in the Lion King? The you watched Finding Nemo and got a thirst for adventure when Marlin traveled all over the ocean to find his son. Revisit these movies you grew up with as a grown up to remember the lessons they taught you.
These 10 childhood movies go just as hard when you watch them as an adult.
1. Monster’s Inc
Monster’s Inc. may have been the best movie of them all, as long as the monsters didn’t scare you nearly to death. Mike and Sully became engraved in our memory as some of the most memorable movie characters. You may have slept with stuffed animals of them at night as well, and the little girl, Boo, just stole the hearts of everyone. Her cute laugh and little baby eyes made Sully, Mike and even us love her—and I guarantee that a few of us dressed up as Boo for Halloween. And who can forget when Monsters University came out? Not only can we all relate to that stressful college life, but just like that, the clock turned back to when we were five years old sitting with a snack in front of the TV.
2. The Incredibles
When you remember your childhood heroes, you automatically think of Batman, Superman, Captain America and of course, The Incredibles. Mr. Incredible possessed super strength and Elasta-girl the ultimate flexibility; Dash ran like the wind and Violet protected everyone with force fields. You know it and I know it: Every kid dreams of having superpowers like these. Every kid on the block would pretend they could run like Dash or lift like Mr. Incredible. And, when you thought it couldn’t get any better, The Incredibles 2 came out. Even in college, we still find ourselves wishing for superpowers to overcome finals season and other college villains when we rewatch these classics.
3. The Sandlot
Real fans have definitely thrown out a “You’re killing me, Smalls” when someone in their college squad messes up. Probably any and every time you go out to bars and act up. Even if you weren’t part of a rag-tag group of children who formed your own epic baseball team, this movie hit home. Long story short, the team loses an important baseball that belonged to their friend Smalls. They all work together to get it back. They showed the characteristics of true friendship. In college when you are going through tough times like finals week, midterms or even a particularly hard breakup, you learn who your real friends are. They stick by your side no matter what. The sandlot squad shows that same thing here by helping Smalls as best they can. Not for nothing, but this movie also provides the ultimate squad Halloween costumes.
4. The Mighty Ducks
Way before Jason Kelce gave his famous Super bowl 52 underdog speech, The Mighty Ducks happened. I mean, haven’t you heard of the Pee Wee Hockey Minnesota State Championship? A group of underprivileged kids with very little skills come together and go from losing games by 20 goals to winning every time they step on the ice. Former pro hockey player Gordon Bombay brings the team together with various drills and team building activities. They pass eggs back and forth like hockey pucks and tie the goalie, Goldberg, to the net and forget about him. Goldberg has the best one liners like c’mon coach let me at em, and you want some of this? Now looking back as an adult, you see how the little things like supporting each other and working as a team to overcoming obstacles taught you so many life skills.
5. Space Jam
Michael Jordan, Bill Murray, Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny: the true definition of dream team. Space Jam brought all of your favorite cartoon characters and your favorite basketball players together, and, let’s be honest, everyone wanted a spot on that basketball team. Just like The Mighty Ducks, it taught you about hard work and team effort—not to mention confidence. We can’t all be Michael Jordan (though we wished that we could drink some of that secret stuff that Michael gives to the team to help them play better), and we can only dream of coming out in the second half of a game against an alien and somehow mount the biggest comeback the world has ever seen. But I guess we’ll all have to settle for being the MVP of group projects. Sigh.
6. Toy Story
We all know how it went: “You Got a Friend in Me” came on as a kid and everyone would lose their mind. The relationship between Buzz and Woody formed through obstacles and adventures, growing from hostility to BFF goals. In college, you go through all the ups and downs with your best friends. You struggle through classes and lots of nights where you make poor decisions but in the end it all works out. Toy Story showed that monumental change from adversaries to friends.
7. The Goonies
You felt like the cool kid watching this movie when you were younger because your parents never let you watch scary movies. Then you saw The Goonies, and you felt like you had the one up on all your friends in class. The quest for hidden treasure, the crazy traps—like playing the organ in order to find which pathway was right—the pirate ship and all of the insane gadgets filled every second of this movie with laughter and suspense—just like those college party nights, right? At the end of the day, who doesn’t want to watch Chunk twisting and turning his pizza-filled belly all over the place?
8. Lion King
You have forgotten who you are. Look inside yourself, Simba. You are more than what you have become. In college, we all know how easy it is to get lost. With all the new adult choices we have to make about our lifestyles, we need that gut check moment of who we really are just like Simba in the Lion King. The obstacles Simba faced to take back his kingdom were no easy ones, like when he went into the den with the hyenas or when he challenges Scar for the kingdom. As a college student, the road to success and obstacles you take to graduate may not come easy either. In the end, if you keep pushing things always pay off, and this movie, while for young kids, points out morals that become useful to even 20-year-olds in college.
9. Finding Nemo
Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming, swimming, swimming. Thiss lesson is more important now than ever—especially when you have finals on the horizon. When Dory gets tired from the long journey or all the fish get caught in the net, they sing this song to stay strong. When you find yourself drowning in work, study guides and projects, take a break and watch Finding Nemo. And whatever you do, don’t forget to just keep swimming.
10. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
Long before you knew about mansions and pools and all that good stuff, you pictured a different dream house: Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. You dreamt of waking up and walking down to the river, not for water but for milk chocolate. You walk around, and everything is edible: trees, bushes, grass, you name it. Your parents wouldn’t be there either to tell you can’t have too much sugar. If you think about it, college seems kind of similar since you can eat whatever you want when you want…you just don’t have a giant candy mansion and you live that #brokecollegekidlife.