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Daily Debate: What Animated Movie has the Biggest Plot Hole?

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We get it, not every animated film is perfect and there’s only so much time to tell the story. However, some movies are much better than others at developing a clear, robust plot. While some have a major plot holes that take away from fully enjoying the film.

Some films cover all their bases, making sure that the viewers understand all aspects of how the characters get from point A to point B. However, some animated films fail miserably at this. Whether its because they assume their target demographic is a younger audience who won’t notice, lazy storytelling, or simply ignorance, some films leave the audience scratching their heads thinking, “Huh?

So that leads us to today’s Daily Debate:

What animated movie has the biggest plot hole?

Let us know in the comments below or head on over to our Facebook page to join the discussion there!

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About Morgan Stradling

Morgan is a native of Arizona and is a desert rat who loves the heat–she doesn’t even turn on the AC in her car in the middle of the summer! She loves big eyeliner, Survivor, Lady Gaga, and, of course, animated films. She has her MBA in Marketing from ASU and now works as a Product Manager for a tech company. Follow her on Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

  • Angelo Thomas

    I like Monsters University, but the movie itself is kind of a giant plot hole since it’s said in Monsters, Inc. that Mike and Sully met in fourth grade.

    • I don’t consider that a big one. There’s something funny about two longtime friends being able to say to each other “You’ve been jealous of my good looks before you even met me.”

    • Let’s just say the producers screwed up.

      • On the contrary, they tried for a ridiculously long time to make the story work with a grade-school introduction for Mike and Sully.

        • Manuel Orozco

          Some of us wanted it to happen but I’m okay with what we got in the end.

    • Manuel Orozco

      True but at least it was good to have Billy Crystal and John Goodman back voicing them.

  • I was going to say Beauty and the Beast with how the timeline is a little confusing, but we all know about the time vortex in the west wing that fixes any plot hole that movie may have.

  • Based on the image you used, I’m assuming it’s referring to the plot hole of “Why didn’t Ariel just write down something for Prince Eric to read?”

    • Ruise

      Let’s just pretend they have different written languages. xD

      • Ruise

        Also Prince Eric is like REALLY bad at Pictionary.

      • Jeff

        A bit hard to believe when everyone in the movie is fluent with speaking the same language, and Ariel also signed her name in English on Ursula’s contract.

    • DoctorCuF

      Why would she know how to write? She lives underwater. Paper would get soggy.
      There’s no evidence she can read either.

      • She signed a contract to Ursula.

        • DoctorCuF

          Lots of people who can’t read or write can sign their name.
          We know she sure didn’t read the contract.
          If you mean the contract didn’t get soggy and the ink didn’t wash out of the pen, I say: magic.

          • Manuel Orozco

            If i were Ariel i would have read the contract first

  • JMB

    Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children has a pretty big one. The film revolves around this incurable disease that surfaced after the storyline of the game the movie serves as a sequel to. The main protagonist is one of the victims of the disease and things have gotten so bad for him and so many others that he’s already given up trying to find a cure for it before the movie’s story even began.

    Eventually, amidst a new conflict tied to that mysterious disease, he gets a little help from someone beyond the grave to heal him so he can take on the main antagonist, which just raises the question as to why he and all the other people that fell victim to this illness couldn’t be saved much earlier, especially since the film beats it into the audience’s head that the presence of this spirit is still felt and is very much aware of everything that’s going on.

  • Rachel Wagner

    For me how does the ships defy physics in Treasure Planet. That’s a pretty big plot hole. Also how come there are two random anthropomorphic characters in Pinocchio and nowhere else?

  • Ezra

    Monsters University, Cars 2 and Cars 3, Planes, Planes: Fire & Rescue, Frozen, Brave, Wreck It Ralph, Zootopia, Inside Out, and Big Hero 6 because they’re colorful and funny and have great visuals and they all have great stories and plots!

  • Ezra

    The Angry Birds Movie and The Emoji Movie!

  • Ezra

    DreamWorks’ Turbo, Home, and Trolls!

  • Ezra

    Ice Age: Collision Course and Shrek Forever After!

  • In the first Toy Story movie, why does Buzz even stands still just like all of the other toys when Andy or some other human comes by if he truly believes that he is a legitimate ‘Space Ranger’ and not a toy!? Like, seriously!!

    • Ruise

      The whole “humans can’t know that literally all toys are sapient” thing doesn’t make sense to begin with, it’s actually what puts me off the entire Toy Stories franchise. They don’t want human rights! They just want to be played with by children! It’s super weird!

  • Manuel Orozco

    I’ll have to go with Moana because I love it. One plot hole I can address is their is no farther explanation of the ocean choosing Moana to bring back the heart!

    • I think the ocean chose Moana because it ‘saw’ her save the turtle in the beginning, so knew she’d have the kindness and compassion to see the ‘lava monster’ for who she really was? Otherwise why bother having the turtle scene.

      • Manuel Orozco

        Very good point there

  • There’s kind of a big one at the end of Mr. Peabody & Sherman that’s pretty hard to explain away. Basically there’s a duplicate of Sherman in one timeline where the first Sherman had left Penny in Ancient Egypt. The other Penny is there, but they never address or retrieve the first one. So unless they somehow totally erased that from having happened there’s a version of her that’s stuck there until King Tut dies.

    • Manuel Orozco

      I don’t remember that

  • Fadi Antwan

    The biggest plot hole is obviously Tarzan having an American accent when he was taught English by British people!

    • Cecelia

      Speaking of accents–why is Lumiere the only character (not including the really minor ones) with a French accent? They’re FRENCH.

      • Fadi Antwan

        He’s a real patriot, that Lumiere.

        • Cecelia

          Oh yes. The love he has for his country burns with a fire that can never be extinguished.

    • Ruise

      UM, pretty sure that’s a Gorillan accent.

  • Sebastian

    Every time I watch Rescuers Down Under. I’m reminded of these 3 questions. What happened to the imprisoned animals? Did Cody’s mom find out about him being kidnapped? Why were the early animals (female kangaroo) only a plot device? Every time I so badly want answers to these questions, and I really wanted to see more with Bernard & Bianca being in peril in the outback.

    • Rachel Wagner

      His Mom definitely knows as the sherrif gives her Codys bag so she thinks he’s dead

    • dlizsehshus

      Seriously? these are all common sense questions.

      1. Its possible Cody would have reported it to the authorities. And the animals were rescued.

      2. She thought he was dead. Because Mclish threw his bag in the crocodile river.

      3. Because they are secondary characters. This isn’t a novel its a movie. You only have two plus hours to work with.

  • Chelsea Warner

    I have never seen it, but the whole plot of The Emoji Movie sounds like a big plot hole. Like it revolved around an emoji that had more than one emotion, and he was treated like a freak. However other emojis had different emotions and they were not treated differently. Can somebody fill me in?

    • Manuel Orozco

      I didn’t think of seeing Emoji either

    • Marielle

      The face emojis stuck to one emotion. His big problem is that he panicked and made the wrong face at work (sending the wrong emoji to the text app). After that he was told he wouldn’t work again. That’s why he wanted to fix himself.

      • Chelsea Warner

        Thanks for the explanation.

  • Ok in Disney’s Snow White, when she’s supposed to be in rags in the first scene we saw her, but then when she’s picking flowers she’s suddenly aloud to wear a pretty dress even though The Evil Queen only allows her to wear rags?? I just felt that was a weird plot hole to me as a kid….
    or I’m reading too deep into it…..

    • Manuel Orozco

      Maybe they just changed her dress so her rags won’t get dirty in the grass

    • Jeremiah

      Wow. I never even. Maybe the animals, in addition to a clean team, are dressmakers?

    • dlizsehshus

      I always thought that was for show. In private she makes her wear rags but in public she lets her wear pretty dresses. Have to show the peope she is being nice to her Stepdaughter. Politics baby.

  • Personally I think it’s Frozen. The journey as Hans from good guy to bad guy just doesn’t make sense. It’s clear they changed their mind half way into production about who the bad guy was going to be.
    And I actually think Zootopia has the same problem. Bellwether(the sheep) actually helps Judy and Nick at one point figure out how to solve the case.

    • Manuel Orozco

      Trust me I did get spoiler alerts but I didn’t expect the buildup to the revelations at all. But I think Bellwether was more unscrupulous than Hans. Although I wasn’t ready for her and the lion to go to jail for their actions. Hans role as the surprise antagonist didn’t make sense with the love vs. fear theme unless he represented fear. The marketing prior to Frozen’s release gave me and some of us probably the impression that Duke of Weselton was going to be the main villain behind the plot to turn Arendelle against Elsa.

    • DoctorCuF

      Most of Frozen felt like it was cobbled together at the last minute and pushed out the door.

      • Manuel Orozco

        I find that very hard to believe. But at least the happy ending saved the movie from disaster

      • Manuel Orozco

        But there is only one logical explanation I thought of just now. Because Frozen was given the go by Disney in the wake of Tangled’s success, they seemed in a two year hurry to lure a similar gender neutral audience while Tangled was still fresh on people’s minds.

        • DoctorCuF

          Considering they pretty much scrapped the whole thing and started all over again with less than 2 years to the release date and Jennifer Lee was promoted to Co-Director for the final year of production.

          I’m not sure anyone knew what the movie was going to look like until they ran out of time and had to finish just finish it.

          • Manuel Orozco

            True about Jennifer Lee and that’s how I ended up getting excited about Frozen in the first place. But no matter what went wrong, people love the royal sisters of Arendelle and the rest is Disney history.

    • Ruise

      This I agree with you on, I get that they wanted their villainous reveals to be shocking, but…BUT…those were some sharp heel turns. (I actually like the movies better that way though.)

      • Manuel Orozco

        Sharp heel turns indeed. Bellwhether’s reveal and climatic confrontation felt more rushed

    • dlizsehshus

      I disagree 100% on Frozen.

      Plenty of people like Hans in the real world. For example look at Ted Bundy. On the outside people thought he was a handsome, nice, intelligent, and charming guy. But behind closed doors he coldly murdered over 30 people mostly women for years. He got away with it for so long because people never suspected him.

      So Hans to me made sense. Never take anyone at face value is the lesson there.

      To me he’s the most realistic Disney Villain since Gaston.

      • Manuel Orozco

        Murdered 30 people for years? Please

        • dlizsehshus

          Wikipedia look it up.

          • Manuel Orozco

            No thanks

          • dlizsehshus

            Then don’t question it if you don’t want to find out the facts for yourself.

    • pretto

      The difference between the two villains is that Bellwether is the evil brains behind the entire mystery and plot of the movie. Hans has zero impact on the story. He’s just an opportunist who only decides to take advantage of the ElsaAnna drama very late in the film. He reveals himself to be a bit of a cad, but it’s not a big plot hole because as everybody kept telling Anna, she barely knew the guy in the first place.

      • I guess you could say my issues with these films are more character development issues than plot holes. More so with Frozen.

        Makes me wonder if Frozen could have worked without Hans being a murderous bad guy. Still have him believe that Elsa was turning evil but have drama where Anna thinks Elsa is still good etc. Anna ends up turning away from Hans and sacrifices herself to save Elsa. Just no big “I want to kill you!” Hans running around.

  • Jeremiah

    When it comes to plotholes, t’s no secret Frozen is pretty much the Harry Potter of animated movies. Brilliant, dazzling, and chock full of stuff that makes zero sense. Did the trolls just kidnap Christoph from the humans? Why didn’t the soothsayer troll just immediately tell the King and Queen, “No, don’t lock her up! That’s not what I meant. Wtf.” And so on and so forth.

    • Ruise

      The answer to all of your troll-related questions is that the trolls are terrible and a stain on an otherwise sparkling and pristine film.

      • Jeremiah

        No one else knew why the servants (I assume) were keeping the gates shut, so what made them do it? The princess who never left her room? Also, suppose Elsa commanded the servants through the door, despite seeming too insecure to do that. Still, Anna is a princess too. She has no idea why the heck the gates are supposed to be shut. Why doesn’t she just order them open? Or if not permanently open, out of respect for sister, at least for a second to let her out of what is essentially a big prison? Anyhoo, nope. Not just the trolls, my dear sir.

        • dlizsehshus

          Because the family ordered it. They are the rulers, they could do what ever they want. People tell Donald Trump to quit saying racist rants. He still does it anyway. Its called Power.

      • pretto

        Not terrible so much as ignorant. They definitely frightened the king more than they should have about Elsa’s situation.

    • dlizsehshus

      Obviously no, since Christoph is still collecting Ice when he’s an adult.

      Why would he do that? When he just told the King and Queen her magic is dangerous. Which is why they locked her up in the first place.

      Did you even watch the movie?

  • Marielle

    Brave sadly falls apart for me because all she had to do was tell her dad “mom changed into a bear” and then the mom would have been able to prove it with her behavior.

    • DoctorCuF

      I always thought the plot would work better if she managed to reform Mor’du and turn him back into a person.
      Seriously, Merida will die a spinster with those chumps being her only marriage choices.

      • Manuel Orozco

        I don’t if I agree with you on that. I bet Pixar wanted to keep the mother daughter emotional core steady and not let Merida get into royal obligations for a while.

        • DoctorCuF

          My assumption was they tried to do both and found it made the movie unfocused.
          If you think about it, it means instead of being made to marry one of the ridiculous suitors, she would have been rescuing the prince.

          Instead the Mor’du plot feels unnecessarily over elaborate just to make her stitch up a tapestry. Was it the tapestry that actually fixed things or was it her relationship with her mother? If not, why did we GET the whole Mor’du story?

          I’m still confused and I’ve seen the movie several times.

          • Manuel Orozco

            I believe the tapestry was to symbol family

          • DoctorCuF

            True, but after she fixes the tapestry, her mother doesn’t change back.
            Her mother only turns human after Merida breaks down and shows her love for her mother.

          • Manuel Orozco

            Well i didn’t get the concept 100% either. Brave just would have been better if Brenda Chapman remained onboard as director. It would have been complete history in the making

          • DoctorCuF

            I don’t play that game. I don’t think there is any indication that it would have been better or worse under another director.

          • Manuel Orozco

            Whatever you say

  • In How to Train Your Dragon, why do the imprisoned dragons on Berk suddenly trust the kids at the end? Any time the door was opened for them to get out before, they were pretty aggressive, so what exactly did Hiccup do to convince them otherwise?

  • Amy Atherton

    Madagascar 3 takes it for me. A giraffe, a hippo, a lion and a zebra decide to go to Monte Carlo from Africa (apparently Tanzania)… somehow cross the Northern African deserts and SWIM across the Mediterranean Sea to arrive in said destination as if it was nothing. It is VERY hard to take their struggle to get back to New York seriously without disregarding the ridiculous scene that precedes the rest of the film… not that much of what follows makes sense either!

  • Cecelia

    How about Anastasia? You’re telling me that the Russian Revolution happened because a mystic/holy man suddenly stopped being friendly with the Czarina and that the youngest daughter was separated from her family, got amnesia and the Soviets weren’t looking for her?? I don’t buy it.

  • Ernesto Chacon

    Don’t know if this is considered a plot hole or even if it’s considered relevant in the film cause its small, unless if I have to rewatch it again for better understanding. But personally it’s the Shadow Man’s grudge against Daddy Labouff in The Princess and the Frog.