Looking for life-affirming film and tv about making big positive changes
June 23, 2018 10:22 AM   Subscribe

I recently happened across Queen Latifah's Last Holiday, about a woman who gets a terminal diagnosis and goes off on a life-changing adventure. It reminded me also of the movie Yes Man, about a man who changes his life by saying "yes" to new opportunities. Can you find me some more movies like this?

Desired elements:
- Preferably a female lead, seeking self-fulfillment, not marriage or a relationship (although a romantic subplot is ok)
- Focused specifically on the acts involved in making positive changes; the changes are a deliberate choice that take courage, not an accident or from a magical stranger, etc.
- Charming, funny, upbeat, light
- No trauma, leaving abuse, dark backstories, horror, etc.
- Quirky premise appreciated
- Ideally not based in the supernatural, but in courageous choices

Thank you, Mefi!
posted by 3491again to Media & Arts (18 answers total) 32 users marked this as a favorite
Julie & Julia
Auntie Mame

posted by brookeb at 10:29 AM on June 23, 2018

Under the Tuscan Sun
posted by samthemander at 10:31 AM on June 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

posted by mochapickle at 10:32 AM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

It should Happen to You Dir. George Cukor, 1954.
posted by Morpeth at 10:38 AM on June 23, 2018

Bagdad Cafe
posted by gudrun at 11:01 AM on June 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Shirley Valentine and Educating Rita are both perfect examples.
posted by humph at 11:40 AM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

Legally Blonde is hugely enjoyable too.
posted by humph at 11:44 AM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

OK, not a female lead, but the original version of Last Holiday (1950) had Alec Guinness in the lead.
posted by ubiquity at 11:52 AM on June 23, 2018

Two Days, One Night
posted by gemutlichkeit at 12:13 PM on June 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Seeking A Friend For The End of the World
posted by poppunkcat at 12:33 PM on June 23, 2018

Enchanted April, from the book of the same name, with Joan Plowright et al
posted by runincircles at 1:40 PM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

Weirdly, The Good Place TV show is very much this.

It's not great as a movie, but: Eat Pray, Love.
posted by lunasol at 2:24 PM on June 23, 2018

Bridget Jones's Diary
Sliding Doors
Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day
Cold Comfort Farm (pretty much every character makes a delightful life change!)
posted by apparently at 4:28 PM on June 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Harold & Maude. It's amazing. Ruth Gordon is an absolute treasure.
posted by DarlingBri at 5:15 PM on June 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

View From the Top.

It's cheesy and has poor ratings, but imo it's no worse than other movies of the same era/flavour that did quite well; it's my contention that this movie did poorly only because it was a lighthearted comedy about a woman succeeding and fulfilling her dreams without being a traditional rom-com or all about a man.

This one is on my top 10 list, especially whenever I need inspiration, a laugh, or a happy cry. I don't want to spoil it but I have lots of Opinions about this movie that I'd love to share at length if you decide to watch it.
posted by windykites at 6:07 PM on June 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Eat, Pray, Love
posted by twin_A at 8:40 AM on June 24, 2018

The Holiday
posted by twin_A at 8:46 AM on June 24, 2018

You may like I Know Where I'm Going! - although some of the choices are out of the heroine's hands.
posted by low_horrible_immoral at 10:51 AM on June 24, 2018

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