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The Best '50s Kids Movies

Updated June 14, 2019 1.5k votes 210 voters 10.9k views34 items

List RulesVote up your favorite children films that were released in the 1950s

The top ‘50s kids movies are a diverse group of genre classics that have been delighting audiences for decades. Many of the characters and stories modern audiences associate with the genre of children’s films can be traced back to the 1950s.


One of the greatest ‘50s kids movies is
Alice in Wonderland, adapted from the beloved Lewis Carroll novel. Walt Disney unsuccessfully tried to adapt this title throughout the 1930s, but it wasn’t until 1951 that his dream was realized. The film was derided by critics upon its release, but in later years it went on to achieve cult-classic status and came to be regarded as one of the best Disney animated films of all time. The actress who voiced Alice, Kathryn Beaumont, also went on to appear in another good ‘50s kids movie classic, Peter Pan.


Also on this list of the best ‘50s kids movies, you will find
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, starring Kirk Douglas, James Mason, and Peter Lorre. The film was the only sci-fi picture to be personally produced by Walt Disney, and it stands as one of the earliest American examples of the steampunk sub-genre. Vote up the best '50s kids movies below, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comment section.
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  • 1
    Lady and the Tramp is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    75
    11

    Lady and the Tramp

    Peggy Lee, Stan Freberg

    Released1955

    Directed byWilfred Jackson, Hamilton Luske, Clyde Geronimi

    Lady and the Tramp is a 1955 American animated musical romance film directed by Clyde... more on Wikipedia

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  • 2
    Cinderella is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    81
    33

    Cinderella

    June Foray, Mike Douglas

    Released1950

    Directed byWilfred Jackson, Hamilton Luske, Clyde Geronimi

    Cinderella is a 1950 American animated musical fantasy film produced by Walt Disney and... more on Wikipedia
  • 3
    Alice in Wonderland is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    60
    21

    Alice in Wonderland

    Ed Wynn, Heather Angel

    Released1951

    Directed byWilfred Jackson, Hamilton Luske, Clyde Geronimi

    Alice in Wonderland is a 1951 American animated musical fantasy comedy-adventure film produced... more on Wikipedia
  • 4
    Peter Pan is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    75
    38

    Peter Pan

    June Foray, Bobby Driscoll

    Released1953

    Directed byWilfred Jackson, Hamilton Luske, Clyde Geronimi, Jack Kinney

    Peter Pan is a 1953 American animated fantasy-adventure film produced by Walt Disney and based... more on Wikipedia
  • 5
    Old Yeller is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    49
    25

    Old Yeller

    Chuck Connors, Fess Parker

    Released1957

    Directed byRobert Stevenson

    Old Yeller is a 1957 American family tragedy film produced by Walt Disney. It stars Tommy... more on Wikipedia

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  • 6
    Sleeping Beauty is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    57
    49

    Sleeping Beauty

    Marvin Miller, Mary Costa

    Released1959

    Directed byClyde Geronimi

    Sleeping Beauty is a 1959 American animated musical fantasy film produced by Walt Disney based... more on Wikipedia
  • 7
    Tom Thumb is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    35
    24

    Tom Thumb

    Peter Sellers, Stan Freberg

    Released1958

    Directed byGeorge Pal

    Tom Thumb is a 1958 fantasy-musical film directed by George Pal and released by MGM. The film,... more on Wikipedia
  • 8
    Treasure Island is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    32
    23

    Treasure Island

    Patrick Troughton, Bobby Driscoll

    Released1950

    Directed byByron Haskin

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  • 9
    Davy Crockett: The River Pirat is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    27
    19

    Davy Crockett: The River Pirates

    Fess Parker, Buddy Ebsen

    Released1956

    Directed byNorman Foster

    Davy Crockett and the River Pirates is a 1956 live-action Walt Disney adventure film starring... more on Wikipedia
  • 10
    20,000 Leagues Under the Sea is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    30
    23

    20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

    Kirk Douglas, Peter Lorre

    Released1954

    Directed byRichard Fleischer

    20,000 Leagues Under the Sea is a 1954 American Technicolor adventure film starring Kirk... more on Wikipedia

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  • 11
    Darby O'Gill and the Little Pe is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    31
    25

    Darby O'Gill and the Little People

    Sean Connery, Janet Munro

    Released1959

    Directed byRobert Stevenson

    Darby O'Gill and the Little People is a 1959 Walt Disney Productions feature film starring... more on Wikipedia

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  • 12
    Long John Silver is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    22
    15

    Long John Silver

    Rod Taylor, Robert Newton

    Released1954

    Directed byByron Haskin

    Long John Silver, also known as Long John Silver's Return to Treasure Island, is a 1954 United... more on Wikipediaamazon_watch buy button
  • 13
    The Story of Robin Hood and Hi is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    25
    19

    Released1952

    Directed byKen Annakin

    The Story of Robin Hood and His Merrie Men is a 1952 live action Disney version of the Robin... more on Wikipedia

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  • 14
    The African Lion is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    23
    19

    The African Lion

    Winston Hibler

    Released1955

    Directed byJames Algar

    The African Lion is a 1955 feature-length documentary that was released by Walt Disney... more on Wikipedia
  • 15
    Westward Ho the Wagons! is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    17
    17

    Westward Ho the Wagons!

    Fess Parker, George Reeves

    Released1956

    Directed byWilliam Beaudine

    Westward Ho, The Wagons! is a 1956 live-action Disney western film, aimed at family audiences.... more on Wikipedia
  • 16
    Kim is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    16
    21

    Kim

    Errol Flynn, Dean Stockwell

    Released1950

    Directed byVictor Saville

    Kim is a 1950 adventure film made in Technicolor by MGM. It was directed by Victor Saville and... more on Wikipedia
  • 17
    Third Man on the Mountain is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    12
    16

    Third Man on the Mountain

    Helen Hayes, Herbert Lom

    Released1959

    Directed byKen Annakin

    Third Man on the Mountain is a 1959 American Walt Disney Productions film set during the... more on Wikipedia
  • 18
    Francis in the Navy is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    12
    16

    Francis in the Navy

    Clint Eastwood, Donald O'Connor

    Released1955

    Directed byArthur Lubin

    Francis in the Navy is a 1955 American black-and-white comedy film from... more on Wikipediaamazon_watch buy button
  • 19
    Tonka is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    12
    16

    Tonka

    Sal Mineo, Slim Pickens

    Released1958

    Directed byLewis R. Foster

    Tonka is a 1958 Walt Disney Western adventure film about the US cavalry horse that survived... more on Wikipedia

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  • 20
    The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    15
    22

    The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T

    George Chakiris, Hans Conried

    Released1953

    Directed byRoy Rowland

    The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T. is a musical fantasy film, the only feature film written by... more on Wikipedia
  • 21
    The Great Locomotive Chase is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    11
    18

    The Great Locomotive Chase

    Fess Parker, Slim Pickens

    Released1956

    Directed byFrancis D. Lyon

    The Great Locomotive Chase is a 1956 Walt Disney Productions CinemaScope adventure film based... more on Wikipedia

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  • 22
    Snow White and the Seven Dwarf is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    10
    18

    Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

    Doris Weikow, Marianne Christina Schilling

    Released1961

    Directed byGottfried Kolditz

    Schneewittchen und die sieben Zwerge is an East German film. It was released in 1962. The... more on Wikipediaamazon_watch buy button
  • 23
    Superman and the Mole Men is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    10
    19

    Superman and the Mole Men

    George Reeves, Jeff Corey

    Released1951

    Directed byLee Sholem

    Superman and the Mole Men is a 1951 superhero film starring George Reeves as Superman and... more on Wikipediaamazon_watch buy button

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  • 24
    The 7th Voyage of Sinbad is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    12
    22

    The 7th Voyage of Sinbad

    Kerwin Mathews, Torin Thatcher

    Released1958

    Directed byNathan H. Juran

    The 7th Voyage of Sinbad is a 1958 Technicolor fantasy film from Columbia Pictures, produced... more on Wikipediaamazon_watch buy button

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  • 25
    The Red Balloon is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best '50s Kids Movies
    12
    23

    The Red Balloon

    Renaud Séchan, Georges Sellier

    Released1956

    Directed byAlbert Lamorisse

    The Red Balloon is a 1956 fantasy featurette directed by French filmmaker Albert... more on Wikipedia

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