Gabi Conti
September 11, 2014 3:20 pm

We’ve all been there: feeling defeated, low, sad, on the verge of a panic attack. Maybe it’s because your crush is not texting you back. Maybe your parents are giving you a hard time. Or perhaps work is just feeling like a nightmare. The bottom line is that you feel powerless, and in need of some emotional pumping up. Friends are amazing and all, but in times of mild self-doubt, it sometimes helps to lean on a movie. That’s kind of what they’re there for. And some movies are particularly crutch-worthy. You know what we’re talking about: those movies with lovable female characters, or as Netflix calls it, “movies with a strong female lead” who make a major change in their life and start putting their needs first. They’re like 8-hour energy shots of confidence and, if nothing else, they remind you that everything is going to be OK. Why? Because you rock. And so do these movies:

1. Working Girl

You will feel in control just from watching the opening credits. I dare you not to smile as Carly Simon’s “Let the River Run,” blares and Melanie Griffith and Joan Cusack hair spray their ‘dos and take the ferry into Manhattan—where ’80s dreams are made. Melanie’s character makes a huge change by dumping her cheating boyfriend (perfectly played by a young Alec Baldwin), and going after the job she wants. And let’s not forget those quotes that totally translate to real life: “I’m flat broke and crazy about a man who I will probably never see again.” Been there! This movie has it all; a rags-to-riches story about breaking the glass ceiling and “getting what you deserve.”

2. Sex and The City: The Movie

This movie will pump you up and help you cope with a breakup. If Carrie can bounce back from getting left at the altar, and Miranda can make it after Steve cheats on her, you can deal with well. . .pretty much anything. This movie is a great reminder that change is good and you can get by with a little help from your friends. As Carrie perfectly puts it, “Life doesn’t always turn out to be your fantasy, that’s why you need friendship to get you through it all.” It’s a nice reminder that friends are there for you, even when it feels like everything else around you is falling apart.

3. Clueless

Who didn’t grow up idolizing Cher? She reminds us that anything is possible when you put your mind to it, even if it is manipulating the Beverly Hills grading system by playing cupid for your teachers. And how many times does it feel like all is lost as you hear Celine Dion’s “All By Myself” playing in your head? Granted, your epiphany is probably not that you’re in love with your stepbrother, but Cher shows us that even when you feel hopeless, things get better. Bonus: the ’90s nostalgia and totally rad soundtrack makes this the comfort food of chick flicks.

4. The Devil Wears Prada

If you think your boss is a terror, re-watch this and thank your lucky stars you’re not working for Miranda Priestly. Anne Hathaway plays Andy, a “sad little person” that her fancy magazine co-workers look down on with snooty disdain. There’s nothing like a movie makeover to give Andy the confidence she needs to kill it at her job. But it’s when she starts putting her own needs first and focuses on her true goals, that she starts taking names and showing everyone who’s boss.

5. Under The Tuscan Sun


Netflix kept suggesting this to me, so I eventually gave in and loved it. If you think things can’t get worse, imagine being married and the husband you’ve been supporting leaves you for another woman and takes the house of your dreams. So what do you do? Make a change and move to Tuscany, of course! And that’s exactly what Diane Lane’s character does. She ends up buying a fixer-upper villa and, of course, falling for a hot Italian. . .because, when in Tuscany! This movie is chock-full of adorable language barriers, scenic shots, and Sheryl Crow’s “Soak Up The Sun.” Get it? Because the movie is called Under the. . .okay cool. But really, the movie is a great reminder that big risks, even ones that seem a little crazy, have their rewards.

6. Thelma & Louise

First of all, HOW PERFECT would this be for a Halloween costume with your Bestie? Just don’t Romy-and-Michele it and argue over who’s the Thelma. (You’re the Thelma.) The movie features a very young and very hot Brad Pitt and two strong independent women on an OG badass road trip. They’re sick and tired of being treated like second-class citizens and they finally do something about it. Sure, it involves a crime spree and things get a little dark in the end, but overall, this is one of the most empowering movies you can watch when you’re in a funk.

7. A League of Their Own

And that’s a great metaphor for life as well. Of course there is crying in life, but don’t sweat the small stuff. Like baseball games. This movie has not just one confident female but a whole cast. They all leave behind what is familiar to them and ship off to play baseball during the war. It’s a feel-good movie that makes you believe anything is possible, because it is.

8. Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion

These girls are the only two ladies who can pull off wearing platforms to the gym. They also just have the best wardrobe, and attempt the best scam of all time: going to their high school reunion and pretending to be successful. Too bad we can’t pull that off today, unless we all deactivate our Facebook accounts like, now. Well SPOILER ALERT, they don’t pull it off, but they learn a very valuable lesson along the way: be yourself.

(Images via , here, here, here and here.)

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