Best Movies for Tweens

I have a tween.  I’m not sure how it happened and it gives me anxiety to say it.  When she went to middle school, all of a sudden, she matured exponentially in the span of a few months.  With this newfound maturity comes a need to watch movies with content she can relate to.

She’s been sex educated {you can read that fun post here,} and she reminds me daily that none of the language in a PG-13 movie can be worse than what comes out of her own mom’s mouth.  I’ve always been protective of what she watches, but it’s time for me to loosen the reins.  We’re starting where I started – with John Hughes.  And we’ll take it from there…

Best Movies for Tweens

13 Going on 30 – A great lesson to be careful what you wish for.  This is Big but with Jennifer Garner playing a 13-year-old who wishes to be an adult.

A League of Their Own – I have indoctrinated my daughter with a love of Madonna since she was in the womb, so I’m super happy she’s finally old enough to watch this gem about the first female professional baseball league, starring Madonna.

Back to the FutureI was surprised she stuck with this one because I thought it would be confusing for her, but she totally got it.  She love Part 2, but didn’t care for Part 3.

Bend it Like Beckham – Jess dreams of playing soccer like David Beckham, but her traditional Indian family has other plans for her.

Ferris Bueller’s Day OffMy dream day would be a day just like Ferris’, only I wouldn’t wreck the Ferrari.

Forrest Gump – There are some mature themes in this movie given the Vietnam War, but I think we’re ready to run with Forrest.

Grease – I saw this movie when I was in first grade.  It was the 70’s.  I let my daughter watch this one a couple years ago.  She loved it, but had a lot of questions, especially about the hickey from Kenickie.

Jurassic ParkMy daughter hates being scared, especially when it comes to movies.  We watched this one over the summer, which she deemed as “boring.”  I don’t even know what to say to that except I was scared the first time I saw it and I was in college…

Sixteen CandlesMy love of this movie runs deep and wide, and I hope it will for Ella, too.  Definitely some politically incorrect moments, but good conversation starters on horrible nicknames and inclusivity.

Stand By Me – This one is rated R, but the kids are 12-years-old and besides language and what prompts their adventure, it’s a true coming-of-age story.

Hidden FiguresMy love for this movie also runs deep and wide.  We saw it three times in the theater.  Such an amazing story about three African-American women working at NASA.  They helped launch John Glenn into space while breaking glass ceilings along the way.

Legally Blonde – What, like getting into Harvard Law School is hard?

My GirlThis one is rated PG, but it’s so heartbreaking and emotional, I’ve been holding off on letting her watch it.  I think it’s time…

Napoleon Dynamite – This one is also PG, so I let her watch it a while ago.  We absolutely love it, quote it all the time, and after years of trying, I convinced Ella to dress up as Deb to my Napoleon for a Halloween event this year.  Yesssss…

OverboardDon’t even with the modern remake.  Make sure to watch the original with Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell.   

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl – This one is definitely the best one in the series, and how can you go wrong with a movie based on one of Disney’s best rides?

School of Rock – Jack Black plays a substitute teacher bent on turning his class into a rock band.

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe – My daughter is currently reading the book, so she’s excited to see the movie.  But First, I shared with her one of the best SNL Digital Shorts ever, Lazy Sunday.

The Karate KidMake sure you watch the original of this one, too.  No one can replace Mr. Miyagi.  Wax on, wax off.

The Kissing BoothCurrently streaming on Netflix, this is a super cute throwback to the classic 80’s movies of our teens.

Titanic – You’ll never recreate the excitement this movie and Leonardo DiCaprio instilled in teenage girls in 1997, but you can try.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before Another one streaming on Netflix with plenty of John Hughes references and a love triangle to boot.


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