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10 Family Films That Teach The Importance Of Forgiveness

10 Family Films That Teach The Importance Of Forgiveness

The Bible says in Ephesians 4:32, “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Forgiveness can be a challenging concept for children. This MOVIEGUIDE®-curated list of family movies offers opportunities to discuss the Biblical power of grace with little ones.   

 

JONAH – A VEGGIETALES MOVIE

Quality:
****
Content:
+4 Biblical, usually Christian, worldview, with no questionable elements whatsoever.
JONAH – A VEGGIETALES MOVIE is a funny film for children that retells the Jonah and the Whale Bible story. The singing veggies crash their van full of young vegetables on a dock near a seafood restaurant. Once inside, The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything tell them a story that teaches compassion and forgiveness. It contains a strong Biblical worldview with no objectionable content–save for some cartoon peril and light slapstick violence. JONAH – A VEGGIETALES MOVIE is a delightful film that’s safe for the whole family.

POOH'S HEFFALUMP MOVIE

Quality:
****
Content:
+3 Some minor questionable elements. (Media-wisdom is suggested to discuss.)
POOH’S HEFFALUMP MOVIE features Winnie the Pooh and the friends of the Hundred Acre Wood. The gang is frightened when they discover Heffalump tracks. Roo sets off on an adventure on his own and meets Lumpy, a playful Heffalump with whom he gets into all sorts of mischief. It’s a heartwarming story filled with lessons about friendship and grace. Parents should know there is light cartoon peril but nothing too scary. POOH’S HEFFALUMP MOVIE is a gentle movie for the 4+ crowd.

DESPICABLE ME

Quality:
****
Content:
+1 Moderately questionable elements. (Discernment required for young children.)
DESPICABLE ME is an action-packed movie about a criminal mastermind who adopts three orphan girls as pawns for his dastardly plan. Little does he know that their love will transform his heart forever. The film features a strong moral worldview emphasizing redemption and the power of love. It contains pro-family and pro-adoption messages. There is mild potty humor and strong slapstick violence. Movieguide® suggests caution for young children. DESPICABLE ME is a hilarious romp for kids 6 and up.

TOY STORY

Quality:
****
Content:
+3 Some minor questionable elements. (Media-wisdom is suggested to discuss.)
TOY STORY is the classic Pixar film about Woody, a cowboy doll who feels threatened when a new toy named Buzz Lightyear appears in his owner’s room. When their fighting leaves them stranded at a gas station, they must learn to work together. Will they find their back to Andy’s room? The movie contains a strong Christian worldview extolling the power of charity over jealousy. Parents should be aware that there is some cartoon violence and light language. Otherwise, TOY STORY is a wholesome movie for children 5+.

CINDERELLA (2021)

Quality:
****
Content:
-2 Extreme caution for older teenagers and adults.
CINDERELLA is the live-action reboot of the beloved fairy tale. It tells the story of Ella, whose father unexpectedly passes away, leaving her at the mercy of her unkind stepmother and two stepsisters. Ella’s luck turns when she meets her fairy godmother. The movie features a very strong moral worldview and touches on redemptive themes of hope, loyalty and mercy. It contains light violence, so Movieguide® suggests parents use caution for kids under 6. CINDERELLA is a magical movie about overcoming adversity with grace.

INSIDE OUT

Quality:
****
Content:
+2 Moderately questionable elements.
Disney Pixar’s INSIDE OUT follows an eleven-year-old girl named Riley whose happy life turns upside down when her family moves to San Francisco, California. Her emotions–Joy, Fear, Sadness, Anger and Disgust–take over. Viewers have a front-row seat into the headquarters of her mind. The film inspires children to explore self-compassion and process uncomfortable emotions. It has a strong moral worldview, but some themes may confuse younger children. INSIDE OUT is a poignant story for kids ages 6 and up.

PETER RABBIT (2018)

Quality:
****
Content:
+1 Moderately questionable elements. (Discernment required for young children.)
PETER RABBIT is a live-action film based on the children’s stories by Beatrix Potter. A rebellious rabbit named Peter inherits a farm and makes it his life’s mission to sneak into his neighbor’s vegetable garden. Hijinx unfolds when he falls for the girl who lives next door. The movie contains a strong moral worldview promoting repentance and doing the right thing. Parents should know there is light slapstick violence and mild language. PETER RABBIT is an edgy take on a classic tale for kids 7+.

ENCANTO

Quality:
****
Content:
+2 Moderately questionable elements.
ENCANTO is an animated Disney musical about a teenage girl in Columbia who hails from a magical family. Every child’s gift appears when they are 5-years-old, but she has yet to discover her own. While the premise seems as if it may contain witchcraft, the redeeming message of a family being the real magic shines through. Parents may want to have a follow-up conversation with young children about the metaphor. The film contains a strong moral worldview, extolling love over resentment. There is light peril but nothing too intense. ENCANTO is an enchanting movie for kids over 6.

FERDINAND

Quality:
****
Content:
+1 Moderately questionable elements. (Discernment required for young children.)
FERDINAND is a sweet story based on the children’s book about a gentle bull mistaken for a dangerous beast after he accidentally destroys a town in reaction to a bee sting. After being sent to the bullfighting ring, he teams up with a misfit group of animals to find his way home. While FERDINAND has a strong moral worldview stressing love over hate, there are romantic elements that may be confusing for young children. For the most part, it’s a charming movie for kids 6 and up.

THE LION KING

Quality:
****
Content:
+2 Moderately questionable elements.
THE LION KING is a Disney-animated musical featuring fun songs and beautiful animation. It tells the story of Simba, a lion cub who is the rightful heir to the throne of Pride Rock. Yet, his bitter Uncle Scar aims to claim the throne himself. It has a strong moral, redemptive worldview with themes of good vs. evil. Parents should know there is cartoon jeopardy and some scary scenes, so use caution with young children. THE LION KING is a thrilling romp for kids 6 and up.

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