Movies with Characters Who Have Physical Disabilities

Physical limitations can make life more challenging. But these movies show characters with disabilities finding ways to live the lives they want. Stories about characters with physical difficulties can help build understanding, compassion, and tolerance among viewers who don't face those challenges -- and give those who do a chance to see relatable people on-screen. Families will learn about courage, empathy, and perseverance as they watch and discuss these inspiring stories. Check out our Books with Characters Who Have Physical Disabilities and Movies with Characters Who Have Learning and Attention Issues and Developmental Disabilities lists too.

Finding Nemo Poster Image
MOVIE

Finding Nemo

age 5+

Sweet father-son tale has some very scary moments.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2003)
See full review
An American Girl: McKenna Shoots for the Stars Poster Image
MOVIE

An American Girl: McKenna Shoots for the Stars

age 6+

Sweet, inspiring tale about a girl reaching for her dreams.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2012)
See full review
Finding Dory Poster Image
MOVIE

Finding Dory

age 6+

Delightful sequel promotes teamwork; some sadness, scares.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2016)
See full review
Dolphin Tale Poster Image
MOVIE

Dolphin Tale

age 7+

Heartwarming tale is sweet, inspiring for kids and tweens.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2011)
See full review
No Ordinary Hero: The SuperDeafy Movie Poster Image
MOVIE

No Ordinary Hero: The SuperDeafy Movie

age 7+

Well-meaning drama about being deaf in a hearing world.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2013)
See full review
Going to the Mat Poster Image
MOVIE

Going to the Mat

age 8+

Sports drama has positive representations; some bullying.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2004)
See full review
The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996) Poster Image
MOVIE

The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)

age 8+

Touching but dark Disney tale cheers on the outcasts.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 1996)
See full review
The Secret Garden Poster Image
MOVIE

The Secret Garden

age 8+

'90s adaptation of classic book has some heavy themes.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 1993)
See full review
23 Blast Poster Image
MOVIE

23 Blast

age 10+

Inspiring true-life tale about blind football player.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2014)
See full review
The Miracle Worker Poster Image
MOVIE

The Miracle Worker

age 10+

Outstanding movie based on life of Helen Keller.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 1962)
See full review
Simon Birch Poster Image
MOVIE

Simon Birch

age 10+

Tearjerker is touching but too intense for younger kids.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 1998)
See full review
Soul Surfer Poster Image
MOVIE

Soul Surfer

age 10+

Earnest sports biopic tugs at heart despite clichés.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2011)
See full review
Wonder Poster Image
MOVIE

Wonder

age 10+

Earnest, emotional book adaptation has strong messages.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2017)
See full review
A Space in Time Poster Image
MOVIE

A Space in Time

age 11+

Candid docu captures family impacted by muscular dystrophy.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2021)
See full review
The Best of Men Poster Image
MOVIE

The Best of Men

age 12+

British WWII drama has positive messages, trauma, language.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2014)
See full review
Breathe Poster Image
MOVIE

Breathe

age 12+

Feel-good romance tackles serious themes, disability rights.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2017)
See full review
CinemAbility:  The Art of Inclusion Poster Image
MOVIE

CinemAbility: The Art of Inclusion

age 12+

Earnest Hollywood docu argues for disability inclusion.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2018)
See full review
Hearing Is Believing Poster Image
MOVIE

Hearing Is Believing

age 12+

Docu spotlights blind, musically gifted young woman.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2017)
See full review
Marie's Story Poster Image
MOVIE

Marie's Story

age 12+

Inspirational subtitled film is emotionally intense.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2014)
See full review
Miss You Can Do It Poster Image
MOVIE

Miss You Can Do It

age 12+

Heartwarming docu digs into a pageant for disabled girls.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2013)
See full review