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25 Inspirational Movie Quotes That Teach You About Life And Death

25 Inspirational Movie Quotes That Teach You About Life And Death

All of us have our favorite film that tackles life and death themes, yet moving observations about our existence can be found in an incredibly wide range of films. Whether a film is comedic or tragic, for kids or adults, audiences are frequently faced with tender, noteworthy views on life and death. Whether they are old favorites or new additions, these movies hold truly pointed and touching observations about life and death.

Be The Change

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    “Sometimes the truth isn’t good enough, sometimes people deserve more. Sometimes people deserve to have their faith rewarded…”
    -Batman, The Dark Knight

    In a film emphasizing doing good because it’s our duty as humans, no other line summarizes the importance of taking initiative quite like this one.

    Seek Your Own Path

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      “This cannot be my destiny!”
      -MewTwo, Pokemon: The First Movie

      Films for children rarely stir your soul, but who doesn’t empathize with a character becoming aware of himself in the very worst of starting places. A movie that challenges kids to go after what they want, MewTwos hatred of his lot in life can stir any viewer.

      Avoid Being A Follower

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        “Who’s the more foolish, the fool or the fool who follows him?”
        -Obi-Wan, Star Wars: A New Hope 

        In the middle of a tense undercover mission, Obi-Wan addresses the other character’s fears head on, reminding each of us to think before we follow others.

        Life Requires Art

        life-is

          “Nothing is more necessary than the unnecessary.”
          -Uncle Eliseo, Life Is Beautiful

          Amid the tragedies of the holocaust, Guido in Life Is Beautiful strives to protect his sons innocence. The film highlights the critical nature of art in everyday life, making the case that the things and people we love are the only reason for living. Never is this more clear than when Uncle Eliseo states our need for art and comedy so concisely.

          Believe In Yourself

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            “Luke: ‘I don’t, I don’t believe it.’ Yoda: ‘That is why you fail.’”
            -Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

            Perhaps no movie character can beat Yoda when it comes to the wise, all-knowing mentor. This simple retort to Luke’s complaint is a poignant underscore to one of the main themes in the Star Wars films: that a strong mind that perseveres can do anything in life.

            Choose Your Destiny

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              “I see now that the circumstances of one’s birth are irrelevant; it is what you do with the gift of life that determines who you are.”
              -MewTwo, Pokemon: The First Movie

              The penultimate line from Pokemon: The First Movie, when the result of a scientific experiment learns our choices determine who we are. Proving that quality films, even ones about Pokemon, can teach us a thing or two about life and death.

              Don’t Take Life Too Seriously

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                “This trial… the whole world… it’s all… show business.”
                -Billy Flynn, Chicago

                Another theme in Chicago rings reminiscent of Shakespeare’s “all the worlds a stage..”. Highlighting the temperance of life, reminds us all to enjoy life while we have it, concentrating less on where we are and more on enjoying the ride.

                Consider The Other Side

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                  [Explaining the death of her parents to Stitch] “It was raining, and they went for a drive. What happened to yours? I hear you cry at night. Do you dream about them? I know that’s why you wreck things, and push me.”
                  -Lilo, Lilo And Stitch

                  Lilo’s unique perspective on the troublesome, chaotic stitch in Lilo And Stitch is a powerful statement on empathy. A quiet, simple moment that teaches us all to remember to walk a mile in another’s shoes.

                  Life Is Easier Said Than Done

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                    “Neo, sooner or later you’re going to realize just as I did that there’s a difference between knowing the path and walking the path.”
                    -Morpheus, The Matrix

                    Another insightful moment from Morpheus, the enlightened leader reminds all of us that falling along the way to success in life is normal.

                    Choose Thoughtfully

                    The-Incredibles

                      “See? Now you respect me, because I’m a threat. That’s the way it works. Turns out there are lots of people, whole countries, that want respect, and will pay through the nose to get it.”
                      -Syndrome, The Incredibles

                      The animated film The Incredibles takes a truly intimidating turn when the evil genius Syndrome flaunts his seemingly endless wealth and new connections. Since Mr. Incredible’s actions influenced Syndrome’s decision to become evil, this moment is a surprisingly powerful reminder that our actions have consequences.

                      Hold To Your Convictions

                      Jack-Skellington

                        “Just because I cannot see it, doesn’t mean I can’t believe it!”
                        -Jack Skellington, The Nightmare Before Christmas

                        In a movie full of quotable scenes, Jack Skellington’s refusal to give up on his passion just because it seems unlikely is inspiring.

                        Moving On Is A Process

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                          “Molly: ‘My daddy doesn’t think she’s in heaven.’ Corrina Washington: ‘Well, that’s probably just because your daddy is so jealous of the angels. He’s so jealous, he can’t even stand to think about those angels who get to play with your mommy all day long. And he’s hurting just like you’re hurting, and you’re going to hurt for a long time. Every day it’ll get a little better, but you’ll always miss your mommy, and that’s okay.’”
                          -Corrina, Corrina

                          In a film that tackles loss in 1950’s America, Corrina’s succinct advice to a young girl missing her deceased mother is truly moving. Reminding us that life and death come with troubling, yet manageable circumstances.

                          Never Give Up

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                            “A real loser is someone who’s so afraid of not winning he doesn’t even try.”
                            -Grandpa, Little Miss Sunshine

                            As Olive grows afraid she won’t win the beauty pageant, Grandpa’s timeless advice will make anyone smile. Ultimately reminding audiences taking risks is important in life, Grandpas words make everyone ready to give it another try.

                            Laugh At Your Troubles

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                              “He gets down to the end of his life, and he looks back and decides that all those years he suffered, Those were the best years of his life, ’cause they made him who he was. All those years he was happy? You know, total waste. Didn’t learn a thing. So, if you sleep until you’re 18… Ah, think of the suffering you’re gonna miss. I mean high school? High school-those are your prime suffering years. You don’t get better suffering than that.”
                              -Frank, Little Miss Sunshine

                              As struggling teen Dwayne is faced with his most painful years, Frank’s humorous take on what lies ahead reminds us all to look for the positive in life. Even when things are troubling, the only way to move forward is to keep your chin up.

                              Growing Up Can Be Hard

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                                “You know that point in your life when you realize the house you grew up in isn’t really your home anymore? All of a sudden even though you have some place where you put your shit, that idea of home is gone.”
                                -Andrew Largeman, Garden State

                                Everyone faces a time in life where they transition out their childhood comfort zones. As Andrew Largeman is forced to revisit a troubling childhood, his musings had all of us contemplating our place in life.

                                Audiences Have Responsibility Too

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                                  “In this town, murder’s a form of entertainment.”
                                  -Matron Mama Morton, Chicago

                                  Chicago challenges how far we say audiences will go to see something new. Mamas interpretation that murder is show business is more relevant than ever in a world of gratuitous reality programming.

                                  Laugh At Yourself

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                                    “If you can’t laugh at yourself, life is going to seem a whole lot longer than you’d like.”
                                    -Sam, Garden State

                                    Sam’s simple encouragement for Andrew Largeman to take things less seriously is an effective and powerful lesson in Garden State.

                                    Go Your Own Way

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                                      “Can you imagine being the guy whose job it is to argue for the right to build a mall on top of a geological phenomenon?”
                                      -Andrew Largeman, Garden State

                                      When Andrew and his new friends strike out into their surroundings, we’re once again caught contemplating our individual choices and direction in life.

                                      Make The Most Of Life

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                                        “Frodo: ‘I wish the ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.’ Gandalf: ‘So do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.’”
                                        -The Lord Of The Rings: Fellowship Of The Ring

                                        An emotional reminder that everyone has challenges they’d rather not face, Gandalf reminds us all the only thing we can do is make the most of where we are in life.

                                        Stand Up For Others

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                                          “There’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo… and it’s worth fighting for.”
                                          -Sam, The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers

                                          Amid a crumbling society, Sam’s simple optimism in The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers is a beautiful reminder that there is always good-natured people, even when things look impossible.

                                          Challenge Your Perspective

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                                            “What is real? How do you define ‘real’? If you’re talking about what you can feel, what you can smell, what you can taste and see, then ‘real’ is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain.”
                                            -Morpheus, The Matrix

                                            Another movie full of wise lines, The Matrix challenges each of us to redefine how we view our world. As the film challenges the way we see ourselves, we are all prompted to  make the most of our lives.

                                            Examine Your Own Faults

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                                              “You know what I’ve noticed? Nobody panics when things go “according to plan.” Even if the plan is horrifying! If, tomorrow, I tell the press that, like, a gang banger will get shot, or a truckload of soldiers will be blown up, nobody panics, because it’s all “part of the plan”. But when I say that one little old mayor will die, well then everyone loses their minds!”
                                              -The Joker, The Dark Knight

                                              In an already thrilling examination of a twisted mind, The Dark Knight prompts each of us to examine our own lives. While we’re quick to condemn evil, the villain in this film reminds us that every day decisions made by our lawmakers have just as troubling effects.

                                              Appreciate What You Have

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                                                “Kim: ‘Hold me.’ Edward: ‘I can’t.’”
                                                -Edward Scissorhands

                                                Nothing makes you appreciate the things you have quite like Edward’s unfortunate challenges in Edward Scissorhands. As Edward is forced to remain apart from those he loves because of his form, anybody is prone to tear up.

                                                Think Before You Act

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                                                  “If I may… Um, I’ll tell you the problem with the scientific power that you’re using here, it didn’t require any discipline to attain it. You read what others had done and you took the next step. You didn’t earn the knowledge for yourselves, so you don’t take any responsibility for it.”
                                                  -Dr. Malcolm, Jurassic Park

                                                  Dr Malcolm’s quotable objection to science playing with life is a powerful reminder that what we do in the name of discovery, we are still responsible for. No other film line quite captures the new scientific discoveries and challenges faced in our budding millennial world. 

                                                  Carpe Diem

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                                                    Carpe diem. Seize the day, boys. Make your lives extraordinary.”
                                                    -John, Dead Poets Society

                                                    In a simple moment from Dead Poets Society, John Keating sums up the most vital life advice any of us can receive.

                                                    Featured photo credit: Chuck Coker via flickr.com

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                                                    Last Updated on May 21, 2019

                                                    How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

                                                    How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

                                                    For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

                                                    If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

                                                    Example 1

                                                    You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

                                                    You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

                                                    In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

                                                    Example 2

                                                    You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

                                                    People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

                                                    You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

                                                    Example 3

                                                    You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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                                                    The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

                                                    Example 4

                                                    You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

                                                    Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

                                                    If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

                                                    Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

                                                    • Understand your own communication style
                                                    • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
                                                    • Communicate with precision and care
                                                    • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

                                                    1. Understand Your Communication Style

                                                    To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

                                                    In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

                                                    Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

                                                    2. Learn Others Communication Styles

                                                    Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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                                                    If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

                                                    “How do you prefer to receive information?”

                                                    This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

                                                    To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

                                                    3. Exercise Precision and Care

                                                    A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

                                                    On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

                                                    Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

                                                    I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

                                                    I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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                                                    In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

                                                    The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

                                                    Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

                                                    4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

                                                    Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

                                                    In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

                                                    “Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

                                                    Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

                                                    Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

                                                    It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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                                                    It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

                                                    It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

                                                    Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

                                                    Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

                                                    The Bottom Line

                                                    When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

                                                    I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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                                                    Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

                                                    Reference

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