The 21 Best Family Movies on Hulu, from ‘Charlotte's Web’ to ‘Shrek’

Giant bowl of snacks? Check. The entire family snuggled in front of the TV in cozy pajamas? Check and check. But there’s just one thing that’s missing: A genuinely good, family-friendly movie that everyone can actually agree on. Should it be an animated film? A Disney favorite? Or perhaps, a nostalgic throwback?

As we all know, picking films for family movie night is no easy task, especially when there’s a wide range of ages involved. But thankfully, Hulu offers a variety of entertaining options that'll appeal to kids and adults alike. From Shrek to Dora and the Lost City of Gold, read on for the 21 best family movies on Hulu. (FYI, some of these options require add-on services, including STARZ and HBO).

The 50 Best Family Movies of All Time

1. Are We There Yet? (2005)

  • Cast: Ice Cube, Nia Long, Jay Mohr
  • Rating: PG

Nick is a successful bachelor who sets his eye on Suzanne, a divorced mom with two children. In hopes of winning Suzanne over, Nick offers to drive the family from Portland, Oregon to Canada. But chaos ensues as the kids go out of their way to sabotage Nick's chances with their mom.

2. Dr. Dolittle (1998)

  • Cast: Eddie Murphy, Ossie Davis, Oliver Platt
  • Rating: PG-13

Meet Dr. John Little, a quirky veterinarian who has the ability to communicate with a variety of animals. When his connection to these creatures eventually lands him in a mental institution, he has to rely on his animal friends to save the day.

3. Charlotte's Web (2006)

  • Cast: Julia Roberts, Dakota Fanning, Steve Buscemi
  • Rating: PG

In this adaptation of E. B. White's classic book, a young pig named Wilbur learns that his days are numbered when the other animals tell him that he'll be prepared for Christmas dinner. Fortunately for him, his clever spider friend, Charlotte, weaves a plan to save his life.

4. Rugrats In Paris: The Movie (2000)

  • Cast: E.G. Daily, Christine Cavanaugh, Michael Bell
  • Rating: G

When Stu Pickles gets summoned to an amusement park in Paris to fix his epic Reptar invention, the rest of the gang joins him for a fun family vacation. But chaos ensues when Chuckie's dad, Chaz, strikes up a romance with the conniving Coco. Prepare for all the nostalgia.

5. Anastasia (1997)

  • Cast: Meg Ryan, John Cusack, Kelsey Grammer
  • Rating: G

This Oscar-nominated film follows the journey of Anastasia, the sole surviving child of the Russian Royal Family. When her grandmother, the Dowager Empress, offers a reward to the person who can bring her back home, two con men hatch a plan to pawn off a phony—except things don't go according to plan.

6. Daddy Day Care (2003)

  • Cast: Eddie Murphy, Jeff Garlin, Steve Zahn
  • Rating: PG

After getting laid off from their corporate jobs, two dads attempt to start their own daycare business. However, chaos ensues when Gwyneth, the director of Chapman Academy, tries to destroy the competition. As always, Murphy delivers plenty of laughs and Anjelica Huston is simply phenomenal.

7. Alvin and the Chipmunks (2007)

  • Cast: Jason Lee, David Cross, Cameron Richardson
  • Rating: PG

Our favorite trio of chipmunks, Alvin, Simon and Theodore, are up for quite the adventure when they move in with a songwriter named Dave. After he discovers their talent for singing, they skyrocket to fame—but unfortunately, their newfound success comes with a price.

8. Mr. Popper's Penguins (2011)

  • Cast: Jim Carrey, Carla Gugino, Angela Lansbury
  • Rating: PG

Mr. Popper is a top-notch real estate entrepreneur and father who seems to have a bright future ahead of him. But his life is turned upside down when his father suddenly passes away and leaves a rather unique gift: a live penguin. One miscommunication later, he ends up with a colony of six, and of course, hilarity ensues.

9. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)

  • Cast: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Jamie Foxx
  • Rating: TV-14

Set two years after the first installment, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 follows Peter Parker as he successfully uses his powers to protect his city and his partner in crime, Gwen. However, when a deadly new threat emerges, Peter is forced to go up against his most terrifying foe yet.

10. Rio (2011)

  • Cast: Anne Hathaway, Jemaine Clement, Leslie Mann, George Lopez, Jamie Foxx
  • Rating: PG

In this light-hearted comedy, Blu, an overprotected male Spix macaw, is terrified to fly. When his human owner, Linda, learns that there’s a female of his kind in Rio de Janeiro named Jewel, she takes Blu to meet her. However, things get rocky when animal smugglers manage to kidnap Rio and Jewel. The star-studded cast includes.

11. Shrek (2001)

  • Cast: Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz, John Lithgow
  • Rating: PG

Shrek is quite content in his swamp—that is, until it is invaded by fairytale creatures. When he learns that they've been banished from their own home by Lord Farquaad, Shrek decides to make a deal with Farquaad, which involves rescuing his future bride, Princess Fiona.

12. Mrs. Doubtfire (1993)

  • Cast: Robin Williams, Sally Field, Pierce Brosnan
  • Rating: PG

Williams shines as Daniel, a divorced dad who transforms into an older nanny to stay close to his children. However, balancing his regular responsibilities with his nanny persona proves to be a major challenge. And his ex-wife's new partner doesn't help matters.

13. Despicable Me (2010)

  • Cast: Steve Carell, Jason Segel, Russell Brand
  • Rating: PG

With the help of his assistant and his loyal army of Minions, Gru comes up with a plan to steal the moon. In the midst of the biggest heist ever, he adopts three adorable orphan girls who start to change his outlook on life.

14. Ice Age: Continental Drift (2012)

  • Cast: Ray Romano, John Alberto Leguizamo, Denis Leary
  • Rating: PG

Who knew that a little acorn could cause a continental disaster? In this sequel to Ice Age, Scrat inadvertently triggers a massive chain reaction that sends Manny, Diego, Sid and his granny adrift on a chunk of an iceberg. Together, they embark on a new adventure that involves pirates and new sea creatures.

15. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days (2012)

  • Cast: Zachary Gordon, Robert Capron, Devon Bostick
  • Rating: PG

With summer break in full swing, all Greg wants to do is stay indoors and enjoy his video games. But those plans fall apart when his dad insists that they have some father-son bonding time. To prevent his dad from ruining the fun, Greg comes up with a clever scheme. But will it work?

16. Garfield the Movie (2004)

  • Cast: Breckin Meyer, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Stephen Tobolowsky
  • Rating: PG

When Garfield's owner, Jon, brings home a new pet dog named Odie, he isn't exactly thrilled. But when Odie gets kidnapped one night, Garfield enlists the help of a few friends and embarks on a mission to rescue the pup.

17. The Sandlot (1993)

  • Cast: Thomas Guiry, Mike Vitar, Patrick Renna
  • Rating: PG

In this coming-of-age film, Scottie Smalls moves to a new neighborhood and bonds with a group of boys who play baseball at the local sandlot. The kids, however, run into a bit of trouble when Scottie loses his stepdad’s valuable baseball. The feel-good 90s film was a major box office hit and is now considered a cult favorite.

18. Beethoven (1992)

  • Cast: Thomas Guiry, Mike Vitar, Patrick Renna
  • Rating: PG

Your furry friends can join in on the fun as you watch Beethoven, which follows the Newton family as they adopt a new puppy. However, when he grows bigger, he catches the eye of Dr. Herman, a local vet who doesn't have the best intentions. Expect plenty of silly moments and slapstick humor.

19. Free Birds (2015)

  • Cast: Owen Wilson, Woody Harrelson, Amy Poehler, George Takei
  • Rating: PG

Featuring a star-studded voiceover cast and great computer animation, this sci-fi comedy follows Reggie and Jake, two turkeys who time-travel back to the first Thanksgiving in hopes of removing their fellow turkeys from the dinner menu.

20. Kung Fu Panda (2008)

  • Cast: Owen Wilson, Woody Harrelson, Amy Poehler, George Takei
  • Rating: PG

This martial arts comedy tells the story of Po, a clumsy panda and kung-fu fan who's shocked to learn that he's been selected to defend the Valley of Peace. Fun fact: This was the third highest-grossing film of 2008.

21. Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (2008)

  • Cast: Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer
  • Rating: PG

This comedy adventure is guaranteed fun for the whole family, thanks to the humor and stunning animation. The movie follows a group of New York zoo animals who escape from Madagascar and try to make it back home, but land in an African country instead. The animals embark on a whole new adventure as they meet other members of their species for the first time.

nakeisha campbell bio

Associate Editor, News and Entertainment

Nakeisha has been interviewing celebrities and covering all things entertainment for over 8 years, but she has also written on a wide range of topics, like career...