Not every stories are all sunshine and rainbows. Sometimes, they can be dark and cruel as well to reflect our realities. And in most cases for children’s movies, they can be quite tragic. Take these 3 heartbreaking scenes from animated movies for example:

Ellie and Carl’s love story (Up)

A story of love, growth, adventures, and loss. The opening sequence of UP is a brilliant story which can stand by itself. There was no dialogue and the only thing you could hear was an instrumental song playing in the background. Yet it conveyed so many emotions and depth. It was a truly moving piece which showed their many adventures together. From their wedding to the construction of their house to starting a family, and growing old. Ellie and Carl did everything together, faced every problem together. So, when we drew closer to the end of their story, it was devastating.

Even as the movie went on, her absence was still made apparent. As shown in the time lapse, Ellie fixed Carl’s tie every morning. But when she became too weak and eventually passed, Carl stopped wearing them. Who knew such a simple thing could have such an impact.

The Murder of Manny’s Family (Ice Age)

In the start of the movie, Manny the Mammoth was a cold and distant figure who kept to himself. He initially didn’t even want to help Sid return the human baby to his tribe. It wasn’t until Diego revealed himself and claimed to want the same thing that he stepped in. Still, he maintained an emotional distance with the baby and the others. The reason was later revealed in a painting they saw in a cave.

Before the events of the movie, Manny had a wife and child whom he loved dearly. However, they were hunted down by humans. And as depicted in the painting, Manny tried his best to defend his family but they were separated by the hunters. His wife and child were later cornered and murdered.

Although the scene wasn’t particularly violent, the cries of the Mammoths is enough to make the implication gut-wrenching. Even sadder is when the baby touched the images of Manny’s family before they shared a hug.

Dumbo’s reunion with his mother (Dumbo)

When a group of mean boys bullies the young Dumbo for having large ears, his mother, Jumbo, immediately comes to the rescue of her son. However, her defense is seen as a threat and she is cruelly chained up to prevent her from committing another outburst. Dumbo then goes to see his mother and raises his trunk by her window. Her face when she saw it was crushing. She immediately rushed to the window but was sad, unable to reach it due to being chained.

All Jumbo could do was reach her trunk out the window and cradle her little baby.

This scene has many layers. On one hand, as a young audience, you relate to being separated from your mother or parent. But as a parent, you relate to the fear for your child and the need to comfort them despite being tied down yourself. It’s a really sad story which, fortunately, was given a happy resolution.

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