With Brave dominating the box office, let’s revisit and rank the Pixar canon and see where the new Pixar film lands on this high caliber list.

Pixar has produced films ranging from masterpieces to the great ones to the simply good. It seems everyone has a favorite Pixar film without there being a clear front runner. It’s probably because Pixar’s stories are so relatable that each film affects each of us differently. You could honestly argue almost any movie on this list and nobody would be wrong. Pixar has a high brand quality to its name, releasing hit after hit with major box office results and critical favorites.  As Brave continues Pixar’s winning box office streak, lets revisit all thirteen films and where they rank.
 

13. Cars 2 (2011)
Director: John Lasseter, Brad Lewis
Gross: $191.4 million (US)
Classic Quote: “Tow-Mator, average intelligence.”

Arguably the worst of the best, the film is simply decent (which ranks better than half animated films released in a year). This sequel to Cars (2006) centers around sidekick Mator (voiced by Larry the Cable Guy) getting mixed up in an international espionage plot. The film is amusing at parts and beautiful to look at, but it doesn’t have the charm of the first movie or the brains and heart of many of Pixar’s earlier works. Its focus seems mostly to exist to sell merchandise and doesn’t have strong enough story for a full length feature. Yet, having Michael Caine voicing a secret agent car doesn’t hurt it.
 

12. Cars (2006)
Director: John Lasseter, Joe Ranft
Gross: $244.0 million
Classic Quote: “KA-CHOW!”

This was the first speed bump for Pixar’s amicable list. The film was not a failure by any means- it grossed $460 million worldwide and got an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Feature. The film is charming and colorful filled with a very talented cast including Owen Wilson, Bonnie Hunt, and Paul Newman. And perhaps the biggest breakout star was funny side-kick Mator, voiced by Larry the Cable Guy. However, the film lacks the depth and intelligence and even maturity of not only other Pixar films, but animation rival Dreamworks. It’s cute and aimed at very young children ready to purchase some car toys right when the movie is over.
 

11. A Bug’s Life (1998)
Director: John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton
Gross: $162.7 million
Classic Quote: “Look at me I’m a beautiful butterfly”

After the massive success of Toy Story, Pixar was officially on the map. The pressure was on them and the only way to go was even higher. Well, maybe not higher but it surly didn’t hit the ground. A Bug’s Life was another technical achievement, being the first to animate very large groups of detailed third dimensional characters. The film also continued Pixar’s tradition of quick wit and strong storytelling. It also had one of the best Pixar villains to date- Hopper (Kevin Spacey). He’s ruthless, cunning, and kind of funny.
 

10. Brave (2012)
Director: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman
Gross: In theaters now
Classic Quote:  “If you had a chance to change your fate, would you?”

The newest addition to the Pixar catalogue is the first to star a female protagonist. Set in an ancient Celtic backdrop, boisterous Princess Merida sets out on a quest to change her fate when her mother forces her to choose a suitor and follow monarchy tradition. The story has been told thousands of times (pick any traditional Disney animated film with a princess), yet so have most plots we see on screen today. Although the film takes its chance on some interesting story choices (involving a bear) it shifts its tone up and down. However, the animation is top notch and Patrick Doyle’s score is perfect for its whimsical Irish setting. Merida is a great addition to not only the Disney Princess collection, but her troublemaking triplet brothers are bound to be classic characters. It’s a fantastic story especially aimed for mothers and daughters while Merida’s wild spirit and courage is an inspiration we can all relate to. The film has great heart and is often hysterical. Although it doesn’t reach the heights of many Pixar classics, it still is a welcome addition.
 

9. Monsters Inc. (2001)
Director: Pete Docter, David Silverman, Lee Unkrich
Gross: $255.8 million
Classic Quote: “Put that thing back where it came from, or so help me, so help me!”

The movie is a touching, fast paced adventure set in a world where monsters use children’s screams as their energy source. It’s a clever idea that keeps the gags coming a mile a minute. One of the biggest achievements was the first animated film to really get the fur/hair texture correct. The stunning chase sequence through closet doors was also a milestone in the animation world. Like a kid who has had too much candy, it’s maybe a little too rambunctious but it’s so smart blending ideas together (energy crisis/ monsters in the closet) that one can’t help falling for its appeal.
 

8. Toy Story 2 (1999)
Director: John Lasseter, Ash Brannon, Lee Unkrich
Gross: $245.8 million
Classic Quote: “You never forget kids like Emily, or Andy, but they forget you.”

This is one of the few films that’s regarded just as good or maybe even better than the original. The film is notorious for going into major re-production after Disney began work on a Pixar-less staff for a direct to video sequel. Thankfully, original director John Lasseter and fellow crew members stepped in to fix up the project. The result was a massive success with a huge gross, critical acclaim, and an Oscar nomination. But perhaps one of the most pivotal things the movie brought was an emotional depth not yet seen by Pixar with a scene involving Jesse the Cowgirl being left behind by her owner. The scene was the first time Pixar proved to be more than just a company brining breakthrough animation with great stories. It proved it could be more emotional than most live action films and was a force to be reckoned with.
 

7. Ratatouille (2007)
Director: Brad Bird
Gross: $206.4 million
Classic Quote: “Not everyone can become a great artist, but a great artist can come from anywhere”

A rat in Paris wants to cook; an interesting concept if not a little off-putting to a few.  The film is Brad Bird’s second film with Pixar and proves to be one of Pixar’s more mature works. The movie (not without its moments) is more subdued and elegant in its animation and storytelling. It’s not as zany as some of the other hits but it works on such high levels of maturity and fantastic storytelling that it stands a bit above some of the others. The film is still one of the most beautiful efforts brought to life on screen and draws some great inspiration on the theory of criticism with the incredible voice talent of Peter O’ Toole as food critic Anton Ego.
 

6. Finding Nemo (2003)
Director: Andrew Stanton, Lee Unkrich
Gross: $339.7 million
Classic Quote: “Mine!”

One of Pixar’s biggest hits and heart wrenching flicks. Finding Nemo grossed over 860 million worldwide plus an Oscar win for Best Animated Feature. The film focuses around a father’s journey to find his son. The biggest character to come from the film was Ellen DeGeneres’s forgetful Dory, adding to Pixar’s already strong comedy writing. The film still holds up as a fantastic father, son story bringing depth into themes such as growing up and letting go. Never weighted down with the themes, the film is quickly paced and hilarious offering top notch gags for all ages. It’s colorful with some very memorable characters that can be considered one of animation’s finest.
 

5. The Incredibles (2004)
Director: Brad Bird
Gross: $261.4 million
Classic Quote: “No Capes!”

Animation director Bird Bird’s first feature with the company is regarded not only as one of the best action films of all time but one of the best films period. The movie is the most realistic and perhaps one of the darkest of the Pixar bunch letting you know that characters can die in this universe and anyone is expendable. The movie offers some of the most action packed sequences that rival even the biggest summer blockbusters. The film also is hilarious with some of the best gags coming from super-fast youngster Dash and fellow family friend Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson). But no matter how big the action sequences, the movie never forgets its story and ultimately reminds us how strong family can be.
 

4. Toy Story (1995)
Director: John Lasseter
Gross: $191.7 million
Classic Quote:  “To Infinity and Beyond!”

The first one out of the canon may also still be the most ground breaking. This classic was the first fully third dimensional animated film and forever changed the face of animation (winning an honorable Oscar). The movie was a giant hit, having film animators wonder if this was the end of traditional 2D animation. That argument can still be debated, however, Toy Story still holds up as a timeless classic. More importantly than the breakthrough animation, was the touching story surrounded by colorful characters and wit. Many ‘best of’ lists will name Toy Story as their top pick, however, that would also hint that Pixar never topped their first effort. And while the film is breakthrough in many aspects, it doesn’t have the emotional punch that some later works would achieve. That being said, Toy Story has not survived the years just because of nostalgia but because it simply is one of the best films ever released.
 

3. Up (2009)
Director: Pete Docter, Bob Peterson
Gross: $293.0 million
Classic Quote: “Squirrel!”

The film is probably one of the most emotional draining of the Pixar bunch. The now classic opening sequence is still one of the most heart wrenching montages ever put on screen. The film focuses around an elderly gentleman named Carl who embarks on a quest to visit a tropical location he was never able to visit with his now deceased wife. However, a rambunctious goody, goody young Boy Scout named Russell accidently comes along with him on his flying balloon house. The movie is as whimsical as it is heart breaking. It deals with the deep emotion of loss and abandonment. It’s mature without getting too heavy for young children. It’s a fun treat that will have you wiping your eyes by the end. Grossing over $730 million worldwide, the film also struck a milestone being the second animated film to be nominated for a Best Picture Oscar nomination (the first being Beauty and the Beast, 1992).
 

2. Toy Story 3 (2010)
Director: Lee Unkrich
Gross: $415.0 million
Classic Quote: “But the thing that makes Woody special, is he’ll never give up on you… ever.”

When the studio announced they were going to make another Toy Story, many were skeptical. How would they be able to top not only their latest efforts, but the first two Toy Story films? However, the geniuses at Pixar did it and the film received universal acclaim (Winning two Oscars and a nomination for Best Picture) and became the highest grossing animated film of all time (worldwide). This time the story revolved around the toys being accidently dropped off at a vicious daycare as owner, Andy, prepares to leave to college. With some great gags (tortilla Mr. Potato head) the film is utterly bittersweet and heartbreaking. It pours out the nostalgia like no tomorrow and lets you ponder the idea of maturing and aging. It wraps up the series so pitch perfect that you wonder how they could top it.
 

1. Wall-E (2008)
Director: Andrew Stanton
Gross: $223.8 million
Classic Quote: “I don’t want to survive, I want to live.”

The film centers around a robot, Wall-E, sent to clean up earth in the future after humans have wasted away the planet. As Wall-E cleans the earth he finds an appreciation and love for human items, curious about our lifestyle. He meets and falls in love with a more superior robot, Eve, who is sent to find a plant as an oxygen source. Soon, the two robots embark on an adventure to help save earth. The film is one of the strongest love stories to come out in the last decade. It’s one of the highest merits Pixar has produced, resulting in near high art. It centers on the idea of machines learning to love when humans have forgotten how. Its stunning visuals, aided with Thomas Newman’s beautiful score enhance the already strong story. The film also challenges itself by having almost no dialog in the first half hour, working simply with sounds and music. It is a challenging piece of filmmaking that makes the dive into scary territory dealing with apocalyptic and political backdrop. Yet with the impeccable storytelling and animation, Pixar has created a universe that is elegant, whimsical, and breathtaking.