Aside from their heartwarming stories, loveable characters and astounding animation that blew the world’s minds in 1995 when Toy Story hit theaters, Pixar movies are remembered for their catchy tunes and emotional scores.
“Beyond The Sea” topped off Finding Nemo and “If I Didn’t Have You” was a beloved duet from Monsters, Inc. and “You’ve Got A Friend In Me” became the theme song of Toy Story, but in some cases, it was the music that made a scene in these treasured Pixar films.
Merida Rides Away (‘Brave’)
Brave was Pixar’s first — and so far, only — princess movie that earned its lead character a spot on Disney’s official princess roster in 2013. As only one of two princesses who do not have a prince, the film follows Merida and her rebellious nature on her journey to learning the true meaning of a mother-daughter relationship.
After days of learning the ins and outs of being a queen, Merida spends her day off her with her horse Angus, riding through the woods and shooting her bow and arrow. But the most memorable part of the montage was the song “Touch The Sky” by Julie Fowlis, that’s lyrics showcase Merida’s inner hopes to break free from her reigns and touch the sky.
Woody Says Goodbye (‘Toy Story 4’)
While Toy Story 4 was a bittersweet conclusion to the Toy Story saga that followed beloved toys and a hilarious spork, it left viewers crying in the theater at the way it ended, and at the notable song choice.
When Woody says goodbye to all of Bonnie’s toys when he chooses to stay with his love Bo Peep, a score called “New Horizons” by Randy Newman plays during this final scene when viewers see Woody. The score was used as a nod to the first time viewers ever saw Woody in the original Toy Story, where it played as Andy played with his cowboy doll.
Bob Is Secretly Super (‘The Incredibles’)
The Incredibles followed retired superhero Bob Par who goes from being a family man with an office job and three kids, to moonlighting as his former hero persona Mr. Incredible, learning in the end just how super his family is.
A memorable montage from the film was paired with a jazzy tune by the name of “Life’s Incredible Again.” The score was written by Michael Giacchino (who most recently contributed scores to Lightyear) and can be heard as Bob goes back and forth from hardworking husband and dad to hardworking superhero training.
Mei Turns Red To See 4*Town (‘Turning Red’)
As if Turning Red didn’t already have it all with a relatable teenage girl who doubles as a fluffy red panda, a group of eclectic friends, and a mother-daughter message for the ages, the film also features a fictional boy band named 4*Town.
When Mei and her friends realize she can use her newfound panda fame to earn enough money to buy 4*Town tickets, the group starts selling photos with the red panda and merch to their classmates to “U Know What’s Up” by 4*Town in this amusing montage.
Jessie’s Backstory (‘Toy Story 2’)
Pixar has always been known for pulling at the heartstrings over inanimate things like cars, robots, lamps, or toys, and if the opening scene from Up or the ending of Toy Story 3 didn’t make you cry, then this Toy Story 2 moment will.
When a sad Jessie finally reveals to Woody her traumatic backstory about her kid named Emily who loved her for years before finally outgrowing her and leaving her in a box on the side of the road, it’s met with the emotional “When She Loved Me” performed by Sarah McLachlan.
Lightning McQueen And Sally Race (‘Cars’)
Cars became one of Pixar’s biggest franchises with three feature films and several shorts, but the original film was where it all started for Lightning McQueen in the beloved little town of Radiator Springs.
In the first film when Lightning and Sally endure in a flirty race out of town, their romantic drive isn’t to the radio, but to a cute score by Randy Newman that was named “McQueen And Sally” after the animated supercouple.
WALL-E And Eve Share A Dance (‘WALL-E’)
The starring robot of WALL-E wasn’t supposed to develop a personality or emotions or any form of sentience, but when the titular character does, he’s faced with the challenge of teaching his new robot friend Eve his mystical ways.
In a combination of a touching and comedic scene, WALL-E plays for Eve his favorite song, “Put On Your Sunday Clothes,” accompanied by a black and white video of dancers, during which WALL-E attempts to teach some steps to Eve.
Héctor Remembers “Remember Me” (‘Coco’)
Coco is filled with musical moments as a film that follows young Miguel on his unexpected journey to the Land of the Dead in hopes of finding his musical idol Ernesto de la Cruz, but ends up learning a devastating secret involving his idol and his family.
When Miguel’s skeleton friend Héctor tells him the story of missing his daughter in the living world, he flashes back to right before he left her, playing his guitar and singing to her an acoustic version of the tearjerker “Remember Me.”
Woody And Buzz Fall With Style (‘Toy Story’)
From the moment Woody meets Buzz on Andy’s bed to teaming up with Sid’s misfit toys to take down their tormenter, Toy Story is full of memorable and nostalgic moments throughout the film that feature its starring toys Woody and Buzz.
But the most iconic scene in the movie was paired with a powerful score by Randy Newman. When Buzz and Woody skyrocket into the air and Buzz pops out his wings, the two fall with style from the sky into Andy’s mom’s van to a song rightfully titled “Infinity and Beyond.”
Carl And Ellie’s Opening Montage (‘Up’)
Up takes viewers on a rollercoaster of emotions as it follows Carl Frederickson on his journey from happy married life with his wife Ellie to a lonesome elderly life to flying across the world with a boy scout and a dog to visit the place he and his late wife always dreamed of going.
But before all that, the movie begins with what’s arguably the saddest montage in film history, following Carl and Ellie’s love storyfrom friends to spouses to buying a home and losing a child, all to the uplifting tune called “Married Life” that fizzled out as the montage comes to its devastating end.