Movies with Strong Female Characters

Let's hear a round of applause for these empowering leading ladies! From Elsa and Hermione to Katniss and beyond, brave, spirited girls and women are getting the spotlight they deserve. Make sure to talk to both girls and boys about how women are portrayed in the media and what kinds of stereotypes they see. These discussions can counteract harmful messages kids get about body image, sexuality, and role models. For even more media picks with strong female characters, check out these books, games, and TV shows.

Browse Movies with Strong Female Characters

Angelina Ballerina: Dreams Do Come True Movie Poster Image
Sweet tale celebrates friends, family, positive messages.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2012)
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Frozen Movie Poster Image
Wintry Disney musical is fabulous celebration of sisterhood.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2013)
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Kiki's Delivery Service Movie Poster Image
A mystical, positive take on girl's coming of age.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1998)
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Lilo and Stitch Movie Poster Image
Cute story, great characters, fabulous soundtrack.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2002)
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Mulan Movie Poster Image
Disneyfied but dignified tale of Chinese warrior.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1998)
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My Neighbor Totoro Movie Poster Image
Beautifully animated fantasy about friendship fit for all.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1988)
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Tangled Movie Poster Image
Fantastic princess adventure is fun, with great messages.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2010)
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Finding Dory Movie Poster Image
Delightful sequel promotes teamwork; some sadness, scares.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2016)
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Inside Out Movie Poster Image
Beautiful, original story about handling big feelings.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2015)
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Moana Movie Poster Image
Great characters, memorable music, some monsters/scares.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2016)
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Pollyanna Movie Poster Image
Wonderful family film with excellent messages.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1960)
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The Powerpuff Girls Movie Movie Poster Image
Funny, exciting, and involving.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2002)
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The Adventures of Ociee Nash Movie Poster Image
Tale of 19th-century girl power will inspire modern kids.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2004)
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An American Girl: McKenna Shoots for the Stars Movie Poster Image
Sweet, inspiring tale about a girl reaching for her dreams.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2012)
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An American Girl: Saige Paints the Sky Movie Poster Image
Sweet American Girl story about finding your voice.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2013)
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Anne of Green Gables Movie Poster Image
Faithful, sensitive take on classic novel is great for kids.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1986)
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The Book of Life Movie Poster Image
Beautifully animated film has some scary imagery.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2014)
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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone Movie Poster Image
First Potter movie is a magical ride but also intense.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2001)
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The Incredibles Movie Poster Image
Top-notch, action-packed fun for the entire family.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2004)
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A Little Princess Movie Poster Image
Wonderful adaptation of classic book; some scary moments.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1995)
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Nim's Island Movie Poster Image
Book-based tropical adventure is good family fun.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2008)
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Pippi Longstocking: Pippi in the South Seas Movie Poster Image
Kitschy '70s Pippi is kid adventure-fantasy at its best.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2005)
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Radio Rebel Movie Poster Image
Sweet story celebrates self-expression and conquering fears.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2012)
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Akeelah and the Bee Movie Poster Image
Inspiring drama about a champion speller; OK for tweens.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2006)
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Ballet Shoes Movie Poster Image
Sisters learn value of love, work, and sacrifice.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2007)
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Because of Winn-Dixie Movie Poster Image
A girl and a dog educate a small southern town.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2005)
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Brave Movie Poster Image
Mother-daughter princess tale has some very scary scenes.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2012)
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Fly Away Home Movie Poster Image
Thrilling, touching adventure for animal lovers.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1998)
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Howl's Moving Castle Movie Poster Image
Charming Miyazaki fairy tale with surreal villains.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2005)
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Hugo Movie Poster Image
Spectacular book adaptation is great for tweens and up.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2011)
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Long Way North Movie Poster Image
Thrilling tale about a girl's search for her grandfather.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2016)
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The Secret Garden Movie Poster Image
Great book, great adaptation.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1993)
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Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken Movie Poster Image
Girl-and-her-horse story with some peril might inspire kids.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1991)
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Zootopia Movie Poster Image
Charming buddy-animal story promotes tolerance, teamwork.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2016)
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Anne Frank Remembered Movie Poster Image
Powerful look at the Holocaust through teen eyes.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1995)
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April and the Extraordinary World Movie Poster Image
French steampunk tale for kids mixes science, adventure.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2016)
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A Ballerina's Tale Movie Poster Image
Engrossing dance docu introduces powerful role model.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2015)
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Bridge to Terabithia Movie Poster Image
Beautiful lesson in friendship for young and old.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2007)
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Coraline Movie Poster Image
Cool but creepy animated fantasy too scary for young kids.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2009)
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From up on Poppy Hill Movie Poster Image
Inspiring, romantic coming-of-age tale about '60s teens.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2013)
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The Journey of Natty Gann Movie Poster Image
Compelling adventure too violent for some kids.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1985)
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Lindsey Vonn: In the Moment Movie Poster Image
Inspiring sports docu with great role model; one F word.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2011)
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Spellbound Movie Poster Image
Families should see this m-a-r-v-e-l-o-u-s film.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2003)
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Spirited Away Movie Poster Image
Magnificent movie with scary creatures and a strong heroine.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2002)
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Wadjda Movie Poster Image
Beautiful, nuanced tale of an independent Saudi girl.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2013)
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Hidden Figures Movie Poster Image
Inspiring true story of African-American women at NASA.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2016)
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A League of Their Own Movie Poster Image
Terrific story of women's baseball has great messages.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1992)
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The Miracle Worker Movie Poster Image
Outstanding movie based on life of Helen Keller.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1962)
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Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind Movie Poster Image
Beautiful anime with eco message and an amazing heroine.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2005)
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Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens Movie Poster Image
Epic Star Wars sequel delivers great performances, action.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2015)
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Arrival Movie Poster Image
Great, deeply thoughtful, compassionate sci-fi tale.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2016)
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Betty & Coretta Movie Poster Image
Moving tribute to two civil rights widows' legacies.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2013)
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Little Women Movie Poster Image
Lovely Alcott adaptation tugs at the heartstrings.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1994)
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Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Movie Poster Image
Epic but violent adventure offers diversity, role models.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2016)
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Speed Sisters Movie Poster Image
Spirited docu follows Middle Eastern female racing team.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2017)
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Whale Rider Movie Poster Image
Excellent, gorgeous drama with uplifting messages.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2003)
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Girl Rising Movie Poster Image
Powerful docu explains why all girls need an education.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2013)
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The Help Movie Poster Image
Poignant, thought-provoking civil rights tale.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2011)
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He Named Me Malala Movie Poster Image
Inspiring, deeply affecting docu explores teen icon's life.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2015)
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Loving Movie Poster Image
Moving drama about interracial couple's historic fight.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2016)
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The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants Movie Poster Image
Sensitive portrayal of four girls' friendships.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2005)
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Steel Magnolias Movie Poster Image
Three-hanky special, but with lots of laughs, too.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1989)
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Wonder Woman Movie Poster Image
Engaging, entertaining, empowering superhero adventure.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2017)
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Norma Rae Movie Poster Image
Inspiring pro-union story is good watch-together fare.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1979)
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Bend It Like Beckham Movie Poster Image
Superb tale of a girl's struggle for her dreams.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2003)
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Beasts of the Southern Wild Movie Poster Image
Devastatingly moving drama has harsh truths, whimsy, wisdom.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2012)
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The Color Purple Movie Poster Image
Powerful tale of survival with wrenching scenes of abuse.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1986)
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Gravity Movie Poster Image
Intense, astonishing sci-fi thriller has real soul.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2013)
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The Hunger Games Movie Poster Image
Intense adaptation is violent, thought-provoking for teens.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2012)
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Real Women Have Curves Movie Poster Image
Smart coming-of-age drama addresses body image.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2002)
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Temple Grandin Movie Poster Image
Riveting true story of a young autistic woman's journey.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2010)
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Veronica Mars Movie Poster Image
Charming, bantery thriller is made by and for die-hard fans.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2014)
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Easy A Movie Poster Image
Teen Scarlet Letter update is smart but risque.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2010)
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The Terminator Movie Poster Image
Terrific sci-fi action, but too violent for some.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1984)
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Mad Max: Fury Road Movie Poster Image
Postapocalyptic action is excellent but extremely violent.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2015)
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Thelma and Louise Movie Poster Image
Now-classic feminist road movie best for very mature teens.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 1991)
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