Five Summer Flicks That Inspire Courage and Compassion

//We love true stories. My kids, my hubs, and me. There’s nothing like gathering around the TV with popcorn on a Friday night and being inspired with an inspiring tale of overcoming. When we watch stories of courage and compassion, we open up a dialogue of how to live this way in real life. These are stories of flesh and blood greatness: surmounting hardship, prejudice, and socially-contrived boundaries. They deepen our belief that we can indeed do great things to make the world a beautiful, better place.

Movies do this like no other.

My 8-year old son and 12-year old daughter give the first four of these a thumbs up. The last one is on our list this summer. All true stories, all PG, which is hard to find these days!  //

Five Flicks with Fabulous True Stories

1.McFarland USA: a California coach moves his family to a rural Hispanic farming community. Facing cultural boundaries and an unpromising future for his students, he tries to make a better life for them and his own family by starting a track team.

2. Soul Surfer: young surfer Bethany Hamilton loses her arm in a shark attack and faces the daunting challenge of relearning how to do get back on the board and do what she loves.

3. Hidden Figures: a group of African-American women mathematicians working for NASA help the U.S. space program make strides in the cosmos and humanity.

4.We Bought a Zoo: a widower invests his entire financial future into a small, failing zoo. With his kids and new animal staff, he tries to bring it back to life.

5.The Eagle Huntress: a documentary about a young Mongolian girl who attempts to become the first female eagle huntress in 13 generations.

These movies are suites for ages 8+. However, as with all media, use your personal discretion to determine what is right for your family. Pluggedin.com and Commonsensemedia.com are great resources.

This post is part of Five Minute Friday, a community of speedy-fingered and highly creative faith writers. We write for five minutes on one word. This week was INSPIRE.  P.S. My kids are home this summer, so I don’t do anything in just five minutes. I try though.

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July 28, 2017
  • I really liked Passengers! Riveting storyline. Thanks, Andrew.

  • JeanneTakenaka

    I just gotta say, I LOVED each of the movies you shared. I haven’t seen The Eagle Huntress yet. Glad you shared it! we’ve shared most of these movies with our boys. The other movie based on a true story that I love is Remember the Titans. 😉

    • ooo! I don’t know if I’ve seen that. Aren’t true stories the bestest?

  • Karrilee Aggett

    I have watched (and loved) 4 out of 5 of these listed… so I guess I have a new movie recommendation to look for! (The Eagle Huntress)

  • Queen of Katwe is now on Netflix. We just watched that one together last night. It’s a good one, too! Great list! I’ve got a couple more to try now!

  • Mary Hood

    Christina,
    My family watched Hidden Figures and just loved it! My kids are off on their own now, but I love finding good, wholesome movies and encouraging them to watch them. I haven’t seen the others you mentioned. Will look them up though. FMF #72

  • Stephanie Nelson

    Some great choices here! I love the angle you took, and now I have to go find The Eagle Huntress!

  • I enjoyed, “We bought a Zoo.” I want to check out the other ones you recommended.

  • Marie

    Just watched “Hidden Figures” and loved it! Those women are amazing.

    I wish it wasn’t so hard to find movies that hit all the marks: good storytelling, non-cheesy, little to no language.

    • I hear ya! There were some that were pg-13 that could almost make it family friendly,but for that one scene. It seems like there’s definitely more variety than a few years ago though of good clean fun!

  • Bethany Vitaro

    I feel like all of these should be on my personal “to watch” list! Thank you!

  • Thanks for sharing these recommendations. The only one I’ve seen is Hidden Figures and I agree, it is inspiring! I’ll have to check out some of the others.

  • bluecottonmemory

    They each sound like they have such motivational themes! I definitely need to get out more to the movie theater. I miss the buttery popcorn and over-the-top movie screen!

  • Tara Ulrich

    We Bought a Zoo is one of my faves! I’ll need to check out the others. I especially want to see Hidden Figures. There truly is something great about popcorn and a movie. I’m in the 7 spot this week.