In the late ‘90s, it was hard to discern why exactly the golden renaissance of Disney, going so strong in 1994 with The Lion King, dissipated so suddenly. With the benefit of hindsight, the biggest reason was the release of the first feature-length computer-animated movie in 1995, Pixar’s Toy Story.
In less than a decade, computer-animated movies had become so advanced and such a box office draw, even Disney shuttered their hand-drawn animation studio down in 2004 and switched to 100% computer-animated fare.
As the cost of computer animation has decreased, more and more computer-animated movies have flooded movie theatres, with fewer being any good, but great ones still exist. Some even outshine that first Pixar feature from 21 years ago. These are the best examples of what modern animation can achieve.