Let's Rank: Iconic Millennial Disney Channel Movies
To all our millennials out there, do you remember the days of wholesome Disney content? Where every movie release had some sort of musical element? Well, it’s time to take it way back… and we mean WAYYYY back to the good ole’ days of (High School) Musicals, girl groups, and Hilary Duff.
1. CADET KELLY (2002)
I mean, was there ever any doubt. Cadet Kelly is an iconic Disney classic with all the typical Disney movie tropes you would imagine. However, the casting, the storyline, THE CASTING just hits different. Starring our favorite Hillary Duff, alongside X-Men’s Shawn Ashmore and Lucifer’s Aimee Garcia, Cadet Kelly brings to life tired stereotypes and then sends them crashing to the ground in true Disney fashion.
2. HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL (2006)
Controversial placement but for all of High School Musical bop bop bops, we just couldn’t find it in ourselves to send it straight to the top. HSM is a dramatic take on the high school experience, branching out into new horizons and opening one’s mind… well it’s not THAT existential but you get the idea. With stars like Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, and Ashley Tisdale, how could you go wrong?
3. THE COLOR OF FRIENDSHIP (2000)
Now, this is what we like to see, Disney challenging societal norms and inequalities. Disney as a production studio has always been praised for “pushing boundaries” so to speak, and tackling issues that often would get swept under the rug. The Color Of Friendship explores the dynamics between a white foreign exchange student from South Africa and the daughter of a black U.S congressman in D.C. Both learn from each other about how racialized assumptions about one another are built and how we have the power to take them down.
4. GET A CLUE (2002)
Lindsay Lohan as Lexy Gold.... iconic. Get A Clue tells of a spoiled rich kid who happens to be a school gossip columnist. After publishing a pic of her teacher, mysterious events start to emerge ultimately leading up to the disappearance of her teacher. It's up to her and friends Jack (Bug Hall) and Jennifer (Brenda Song) to uncover the mystery.
5. CHEETAH GIRLS (2003)
We absolutely cannot believe how underappreciated this movie is. Cheetah Girls represents a strong, empowering, driven and thoughtful nature of a powerful young woman. Every song is show-stopping and they DO in fact bring the DRAMA. Cheetah Girls navigates the difficulties of living in the spotlight while maintaining a normal life. The film gets our attention every time and will do the same for you too, so get up and dance! You know you want to.
6. TWITCHES (2005)
2005 was the year of iconic Disney movies, and the sister duo Twitches was certainly no exception. Reunited on their 21st birthday, twin sisters Alexandra and Camryn use their combined magical powers to save their mother and their kingdom from the dark forces ahead. With a budget of over 20M USD, Disney spared no expense in making this fantastical flick come to life -- and we thank them for it.
7. LUCK OF THE IRISH (2001)
Mildly problematic with a wild storyline, Luck of the Irish pits 15-year-old basketball player Kyle Johnson versus an evil leprechaun bent on keeping his family hostage and tormenting their lives. Truly, this movie is riddled with audacious stereotypes of Irish culture in America. We kept it on our list because the fans demanded it so if the Disney gods are kind, they will either revoke this movie into the pits of Disney hell OR remake this awful tragedy.
8. PROUD FAMILY MOVIE (2005)
Considering Proud Family was one of the most, if not THE most memorable animated shows to come from Disney studios, we had to put the movie version on this list. With an all-expenses-paid vacation to a secret location, a mad scientist captures the Proud Family to get the secret formula for Proud Snacks. Although it's not the most riveting plotline or touches on the important topics we come to know from the show, it’s one of our favorites and a definite must-watch.