I absolutely adore a good film, particularly as a great family activity. Now the shorter days and darker nights are upon us, it’s time to light the fire and get under cosy blankets on an evening, so I thought I would put together some of my favourite family films for Autumn nights ahead of us.
Fantastic Mr Fox
This stop motion adaptation of the classic Roald Dahl book is a great family film for Autumn to cosy up to on an evening. With George Clooney in the lead role of Mr Fox, it’s a really fun film for any age and as a big Roald Dahl film I thought it was a really good adaptation of the book.
A true story of a young man who decides to create his own rocket, against his father’s wishes. The film is an inspiring tale about following your dreams against whatever obstacles. There is a scene with some violence and mild swear words so possibly not for the younger children.
It’s The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown
This is more of an American favourite and not one I watched when my children are little, but it is a classic Halloween watch filled with trick or treating and apple bobbing. A really fun watch for all age groups.
I’ve watched both the 90’s and more recent version of this Louisa May Alcott adaptations and love them both. The story of the March sisters is a classic story of siblings and the falling ins and outs as they grow up. There is a sad part to the story with the death of one of the sisters so if you have a child that may find that difficult you may want to avoid that scene, but it is overall a heartwarming watch.
Fly Away Home
I have to admit this isn’t one I have watched but I’ve heard it recommended many times as a great film for this time of year. It’s a really touching tale for animal lovers of how a young girl and her father help lead a flock of orphaned geese south for the winter.
An extremely popular 90’s film, this tells the tale of when an alien who is left behind on earth is hidden by a young boy whilst he is being hunted by the government. It’s such a lovely story of friendship and whilst there are a few scenes where ET is being chased, it is a good all rounder for the family.
A Disney classic based on the story of Pocahontas and the English colonialism, it is a tale of a young girl set to marry the bravest warrior in the village but who dreams of more than that. I loved this myself as a child and it carries a lovely message of following your own path.
This is an 80’s classic and although it may not be suitable for all age groups it is a really fun adventure tale of a group of kids searching out lost treasure. There are some scenes that are a bit freaky and mention of drugs in the first scene, which is why younger kids may not be suitable, but overall it’s a really fun family watch.
This is a really underrated animation, in my opinion, and one of my favourite family films for Autumn. It’s the story of a boy, Hogarth, who comes across a huge robot and they become firm friends. However the government is out to destroy it, and you follow the journey of the robot and Hogarth trying to find a way to get the robot to safety. It’s a really heart-warming story and whilst it has a couple of sad moments it is a lovely watch for all the family.
This is a 2006 animation about a tame bear who is quite happy with his life at the wildlife park but who gets thrusts into the wild., where he has to learn to fight against the elements but also humans. The main driver of the story is one of friendship but also respect for animals and is a fun watch for most children, although there is a bit of violence so younger children may need supervision.
Time for some honesty – whilst this was a classic when I was a child I never watched it until I was in university and haven’t seen it since! Many adults of my generation can quote this David Bowie movie, which was directed by Muppets legend Jim Henson. It is a musical fantasy journey of a young girl who finds her baby brother stolen by goblins whilst she is babysitting. The Goblin King gives her 13 hours to solve his labyrinth before her brother is stolen forever, and then ensues an adventure filled with all manner of characters and trials. This is a really surreal but fun film, that kids from around 8+ will enjoy.
The Fox and the Hound
The story of a red fox and a hound dog who form an unlikely bond when they are young but who become enemies as they are adults, there are some sad and emotional themes. It is a beautifully told story of maturity and loss of innocence but probably not suitable for younger watchers.
Based on the classic book The Sheep-Pig, Babe features around an orphaned pig who learns to herd cattle, much to the frustration of sheepdog Rex. Gradually Babe wins over each character and we see some really lovely moments between him and the farmer. It is a really heart warming story and a lovely watch for all the family.
Bedknobs and Broomsticks
This was one of my favourites growing up, even though it was made in 70’s It is a musical set in 40’s in London during the Blitz and centres around three children who are evacuees sent to live with an unusual woman in the country. They end up going on an adventure that takes them in the cartoon world and eventually to discover surprising new friendships along the way. It is such a fun and surprising film if you can overlook its age all your family will enjoy it.