I was looking for posts on feel good movies earlier today, so I figured I’d just make one of my own. When I need some distraction, I tend towards the light and entertaining, and I could write a whole essay on why these kinds of feel good movies are just as important as all your dark, critically acclaimed epics, but I’ll give you this list instead. Feel free to add to it in the comments; I’m always looking for recommendations! These are some of my very favorites, the créme de la créme of movies that bring a smile to my face.
What a Girl Wants
The classic modern day Cinderella story set in London’s royal society, starring Amanda Bynes as Daphne Reynolds, a girl from New York who is trying to figure out who she really is. I’ve watched this movie too many times to count when I was younger, and I still enjoy it now. My memory isn’t usually good enough to quote movies, but I can mouth the lines to this one.
Peter Colt is a …sinking star on the tennis horizon? He is about to announce his retirement from professional tennis when he meets Lizzy, who takes what she wants when she wants. I love how Peter’s outlook on life transforms throughout the movie as he goes from resigned pessimist to someone who fights for what he wants. I’m not a sports person, but I used to play a bit of tennis, and I just love how it is used here. Paul Bettany is most recently known for his role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but this was the movie I first saw him in. He and Kirsten Dunst have awesome chemistry, and the supporting cast is exceptionally talented and well written.
Mean Girls is such a modern classic that it needs no introduction. The third of October is Germany’s most important national holiday, but, more importantly, it’s Mean Girls day. I saw a lot more Mean Girls quotes than references to my country’s day of unity and you know what? I have no complaints. Germany doesn’t even go here.
Another modern classic. Reese Witherspoon kills it as Elle Woods, who shows that you can be both pretty and smart. What a revelation, I know, call the newspapers. I love that Elle always works incredibly hard at what she wants to achieve without sacrificing who she is. She’s capable of change and growth, but she also remains true to herself.
Honey is another movie with a protagonist who works really hard and believes in herself to make her dreams come true. But not only that, the soundtrack is AMAZING, the choreographies are bomb, and the atmosphere is phenomenal. I love the urban backdrop and the relationships – everything just seems like you could step right into the scene.
This movie takes walking a mile in someone else’s shoes to a whole new level. When an estranged mother and daughter switch bodies, not only hilarity but understanding ensues and everyone benefits.
Bend It Like Beckham
I’m starting to sense a theme here. Bend It Like Beckham is the story of an Indian girl living in the UK, who dreams of being a professional football player. Her family would prefer a more traditional role for her, but she’s set on living her passions.
This movie has no right to be this good, but I will unashamedly admit that I’ve seen it several times. I’ve noticed that a lot of the movies I like have a great supporting cast and so does this one. It’s a cross between a coming-of-age story and a midlife crisis, which makes me wonder whether a midlife crisis isn’t just a belated coming-of-age. Zac Efron and Matthew Perry make a great team, and while the time travel/body switch component doesn’t make a lot of sense, it always makes for an entertaining story (see: Freaky Friday).
The Princess Diaries 2
I was a huge fan of The Princess Diaries books when I was younger. I prefer the second movie to the first one, because it’s just more fun in my opinion, but maybe it’s just because I saw it first. You can even watch it without watching the first one, and that’s coming from someone who usually always watches things in order. I love the Genovia setting and the characters are great. Also, I’m not even that into clothes, but Mia’s closet is just unreal. And her grandmother is living (pixelated?) proof that being a good queen and being a good mattress surfer are not mutually exclusive things. That poise has got to be good for something.
When I think of this movie I think of the song Don’t Go Breaking My Heart. It’s a sort of fairytale with an unlikely hero and a lot of adventure. It’s quite magical, and we all need a little more magic in our lives.
And that’s it! What are your favorite feel good movies? Also, does it just sound like it or is there literally one person voicing all movie trailers ever?