Trolls World Tour and the original Trolls –In 2016, there was no escaping “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” — Justin Timberlake’s infectious Oscar-nominated and Grammy-winning Trolls theme song. And it’s a great song indeed. However, my kids and I actually prefer the soundtrack to Trolls World Tour (now at the Box and Redbox On Demand), because it includes not only crowd-pleasers from almost every major genre, but also a few sweet originals including “The Other Side” and “Perfect for Me.” All of the songs also make my kids laugh when they remember the (funny) parts of the movie that they were from.
The Lego Movie and The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part – Similar to what I was saying about Trolls vs. Trolls World Tour, no track in the Lego Movie sequel matched the popularity of the original film’s Oscar-nominated “Everything is Awesome” theme song. However, I would argue that the sequel has a better soundtrack as a whole between the “Everything is Awesome” remix, “The Catchy Song,” “Super Cool,” the amazing “Not Evil” by Tiffany Haddish (sung as her character, Queen Watevra Wa’Nabi), and the weirdly moving “Everything’s Not Awesome” montage sung by the entire cast.
Sing – This is one of those animated films that my husband and I watched reluctantly with our kids and ended up loving. We were surprised by its mix of popular covers (from “My Way” to “I’m Still Standing” to “Shake It Off”) and outstanding originals (with “Faith” by Ariana Grande and Stevie Wonder being the best). It’s nearly two hours of non-stop music with a stellar voice cast (Scarlett Johansson, Reese Witherspoon, Taron Egerton, Matthew McConaughey) and a touching plot.
Frozen II – I love this soundtrack so much that I forced myself to rank its songs when the movie hit the Box earlier this year. It was like making me pick between my kids, I tell you. But seriously, there’s something for all types of music lovers in this movie – from ’80s love songs, to silly ditties, to heart-wrenching ballads, to inspiring and empowering themes, to lullabies.
Leap! – If you have anyone in your family who loves dancing — or ballet, specifically — and you have somehow not seen this movie yet, stop what you’re doing and make sure to watch it. It’s a beautiful, charming story set in the late 1800s about a poor orphan girl who gets a shot at auditioning for the Paris Opera Ballet. On top of its wonderful voice cast (Elle Fanning, Kate McKinnon, Carly Rae Jepsen, Mel Brooks), it has a few standout songs on its soundtrack that have wonderful messages and have been played on heavy rotation in our house ever since my 5-year-old daughter fell in love with this film: “Rainbow” by Liz Huett and “Confident” by Demi Lovato.