You know those movies. The ones that take you on a long and winding emotional journey and then after an hour and a half of being completely invested in the characters, the film leaves you feeling uplifted, encouraged, hopeful, and with a full heart. These are feel-good movies and they come in many forms. They can be anything from a story of young glee club competitors finding their voice and their place in the world, to the story of a young clown fish separated from his father who learns about adventure and bravery. The movies on this list are the best of the best in feel-good movies:
1. Pitch Perfect
This surprise hit of 2012 about an all-girls a cappella singing group took everyone by surprise. Men and women alike have found themselves rooting for the Bellas and it is difficult to not get the chills during the final performances in the movie. We dare you to not get up and dance, or at least tap your foot.
2. We Bought a Zoo
Emotional and moving, this film about a Southern California father moving his family to the countryside to re-open a struggling zoo will leave you feeling uplifted and maybe even wanting to buy a lion.
3. The Breakfast Club
You don’t have to be young and in the 80’s to appreciate watching this movie. Whether you were the nerd, the jock, the criminal, the princess or the basket case growing up you can relate with this timeless coming-of-age story. We’ve probably seen it 20 times and it never gets old.
4. The Sound of Music
When a musical movie made 50 years ago stands the test of time the way that The Sound of Music has you can’t help but watch it over and over again.
5. 500 Days of Summer
This offbeat romantic comedy released in 2009 surprisingly grossed $32 million, mostly because it was a unique twist on the traditional rom-com. Spoiler alert: movies don’t always have to have an ending which is wrapped up in a neat little bow to make you feel hopeful and complete.
6. Forrest Gump
“Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know which one you’re gonna get.” Words to live by, right? This movie is at it’s core a cleverly timed story of love that is beloved by audiences and critics alike. It won 6 Academy Awards including Best Picture in 1994, proof that this movie is one of the best feel-good movies of all time.
7. Finding Nemo
You do not have to be a child to appreciate this amazing Disney/Pixar animated story of adventure, struggle, bravery, and love. We almost can’t wait until 2016 for “Finding Dory” to come out!
8. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
Oh John Hughes….we love you. Leave it to a young Matthew Broderick to teach us that life moves pretty fast, and if you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it. This movie is pure fun.
9. It’s a Wonderful Life
We all watch this one during the holidays but let’s get crazy and watch it on a random Wednesday night. It is such a classic and reminds us to be thankful of what life has handed us.
10. The Wizard of Oz
It’s shocking that this movie was made in 1939 and yet our children still are amazed by the wonder of it all. It is such a classic movie that teaches us about bravery, friendship and the power of magic.
Who would have thought that the relationship between a garbage collecting earth robot and a sleek and dangerous reconnaissance robot could create such a beautiful love story. This clever family movie is a must-see.
12. The Shawshank Redemption
There is a reason why this film is on nearly everyone’s Top 5 favorite movie list. The heart wrenching story of a wrongly-imprisoned man finding redemption is one of the best movies ever made.
13. The Blind Side
We love movies based on a true story, and this one based on the life of a homeless and traumatized Michael Ohr who became an All American football player and first round NFL draft pick with the help of a loving woman and her family, is one of the best. We dare you to watch this and keep a dry eye.
14. Field of Dreams
Sometimes you just have to have a little faith. And if you are an Iowa corn farmer and you hear voices telling you to build a baseball diamond in your fields, you have to believe that there is a reason for the voices whispering “if you build it, he will come”.
15. Jerry Maguire
We could all relate to Jerry Macguire when he had a moral epiphany and went a little nuts at his job at an elite sports agency. When he goes out on his own we are led in an uplifting story of struggle, growth, friendship and love.
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