The Ultimate List of Feel-Good Movies to Combat Pandemic Sadness
There is no better feeling than crawling under a blanket with a warm bowl of popcorn and turning on your favorite movie—especially when you need a distraction from a pandemic.
We all want to escape our reality from time to time, and films are the perfect way to leave our world for a couple of hours. The perfect feel-good movie should comfort you and leave you feeling lighter. And since everyone's tastes are different tastes, this list is packed with films that anyone can enjoy . Whether you want to see adorable puppies, cry over a rom-com or take a trip down memory a lane, we've got you covered.
Pick Of The Litter (2018)
Pick of the Litter follows the lives of five puppies on their journey to become guide dogs. Over two years, we watch as Patriot, Phil, Poppet, Potomac and Primrose make their way through guide-dog training. The film provides a unique perspective on the challenges of visually impaired people's lives, and how getting a guide dog can change everything. This movie is full of heartwarming moments and adorable puppies. What more could you want?
(Pick of the Litter via IFC Films)
The Lorax (2012)
Based on Dr. Seuss's book, The Lorax is a comedy and musical with an all-star cast that includes Zac Efron, Taylor Swift, Danny DeVito and Ed Helms. Ted, played by Efron, lives in a tree-less city where the air must be sold to the citizens. When Audrey, played by Swift, says she wants to see a real tree, Ted sets off on a mission to find a tree and win her heart. This journey leads him to the Once-ler, played by Helms, who tells Ted the story of what happened to the trees and how a mystical creature called the Lorax, played by Devito, tried to save them. Between the catchy songs, fantastic animation and goofy moments, there is an important message about taking care of our planet. It will leave you feeling not only happy but inspired.
Legally Blonde (2001)
We couldn't put together the ultimate feel-good movie list without Legally Blonde! Reese Witherspoon gives an iconic performance as Elle Woods, a sorority girl and fashion merchandising student who gets into Harvard to win her ex-boyfriend back. Filled with quotable lines and endearing performances, this is a movie you can watch a million times without ever growing tired of it. This movie reminds us of enough hard work, determination, and monochromatic pink outfits, anything is possible. Elle truly will inspire you to chase your dreams.
(Legally Blonde via Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer)
Little Women (2019)
Saorise Ronan, Florence Pugh, Emma Watson, Eliza Scanlen, Timothée Chalamet and Laura Dern star all in this brilliant adaptation of Little Women. The present and past are seamlessly woven together as we follow Jo, Amy, Meg and Beth from childhood to adulthood. The movie takes place in the 19th century as the main characters grapple with losing their youth and trying to find their independence as women. This moving has everything: dramatic movements, romance, silly scenes and a profound family importance message.
She's The Man (2006)
Amanda Bynes and Channing Tatum make the perfect rom-com duo in She's The Man. Violet Hastings, played by Bynes, is gutted when her coach cuts the girl's soccer team. Violet pretends to be her twin brother, Sebastian, to make his private school's soccer team. Her roommate Duke, Channing Tatum, is a loveable jock who is oblivious to Violet's real identity. The two become friends, and they strike a deal—Duke will help Violet/Sebastian on the soccer team if Violent/Sebastian helps Duke win the heart of his dream girl, Olivia. With an unexpected love triangle and the suspense of someone discovering Violet's true identity, this movie is full of laugh out loud moments and—spoiler alert—has the sweet romantic ending we all wanted all along.
The Parent Trap (1998)
Grab some peanut butter and Oreos, because it's time to watch The Parent Trap. this film is a sentimental favorite for many people, and for good reason. Lindsey Lohan is adorable as Hallie Parker and Annie James, two twins separated at birth after their parents split. They accidentally discover each other's existence when they're sent to the same summer camp. To get their parents to reconcile, they switch places and pretend to be each other. This movie is full of charm, and you'll feel warm and happy for its entire run of two hours and eight minutes.
(The Parent Trap via Buena Vista Pictures Distribution)
Love, Simon (2018)
In Love, Simon, Simon is an average teenager in a small town. He has lovely parents, a sweet sister, great best friends and a secret—he's gay. He's too afraid to tell everyone because he fears everything will change for him, so he keeps it to himself. One day, another kid from his school comes out anonymously on a message board, and Simon messages him back. They start up an email relationship, both keeping their real identities a secret. When Simon forgets to sign out of his email at a school computer one afternoon, a classmate discovers his secrets and blackmails Simon into helping him get a girlfriend. When Simon does come out, his friends and family support him. This modern romance with a beautiful ending is a must-see.
To All The Boys I've Loved Before (2018)
If you're in the mood for a feel-good teen movie, open Netflix and stream To All The Boys I've Loved Before. Lana Condor and Noah Centineo make the perfect couple in this cute and light-hearted movie. Lara Jean Covey lives a vibrant life in her head, but is too shy to act on her feelings. To express the passion she feels, Lara Jean writes love letters to her five crushes, but hide them in a box, never to be seen. When the letters mysteriously do get sent out, Lara Jean must deal with the various boys' reactions. If you're like us and you fall in love with Lana and Noah's chemistry, you'll adore the sequel To All The Boys: P.S. I Still Love You.
(To All the Boys I've Loved Before via Netflix)
Hidden Figures (2016)
Hidden Figures is a powerful movie based on the true story of the team of Black women mathematicians who were essential to NASA during the Space Race. Katherine Johnson, played by Taraji P. Henson, is an exceptional mathematician who calculates the missions' critical flight trajectories. She balances raising her three daughters and working at NASA while facing unbelievable discrimination. We also follow Katherine's friends, Dorothy Vaughan, played by Janelle Monáe, and Mary Jackson, played by Octavia Spencer, to overcome their racist work environment and help change history. If you're looking for an inspirational story with an important message, this is your movie.
Zootopia takes you into a fantastic animal world, where predators and prey live in peace. Our exuberant hero, Judy Hops, voiced by Ginnifer Goodwin, becomes the first bunny to make the police force. Judy is assigned to Zootopia, a massive city, where she finds out that several animals classified as prey have gone missing. Determined to solve the mystery, Judy must befriend a sly Fox named Nick Wilde to solve the mystery and prove that she is more than just a "dumb bunny." The animation is incredible, Judy and Nick are a loveable duo, and the film drives home the vital message of not judging each other based on stereotypes. We could all use a sense of unity right now. Bonus points for Shakira voicing Gazelle, one of the most famous pop stars in Zootopia, and singing the original song, "Try Everything."
(Zootopia via Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)
Love great cinema? Click HERE to check out 30 incredible films that 100% ratings on Rotten Tomatoes.