It’s tough being a Millennial or a Gen Z-er. It’s even harder being a Millennial or a Gen Z-er during the middle of a global pandemic. Things can seem pretty overwhelming at times, and it’s easy to start feeling bogged down and uninspired. If you’re anything like me, Netflix and Hulu are probably your go-tos when you can’t work up the motivation to get anything done. Why not turn a regular movie-watching session into an inspirational one? Here are seven great inspirational movies for Millennials who want to get things done.
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I’ll preface this by saying Emily was robbed and Nate wasn’t wrong. If you know, you know.
This film chronicles Andy's (Anne Hathaway) journey from a mousy, hopeful journalist to an executive assistant at a major fashion magazine. Her boss (Meryl Streep) is a total get-things-done BA. If you’re looking for motivation to get yourself together and chase after your dream career, this movie should do the trick.
I will admit that the characters’ motives are definitely questionable at times. This movie is actually kind of a lesson in the dos and don’ts of reaching your goals. The general message of following your dreams and creating the life you want still comes through, though.
2. Soul Surfer
I’m a sucker for a good comeback story. I'm also a fan of any movie that includes Dennis Quaid. Soul Surfer is based on the true story of Bethany Hamilton (played by Anna Sophia Robb). Bethany lost her arm in a shark attack, but she still became a professional surfer.
This inspirational movie is all about overcoming obstacles and taking whatever life throws at you in stride. If you’re feeling a little sorry for yourself or can’t seem to make any progress toward your goals, you need to watch Soul Surfer. I promise you’ll feel uplifted and probably a little humbled when it’s over.
You can’t talk about truly inspirational movies without including at least one sports film. I’m usually not super into sports movies, but this one is different.
The Blind Side is based on the true story of Michael Oher (Quinton Aaron). Michael was a teenager who went from being homeless and essentially orphaned to becoming a phenomenal college football star. This movie will really make you think about your privileges and blessings in life. Plus, you’ll get to see some great acting from Sandra Bullock and Tim McGraw.
Just like the other inspirational movies on this list, if you’re feeling unmotivated, The Blind Side will give you a new perspective on life and help you get back on track. It’ll also remind you how important it is to lean on your family, biological or chosen, when you need some help.
This is one of my favorite films of all time because a) it stars Meryl Streep, and b) it follows the story of an aspiring blogger who reminds me a lot of myself.
Julie and Julia is a film that parallels the stories of Julia Child (Meryl Streep), the famous cookbook author and cooking show star, and Julie Powell (Amy Adams), a hopeful blogger and amateur chef. It’s loosely based on the true stories of both women.
I think this is a great film to watch if you’re trying to find what really excites you in life. Whether it’s cooking or something else entirely, watching these women discover their passion and find ways to reach their goals is pretty motivational.
I think this is the ultimate inspirational movie to watch for anyone who feels like they’ll never be able to make a difference in this world.
Freedom Writers is based on the true story of Erin Gruwell (Hilary Swank). Ms.Gruwell is a teacher who took a job at a school where most of the students were involved in dangerous activities and affected by internalized racism. She turned the classroom around by asking her students to write about their lives and feelings in journals, and she helped change their lives.
If you think your actions and efforts will never amount to anything noteworthy or beneficial, watch this movie. I guarantee you’ll be inspired to reach your goals and make the world a better place.
How could I compile a list of inspirational movies that will motivate Millennials without including the iconic Legally Blonde? Elle Woods (Reese Witherspoon) is a great example of working hard, tuning out others' opinions, and reaching for the stars.
In case you haven’t seen it, here’s a quick summary. Elle is a sorority girl who gets dumped by her boyfriend (who’s a major jerk, by the way). She decides to go to Harvard Law School to spite him. What, like it’s hard? Along the way, she focuses less on proving herself to her ex and more on proving her worth to herself.
Are you scared to go after your dreams because of what others might think? Do you need some motivation to follow your heart? Add this film to your watchlist.
7. Yes Man
This is probably the goofiest movie on this list, but it motivates me and makes me think about life a little differently every time I watch it.
Yes Man stars Jim Carrey as Carl Allen, an unhappy accountant who says no to everything. He does whatever he can to get out of saying yes to adventures, opportunities, and basically anything that requires him to leave his house. He ends up going to a (semi-culty) workshop where he promises to say yes to everything, and things get a little out of hand.
While you definitely should not say yes to everything, this movie might inspire you to open yourself up to new ideas and opportunities in life. If you’re feeling stuck, I highly suggest watching Yes Man for a good laugh and a little motivation.
Conclusion: These Movies Will Motivate and Inspire You!
They may not change your life or fix your problems. They’ll give you a great jumping-off point, though. Only you can make real moves and changes in your life, but these inspirational films might provide that spark of motivation you’ve been looking for.
Looking for something that’ll help you feel a little better about not having your life together? Don’t worry— there are plenty of shows out there to soothe that pesky quarter-life anxiety.