MOVIES THAT HELP BOOST self-confidence have characters and actors that possess the business acumen, social wit or mental toughness that we’d like to have. An onscreen role model is someone we can relate to, admire, and want to be. I love these movies and characters and the motivation that they give me.
Maybe they’ve overcome a dire situation and come out on top. Whatever the traits are for you, I’m sure you could agree with some of mine.
15 Movies That Help Boost Self-Confidence
Which Character? William H. “Billy the Kid” Bonney played by Emilio Estevez
Boosts Confidence For: Overcoming fear, renewing your youthful confidence
Watching Billy the Kid in this movie makes you realize that when you were young you had confidence that came from not knowing anything about the world. Billy the Kid was in his late teens by the time he made a name for himself. Renew that youthful confidence.
Director: Christopher Cain
Also Starring: Terence Stamp, Charlie Sheen, Dermot Mulroney, Lou Phillip Diamond, Keifer Sutherland and Jack Palance
Plot: Six youths on the American Frontier are dragged into a cattle war when their mentor and benefactor is murdered. They are outnumbered but not outgunned. For they become “The Regulators” and gives birth to the legend Bill the Kid.
The Boat That Rocked
Which Character? All of the Radio DJs
Boosts Confidence For: Social Interactions
That you might take yourself a little too seriously. What would they do in this situation? These guys are fun.
Director: Richard Curtis
Also Starring: Bill Nighy, Rhys Ifans, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Nick Frost, Chris O’Dowd, Emma Thompson, January Jones and Kenneth Branagh
Plot: In 1970s Britain, a young man is sent to live on a ship that acts as an illegal radio broadcaster. There he encounters all sorts of different characters and personalities who each have their own radio slot and bring a certain dynamic to the radio station.
Which Character? Alexander the Great played by Colin Farrell
Boosts Confidence For: Following your own intuition
Look what Alexander the Great did. No one believed in what he wanted to achieve. No one. On a daily basis it seemed that he was berated for his dreams and ambition, and nearly having revolts within his army and council several times.
If we all only had the belief in our own judgement and dreams life Alexander the Great.
Director: Oliver Stone
Also Starring: Jared Leto, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Toby Kebbell, Rosario Dawson, Angelina Jolie, Christopher Plummer, Anthony Hopkins and Val Kilmer
Plot: By the age of 30, the Macedonian King Alexander the Great, ruled the known world including Greece, Egypt, Persia and parts of India. This is the story of his rise, internal struggle with himself and the people around him to his untimely death.
Which Character? Forrest Bondurant played by Tom Hardy
Boosts Confidence For: Standing up for yourself
What is the worst that can happen? If you’re not going to die or get shot at, be brave, be bold. If someone is rude enough to you to ask or do something then you’re allowed to be rude enough to retaliate.
I’ve never had trouble standing up to people I don’t like or I don’t know. It’s my friends that I have trouble with. I’ve learnt to cull toxic friendships, most of the time these friendships don’t matter anyway.
Director: John Hillcoat
Plot: The Bondurants are three brothers during the Prohibition that run a bootlegging operation in rural Virgina. They become the only the only operation left when corrupt authorities soon reign down on the productive moonshine region and begin shutting down bootlegging.
Which Character? Trent Walker played by Vince Vaughn
Boosts Confidence For: Talking to the opposite sex
Trent shows how easy it is to talk to girls. You could argue that he is over confident and that it isn’t like that in the real world. If you think about it though, we all have a friend like this.
I know I do.
My friends says and has the most unbelievable openers and conversations that I think would crash and burn. He’s confident though and doesn’t care.
Director: Doug Liman
Starring: Jon Favreau, Ron Livingston and Heather Graham
Plot: The film centers on Mike, a struggling actor, who has just made a recent move to LA, leaving his girlfriend in New York. He is low on self-esteem and misses his old life. Mike is one of a group of struggling actors who attend parties, talk women, and gallivant around Los Angeles.
Which Character? Vito “The Godfather” Corleone played by Marlon Brando
Boosts Confidence For: Business Acumen
Watching the The Godfather conduct his business with such a cool and calm conduct is inspiring.
Next time you’re in a business meeting or having a serious conversation involving money, just think of Marlon Brando as Vito Corleone.
Director: Francis Ford Coppolla
Also Starring: James Caan, Al Pacino, Robert DuVall, Diane Keaton,
Plot: A Mafioso family based in New York are faced with a new drug threat, war between other crime factions and treachery within their own ranks.
Which Character? Wyatt Earp played by Kurt Russell, Doc Holliday played by Val Kilmer
Boosts Confidence For: Being brave and bold
The West was an environment where only the tough survive. And that definitely applies to Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday. Watching this film you realize that these guys aren’t afraid of death and use that power to get ahead.
It’s not like they don’t have anything to lose either. I derive inspiration from these characters too because they’re on the right side of the law for once.
Director: George P. Cosmatos
Also Starring: Bill Paxton, Dana Delaney, Powers Boothe, Charltone Heston, Billy Zane and Sam Elliot
Plot: The tale of the famous lawman Wyatt Earp and his friendship with Doc Holliday. Wyatt Earp moves to the town of Tombstone with his brothers for a chance at a new life away from the law. However, he is soon caught up chasing bad guys again including the famous showdown at the O.K. Corral
We Bought A Zoo
Which Character? Benjamin Mee played by Matt Damon
Boosts Confidence For: Building that courage to approach that the opposite sex
There is one quote form this movie that I love. I think about it whenever the time calls for it. The main character say this to his son and you find out later he used the same technique to meet his wife and the son’s mother.
“You know, sometimes all you need is twenty seconds of insane courage. Just literally twenty seconds of just embarrassing bravery. And I promise you, something great will come of it.”
Director: Cameron Crowe
Also Starring: Thomas Haden Church, Angus Macfadyen, Stephanie Szostak and Scarlett Johansson
Plot: After the death of his wife and a widower purchases a zoo that he runs with the current employees and his two children.
Which Character? Tyler Durden played by Brad Pitt
Boosts Confidence For: Be spontaneous, going a little bit crazy
For one, that we’re not made of glass. And two, the guys in this movie are a bit of touch with the real world but it still makes a good point.
So I don’t suggest going off and putting into action Fight Club’s principles but it does illustrate that we’ve all gotten soft and we take the unimportance of a material world far too serious.
Director: David Fincher
Also Starring: Edward Norton, Helena Bonham Carter, Jared Leto and Meat Loaf
Plot: An insomniac founds an underground bareknuckle fighting club with his strange new friend and housemate Tyler Durden. However, trouble arises when Tyler begins to target, vandalize or destroy public and private property with members of the newly formed – fight club.
Which Character? Becky Fuller played by Rachel McAdams
Boosts Confidence For: Keep going when times get rough
You can’t help but barrack for the main character in this film, she tries really hard. You wish you had a dream like hers with that much tenacity. This is feel good film and at the end when she comes out on top, your own courage is boosted.
Director: Roger Michell
Also Starring: Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton, Jeff Goldblum and Patrick Wilson
Plot: After being let go at her old work, a woman is given a chance to prove herself at her dream job as an executive producer in a morning show. Her strength and sanity is constantly tested as she tries to balance work and life.
Catch Me If You Can
Which Character? Frank Abagnale Jnr. Played by Leonardo DiCaprio
Boosts Confidence For: Doing something
Based on true story, the protagonist is a young man who doesn’t believe in boundaries. It makes me think that I’ve accomplished nothing in my life compared to his. I’m more confident in myself because I take note of this young man’s confidence in doing the unbelievable.
Director: Steven Spielberg
Also Starring: Christopher Walken, Tom Hanks, Amy Adams and Martin Sheen
Plot: An adolescent man is chased by the FBI as he writes fraudulent checks which gives him access to millions of dollars. His quick thinking and brashness makes him illusive as he quite successfully impersonates being a lawyer, doctor and an airline pilot.
Back To The Future
Which Character? George McFly played by Crispin Glover
Boosts Confidence For: Standing up for yourself
This movie is a classic in its own right but I watch it for a different reason. It projects negatively on to me what my life would or will become if I don’t stand up for myself more.
Watching the main character’s weak and soft father as a teenager is a good wake-up call to have some balls and not let people walk all over you.
Director: Robert Zemeckis
Also Starring: Michael J. Fox, Lea Thompson and Christopher Lloyd
Plot: In 1985, a man is accidentally sent to the year 1955 when is parents were still in high school. He helps his father and his mother while trying to get back to the future.
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Which Character? Lester Burnham played by Kevin Spacey
Boosts Confidence For: Taking a break and losing the fear
After watching this movie you have a sense of enlightenment. I know I had a new grasp of what life meant. I know longer felt compelled to abide by what is considered normal and come to think about it, I never have since.
Just stop and smell the roses sometimes.
Director: Sam Mendes
Also Starring: Annette Bening, Chris Cooper, Wes Bentley and Mena Suvari
Plot: A man who is stuck in his suburban rut has a total change of heart and perspective on life when he develops a crush on his daughter’s best friend (that sounds awful but it’s a good movie).
A Lot Like Love
Which Character? Oliver Martin played by Aston Kutcher
Boosts Confidence For: Taking chances
At the end of the movie, Oliver has nothing, no prospects. He’s failed in business and love as he explains on the beach talking to his brother. However, you get a sense that everything is going to be alright. A good way to take chances is to always think of the worst case scenario of what you’re about to do.
What is the absolute worst that can happen?
Once you know that you’re free to do what you want. I heard a quote by Jim Carrey once that goes, “You can fail at you what you don’t want, so you might as well fail at something that you do.” In this movie, Oliver does exactly that.
Director: Nigel Cole
Starring: Amanda Peet, Kal Penn and Moon Bloodgood
Plot: Two people weave in and out of each other’s lives over the years then gradually realize that they love each other. (It’s better than it sounds)
Which Character? George Jung played by Johnny Depp
Boosts Confidence For: Ambition
There is a quote at the end of this movie that sums this movie up perfectly. The main character George Jung starts as young but confident man. Although he ends up in prison for the rest of his life, he gave life his best shot and reached the stars and beyond.
At the very end of the movie in a voice over he says something that absolutely stung me and that I’ve never forgotten –
“…….Life passes most people by while they’re making grand plans for it. Throughout my lifetime, I’ve left pieces of my heart here and there. And now, there’s almost not enough to stay alive. But I force a smile, knowing that my ambition far exceeded my talent……..”
Director: Ted Demme
Also Starring: Penelope Cruz, Ray Liotta, Rachel Griffiths, Cliff Curtis, Franka Potente and Ethan Suplee
Plot: A man takes himself from a selling marijuana on the side on the beaches of California to becoming a drug king, being the largest US importer of cocaine.
Boost That Self-Esteem!
These movies worked for me. When I’m in a situation where I can feel a little social anxiety or lack of self-belief coming in I think of these characters and the actors in aforementioned films. I love them and I hope you do too!
Do you have any movies that help boost self-confidence, let me know what they are below
Cheers for reading. MCM’s Rohan.
Young Guns photo credit: Guilty Viewing Pleasures: Young Guns via photopin (license)
The Godfather photo credit: The cat held by Marlon Brando in the opening scene of ‘The Godfather’ was not written into the scene. Marlon found the stray wandering around the Paramount Lot just before the scene was shot. via photopin (license)
American Beauty photo credit: rossa come l’amore via photopin (license)