kids movies The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies  

Ranker Film
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There's something especially magical about fantasy movies for kids. They spark young viewers' imaginations and encourage them to follow their hearts. The best kids live action movies feature young actors and actresses heading out into a world of adventure. This is a list of the greatest children's live action fantasy movies including everything from The Chronicles of Narnia to The NeverEnding Story to Hook.

What films will you find on this list of the best kids fantasy movies? In the 1971 musical Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, Gene Wilder steals every scene he's in as the whimsical candy-maker. Johnny Depp put his own spin on the classic Roald Dahl story in 2005's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The Goonies features a misfit gang of kids going up against some villainous characters. Other great films featured here include Flight of the Navigator, Where the Wild Things Are, and Casper.

It's up to you to decide which movie deserves the top spot on the list. Give your favorites a thumbs up and please add any good live action fantasy movies for kids that are missing.

list ordered by

1
64 5
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Fa... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory Gene Wilder, Jack Albertson, Tim Brooke-Taylor Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory is a 1971 musical fantasy film directed by Mel Stuart, and starring Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka. The film, a film adaptation of the 1964 novel Charlie and ...more

2
61 7
Jumanji is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Jumanji Kirsten Dunst, Robin Williams, Patricia Clarkson Jumanji is a 1995 American fantasy adventure film directed by Joe Johnston. It is an adaptation of the 1981 children's book of the same name by Chris Van Allsburg. The film was directed by Joe ...more

3
57 7
Hook is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Hook Gwyneth Paltrow, Julia Roberts, Robin Williams Hook is a 1991 American fantasy adventure film directed by Steven Spielberg and written by James V. Hart and Malia Scotch Marmo. It stars Robin Williams as Peter Pan/Peter Banning, Dustin ...more

4
60 10
The NeverEnding Story is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
The NeverEnding Story Gerald McRaney, Limahl, Moses Gunn The NeverEnding Story is a 1984 West German epic fantasy film based on the novel of the same name by Michael Ende, about a boy who reads a magical library book that tells a story of a young ...more

5
56 11
The Goonies is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
The Goonies Corey Feldman, Josh Brolin, Sean Astin The Goonies is a 1985 American adventure comedy film directed by Richard Donner. The screenplay was written by Chris Columbus from a story by executive producer Steven Spielberg. The film's ...more

6
55 11
The Chronicles of Narnia: The ... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Liam Neeson, Tilda Swinton, James McAvoy The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is a 2005 fantasy adventure film directed by Andrew Adamson and based on The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the first published ...more

7
53 11
Labyrinth is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Labyrinth Jennifer Connelly, David Bowie, Frank Oz Labyrinth is a 1986 British-American musical adventure fantasy film directed by Jim Henson, executive produced by George Lucas and based upon conceptual designs by Brian Froud. The film stars ...more

8
53 13
Hocus Pocus is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Hocus Pocus Sarah Jessica Parker, Bette Midler, Thora Birch Hocus Pocus is a 1993 American comedy fantasy film directed by Kenny Ortega and starring Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy as a trio of witches, the Sanderson Sisters, who are ...more

9
46 11
Casper is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Casper Mel Gibson, Clint Eastwood, Christina Ricci Casper is a 1995 American family comedy fantasy film starring Christina Ricci, Bill Pullman, Cathy Moriarty, Eric Idle, and Amy Brenneman, based on the Casper the Friendly Ghost comic books and ...more

10
49 14
Harry Potter and the Philosoph... is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe, Julianne Hough Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone is a 2001 fantasy film directed by Chris Columbus and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. ...more

11
43 10
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Drew Barrymore, Erika Eleniak, Debra Winger E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is a 1982 American science fiction-family film co-produced and directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Melissa Mathison, featuring special effects by Carlo ...more

12
49 15
Matilda is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Matilda Danny DeVito, Mara Wilson, Paul Reubens Matilda is a 1996 American fantasy comedy children's film directed and narrated by Danny DeVito. The screenplay by Nicholas Kazan and Robin Swicord is based on Roald Dahl's novel of the same ...more

The Best Live Action Animal Movies for Kids

13
43 15
Charlie and the Chocolate Fact... is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Christopher Lee Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a 2005 musical adventure film directed by Tim Burton. It is the second film adaptation of the 1964 British book of the same name by Roald Dahl and stars ...more

14
34 16
Charlotte's Web is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Charlotte's Web Julia Roberts, Oprah Winfrey, Dakota Fanning Charlotte's Web is a 2006 American live-action/computer-animated feature film based on the popular book of the same name by E. B. White. It is directed by Gary Winick and produced by Paramount ...more

15
37 19
The Indian in the Cupboard is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
The Indian in the Cupboard Steve Coogan, Richard Jenkins, Vincent Kartheiser The Indian in the Cupboard is a 1995 American fantasy-adventure film directed by Frank Oz. It was based on the children's book of the same name by Lynne Reid Banks. The story is about a boy who ...more

16
31 14
Flight of the Navigator is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Flight of the Navigator Sarah Jessica Parker, Paul Reubens, Veronica Cartwright Flight of the Navigator is a 1986 comic science fiction film directed by Randal Kleiser and written by Mark H. Baker and Michael Burton, about David Freeman, a 12-year-old boy who is abducted by ...more

17
33 18
Cinderella is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Cinderella Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter, Hayley Atwell Cinderella is a 2015 American romantic fantasy film directed by Kenneth Branagh, from a screenplay written by Chris Weitz. Produced by David Barron, Simon Kinberg and Allison Shearmur for Walt ...more

18
28 17
The Spiderwick Chronicles is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
The Spiderwick Chronicles Nick Nolte, Seth Rogen, Mary-Louise Parker The Spiderwick Chronicles is a 2008 American fantasy adventure film. It is the film adaptation of Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi's bestselling series of the same name. Set in the Spiderwick ...more

19
26 23
Bridge to Terabithia is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Bridge to Terabithia Zooey Deschanel, Josh Hutchersonm, AnnaSophia Robb Bridge to Terabithia is a 2007 American-New Zealand fantasy adventure family drama film directed by Gábor Csupó and adapted for film by David L. Paterson and Jeff Stockwell. The ...more

20
23 20
Lemony Snicket's A Series of U... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events Meryl Streep, Jim Carrey, Jude Law Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events is a 2004 American fantasy dark comedy film directed by Brad Silberling. It is an adaptation of the first three novels of A Series of Unfortunate ...more

21
24 23
The Golden Compass is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
The Golden Compass Nicole Kidman, Eva Green, Ian McKellen The Golden Compass is a 2007 2007 fantasy-adventure film written by Chris Weitz and directed by Chris Weitz.

22
24 29
Where the Wild Things Are is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Where the Wild Things Are Mark Ruffalo, Forest Whitaker, James Gandolfini Where the Wild Things Are is a 2009 fantasy drama film directed by Spike Jonze. Written by Jonze and Dave Eggers, it is adapted from Maurice Sendak's 1963 children's book of the same name. It ...more

23
20 26
Zathura is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Zathura Kristen Stewart, Josh Hutchersonm, Tim Robbins Zathura: A Space Adventure is a 2005 American science fiction fantasy adventure film directed by Jon Favreau, and is loosely based on the illustrated book Zathura by Chris Van Allsburg, author ...more

24
14 28
Hugo is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Hugo Jude Law, Chloë Grace Moretz, Christopher Lee Hugo is a 2011 American 3D historical adventure drama film directed and co-produced by Martin Scorsese and adapted for the screen by John Logan. Based on Brian Selznick's novel The Invention of ...more

25
5 28
Beasts of the Southern Wild is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Live Action Kids Fantasy Movies
Beasts of the Southern Wild Quvenzhané Wallis, Jay Oliver, Henry D. Coleman Beasts of the Southern Wild is a 2012 American fantasy drama film directed by Benh Zeitlin and adapted by Zeitlin and Lucy Alibar from Alibar's one-act play Juicy and Delicious. After playing at ...more