101 Movies From Your Childhood + The ’80s & ’90s No Cartoons

Movies from your childhood you’ll want to watch with your (older) kids. Ultimate family movie night from the ’80s and ’90s. NO CARTOONS!

Now that our oldest is 8, it’s been eight long years of watching cartoons. Although I do love cartoons, after a while you sit in limbo just waiting for them to be old enough to watch the movies YOU use to love as a kid.

The movies that are not cartoons and hold a little nostalgia thinking back to them.

It’s time for the ultimate family movie list. (for families with older kids)

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Since these movies are older be sure to check them out on IMDB for a full parent guide. It was the ’80s and ’90s, so some may have smoking, language or adult implied themes.

Table of contents: Family movies from the ’80s & ’90s

Finding a family movie in the ’90s wasn’t really a struggle. At any given time you had 3 different movies on TV to choose from and let’s not pretend we didn’t try to watch them all by switching the channel during the commercials.

But now we have so many streaming platforms before us that it can be difficult finding something you want to watch. After 20 minutes of scrolling you finally give up and let the kids decide. I’m hoping this movie list will help point you in the right direction.

101 Movies from your Childhood | No Cartoons

Action/Adventure- Family Movies

  • Hook- 1991
  • Back to the Future- 1985
  • The Goonies- 1985
  • Labyrinth- 1986
  • Jumanji- 1984
  • The Never Ending Story- 1984
  • Candleshoe- 1977
  • Star Wars- 1977-2019
  • Escape to Witch Mountain- 1975
  • Wild America- 1997
  • Tom & Huck- 1995
  • The Borrowers- 1997
  • Harry Potter- 2001
  • Chronicles of Narnia- 2005

A few of these can be a little bit scary depending on your child’s maturity level. For instance Labyrinth can be a little dark and The Goonies (spoiler alert) have a dead man in the freezer. Also, there is one scene in Back To The Future that personally we fast forward through since Biff can’t keep his hands to himself in the car.

Just keep those things in mind while watching them with your older children and maybe keep the remote nearby.

Comedy- Family Movies

  • Beethoven- 1992
  • Dunstin Checks In- 1996
  • The Princess Bride- 1987
  • Mrs. Doubtfire- 1993
  • The Sandlot- 1993
  • Matilda- 1996
  • The Mighty Ducks- 1992
  • Babe- 1995
  • Little Giants- 1994
  • Space Jam- 1996
  • The Parent Trap- 1961 &1998
  • Cool Runnings- 1993
  • Mary Poppins- 1964
  • Mouse Hunt-1997
  • Blank Check- 1994
  • Richie Rich- 1994
  • Camp Nowhere- 1994
  • The Little Rascals- 1994
  • Dennis The Menace- 1993
  • Jungle 2 Jungle- 1997
  • That Darn Cat- 1997
  • George of the Jungle- 1997
  • Mr. Bean- 1990
  • The Flintstones- 1994
  • Flipper- 1996
  • Problem Child- 1990
  • BIG- 1988
  • How The West Was Fun- 1994
  • Getting Even With Dad- 1994
  • Short Circuit- 1986
  • Spaceballs-1987
  • Born to be Wild- 1995
  • Rookie of the Year-1993
  • The Big Green-1995
  • First Kid- 1996
  • Flubber- 1997
  • Air Bud- 1997
  • Leave it to Beaver- 1997
  • Mr. Magoo- 1997
  • My Favorite Martian- 1999

The majority of these are all really great and a lot of fun to watch with the family. However, even though Spaceballs and My Favorite Martian are both rated PG, I would strongly suggest checking out their parent guide on IMDb.

Many of us remember these movies from television and with that came a few parts that were edited to be appropriate for TV and to fit within an allotted timeframe. Just something to keep in mind when renting the full version of the movie on Amazon Prime.

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Family/Drama- Movies

  • Fly Away Home- 1996
  • The Wizard of Oz- 1939
  • Free Willy- 1993
  • Honey I shrunk the Kids- 1989
  • E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial- 1982
  • Overboard- 1987
  • Annie- 1982
  • Curly Sue- 1991
  • October Sky- 1999
  • Corrina Corrina- 1994
  • Charlets Web- 2006
  • Homeward Bound- 1993
  • It Takes Two- 1995
  • The Indian in the Cupboard- 1995
  • The Secret Garden- 1993
  • Simon Birch- 1998
  • Gold Diggers, The Secret of Gold Mountain- 1995
  • Iron Will- 1994
  • The Karate Kid- 1984
  • The War- 1994
  • Remember the Titans- 2000
  • Radio- 2003
  • My Dog Skip-2000
  • War of the Buttons- 1994
  • Man of the House- 1995
  • Andre- 1994
  • Shiloh- 1996
  • The Sound of Music- 1965
  • The Newsies- 1992
  • A Little Princess- 1995

This movie list family drama’s have many of my favorites as a kid and even now I can’t watch A Little Princess without tearing up.

Front yard decorated as a graveyard for Halloween

Halloween- Family Movies

  • Hocus Pocus- 1993
  • Casper- 1995
  • Beetlejuice- 1988
  • Bedknobs & Broomsticks- 1971
  • Earnest Scared Stupid- 1991
  • Halloweentown-1998
  • Under Wraps- 1997
  • Ghostbusters- 1984

I so badly wanted to put The Nightmare Before Christmas on this list but since it’s a cartoon, it doesn’t make the cut. Wink wink.

Santa's Workshop with Christmas presents hanging from ceiling

Christmas- Family Movies

  • Home Alone- 1990
  • Miracle on 34th St- 1994
  • A Christmas Story- 1983
  • Jack Frost- 1998
  • Elf- 2003
  • The Grinch- 2000
  • Prancer- 1989
  • The Muppet Christmas Carol- 1992
  • I’ll be home for Christmas- 1998
  • Jungle All the Way- 1996
  • The Santa Clause- 1994


Make family movie night extra special with some of these movie night must haves, including a mini movie projector with speaker.

Of course you can set up a movie night in the living room but why not make it a little extra special with a movie night in the sunroom or outside by the fire. And let’s not forget that a simple white sheet is the perfect movie screen as is the garage door in the front yard.


  • Popcorn
  • Hot chocolate
  • Candy
    • Mike & Ikes
    • Chocolate covered raisins
    • Reeces Pieces ect.
  • Fruit
    • Strawberries
    • Apples
    • Blueberries ect.


It seems like silly me forgot a few really great ones. So thanks to some great comments on Pinterest, we’ll add them here!

  • Harry and the Hendersons- 1987
  • Baby’s Day Out- 1994
  • The Great Outdoors- 1988

I hope you’ve enjoyed this classic family movie list from the ’80s and ’90s and make some wonderful memories with your families.

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4 thoughts on “101 Movies From Your Childhood + The ’80s & ’90s No Cartoons”

  1. You should probably rewatch Big before showing it to your kids—I did and was surprised at how much inappropriate language there was that I’d forgotten about.

    1. I do agree that made for TV movies were great in that sense. We usually keep the remote close by for some of the movies on this list and have even cleared our throat loudly a time or two. However, since our children are a bit older now, it is nice to watch some of the movies we used to enjoy as a kid. Maybe with just a bit of fast forwarding. Thank you Denise!

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