I enjoy learning about history and also current social issues through movies and tv shows that tell real-life stories or weave together truths our society is facing. Being able to see people and watch events unfold moves me and helps me try to understand something I never will fully be able to. I’ve put together a list of twelve movies that cover broad topics of injustice. Some are based on real-life, inspired by true events, or created a group of characters to dive deeper into a global injustice. I hope these movies stir up questions as you watch. Lean into discomfort, face the sadness, anger, and heartbreak that may occur while watching, and sit through the story until the end. Lending your time and attention is powerful. It is the first step in making a change. I encourage you to be open to where the journey leads you. You might find yourself with an idea, project, or curiously after watching one or all of the titles on this list.

1. If Anything Happens I love You | Netflix

“In the aftermath of tragedy, two grieving parents journey through an emotional void as they mourn the loss of a child.”

2. The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society | Netflix

“In 1946 a London-based writer begins exchanging letters with residents on the island of Guernsey, which was German-occupied during WWII. Feeling compelled to visit the island, she starts to get a picture of what it was like during the occupation.”

3. Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom | Netflix

“The remarkable life of South African revolutionary, president and world icon Nelson Mandela (Idris Elba) takes center stage. Though he had humble beginnings as a herd boy in a rural village, Mandela became involved in the anti-apartheid movement and co-founded the African National Congress Youth League. His activities eventually led to his imprisonment on Robben Island from 1964 to 1990. In 1994, Mandela became the first president of democratic South Africa.”

4. Rodney King | Netflix

“The film is a one-man show where Roger Guenveur Smith does a multiplicity of voices, alternately taking and opposing Rodney King’s side.”

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5. Fruitvale Station | Netflix

“Though he once spent time in San Quentin, 22-year-old black man Oscar Grant (Michael B. Jordan) is now trying hard to live a clean life and support his girlfriend (Melonie Diaz) and young daughter (Ariana Neal). Flashbacks reveal the last day in Oscar’s life, in which he accompanied his family and friends to San Francisco to watch fireworks on New Year’s Eve, and, on the way back home, became swept up in an altercation with police that ended in tragedy. Based on a true story.”

6. Sitara: Let Girls Dream | Netflix

“A 14-year-old girl dreams about becoming a pilot but she faces family burdens and cultural barriers. Pakistani computer-animated short film directed and written by Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy. The film attempts to spotlight the issue of child marriage.”

7. The Last Paradiso | Netflix

“In 1850s Italy, a passionate free spirit dreams of love, justice and a better life, until a forbidden affair threatens everything.”

8. Penalty | Netflix

“A Manipuri man faces discrimination when he joins the Lucknow University soccer team.”

9. Sitting in Limbo | Netflix

“Wrongfully detained by the Home Office, immigrant Anthony Bryan faces deportation after living in the United Kingdom for 50 years.”

10. Palm trees in the snow | Amazon Prime

“Finding a tantalizing clue in an old letter, a young woman journeys to her family’s tropical plantation to uncover generations of secrets.”

11. The Blind Side | Amazon Prime

“Michael Oher, a homeless black teen, has drifted in and out of the school system for years. Then Leigh Anne Tuohy and her husband, Sean, take him in. The Tuohys eventually become Michael’s legal guardians, transforming both his life and theirs. Michael’s tremendous size and protective instincts make him a formidable force on the gridiron, and with help from his new family and devoted tutor, he realizes his potential as a student and football player.”

12. The Me You Can’t See | Apple TV

Note: This is a document series on Apple TV with a few episodes 60 minutes in length.

“Oprah Winfrey and Prince Harry guide discussions about mental health and emotional well-being while opening up about their own mental health journeys and struggles.”

What movies would you add to this list? Comment them below.

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