The 20 Best Dreamworks Movies of All Time (Ranked)

The 20 Best Dreamworks Movies of All Time (Ranked)
The 20 Best Dreamworks Movies!

Animation and cartoon enthusiasts rejoice! DreamWorks Pictures was first brought to T.V screens back in 1994. Since then it has collaborated with several other animation studios, including one of the most successful film productions: Universal Studios. It has created 46 feature films as of June 2023. Let’s teleport to a world of immense color and creativity as we reveal the most adored DreamWorks movies. 


20. Trolls (2016)

Attack by the Bergens on the Troll village sets the tone for a spectacular adventure. Poppy, the happiest Troll alive, and her band of unlikely friends set off to rescue their captured friends from the villainous Chef. 

Furry, crazy, and whimsical sum up the world of the Trolls. The characters are brilliantly animated replicating the colors of the rainbow. Advancement of animation techniques allowed producers to go above and beyond in crafting the unique Troll World. 

Justin Timberlake and Anna Kendrick released the song “Can’t Stop the Feeling,” which received an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song. Big names such as Russell Brand, Zooey Deschanel, and Gwen Stefani take on roles in the film adding excitement for fans. 

The Trolls are cute, lovable creatures whose positivity and crazy appearances are enticing to children. Friendship and hard work prove to be the two key factors the gang must implement if they want to save their buddies. The story is light hearted and visually wonderful. 

Despite its dark plot, DreamWorks knows how to cover up the eerie with humor and good morals. Poppy and her plushy friends teach the Bergens to find happiness within themselves. Rainbows and sunshine end the film setting a good example for young movie watchers. 


19. Bee Movie (2007)

Hey you, I bet you’ve been told you're the bee's knees. Do bees have knees? In this quirky and original flick, bees do in fact have knees- and they can talk. Barry the bee befriends Vanessa as the two attempt to put an end to the production of honey. 

The film has wonderful intentions and is a highly odd and entertaining watch. Although, it’s a bit strange to watch Vanessa and Barry sort of fall in love with each other through the film. Nevertheless, the plot of the movie makes up for it. 

Human and bees talking and interacting with one another shed a new light on DreamWorks. It’s quite hilarious to watch Barry wearing a suit and attending court to fight for bee rights. What’s even more awesome is that he wins the case. 

The Bee Movie is a computer- animated film, so the graphics are not as up-to-date with current films. Older generations love and appreciate its slower effects and characters. 

It’s a rather unique film, but does send off some uncomfortable vibes. Numerous memes and social media platforms have pieces together amusing photos regarding the film. It’s definitely a memorable movie that will spark a feeling of nostalgia for viewers. 


18. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted (2012)

Possibly one of DreamWorks most known trilogy is Madagascar. The first two films were a massive hit which only meant one thing for producers: to direct a third film. Our wacky animal foursome find themselves performing in the circus after a wild goose chase for their friends lands them in France. 

Madagascar 3 became the highest grossing flick in the franchise. Heaps of chaos and wild, funky scenes keep children and adults curious about the gang's next move. Those who first set their eyes on Madagascar back in 2005, will love the movie's sequel no matter the rating. 

Alex, Marty, Gloria, and Melman luckily stay true to their initial characteristics and comical selfs. The introduction of the circus animals and acts is delightfully humorous and alluring. It differs from its brother films completely as the gang transitions from wild animals to tamed beasts. 

Vibrant and magical scenes flooded with awesome visuals and colors captivate the audience. DreamWork fans buckle up for a new and exciting adventure to Europe, but it’s not all butterflies and unicorns. Plotting to kill Alex and mount his head on the wall, villains take the spotlight too, adding major twists and turns. 


17. Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011)

 Hi-ya! POW! Waboosh! After Kung Fu Panda proved to be a huge hit, hopes were high for a sequel. Karate-chopping his way to Kung Fu Master, Po must now achieve inner peace to conquer the evil Shen who plans to take over all of China. 

Jack Black is the perfect role for our Panda, Po. His booming and lively vocals fit perfectly with our bamboo loving hero. Allied with his unorthodox squad of Kung Fu apprentices, Po is unstoppable. 

Although the film's plot closely relates to the first Kung Fu Panda, it maintains enough riveting visual animation and comedy to compensate. Hilarious characters are always assured in any DreamWorks film. 

The storyline touches viewers' hearts as Po uncovers the truth about his real parents. It has a sweet, family feel about it which creates depth for the franchise. Children adore Tigress, Monkey, Viper, Crane, and Mantis as the critters display awesome action sequences. 

The computer- animated comedy was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. It’s a light- hearted and easy watch. Colors, music scores, and beautifully designed cities draw fans in. 


16. Flushed Away (2006)

 Flushed away seems to be a movie locked deep inside the older generations' memories. This tale follows pet rat Roddy as he gets flushed down a toilet sending him to the sewers of Ratropolis. He meets Rita who agrees to help him get home, but the two are abducted by The Toad sending them on a stinky quest. 

Flushed Away was inspired heavily by the creator of Chicken arum. The characters closely resemble clay like figures wearing bulgy eyes and buck teeth. The cross between clay and computer generated animation is done well. 

The story is fast paced and adventure filled to keep viewers engaged. The whole concept of rats trying to overthrow a stinky frog leader is downright awesome. Luckily, the plot has enough depth to interest adults while also catering to the simplicity of children. 

It goes beyond the norm for animation, dazzling older generations and a sense of newness for kiddos. It surprisingly climbed its way higher than expected by being nominated for the BAFTA Award as well as Critics Choice Award for Best Animated Feature. 


15. Turbo (2013) 

 Snail mail just got a major upgrade. Turbo  is a heartwarming fantasy following a snail whose freak accident grants him the gift of speed. His amazing speed grows in popularity as he enters the IndyCar race in hopes of winning.

DreamWorks masters the art of bringing together humans and animals. This fantastical tale is quite under-appreciated as its plot is magical and brilliant. Animation developers piece together each snail in their own special way with splashes of glamorous color and sparkle. 

Ryan Reynolds, Snoop Dog, and Samuel L Jackson can be heard voicing over said characters. It was positively reviewed for its humor, acting, and visual content. Unfortunately, it underperformed at the box office leading to a 15.6 million dollar write down. 

Despite negative opinions, Turbo is widely loved by children and adults of all ages. Emotions take over as Turbo is hurt and damaged, tugging at the hearts of spectators. Contrary to negative jabs it received, It’s a warm and cute film for anyone who is open to it. 


14. Monsters Vs. Aliens (2006)

 Monsters AND aliens? What could possibly be more exciting than that? Susan Murphy, an average woman, is accidentally struck by a meteorite causing her to grow 50 feet tall. She’s placed in a facility along with other monster mutants for safety. 

Reese Witherspoon voices our star, now named Ginormica, in this 3D animated monster science fiction comedy. A female lead is always refreshing to see. Fellow stars Seth Rogen and Paul Rudd accompany Witherspoon on her monstrous quest. 

The characters are adorably gruesome. You can’t help but fall in love with their comical and glowing personalities. Squid nemesis Gallaxhar is a lively and amusing villain whose plans to extract the quantonium from Ginormica's being. 

Aliens and monsters form a squad to stop this plan. Hysterical havoc breaks loose making this such a highly loved film for children. Animation flow and special effects are specifically detailed to each character giving them their own odd- ball personas. 

Humans, aliens, and monsters join forces and back up the powerful moral of the story. Friendship and the power of good vanquish evil every time. It ranked high in status receiving multiple nominations. 

It was submitted for the Annie Awards for Best Storyboarding, Animation, and voice acting in an animated production. Kids Choice Award put Rogen and Witherspoon up for nomination as favorite Voice from an animated movie. 


13. Shrek The Third (2007)

 Sludge bathing, slug sucking Shrek is up to trouble yet again. The first two films pretty much staple DreamWorks together. Shrek is passed down the crown for Far Far Away, but has zero interest in leading the Kingdom. Shrek, Donkey, and Puss in Boots stumble off to retrieve Fiona's cousin, Arthur, to be titled as new King. 

Shrek The Third received below average reviews ranking it on the bottom for the franchise. Critics claimed the movie's humor and characters lacked originality. Fiona's pregnancy and its adult- like comedy didn’t meet expectations for a children’s movie.

Alas, Shrek is love and life. The gang encounters mischief and mayhem while searching for Artie. Prince Charming stages a very odd musical theater production for the Kingdom in an attempt to murder Shrek. 

The addition of Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, and other memorable princesses put some spunk in the movie. It was predictable that after the second film, Charming would initiate revenge on the Shrek members. It did become a commercial success, grossing 813 million dollars worldwide. 

Nonetheless, the team journeys through awesome new lands and kingdoms keeping the scenes flowing and interesting to watch. The style of animation replicates the first and second flick, keeping it true to its original state. Raw, stupid humor remains intact, but seems to be a bit forced. 


12. Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron (2002)

Spirit is a major throwback for those in their middle and late 20’s. Taking a more realistic path, we ride along with Spirit, the untamed horse, as he navigates through intense emotional barriers. 

As memories seep in from this heart- wrenching story, feelings of intensity overwhelm fans. Spirit was perhaps one of the best and most pure animated movies of its time. 

The film is surely based on a non-fiction reality as the US Western Colonel attempts to capture Spirit and domesticate him. Adults understand the truth behind the film while children thrive off the animation structure and brilliance of the characters. 

Spirit prospers solely on love, friendship, and hardship of old Western times. The film doesn’t offer much, if any, comical relief. Despite this, it’s an absolutely touching and plausible story that will most likely result in streams of tears. 

Our horse friend was nominated for several awards in regards for Storyboard and Animation. Winning the ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards, it also took home Annie Awards for Production and Character Design. 

Round up the family and the tissue box. Spirit's dramatic plot will plant a special place in your heart. 


11. Home (2015)

Give me E.T. but add animation, talking aliens, and a bouncy main character. Home crash lands a new take on aliens when the Boov invades Earth, but in a welcoming sense. Young Tip befriends an alien, Oh as they search for her mother Lucy. 

The movie is enchanting in terms of its visual content and attractive character style. The plot is simple and easily predictable. DreamWorks attempted to string together a solid storyline, but it did fall short of its hopes. 

Villainous, foreign aliens attack Earth for vengeance on the Boov. The aliens are the farthest thing from that of the standard foe. In fact, they seek truce and peace in the end. 

One of the main components of Home is by far its awesome scene structure as each destination is animated beautifully. Squishy characters and exotic lands grasp children’s attention, peeling away from its weak storyline. 

Perhaps the biggest appeal is Rihanna’s voice over of Tip. She also produces songs used for the musical production, vibing off fresh tunes for new generations. Netflix released a series in its honor to try and keep the promising film alive. 


10. Shark Tale (2004)

Do you “sea” what I see? It’s Will Smith and Angelina Jolie in fish form! Shark Tale is a classic DreamWorks flick. Viewers swim alongside Oscar as he goes from zero to hero after wrongly being framed for killing a shark. 

Shark Tale plays around well with its animation magic in bringing ocean creatures to life. Sparkly, scaly fish of all colors add new and exciting headway for DreamWorks Productions. The underwater element allows for a new visual animation aspect to be toyed with. 

The cinema received mixed critical reviews. Most of which criticized the stereotype of Italian- Americans and real world issues. Children will dive into a world of fantasy while adults pick up on crude jokes regarding race and gangs. 

Familiar stars such as Will Smith, Angelina Jolie, and Robert De Niro are fun and comical to hear voicing the characters. Music production and number scores feature funky songs such as “Three Little Birds” and “Car Wash.” 

The plot contrasts all of DreamWorks' other movies. Oscar pays his debt to his manager, but at the wonderful and horrible cost of fame, lies, and fortune. We definitely feel the fish’s struggle between right and wrong in this story. 

Racking up tons of nominations for Best Animated film, it won the Artios Award for Outstanding Achievement in Animated Voice- Over Feature Casting. Smith triumphed by bringing home the Nickelodeon Kids Choice Award for Favorite Voice from an Animated Movie. 

If you enjoy culture jabs and jokes, Shark Tales offers plenty of it. Adults will find themselves giggling at the crude humor as there’s tons of jokes set aside just for children, as well. 


9. Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005)

Classically adored Wallace and Gromit find themselves in the midst of a crisis. When Wallace’s “Bun-Vac 6000” and “Mind Manipulation-O-Matic” backfires, he is transformed into the beastly Were-Rabbit. 

Claymation combined with stop-motion animation brings this story to life. It did quite well amongst critics and fans. Wallace and Gromit brought home DreamWorks The Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. Annie Awards gave it 10 trophies, praising its production design and animation effects and design. 

Plot and storyboarding are portrayed wonderfully without getting too off topic. The concept of the dog and man duo creating inventions to stop the rabbits from consuming garden vegetables is genius. At first it seems a bit too simple and humdrum, but the producers quickly add in chaos and adventure. 

Clay animation is not done often anymore, so the film is one of the few stop motion productions of its kind. Older fans easily recognize the references from King Kong to Hammer Horrors slipped in sneakily. 

Children take awe in the hilarious mutant bunnies and creepy Were-Rabbit. Critically acclaimed actress Helena Bonham Carter is a familiar voice for new viewers who know her as Bellatrix from The Harry Potter franchise. 

Nonstop adventure and surprises jump out at every corner keeping it lively and eccentric. Recent films take inspiration from its visual whim and claymation production to create similar films. 

Wallace and Gromit remain fresh, original, and wildly successful for DreamWorks. It’s a wonderful nostalgic throwback for older and younger adults. 


8. Mr. Peabody and Sherman (2014)

Talking dogs seem to be a go-to for a myriad of cinematic productions. Who in their right mind does not enjoy watching a dog talk to humans? Mr. Peabody is a highly intelligent canine who lives with his adopted son, Sherman. When Sherman uses Peabody's time machine sending them on a journey into the historical past. 

Critic reviews evened out based on the story's content. It received positive reviews for its interesting plot and shiny animation. The characters leap further into the world of visual effects allowing them to design striking, bright colored scenes. 

As the two main characters and classmate Penny venture into the past, viewers excitedly greet famous historical figures. King Tut, George Washington, and Leonardo da Vinci are raised from the dead. It’s a neat and original idea that transports all ages to Egypt and the old Renaissance era. 

Nominations regarding its animation and character design lived up to its standards. The film is a fun and witty 3D experience that balances enjoyment for children and adults. 


7. The Croods (2013)

In a time where prehistoric animals ruled and dinosaurs stomped on the Earth, we meet the family of cavemen known as the Croods. Prehistoric times set the tone in this awesome DreamWorks production. After an earthquake destroys their cave, they capture a human who promises to lead them to a safe, new home. 

Emma Stone, Nicolas Cage, and Ryan Reynolds are the exciting voices behind our cave dwellers. It became a box office success by earning $587.2 million with a budget of $135 million. Amusing and droll humor drive the movie. 

Grug and Ugga along with their children Eep, Thunk, and Sandy face major conflicts. Their family issues are engaging and relatable for adults. Simple comedy entertains children through the entirety of the flick. There is always a new adventure and land being explored which keeps it super interesting. 

Winning three Annie Awards for its outstanding character animation, design, and production, The Croods funky and 3D characters prove success. It’s a heartwarming coming of age story enticing to teenagers and their parents. 

Invigorating and silly prehistoric animals push the limits of animation development. Characters are carefully and beautifully sequenced and cartoon composition is highly applauded. 


6. Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (2008)

Behold our mighty zoo animals! Alex, Marty, Gloria, and Melman return with a new conflict in the second film of the franchise. The gang crash lands in the heart of Africa where they come across animals of their species. Enemies and turmoil threaten the African preserve and it's up to Alex and his chums to restore the peace. 

Escape 2 Africa was considered an improvement from critics compared to its forerunner. Animation and character quality strongly take the reins for the movie's success. With times always changing, comedy is a key ingredient to keep up with new generations. 

The film does well considering it racks in an astronomical $603.9 million on a mere $150 million budget. Offering an array of new and cheeky characters, the flick is filled with hilarious surprises and lively action twists. 

Voice acting led by Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, and Jada Smith is a large part of the reason fans return to watch it. The plot does lack originality, but the underlying moral of the story is sweet and lovable. Alex faces a crisis when he is banished, causing his lion parents to re-evaluate their opinions of him. 

DreamWorks throws in enemies, love dilemmas, and even strands humans on the wild African planes. The movie has tons of thrills and laughs leaving no time for monotonous clips. Its light-hearted nature and ditzy characters won it the Nickelodeon Kids Choice Award for Favorite Animated Film. 


5. Mega mind (2010)

 Mad scientists, aliens, deceptions, and heroes- what a whirlwind of a movie! Mega mind is loaded with hidden gems and shocking surprises. In his pursuit to create a hero to battle, our villain builds up too many lies to keep up with resulting in disaster and deception. 

Mega mind poses a new take in the world of superheroes and villains. The so-called evil fiend tends to lean more towards the dim-witted and clumsy side. The story constantly switches up the characters true colors trusting it’s audience will be kept engaged. 

Glamorous 3D animation style is tweaked and improved to create amazing character and setting visuals. Our big blue- headed star was nominated for 5 Annie Awards thanks to its character design, writing technique, and storyboarding. 

Raw and crude humor is planted in all the right places providing viewers endless laughter. The flick is witty and goofy with splashes of mad sci-fi features. Children adore the flamboyant, colorful world while parents can appreciate some dark-styled comedy. 


4. Madagascar (2005)

I like to move it move it! Do you like to move it move it? Well, turn up the volume if you are! Madagascar is a wildly popular and beloved film by DreamWorks enthusiasts. Quirky zoo animals break out of captivity and find themselves stranded on the island of Madagascar. Friendship and inner peace is put to the test as the animals face extreme changes. 

Madagascar is an adorable, classic film created uniquely by DreamWorks. Although it seemed to have fallen short of critics' approval, it remains highly loved by adults and kids. Extravagant and rowdy characters are conjured up to bring the film alive. 

Well known musical compositions such as: “What a Wonderful World” and “Chariots of Fire” can be identified by the young and old. Nominations in regards to its animation, music, and storyboarding were acknowledged at the Annie Awards. It took the crown for Favorite Animated Movie at the Kids Choice Awards. 

Humor style is good natured and easy flowing. Its computer based animation tends to be limited during some moments, but overall it delivers an imaginative and hilarious watch. Characters possess odd- ball and individualized qualities which clash vibrantly creating an engaging storyline. 

Budgeting the flick at $75 million, it grossed a whopping $556.6 million. The movie offers lots of inner struggles on the basis of friendship and the meaning of life. It definitely provides depth and a simple yet complex feel to its plot. 


3. Shrek 2 (2004)

After its predecessor “Shrek” was deemed highly victorious, producers were excited to create its sequel. Shrek 2 ventures to Far Far Away where our smelly ogre must encounter Fiona's parents. King Harold and Shrek butt heads and an unlikely turn of events transforms our cast into their opposite beings. 

  Shrek 2 roared into theaters with high expectations. It collected $935.2 million worldwide and was the largest opening animated movie for 2004. DreamWorks was ecstatic when Shrek 2 was announced its highest grossing film to be released. 

New and old cast members hide behind the screen to deliver their wonderfully known voices. Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz, Eddie Murphy, and Antonio Banderas carry half the film's success on their backs. 

Animation style is super customized with its visual design. The characters and setting are unique from other DreamWorks films as major animation advancement allows for new production. 

Shrek 2 fills viewers' ears with an awesome soundtrack filled with well known musical numbers. “Accidentally In Love” won the Most Performed Song from a Film at the BMI Film and TV Awards. People’s Choice Awards gave the film 5 trophies in respects to it being a favorite for its actors, comedy, and overall performance. 

Let’s not leave out the most important part of the movie: the transformation of Shrek and Fiona into humans. Totally taken by surprise, returning fans were blown away to see the dirty, green ogre undergo a spell turning him into an attractive man. Donkey gets an upgrade as a stallion, as well. 

Shrek is praised for its dark and dry humor. The ogre is unapologetically confident in who he is and takes no mercy on his sly jokes. Eddie Murphy makes a perfect Donkey, morphing the simple character into the wholesome steed fans adore. Its action is new and exciting, setting no boundary to what will happen next. 


2. How To Train Your Dragon (2010)

Ravenous Vikings and Spectacular Dragons battle ferociously in this critically acclaimed action fantasy flick. In the village of Berk, young Hiccup dreams of earning the title of Dragon Slayer like his peers. One night he gets a chance at murdering an injured dragon, but fails to do so. Hiccup and wounded monster “Toothless” befriend one another creating uproar amongst the Vikings. 

Bringing in $500 million worldwide, How To Train Your Dragon became a commercial success. It has high ratings in reference to its music score, 3D properties, scripting, and voice acting. 

The movie displays a wide range of depth in terms of its aesthetic appeal to emotional boundaries. Thrilling sequences and action patterns smear the screen creating non-stop excitement. Children easily fall in love with little Toothsome as they can relate to his childlike personality. 

Soaring and plummeting its way into the audience's hearts, the plot is dark and heavy. Its richness in visual texture and character growth balance out its emotional concept. 

Initially nominated for 14 Annie Awards, it proudly flew away with 10, speaking true to its fame amongst crowds. The film also won a Critics Choice Movie Award in addition to a Golden Globe Award. 

DreamWorks went on to create a series based on the movie appealing to young fans everywhere. A second and third film released in 2014 and 2019. Amazingly, it set records as the companies highest grossing film in American and Canadian box offices next to the Shrek films. 


1. Shrek (2001)

Come on now, is it really a shock that Shrek takes the golden throne as the best DreamWorks movie? Swamp crawling Shreks simple ogre life is stirred up when fairy tale creatures arrive on his property, banished by King Farquad. Shrek agrees to bring Princess Fiona back to Farquad in exchange for his swamp back. 

Possibly DreamWorks’ number one movie of all time, Shrek allows audiences to step into the world of fantasy and whimsicality. Winning the first ever Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, it was recognized at the Golden Globe Awards for Best Motion Picture. 

What really took the whole cake was the terribly hilarious jokes and puns. Shrek will leave your stomach in pain from laughing. Geared towards kiddos, adults find immense pleasure in its seemingly grown up remarks and references. 

Visually stunning design sends movie goers wandering across fields and hills of greenery. I’m Farquads Kingdom, you feel like you’re actually walking alongside Shrek and Donkey. Not to mention the famous dragon scene taking place at a run down castle surrounded by fiery lava. 

Constant action and movie depth occur wasting no time for useless clips. Shrek rocketed voice actors Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, and Cameron Diaz into the atmosphere. They become beloved characters for adults and children in the world of animation. 

It received praise by harsh critics for its soundtrack, writing, animation, performance, and humor. To this day, Shrek is still running on current television channels, happily clicked on by adoring fans. 


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