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Opinion: The top ten furry movies of the 2010s

Your rating: None Average: 3.6 (17 votes)

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They say hindsight is 20/20, and its 2020, so that must mean a look back is in order. In lieu of the usual top ten best movies of the year, let's actually, for once, do a furry list on the furry site and countdown the ten best furry movies (or at least the ones I liked the most) from the last decade.

The top 10 movies of 2019
10. How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
9. Cats
8. Godzilla: King of the Monsters
7. Crawl
6. The Irishman
5. Knives Out
4. Us
3. Parasite
2. Dolemite Is My Name
1. John Wick: Chapter 3-Parabellum

Okay, before we start, a quick rundown of the year 2019, of which an abbreviated top ten list appears at the right. Each title is linked to an IMDB page or Flayrah review, if you're not familiar with the individual titles, both to the right and below. For the record, I found the best Furry Movie of the year 2019 to be Cats, which you'll note is is my number nine spot. This is usually the place I put very flawed movies that I liked anyway. So it wasn't a good year for furry movies. A furry movie also took my choice for Worst Movie of 2019, with Arctic Dogs taking that dubious honor. However, in a repeat of 2017, Arctic Dogs, despite being a terrible movie, wins the title of Cutest Vixen for the character Jade. Mostly by default; there wasn't much in the way of vixens this year. Also, she is actually kind of cute.

Anyway, enough of 2019, which had no movies that made the following decade list. Time for the main attraction! But first, a few explanations. My definition of what may or may not constitute a "furry movie" was taken into consideration. I think most people will find it on the stricter side, and one movie below would place much farther up if it had more than one character who could be considered furry.

Since, one way or another, I've already reviewed or placed all but one of these movies in top tens, I've decided just to pull quotes from those earlier pieces [the headers link to the reviews]. Sorry if this feels like reheated leftovers to you, but it starts to get a bit harder to write enthusiastic blurbs the second or third time that don't feel like you're laying it on a bit thick. Well, anyways, without further ado, let the bodies hit the floor.

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10. Guardians of the Galaxy-2014

"They did it. Crazy sons of guns, they did it. This movie is a miracle; it wouldn’t have happened if two writers didn’t get permission to just play with a bunch of unused cosmic comic toys, which wound up being a minor cult hit, followed by a screenwriter picking the team created to write a screenplay because it was the only current Marvel property set in space, and that screenplay being picked to actually make a movie. And it worked!

The funny thing is, while most people had no expectations, mine couldn’t be higher. I was a part of that minor cult, and I loved the director, James Gunn’s earlier work. It should have been a massive disappointment for me; it could never live up to my expectations. But it did! So, it is easily the best movie of the year."-2014 Top Ten List

9. Rock Dog-2016

This is the one movie I have neither reviewed nor placed on a top ten list until now. I may have mentioned that my number nine spots are usually reserved for flawed movies that I really like, and that does apply to Rock Dog. But I want to stress how much I really like this movie.

I think what really sets this movie apart for me, however, is Eddie Izzard's role as the cat, Angus Scattergood. I don't know what movie he thinks he's in, but it's on a slightly different wavelength than the rest of the movie. He elevates the whole proceeding just by doing whatever it is he's doing.

8. Puss in Boots-2011

"This was another movie that honestly squeaked into my top ten. However, it was the obvious choice to go, because it exceeded any expectations I had for it by a wide margin. Seriously, I went to this movie simply so I could review it for this site. I would never have guessed it would make my top ten list this time last year.

Puss in Boots is a much better movie than the last paragraph makes it out to be. I pointed out in my review the hilariously choreographed dancing; this is the art of animation at its most classic. This movie is a silly symphony, a looney tune. It may not be high art, but it sure is a lot of fun, and that’s just as good a reason to go to the movies as anything else."-2011 Top Ten List

7. The Jungle Book-2016

"I really didn’t go into this movie expecting it to actually have something to say, other than possibly “hey, wasn’t The Jungle Book fun as a cartoon; maybe you’ll like it in live action, too.” But it actually did have something to say, which was basically “gosh, Mowgli wasn’t really much of a character in the old movie.”

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This movie gives Mowgli a much less passive role; he makes his own decisions, and does things that the cartoon Mowgli never would have thought of. Things don’t just happen to him; he happens to things. And some of the things he can do are wonderful."-2016 Top Ten List

6. Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted-2012

"How did this get here? No, seriously, how did this get here? How can the third Madagascar film possibly be any film critic’s, even a furry film critic’s, second best movie of the year? Some people like to point out that animation is a medium, not a genre, but to those people I would point out that a medium’s qualities suit it for certain genres. Animation is best suited for the impossible.

So, Madagascar 3 does the impossible, again and again. Tigers jump through tiny rings, zebras and sea lions are shot from cannons, not-sea lions and jaguars become trapeze artists, giraffes and hippos dance on wires — and did I mention they all talk, too? Heck, they even managed to make Katy Perry’s “Firework” cool. For like five minutes, admittedly, but whatever. This movie does the impossible over and over. Maybe it’s not so strange it ended up my second favorite movie after all."-2012 Top Ten List

5. Leafie: A Hen into the Wild-2011

"The character design and animation are spectacular, excepting a few cases when obvious CGI objects are inserted into the otherwise drawn scenes, which are a bit jarring. One stand-out moment from the animation side of things occurs when the titular hen must cross through the forest; animals of all sorts pause their normal activities to investigate this strange new creature, in a scene that is full of inventive animation.

Though Leafie has themes on man’s treatment of animals, it realizes that these are obvious, and does not hammer the point relentlessly. The movie also has things to say about what it means to be a mother; the titular Leafie has a maternal instinct the size of a maiasaur. The movie makes its points, and it makes them well."-Review

4. Isle of Dogs-2018

"So I like Wes Anderson movies. They are almost their own genre, at this point. Like all of his movies, Isle of Dogs is bittersweet, but it manages to hide the bitterness very well. So much so that you almost don't notice it's there until you think back on it later.

And it's not that the bitterness doesn't make the sweetness any less sweet, it does. But there's nothing wrong with a little bitterness in your movies about talking dogs going on adventures. In the end, that's what's it all about. Going to the movies is going on an adventure."-2018 Top Ten List

3. Kung Fu Panda 2-2011

"Animated sequels are not known for their quality. In Kung Fu Panda 2, we have the rare sequel that surpasses the original. The original Kung Fu Panda was no slouch, either. This movie is some kind of miracle.

Hands down the prettiest movie of the year; the scenes involving the panda village are stunning. Luckily, the story matches the beauty of the animation. It even manages to be funny. A strong second act in a franchise that may one day become the animated equivalent of the Lord of the Rings trilogy."-2011 Top Ten List

2. Rango-2011

"You have to feel for established animation houses right now; they just got shown up by a bunch of first-timers. If I have sometimes picked a horror movie that goes in a surprisingly heartwarming direction, Rango is its opposite; an animated funny animal movie that is surprisingly dark.

Sure, things turn out alright in the end, but after nine slots of mostly sentimental movies, Rango is largely free of it. Even the character designs are just plain ugly. This movie challenges you to like it; it does not hold your hand. Of all the movies I have seen this year, Rango is the one I believe people will remember the longest."-2011 Top Ten List

1. Zootopia-2016

"Well, I mean, duh. All this movie had to do was not completely suck and it was going to make the list; all it had to do was be good and it would be top five. Pretty good, and it’s number one, easy. Of course, given the massive anticipation I had for this movie, it could also easily disappoint me even if it was pretty good, and find itself out of the running that way. So, it had better be really pretty good.

So, the fact that it was better than I expected is amazing. At first it seems cute and cuddly, but there are fangs under the fuzz (and deep, painful wounds under that). This movie somehow managed to get more and more relevant as the year went on; I repeatedly joked last summer if Trump wins, I’m moving to Zootopia. Well, so long guys. It’s been real."-2016 Top Ten List

Best Movies of the 2010s - Not accounting if it is furry or not
2010-How To Train Your Dragon 2011-Rango 2012-The Grey 2013-Gravity 2014-Guardians of the Galaxy 2015-Mad Max: Fury Road 2016-Zootopia 2017-Get Out 2018-Isle of Dogs 2019-John Wick: Chapter 3-Parabellum

Comments

Your rating: None

2011 was pretty crazy, wasn't it? I like that we've got something of a mix here, species-wise - though there's still too few amphibians in films. OK, I guess they're not all that furry, but you get what I mean. Where's my axolotl at? And no, just being in the title doesn't cut it.

Your rating: None

You could make an argument 2016 surpassed it; I just like the movies from 2011 a bit better.

Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)

Did you consider anime films when making up this list? "Wolf Children" (2012) would have easily made my top 5, possibly as high as #2. The director of that film, Mamoru Hosoda, also directed "The Boy and the Beast" (2015) which I'd also consider a top 10 contender. A third film of his, "Mirai" (2018) isn't as good as these two in my opinion and is only marginally furry due to a few scenes where the family dog takes on human form.

The only other anime films I could find or think of from the decade are longshots at best. "The Tibetan Dog" (2011) is iffy since the titular dog is barely more anthro than Old Yeller. "Mary and the Witch's Flower" (2017), which is probably not top-10 material anyhow, has one supporting character that's a furry. "Lu Over the Wall" (2017), a quirky and funny film, has one main and other supporting characters who are fish/merfolk, if that qualifies.

As for those you included, I totally agree with "Zootopia" as the #1 furry movie of the decade. My impression of "Rango" was that it had too many cliches and over-the-top gags, and followed the beat sheet to the point of predictability. "Isle of Dogs" is a worthy entry. "Rock Dog" was okay but I doubt it would have made my top 10. A film you didn't list that might have made mine was "Sing". You have a couple listed that I haven't seen, such as "Leafie". Though I've identified some favorites here, if I wanted to put up a top 10 list of my own I'd have to do a lot more digging to remind myself what other furry films were released this decade (and possibly watch some I never got around to, e.g. "Rio").

Your rating: None Average: 1 (1 vote)

I don't know that crossie saw Wolf Children - he didn't comment on dronon's review. While it delves into furry themes, including the challenge we all face of whether to integrate into society or go live with/as an animal in the snowy forest (if you're going to do this, don't burn your house and your dog down), I could see it being dinged, like GotG, for the limited time the characters are actually on-screen as furrries. Certainly, some parts will appeal to therians, but even they may be unsatisfied at what is ultimately a film about family and coming-of-age over anything else.

I think Rango succeeded both critically and at the box office because it successfully integrated a fully anthropomorphic animal cast (with a fair few animal traits at time) into a film that, yes, was clichéd and a tad predictable, but that's part of being a Western. It was "a movie lover's movie" - well-crafted, following traditions but adding a twist here and there - and it was rewarded for it. Few films can boast that they were responsible for the creation of an animation department as well as winning a whole bunch of awards. Heck, it even got a console tie-in - and while it suffers from brevity and replayability issues (rather like a movie), it apparently did its own thing and wasn't a disaster.

Your rating: None

Dronon's review of "Wolf Children" was not particularly favorable; evidently it didn't work as well for him as it did for me or a lot of other viewers. Its rating on MyAnimeList is 8.70 which currently makes it the 9th highest rated of all anime film. Over on RottenTomatoes "Wolf Children" has a score of 94%, albeit with a relatively low 18 reviews.

If the relatively limited screen time of characters in full or partial wolf form is a factor, it wouldn't be for "The Boy and the Beast" (which appears on the above MyAnimeList chart at #33 with an 8.41 rating; 90% on RT). In that one a significant portion of the story takes place in a "hidden" community populated by anthro animals.

Your rating: None

I think that the best response to the original post was "anime (and any foreign language films) were certainly considered, but in many cases that's about it"; just setting aside issues of quality, the films I was able to see were limited by budget and availability. How Leafie got reviewed is a minor miracle (and I like to point out that, for the first time, I managed one foreign language film on both lists; and by a massive coincidence, they're both Korean!); also, speaking of Leafie, not really part of this conversation, but I believe a heavily edited version is available on Netflix as Dixie rather than Leafie. On one hand, it's a readily available version for people who want to try it; on the other hand, I've heard it is drastically changed (apparently the original ending is completely absent), but I can't confirm that because I haven't seen the Netflix/English language version.

Of course, anime, due to its sizable fandom, is usually a bit easier to find in America than other types of foreign animation, but Green Reaper is right and I still haven't seen Wolf Children, so that's at best a *shrug* and admission that maybe it'd make it on there if I had? Maybe?

Your rating: None

If and when you get around to watching Wolf Children and The Boy and the Beast, I'd be curious to hear your impression of them, whether or not you revise the list.

Your rating: None

So, YouTube's algorithms recently hocked this one at me; basically every werewolf to appear in a movie, ever. I mean, he probably missed some, but it's pretty impressive; you've got everything from lost silent films to porno parodies to fashion doll merchandising tie-ins (I don't care what Martin Scorsese says, that's cinema). Putting it here because of his pretty on-point comment about Wolf Children; which if you click the link I should have got to the timestamp (unless I messed that up) in case you don't want to sit through over an hour of horror violence, bare-bones budget special effects, only-technically SFW semi-nudity and the aforementioned Monster High clips.

Your rating: None

In retrospect yeah, I've since spoken with a number of furries about Wolf Children and they're much more taken with it than I was! It's given me more insight about how it resonates for different people. Basically it's not a film to be thought about too deeply, it works best on the level of emotions, growing up, and relationships. The moment you start trying to analyze it, things get worrisome.

In one conversation with someone who also had mixed feelings about it, he pointed out that it seemed to reinforce a social message that the characters weren't allowed to be two things at once - human and wolf - and that an equally interesting story could have emerged if the story had been about defying roles, embracing both aspects and being ok with it, tragic consequences or not. It's also worth mentioning that the YouTube series Every Frame a Painting did a really good analysis of one of the film's visual sequences.

In the past couple of weeks I've been trying to catch up on the backlog of foreign animated films I've been meaning to watch. Most of them non-furry, alas. There was a Japanese film called Rudolph the Black Cat, it turns out it's for really young children. Cat gets lost, makes some friends, is taught the importance of reading, etc. It did very well at the box office in Japan and China! I don't think it has much to grab an adult audience though. If it's been dubbed into English, it would make a pleasant distraction for North American kids.

The Spanish film Birdboy was trying very hard to be dark, edgy, dystopian and mildly offensive, except beyond that, it didn't seem to be trying to say anything specific - I think it's relying on the viewer to extract their own meaning. Vaguely anti-pollution, anti-nuclear, anti-capitalism, anti-anarchy, anti-police-gun-machismo... with some trippy nightmarish sequences and also a beautiful nature scene hidden in the gloom.

I started to watch Mamoru Hosoda's recent film Mirai, and I gave up on it halfway through. This is a rare thing for me - if I'm not quite enjoying a film, usually I'll just increase the video's playing speed. The story revolves around a four-year-old boy who becomes jealous of the attention that his new baby sister is getting. It's a realistic premise, but watching a selfish kid constantly whine and act annoying to piss off his family gets tiresome fast. On the plus side, there's a kind of magical front yard that makes all sorts of interesting things happen! Some really good animation going on in there. Just not the film for me. The trailer seemed to suggest there might be some furry content, but it's borderline and very fleeting.

There's a Mexican children's film called El angel en el reloj (The Angel in the Clock) which I'd like to watch, and have a copy of, except there are no English subtitles available. (Amazon Prime U.S. might have Spanish streaming closed-captions? But I'm not a subscriber nor in the U.S.) The story might be about a kid who has a terminal case of leukemia but doesn't know it yet
(??), and ends up... in a kind of magical dream-world? It looks really colorful! And there's a talking bear side-character.

And I've still got a couple more films to go, one or two of which might be worth a furry review - we'll see, here's hoping! :-)

Your rating: None

Somehow France seems to have started producing really good furry animated movies which I would recommend adding to your list if you haven't seen them already. The Big Bad Fox & Other Tales, Ernest & Celestine, and Wolfy, the Incredible Secret would all have been contenders for my top 10 furry movies from the past decade.

And then there's China bringing us stuff like Agent F.O.X. and Bobby the Hedgehog which while not completely without merit for furries and fans of random absurdity, I wouldn't even start to defend as being in any way good movies.

Your rating: None

I would put KFP2 above Zootopia, but then again...... this is your OPINION, not my OPINION.

Well, I'll be...

Your rating: None

It's pretty good ... I mean, double feature.

Your rating: None Average: 2.4 (5 votes)

Well at least you put Zootopia at the top there. But do know I am judging you so hard for some of this. A Disney remake!? Really? And what's with the complete absence of Detective Pikachu on your list of the best films of 2019? You think Cats is somehow better?

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)

The lack of Detective Pikachu is something that needs explaining for me. Maybe Pokemon isn't his thing? Too much like Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

Your rating: None Average: 1 (1 vote)

I barely remember it.

Which isn't good top ten material.

Your rating: None Average: 1 (1 vote)

(maybe if it had a Vulpix?)

Your rating: None Average: 1 (1 vote)

Yiff you. >.>

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

Your rating: None

Although I haven't seen it for myself yet, I know 2014's "Ernest & Celestine" got a lot of praise (and an Oscar nom if I recall correctly). Seems like a must-see for furries.

I agree with "Zootopia's" #1 ranking, but for me though its gotta be "Paddington 2" as a close second. This movie charmed me like no other and such a refreshing break from the hyper-activity of so much of children's animated entertainment. (I prefer it to the 2015 film, which is also high in my ranking).

Also want to give a shout-out to 2010's "Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole". Not perfect by any stretch, but I enjoyed the adventure it told. I haven't seen it in a few years so I am curious to watch it now to see how it holds up now from my memory of it.

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a red fox

New teeth. That's weird.