Learning from Children’s Movies

Children’s movies often have messages that adults have forgotten or never learned. In this sense, we never really outgrow them. The good ones have a message for everyone of any age.

These are a few of the movies that I have personally learned from:

1. Frozen

Parents can be exasperated by a movie like Frozen when Elsa is in every store they visit. The franchise makes billions. While the marketing side of it might be oversaturated, the movie still has an important message to tell.

Elsa’s ice power is symbolic for many things, but I think the main thing it represents is emotions. Bottling up her emotions and not allowing herself to feel is what leads to the main conflict in the movie.

Elsa unleashes a winter storm in the fictional land of Arendelle because of her internal struggle with herself. Only by allowing herself to confront her emotions and work through them is she able to release the eternal winter.

With mental illness becoming more prevalent, it’s important not to fall into the trap of ignoring our undesired and suppressed emotions. Like it or not, they’re a part of us, and they can be our greatest strengths if we become familiar with them.

2. The Lego Movie

The Lego Movie might seems like a two hour long toy commercial to an adult—and in a way it is—but to kids, toys aren’t just objects. To kids, toys are devices that allow for grand adventures and tales of drama and intrigue.

Many adults lose this sense of wonder and creativity over the years, becoming obsessed with rules and structure, even if they work in a creative field. We’d do well to remember the pure unadulterated joy that comes with playtime, letting our imagination run wild for a little while without fear of criticism.

3. Kung Fu Panda

Kung Fu Panda teaches the important lesson of self-acceptance. Po, a pudgy, easygoing panda, becomes the legendary Dragon Warrior by embracing what makes him unique and using it to achieve his goals. His peers didn’t think he’d get far because of his weight and his apparent laziness, but when he found what motivates him (food and family), he was able to save his town from evil.

So many times in our own lives we look in the mirror and find ways to tear ourselves down. What if that energy was better spent on loving and caring for ourselves, being the best version of ourselves and not the best copy of somebody else’s standards?

4. Finding Nemo

Finding Nemo is a surprisingly poignant story about parenthood. Many parents are afraid to let their kids venture too far out into the world because the world is a big and scary place, especially nowadays.

Finding Nemo teaches the lesson that kids don’t mature without experience, and if we hold onto them too tightly, they won’t be able to become well-adjusted adults.

Risk is a part of life, and the best thing a parent can do is to prepare their child for the risks they will face when they grow up. Trying to prevent bad things from happening will often prevent good things from happening as well. Fear of leaving our comfort zones can prevent us from experiencing the many wonderful things the world has to offer.

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