Pete Docter

Director (Monsters Inc., Up, Inside Out, Soul)

Voted for

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs1937David Hand
Paper Moon1973Peter Bogdanovich
It's a Wonderful Life1947Frank Capra
The Station Agent2003Thomas McCarthy
Raiders of the Lost Ark1981Steven Spielberg
My Neighbour Totoro1988Hayao Miyazaki
City Lights1931Charles Chaplin
Dumbo1941Ben Sharpsteen
Casablanca1942Michael Curtiz


Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

1937 USA

Disney’s first feature, and still the best. You can feel Walt’s passion and innovation in every frame. It’s still beautiful, funny, and emotional 85 years later.

Paper Moon

1973 USA

"Paper moon" is like a poem, with each choice in writing, acting, and cinematography carefully and intentionally chosen. And it’s a blast to watch.

It's a Wonderful Life

1947 USA

Makes you glad to be alive.

The Station Agent

2003 USA

I love all of Tom McCarthy's work, but I especially admire the understated, reserved nature of this film and the wonderful relationships.

Raiders of the Lost Ark

1981 USA

This movie is great filmmaking from beginning to end. Great action, great pacing, and characters.

My Neighbour Totoro

1988 Japan

When I first saw this film I figured it’d be all about the Totoros - who are indeed cute and just the right amount of scary - but the real reason to watch is the amazingly well-observed animation of the two kids.

City Lights

1931 USA

The brilliance of this film is that it's both a showcase for great "business" (clowning around) by the amazing Charlie Chaplin, and at the same time a genuinely emotional love story.


1941 USA

There were rumours that Walt Disney never liked Dumbo, because it was done on the cheap compared to his other films. But it delivers like no other on humour, charm, and emotion. Dumbo visiting his mom in prison gets me every time. And it’s always satisfying to see the little guy succeed against all odds.


1942 USA

I've watched this film dozens of times and still catch something new every time. The performances and cinematography are top notch. And I swear, there’s just a sense that everyone in this movie loves being together. It’s a movie to watch if you want to restore your faith in humanity.

Further remarks

One Froggy Evening (1955) and Feed the Kitty (1955)

Okay, this is two films, but they’re each 7 minutes so I’m hoping Sight and Sound might let it slide. Director Chuck Jones and story man Michael Maltese at the top of their game. Top notch story, design, acting, and great animation.

I only get ten?!?

Obviously "favorite films" is a slippery designation, and one that seems to shift depending on how I feel that day. But here’s what showed up for me today.