Thursday, February 25, 2016

Netflix Picks - 10 Fierce Girl Power Films

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Sometimes it just feels good to watch films about strong women, no matter how many times you've seen them. Maybe it's been a tough week or you're facing some challenges in your own life... Whatever the circumstances, it never hurts to have a little Girl Power inspiration from some epic film heroines! This Netflix Picks is all about the films currently on Netflix about women overcoming the odds and basically, winning at life. From comedies to thrillers, there's something here for everyone to enjoy and a few of these are downright modern classics!

1. View From the Top
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Gwyneth Paltrow, Kelly Preston, Christina Applegate, Mike Myers, Mark Ruffalo and Candace Bergen star in this comedy about a young girl with a dream of escaping her dead-end life to become an international flight attendant. It's funny, cute and the perfect movie for days when all you want to do is curl up on the couch with a pizza and watch something silly.

2. Enough
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I have always been a fan of Jennifer Lopez's more light-hearted films like The Wedding Planner and The Back-up Plan, but Enough is just as good, if not better. The story centers around a waitress who marries her Prince Charming customer only to find out he's not who she thought he was. In order to escape her traumatic circumstances, she must learn how to fight and properly defend herself before ultimately facing her aggressor. This is the ultimate kick-ass girl power film and if you've never seen it before, be prepared to spend a couple of hours on the edge of your seat. Enough also stars Juliet Lewis, another favorite of mine and it's a great Friday night flick!

3. Erin Brockovich
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Julia Roberts won an Oscar for her tour-de-force performance in Erin Brockovich, a film about a single mother who works as an assistant in a small-town law firm where she uncovers an incredible injustice and takes down a power company for the pollution of a city's water supply. A woman with gumption, intuition and enough fight in her to win a war, Erin Brockovich is a heroine for the ages and Julia Roberts plays her like a boss! This is definitely the film to watch when you've had a bad day at work.

4. The First Wives Club
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When an old friend (played by Stockard Channing) commits suicide after reading that her husband was leaving her for a younger woman in the tabloids, three of her friends (played by Goldie Hawn, Bette Midler & Diane Keaton) are reunited and wage an epic revenge plot on their own husbands who also left them for newer models. Funny, upbeat and touching, this 90's flick is still relevant and fun to watch. First Wives Club also stars Sarah Jessica Parker, Maggie Smith, Elizabeth Berkley and Victor Garber. It's the perfect film to watch after a bad break-up, but it's great when you're happy too!

5. Hope Floats
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"Beginnings are usually scary, endings are usually sad, but it's what's in the middle that counts. So when you find yourself at the beginning, just give hope a chance to float up. And it will."

- Hope Floats

Sandra Bullock plays Birdie, a woman who started out life as the prettiest and most popular girl in town, then married her handsome high school sweetheart and moved to a life of privilege in New York. But her bubble is burst when her best friend humiliates her on a national television show and admits to having an affair with her husband. So Birdie packs up herself and her daughter Bernice (played by Mae Whitman) and moves back home to live with her crazy mother (played by Gena Rowlands). Hope Floats is a romantic, funny and charming film that chronicles the effects of divorce on 3 generations of women in the same family. It's a classic tale of small town life in the South, overcoming the worst possible obstacles and finding out that people are always stronger than they thought they were. Hope Floats is a good one to watch when you need a little reminding of how resilient you are, but it's a good one for when the girls come over too... You can cry with each other in between moments of drooling over how hot Harry Connick, Jr. looks in a cowboy hat and tight jeans!

6. Legally Blonde
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The film that made us all fall in love with America's sweetheart Reese Witherspoon, Legally Blonde is the comical tale of a California sorority girl fashion major who goes to Harvard Law School in an attempt to win back the love of her life from the evil, yet socially appropriate Vivian (played by Selma Blair). A real mood lifter, it's hard to watch Legally Blonde without feeling like you can do anything afterwards... Fabulous fashion and plenty of giggles are abundant in this feel-good flick which also stars Victor Garber, Luke Wilson, Ali Larter and Jennifer Coolidge.

7. Mona Lisa Smile
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Another Julia Roberts film, Mona Lisa Smile boasts a strong mostly female cast starring Kirsten Dunst, Julia Stiles, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ginnifer Goodwin, John Slattery, Marcia Gay Harden and Dominic West. Julia Roberts plays a free-thinking art professor who comes to Wellesley in the 1950's and challenges the traditional female roles in society, encouraging her students to learn and work rather than settle for a domestic life in servitude of their husbands. This film truly showcases the strong ability of women to tear each other down or build each other up and it shows that we are always stronger together than we ever are against each other. I really love this movie and I like to watch it any old time!

8. Sleeping With the Enemy
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It's not surprising that there are three Julia Roberts films on this list, given that she always chooses such strong female roles to play. Sleeping With the Enemy is one of her earlier films from 1991 and it's about a young woman who fakes her own death to escape her abusive, controlling husband. Thrilling to the bone, this movie will have you on the edge of your seat for sure! This is one your husband or boyfriend probably won't mind watching with you, so save it for a weekend night when you're both chilling at home and don't forget the popcorn.

9. The Help
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Based on the novel of the same name by Kathryn Stockett, The Help tells the story of Skeeter Phelan, a budding young female writer in the 60's who was raised by an African-American maid whom she loved. Rather than spend her life writing about laundry, kitchen tips and the like, Skeeter (played by Emma Stone) decides to write a book about the daily struggles of African-American maids and their stories about the white families they work for during the Civil Rights Movement. Heart-breaking and touching at the same time, The Help is a story that truly illustrates what not just women, but people in general can overcome when they band together in favor of the same cause. This inspiring film also stars Anna Camp, Viola Davis, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jessica Chastain, Allison Janney and Octavia Spencer, who won an Oscar for her performance in the film. If you haven't seen The Help yet, it's a must-see. If you have seen it before, it's worth watching time and again, especially on a girls' night in for the fabulous performances, touching story, wonderful soundtrack and to-die-for 1960's costumes!

10. Uptown Girls
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When the spoiled New York City socialite daughter of a rockstar (played by Brittany Murphy) loses her family, money and everything she's ever known, she's forced to get a job as a nanny to a wealthy, obnoxious little girl (played by Dakota Fanning). While the relationship is tough at first, these two eventually learn to depend on each other, proving that family isn't always who you're related to - sometimes your family are the people who are there for you when you need them. A story of picking up, dusting off and getting on with it when times are hard, Uptown Girls is a fun, touching and charming film that's great to watch during a lazy weekend when you just need a break and something kind of fun to watch. Grab a tissue though - the ending is a tear jerker!

What are your favorite Girl Power films to watch when you need a bit of inspiration?
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