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20 Inspiring Kids Movies That Your Kids Will Love to Watch This Weekend

20 Inspiring Kids Movies That Your Kids Will Love to Watch This Weekend

Joseph Campbell, author of The Hero with a Thousand Faces, found that all stories consist of a common structural element found universally in myths, fairy tales, dreams, and movies. They are collectively known as The Hero’s Journey. [1] It demonstrates that every story has a different lesson; and in every journey there’s a hero — you are the hero in your own life and in your own journey.

As a parent, we should find those movies and explain the lessons to our children. These life lessons will inspire children to change the world. Let’s see how movies deal with childlike universal questions and bring us powerful life lessons.

Let us now take a look at 20 movies you should watch with your children and the life lessons they provide us.

1. How to Train Your Dragon: Embrace differences, be who you are.

    Hiccup is a misfit in a Norse village where fighting dragons is a way of life. He is tossed into dragon-fighting school by his father (the village chief), yet because of his progressive mindset, he befriends an injured dragon named Toothless.

    This movie demonstrates that we should encourage our children to be who they are, not who the world (or we) want them to be. This is a difficult one for all parents, to include myself.

    2. The Lego Movie: Everyone is ordinary before they become extraordinary.

      An ordinary Lego figurine (Emmet) finds himself mistakenly identified as the Special, an extraordinary Lego destined to save the world. Hilariously unprepared, Emmet turns into an unlikely hero.

      In all seriousness, this movie demonstrates the importance of being different. Stop trying to be like everyone else just to fit in. Strive to be different and embrace who you really are.

      3. The Lion King: Your painful experiences will help you grow and shine.

        Simba is heir to the throne, yet forced to leave his family after his evil uncle Scar kills Simba’s father Mufasa. Simba returns to his homeland as an adult and faces his uncle (with the help of his friends).

        The Lion King demonstrates the importance of learning from the past and the fact that growth can be scary. In the words of Mark Twain,

        “I’ve had many worries in my life. Most of which have never happened.”

        4. Toy Story: Teamwork is important, don’t fight alone.

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          When a Buzz Lightyear (a new toy) arrives on the scene, Woody finds his position as Andy’s favorite toy in jeopardy. When Andy’s family moves, Woody and friends must escape the evil neighbors and reunite with Andy.

          Friendship and teamwork are the keys to success in life. Embrace making new friends as it is always fun to get to know people.

          5. Cars: Winning is temporary, virtue stays.

            Lightning McQueen finds himself lost in an old run-down town of Radiator Springs. He slowly befriends cars in the town who help him in his race at the Piston Cup Championship.

            Without humility, we will fail to use our great power in a responsible way. Cars does a great job demonstrating this important trait. Remember the quote from the movie Spiderman,

            “With great power comes great responsibility.”

            6. Mulan: Fight against the norm if you believe that you’re right.

              Impersonating a man in order to take her ailing fathers spot as he is drafted into the Chinese military; Mulan (accompanied by her dragon) falls in love with a soldier and outsmarts an invasion.

              Mulan shows us the importance of taking control of our own destiny. Write your own story and take control of your own life.

              7. Inside Out: Real happiness comes when you can embrace sadness.

                When an 11-year old girl’s life is turned upside-down due to a move, her emotions come to the rescue. However, this stressful and life-changing event is too much for her emotion Sadness. Sadness and Joy are swept into the far reaches of Riley’s mind – leaving only Anger, Fear, and Disgust in the headquarters of her mind.

                Inside Out demonstrates the importance of allowing ourselves to express sadness and accepting the assistance from others.Sadness is a necessity in life. Understanding this feeling allows us to be more open to others who are experiencing sadness.

                8. Frozen: True love can be found in family.

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                  Anna races to save her kingdom after her sister Elsa causes a harsh winter with an icy spell. Anna must not only save her kingdom, but her sister as well.

                  As a father to a beautiful daughter, this movie was important to me. Frozen shows young girls that they do not need a man to save the day… in fact, the girl can save the day. And you can find true love from your family, from your sisters.

                  9. Moana: Go get your dreams, no matter how hard they seem.

                    In a daring adventure, Moana meets demigod Maui. They sail across the ocean encountering monsters and unbeatable odds; yet, Moana fulfills her destiny and discovers her identify.

                    Yet another movie that holds a special place in my heart. Moana teaches us the importance of following your heart. Time and time again, Moana battles between family expectations and where her heart truly wants to be.

                    10. The Pursuit of Happyness: Try until you succeed, nothing great comes easy.

                      A struggling single father (Chris) is evicted from his apartment with his young son and has nowhere to live. Chris lands an unpaid internship at a prestigious brokerage firm. Chris and his young son endure extreme hardship, yet they do not let life beat them.

                      There are so many important life lessons to take from this film; however, one trait stands out – determination. If you need proof, simply watch the movie… you will not be disappointed.

                      11. Beauty and the Beast: It’s what’s inside that matters, not what’s outside.

                        Belle is drawn to a cold-hearted beast who was placed (along with his servants) under a spell by an enchantress. In a race against time, the spell can only be broken when the beast learns to love and is loved by the beauty (Belle) in return.

                        In Beauty and the Beast, we are presented with an unlikely love story, where a beautiful woman falls in love with an intimidating beast. This movie demonstrates the importance of recognizing the inner beauty in all of us. Look beyond appearance.

                        12. The Wizard of Oz: You’ve always had the potential, you just need to keep trying.

                          After a tornado rips through Kansas, Dorothy (and her dog Toto) are taken away to the magical land of Oz. She (along with her new friends) sets off on a journey to find the wizard in order to find a way home.

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                          In this classic film, Dorothy was seeking a way to return home, yet she had the power to return home the whole time. She just needed to discover it for herself. Look deep within for your power.

                          13. Harry Potter Film Series: Your deepest fear will unleash your greatest potential.

                            On his eleventh birthday, Harry Potter learns who he really is. He discovers he is a wizard and possesses unbelievable magical powers. Summoned to a life of wizardry, he meets new friends and must avenge his parents death by the hands of an evil wizard.

                            Every film in the Harry Potter series demonstrates the importance of facing our fears. No matter how scared it may seem, we must learn to confront our fear.

                            14. Star Wars Film Series: Learn your strengths and weaknesses and utilize them.

                              Luke Skywalker receives a message from Princess Leia, who has been captured by the evil Darth Vader. He sets off on a journey to rescue her, help the Rebel Alliance against Darth Vader, restore freedom to the galaxy, and discover who he really is.

                              Use the Force! Think of the force as a symbol for the inner power and strength in all of us. Once we learn to tap into the force, we can accomplish anything.

                              15. Remember the Titans: Only by getting through a painful change will you succeed.

                                Set in 1971, a town and high school football team is forced to integrate an all-black school with an all-white school. The all-black school football coach is placed as the towns head football coach. An emotional and powerful movie, one coach is able to bring the team together.

                                This powerful movie demonstrates that we must change in order to succeed. We must change in order to move the world forward.

                                16. Alice in Wonderland: If you can dream it, you will make it. Don’t be afraid to dream big.

                                  Alice spots a white rabbit with a pocket watch. Fascinated by the sight of this unique rabbit, she follows him and falls down a deep hole. She finds herself in a wonderful and spontaneous place called Wonderland (an illogical and fantastical world).

                                  This film teaches us that everything is impossible until it isn’t. Dream it and do it. The queen said,

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                                  “When I was your age, I always did it for an hour a day. Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”

                                  17. The Land Before Time: Love always exists even if those who love you are no longer with you.

                                    A young dinosaur (Littlefoot) finds himself alone after his mother dies fighting a viscous dinosaur. In her dying words, she tells him to find the Great Valley. Along with his new friends, Littlefoot sets off on a journey while being hunted by the same viscous dinosaur who killed his mother.

                                    The Land Before Time demonstrates that, even when someone in your family dies, they are still with you in your heart, and you’ll be brave enough to move forward.

                                    18. The Jungle Book: Be thankful for what you have and you’ll be happy.

                                      Mowgli is an abandoned child raised in the jungle by wolves, where he is threatened by the man-eating tiger Shere Khan. After being forced from his family (the wolves) he sets off on a quest to find the man village. With the assistance of his friends, he is able to brave the perils of the jungle and confront Shere Khan.

                                      In the film, Mowgli doesn’t obsess over the things or life that he does not have. Instead, he appreciates everything around him and uses the environment to his advantage. Cherish what you have and utilize them wisely.

                                      19. Kubo and the Two Strings: You are the editor of your own life, write your own story and edit it often.

                                        Kubo’s journey starts when he accidentally summons evil spirits of his mother’s past. On the run and aided by his friends Monkey and Beetle, Kubo must battle gods and monsters. Aided by a magical instrument, Kubo fights his evil grandfather and discovers the mystery of his deceased father.

                                        We have the power to write our own story. This is evident when Kubo’s mother tells him of how she was supposed to kill his father. However, she fell in love with him and rewrote her story. She chose to be the sole author of her own story.

                                        20. Trolls: Stop looking for happiness because it’s within everyone of us.

                                          After her friends are taken by an invading Bergen, Princess Poppy sets off on a journey to rescue her friends from the Bergen’s. Poppy is accompanied by the overly-cautious troll Branch, where the unlikely duo not only rescue their friends, but fall in love.

                                          Happiness is inside of us all. We can’t purchase it or even eat it… even if trolls taste good! When the following song (lyrics below) is played, my two-year old daughter immediately recognizes the importance of bringing out happiness in those we love. Opening lyrics for the song True Colors:

                                          You with the sad eyes; don’t be discouraged; oh, I realize; it’s hard to take courage; in a world full of people; you can lose sight of it all; and the darkness inside you; can make you feel so small; but I see your true colors; shining through; I see your true colors; and that’s why I love you; so don’t be afraid to let them show…

                                          I hope you’ll enjoy watching this list of inspiring movies with your children. Pick a few to kickstart your movie marathon for this weekend with your kids!

                                          Reference

                                          [1] Michael Wiese Productions: The Writer’s Journey by Christopher Vogler

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                                          Dr. Jamie Schwandt

                                          Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt & Red Team Critical Thinker

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                                          1 The Desire to Be Liked Will End You up Feeling More Rejected 2 Why a Life Without Pain Is the Guarantee to True Suffering 3 How to Increase Your Self Awareness to Be Much More Successful 4 How to Do Meditation at Home to Calm Your Anxious Mind 5 How to Handle Rejection and Overcome the Fear of Being Rejected

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                                          Last Updated on February 28, 2019

                                          The Desire to Be Liked Will End You up Feeling More Rejected

                                          The Desire to Be Liked Will End You up Feeling More Rejected

                                          Admit it, you feel good when other people think you’re nice. Maybe you were complimented by a stranger saying that you had a nice outfit. You felt good about yourself and you were happy for the rest of the day.

                                            We all like to feel liked, whether by a stranger or a loved one. It makes you feel valued and that feeling can be addictive. But when the high wears off and you no longer have validation that someone thinks you’re a good, sweet person, you may feel insecure and lacking. While wanting others to like you isn’t in itself a bad thing, it can be like a disease when you feel that you constantly need to be liked by others.

                                            Humans are wired to want to be liked.

                                            It’s human nature to seek approval from others. In ancient times, we needed acceptance to survive. Humans are social animals and we need to bond with others and form a community to survive. If we are not liked by others, we will be left out.

                                            Babies are born to be cute and be liked by adults.

                                              The large rounded head, big forehead, large eyes, chubby cheeks, and a rounded body. Babies can’t survive without an adult taking care of them. It’s vital for adults to find babies lovely to pay attention to them and divert energy towards them.[1]

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                                              Recognitions have always been given by others.

                                                From the time you were a child, whether at school or at home, you have been receiving recognition from external parties. For instance, you received grades from teachers, and if you wanted something, you needed approval from your parents. We’ve learned to get what we want by catering to other people’s expectations. Maybe you wanted to get a higher grade in art so you’d be more attentive in art classes than others to impress your teacher. Your teacher would have a generally good impression on you and would likely to give you a higher grade.

                                                When you grow up, it’s no different. Perhaps you are desperate to get your work done so you do things that your manager would approve. Or maybe you try to impress your date by doing things they like but you don’t really like.

                                                Facebook and Instagram have only made things worse. People posting their photos and sharing about their life on Instagram just to feels so good to get more likes and attention.

                                                Being liked becomes essential to reaching desires.

                                                  We start to get hyper focused on how others see us, and it’s easy to imagine having the spotlight on you at all time. People see you and they take an interest in you. This feels good. In turn, you start doing more things that bring you more attention. It’s all positive until you do something they don’t like and you receive criticism. When this happens, you spiral because you’ve lost the feeling of acceptance.

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                                                  But the reality is this is all just perception. Humans, as a species, are selfish. We are all just looking at ourselves; we only perceive others are giving us their focus. Even for those who please others are actually focusing on making themselves feel good. It’s like an optical illusion for your ego.

                                                    The desire to be liked is an endless chase.

                                                      Aiming to please others in order to feel better will exhaust you because you can never catch up with others’ expectation.

                                                      The ideal image will always change.

                                                      It used to be ideal to have a fair weight, a little bit fat was totally acceptable. Then it’s ideal to be very slim. Recently we’ve seen “dad-bods” getting some positive attention. But this is already quickly changing. In fact, a recent article from Men’s Health asked 100 women if they would date a guy who had a dad-bod, about 50% of women claimed to not care either way, only 15% exclusively date men with a “dad bod”.[2]

                                                      People’s expectations on you can be wrong.

                                                      Most people put their expectations on others based on what’s right in the social norms, yet the social norms are created by humans in which 80% of them are just ordinary people according to the 80/20 rules.[3]

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                                                      Think about it, every day, from the time you wake up to the time you go to sleep, you filter what you believe to be truth. If someone compliments you, you take it and add it to an idea of what the best version of yourself is. When someone criticizes you, even in a destructive way, you might accept it altogether, or add it to a list of things you’re insecure about. When you absorb the wrong opinion from others, you will either sabotage your self-esteem or overestimate yourself by accepting all the good compliments and stop growing; or accepting all the destructive criticisms and sabotage your own self-esteem and happiness.

                                                      Others’ desires are not the same as yours.

                                                        If you live your life as one long effort of trying to please other people, you will never be happy. You’re always going to rely on others to make you feel worth living. This leads to total confusion when it comes to your personal goals; when there’s no external recognition, you don’t know what to live for.

                                                        The only person to please is yourself.

                                                          Think of others’ approval as fuel and think of yourself as a car. When that fuel runs out, you can’t function. This is not a healthy mindset.

                                                          In reality, we’re human and we can create our own fuel. You can feel good based on how much you like yourself. When you do things to make you like yourself more, you can start to see a big change in your opinion. For example, if being complimented by others made you feel good and accepted, look in the mirror and compliment yourself. Say what you wish others would say about you.

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                                                          Internal approval takes practice, but it’s worth the effort. You have to re-train your own mind. Think of the dog who knows there is food when the bell rings, the reflex is hard wired into the dog.[4] We need our own triggers to reinforce the habit of internal approval too. Recognize yourself every day instead of waiting for people to do it for you, check out in this article the steps to take to recognize your own achievements and gain empowerment: Don’t Wait for People to Praise You. Do It Yourself Every Single Day

                                                          Notice that when you start to focus on yourself and what to do to make yourself happy, others may criticize you. Since you’ve stopped trying to please others to meet their expectations, they may judge you for what you do. Be critical about what they say about you. They aren’t always right but so are you. Everyone has blind spots. Let go of biased and subjective comments but be humble and open to useful advice that will improve you.

                                                          Remember that you are worth it, every day. It will take time to stop relying on others to make you feel important and worth something, but the sooner you start trying, the happier and healthier you will be.

                                                          Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via unsplash.com

                                                          Reference

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