Here are some great, entertaining, inspirational movies that teens can enjoy, and at the same time learn a lot about other teens, people, relationships, life, and themselves. Many of these films are based on true stories, a fact which adds meaning and resonance for every teen viewer.
In the 1970's, an awakening took place in the heart of nearly every player of the Woodlawn High School football team and the coach Tandy Gerelds. With a school filled with racism and hatred comes a real life story of love and unity in the largest high school football game ever played in Birmingham, Alabama. This is an amazing movie with many lessons that a teen can learn.
Gimme Shelter (2013)
This movie is based on a true story of a teenage girl with a drug-addicted mother. The teen gets shuffled through the foster home system, and none of those homes work out for her. She then runs away from her mother in search of her wealthy father. She does not have any job, no skills, and no resources. But through many unfortunate circumstances, she finally finds the family she has been looking for her entire life. This movies stars Vanessa Hudgens as Apple. It shows the intense struggle of teens in very bad home situations, but despite despair and hardships that there are people out there who can offer help, support and love.
Hard Flip (2012)
This is the story of an angry teen who is a skater with a hard, broken heart. His hard-working, hard-drinking mother falls ill and his father is absent. After he comes across a stack of old letters in his house, he is determined to find the father he never knew. He goes on a journey to find answers and the truth. It's an amazing movie of one teen's rough journey through difficult times and how he learns lessons about life, himself, and people. This movie is full of action, drama and shows events in a teen's life that one can relate to.
Soul Surfer (2011)
Facing the Giants Trailer
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Soul Surfer is a true story of a young teenage girl, Bethany Hamilton who has a love for surfing. Unfortunately one day she went surfing with her best friend and eventually lost her arm from a shark attack. Now she has only one arm to do everything with. Learn how she faces many challenges and deals with the day-to-day struggle as a result of this traumatic event. This movie stars Kevin Sorbo, Carrie Underwood, Anna Sophia Robb and Helen Hunt and Dennis Quaid. This is a very inspiring movie that the entire family can watch and has some profound lessons for teens to learn from.
Freedom Writers is based on the book Freedom Writers Diary. Hillary Swank stars in this and takes the role of Erin Gruwell. Erin Gruwell is fairly new to teaching and on unfamiliar territory. She starts out by going through attitudes by her students and eventually found ways to break down and break through the racial tension and communicate with them. She began a new class project where everyone was required is to keep a journal and make daily entries. The teacher, Erin Gruwell with the permission from her students to read the journals. In this way, Erin begins to connect with them and understand the hardships and pain in their lives. This is the true story of a teacher who was determined a difference in the lives of inner city students and did everything she could to show them a different path for their lives.
Facing the Giants
In this moving story, the football team and the coach confront their fears and the many challenges that await them and how to have a winning attitude.It teaches us how to face our own giants in our life. This is also a movie that takes a good look and examines the relationships among family members, and offers advice on how to make those relationships more successful. It is a movie that encourages us not to give up and an inspirational movie with great values.
A Walk to Remember
A wonderful movie about friendships, relationships, people, and the lengths love will go. This is one movie that I can watch every year.
Note: Available on disc at Netflix, as disc or streaming on demand at Amazon, and may be viewable on YouTube.
Pay it Forward (2000)
Pay it Forward is a wonderful movie and if each person follows the principles and concept in it, we would be a better individuals and the world would be a better place.
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Ruth Aquila (author) on June 09, 2014:
Thanks so much for your comment.
Madison on June 09, 2014:
These are wonderful suggestions. Definitely have to see some of this. Thanks for compiling these list of movies.
Ruth Aquila (author) on February 21, 2014:
This is a great addition. Thank you so much.
Jessica on February 04, 2014:
I'd like to add the new Vanessa Hudgens film "Gimme Shelter." She gave an amazing performance as a teen girl struggling to find a home and family for herself and her unborn baby. The film is an inspiration to all about staying strong during hard times.
Ruth Aquila (author) on May 01, 2013:
I am glad you enjoyed them.
LTT on February 06, 2013:
Great movie suggestions!