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SOME MOTIVATIONAL & INSPIRATIONAL MOVIES
The Pursuit of Happyness (2006) Based on a true story, “The Pursuit of Happyness” is an incredibly inspiring movie about how difficult it can be to achieve your dreams. The movie tells the story of Chris Gardner, an entrepreneur who struggles for almost one year with being homeless while at the same time having to take care of his child. What is so inspiring about the movie is that it comes with the message that you have to be willing to do whatever it takes in order to realize your dreams. It shows you that it is pointless to lament and complain about the difficulties of life. The only way these challenges and difficulties can be overcome is by taking action and being determined in the pursuit of your goals.
October Sky (1999) What does it take to pursue your dreams against your family’s expectations of you? Quite a lot, as this brilliantly inspiring movie shows. “October Sky” is the coming-of-age story of Homer Hickam who is determined to escape his destiny of having to become a coal miner in order to be a rocket scientist. The movie comes with the important message that if you really want to pursue your dreams, you need to believe in yourself. But this inspirational movie also conveys that you can accomplish anything in life if you are willing to try hard enough.
Pay It Forward (2000) This marvelous movie is all about the idea of paying it forward. “Pay It Forward” tells the inspiring story of 11-year-old Trevor McKinney whose random acts of kindness set a domino effect in motion. His ideas of paying it forward stem from a school assignment in which he is asked to find a strategy to make a positive impact in life. What is so incredibly inspiring about this movie is that it shows you in a wonderful way that even the smallest gestures of kindness can produce a great effect. The movie will convince you of how important it is to help others and to treat others kindly.
Good Will Hunting (1997) Intelligence alone is not enough to find your life’s purpose. That’s the difficult lesson Will Hunting has to learn in this remarkable movie. The inspiring movie is all about the great struggle of finding your place in life and how important it is not to give up during this time. It encourages you to have faith in yourself and to have the necessary courage it takes to do the things you love.
Peaceful Warrior (2006) There are situations in life that turn your entire existence upside down. These difficult moments cannot be avoided but they may introduce important opportunities. “The Peaceful Warrior” tells the story of Dan Milliman whose life is suddenly and abruptly changed when he has a severe accident. Despite the fact that life has knocked him down, he continues pursuing his passion and is able to find meaning in his suffering. It’s a truly remarkable movie about how important it is to always get back up on your feet when life knocks you down
Dead Poets Society (1989) The plot of the movie is centered on Todd Anderson, prep school student, whose class is assigned a new teacher. As it turns out, the teacher, John Keating, is able to skillfully inspire his students and encourages them to question preconceived notions about their lives. “Dead Poets Society” is remarkably inspiring even though it is also quite sad at times. But the overall message of the movie is uplifting. The movie encourages you to forge your own path in life instead of living the life your family wants you to live.
The Theory of Everything (2014) This movie is about the life of Stephen Hawking but it is so much more than just science. It’s the story of a man who’s diagnosed with a debilitating disease that is threatening his life. Despite the grim circumstances, the scientist does not give up. Instead, he decides to use the time he has left to use his ingenuity to make important scientific discoveries.
Mr. Holland’s Opus (1995) Centered on a man’s struggle with being stuck in life, this beautifully inspiring movie tells the story of a man who begins to realize how big his impact on those around him is. It’s a remarkable movie that will encourage you to never give up during the pursuit of your dreams.
Rudy (1993) Directed as a biographical sports film, this inspiring movie tells the real-life story of Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger, who dreams of becoming a football player at his university. “Rudy” is a remarkably inspiring movie that will convince you that you can accomplish great things when you are dedicated and willing to work hard for your dreams. The movie will also inspire you to continue pursuing your dreams even during times when you’re confronted with the greatest opposition.
Remember the Titans (2000) This inspiring movie accompanies a racially diverse high school football team on its great struggles during the football season in 1971. What is so inspiring about this movie is that it teaches important lessons about acceptance, tolerance, and team spirit. The important message of the movie is that success can only be achieved if all the members of a team work together. At the same time, “Remember the Titans” highlights how important it is that individual team members set their selfish tendencies aside so that the team can thrive.
42 (2010) “42” is another incredibly inspiring movie that is based on a true story. It tells the story of the first African-American baseball player Jackie Robinson who struggles greatly with racism from his teammates and the fans of the baseball team. Despite the great difficulties, he has the courage to continue and maintains his composure, which finally allows him to rise to great success.
Freedom Writers (2007) Writing a journal can have a profound impact on your life. This beautiful and inspiring movie highlights this fact once more. It is centered on a high school teacher who inspires her students to begin journaling in order to become more tolerant of each other. Despite the great criticism for her methods, she is able to profoundly influence her at-risk students to make important changes in their behavior.
Coach Carter (2005) A brilliant movie that highlights the importance of education. “Coach Carter” comes with the important message that education is the most important asset you can have. The inspiring movie highlights that education is more important than being an athlete. It’s a feel-good movie about a dedicated basketball coach who encourages his students to have a plan B in case their – oftentimes illusory – hopes of becoming professional athletes do not come to fruition.
Spare Parts (2015) This is another fantastic movie that tells the story of four high school students who form a robotics club out of nothing. It’s the brilliant tale of four students who have no experience in robotics and no money to accomplish their dream's but still manage to challenge the leading robotics champion at the MIT.
Former Marine Louanne Johnson (Michelle Pfeiffer) lands a gig teaching in a pilot program for bright but underachieving teens at a notorious inner-city high school. After having a terrible first day, she decides she must throw decorum to the wind. When Johnson returns to the classroom, she does so armed with a no-nonsense attitude informed by her military training and a fearless determination to better the lives of her students -- no matter what the cost. 1995
Track coach Jim White (Kevin Costner) is a newcomer to a predominantly Latino high-school in California's Central Valley. Coach White and his new students find that they have much to learn about one another, but things begin to change when White realizes the boys' exceptional running ability. More than just physical prowess drives the teens to succeed; their strong family ties, incredible work ethic and commitment to their team all play a factor in forging these novice runners into champions. 2015
Los Angeles high school teacher Jaime Escalante (Edward James Olmos) is being hassled by tough students like Angel Guzman (Lou Diamond Phillips). But Jaime is also pressured by his bosses, who want him to control his raucous classroom. Caught in the middle, he opts to immerse his students in higher math. After intensive study, his students ace California's calculus test, only to learn that their scores are being questioned. They'll have to retake the exam in order to quiet the critics. 1998
Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller), an employee at Life magazine, spends day after monotonous day developing photos for the publication. To escape the tedium, Walter inhabits a world of exciting daydreams in which he is the undeniable hero. Walter fancies a fellow employee named Cheryl (Kristen Wiig) and would love to date her, but he feels unworthy. However, he gets a chance to have a real adventure when Life's new owners send him on a mission to obtain the perfect photo for the final print issue. 2013
When astronauts blast off from the planet Mars, they leave behind Mark Watney (Matt Damon), presumed dead after a fierce storm. With only a meager amount of supplies, the stranded visitor must utilize his wits and spirit to find a way to survive on the hostile planet. Meanwhile, back on Earth, members of NASA and a team of international scientists work tirelessly to bring him home, while his crew mates hatch their own plan for a daring rescue mission. 2015
Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) is sentenced to two consecutive life terms in prison for the murders of his wife and her lover and is sentenced to a tough prison. However, only Andy knows he didn't commit the crimes. While there, he forms a friendship with Red (Morgan Freeman), experiences brutality of prison life, adapts, helps the warden, etc., all in 19 years. 1994
While exploring a remote canyon in Utah, mountaineer and adventurer Aron Ralston (James Franco) becomes trapped when a boulder falls on his arm. Over the next five days, Ralston examines his life and considers his options, leading him to an agonizing choice: to amputate his arm so that he can extricate himself and try to make his way back to civilization or remain pinned to the canyon wall and likely die. Based on Ralston's book, "Between a Rock and a Hard Place." 2010
A human drama inspired by events in the life of John Forbes Nash Jr., and in part based on the biography "A Beautiful Mind" by Sylvia Nasar. From the heights of notoriety to the depths of depravity, John Forbes Nash Jr. experienced it all. A mathematical genius, he made an astonishing discovery early in his career and stood on the brink of international acclaim. But the handsome and arrogant Nash soon found himself on a painful and harrowing journey of self-discovery. 2001
When a successful New York advertising executive (Will Smith) suffers a great tragedy, he retreats from life. While his concerned friends try desperately to reconnect with him, he seeks answers from the universe by writing letters to Love, Time and Death. When his notes bring unexpected personal responses, he begins to understand how these constants interlock in a life fully lived and how even the deepest loss can reveal moments of meaning and beauty. 2016