Sometimes life just grinds you down and makes you want to lay on the sofa eating humus and pita chips. Maybe you feel sad or bored or mad or… just plain old bummed. I’ve put together a small collection of some of my favorite movies for getting me out of a funk. If you want to be in a better mood, then try watching one of these movies. Everyone needs an escape now and then.
**Please note that not all of these movies are your typical “feel good” movies. It sometimes makes me feel really good to watch a bad guy get his ass handed to him. Other times it makes me happy to see Adam Sandler yell at a golf ball. It just depends on my mood. This is just a short list and by all means not comprehensive. I’ll try to sprinkle a little variety on top for ya, but feel free to leave your own favorite Feel Good Movies in the comments.**
- Anchorman – No matter how many times I see this movie I still end up laughing. Of all the silly Will Ferrell movies, this is my favorite. Steve Carrell is hilarious.
- Julie & Julia – This movie features Meryl Streep as Julia Child. That should be reason enough to see it. But, if you are looking for a movie that just makes you happy, this is it. Great performances and it is based on a true story. A woman blogs her way through Julia’s famous cookbook. While doing so, we are treated to flashbacks of Julia’s life in France and how she got started cooking. A really fun movie.
- The Princess Bride –
This is the definition of “Feel Good Movie”. Pirates. Battles. Sword fights. Andre the Giant. Mandy Patinkin. Christopher Guest. R.O.U.S’s. And yes, there is kissing. But we can skip that part if you want.
- Stick It – I watch this movie when I am feeling lethargic and like eating all of the ice cream. Watching a bunch of super fit athletes (they used real gymnasts in the film along side the actors) workout makes me feel like working out. Sometimes it works! This movie is like “Bring it On” but with gymnastics and Jeff Bridges instead of cheerleading and Kirsten Dunst.
- The 40 Year Old Virgin – I had this movie on DVD when I moved to Prague. I must have watched it at least 100 times that first year. It was the only movie (in english) that we had access to. It was funny every single time.
- Romancing the Stone – This one is perfect to watch when you are feeling like life is boring and blah. Nothing can kick-start my need for getting out-of-town like this one. I love watching Joan Wilder outwit crocodiles, drug smugglers, evil kidnappers and Danny DeVito. It’s super campy and 80’s and that’s why I love it.
- The Shawshank Redemption – There isn’t much I can say about this movie that hasn’t already been said. It’s great. The idea that a man can stay true to himself and be awesome under the worst of situations is why we go to the movies. We want to see Red get of jail and find his friend Andy waiting for him on the shores of a Mexican beach. We want to believe that we can do better. If this movie doesn’t make you feel a little happy then maybe you should try harder.
- Grosse Point Blank – I love comedy mixed with explosions and gun fights. I love shoot outs that involve mini-marts. I like Jeremy Piven and John Cusack together. This movie has a little something for everyone. It’s funny, violent, sweet and it features Dan Aykroyd as a professional assassin and a super badass soundtrack. What’s not to love?
- Little Miss Sunshine – Much like “The 40 Year Old Virgin” got me through Prague that first year, this movie got me through living in Mexico. I was fairly isolated there, and I didn’t have a car. And I didn’t have any money. (Teachers in Mexico make even less than teachers in Prague) I spent a lot of time in my little apartment amusing myself by watching movies. I couldn’t get reliable internet there so I was limited to DVDs until my neighbor and fellow teacher/friend got a Blockbuster card. Whoo hoo! Until then I had just a handful of movies to watch. I watched this one a lot. It made me happy every time.
- Ong-Bak: Muay Thai Warrior – I love old school kung-fu movies, and karate movies. Sure I liked Crouching Tiger, but seeing people flying on wires doesn’t impress me as much as watching badass dudes do amazing things physically. I think that’s why I like watching Ninja Warrior. Tony Jaa performs all of his own stunts in this movie. It’s crazy good. The story doesn’t really matter. All you need to know is that you get to see beautiful shots of Thailand and watch Jaa do crazy things with his body. It’s beyond impressive.