18 Movies Starring Women To Watch On Netflix

by Dawn Day

Eureka! We’ve found Friday! And along with it,we’ve  found 18 feminist movies to stream on Netflix. Put on your cozy pants and get ready to plant yourself into the couch after a long week while you take in some healthy, women-centered media – you deserve it! 

1. In A World


Written, directed and starring Lake Bell, this In A World is a feminist film from start to finish. The plot follows a vocal coach, Carol (Bell), as she journeys to become a woman in the boys’ club of voiceover careers. Along the way she encounters competition from all the main men in the biz—including her own father (Fred Melamed). Watch Carol take a step outside of her comfort zone as she vies to be to new voice behind the coveted movie trailer words, “In a world.”


 2. Muffin Top: A Love Story

Muffin Top is a sweet film that shows what it’s like to be a woman who is 40 years old, getting divorced and completely dissatisfied with her body. Suzanne (Cathryn Michon) is a feminist media professor in Los Angeles, and even though she teaches her students to see through the advertisements that perpetuate an unrealistic beauty standard, she has a hard time seeing through them herself. Journey with Suzanne through her first post-divorce dates, weight loss attempts, an embarrassing viral video and plastic surgery as she take claim over her own body and her own life.


3. The Gabby Douglas Story


For anybody who watched Gabby Douglas crush it during the 2012 Olympics, you know that this gymnast is one that can inspire tears with her performance and gumption. As the first African-American gymnast in history to become the Individual All-Around Champion, Douglas is an icon for young women and girls everywhere who are working to make their dreams come true. In “The Gabby Douglas Story,” she is portrayed by Sydney Mikayla from ages 7 to 12 and by Imani Hakim from ages 14 to 16. The trailer alone will give you goosebumps, but if you’re in the mood to be inspired, watch the whole thing while practicing your high beam routine on your coffee table. (Just kidding, that could be dangerous.)


 4. Frances Ha


Frances (Gretta Gerwig) is a 27-year-old modern dancer living in New York City. She is in a rut as her career starts to flat line, she breaks up with her boyfriend, and her best friend Sophie (Mickey Sumner) opts to move into a new apartment in Tribeca, rather than renew the lease for their Brooklyn abode. Black-and-white and shot in a French New Wave fashion, the film’s heart lies in Frances’ determination not to give up on her dreams or herself. Watch her pirouette down the streets of New York, and down the streets of life.


 5. Mona Lisa Smile

It’s the 1950s at Wellesley College, where women’s education is for the privileged, and getting married is the end-all-be-all of existing. That is, until Katherine Watson (Julia Roberts) shows up, and shakes up the cookie cutter world of her students. Watson is an inspiring professor, who builds a relationship with her class and challenges them to break out of the molds society has them pegged in. Plus, this film has a stellar lady cast including Kirsten Dunst, Julia Stiles, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Ginnifer Goodwin.


6. Frida


This 2002 film based on the life of Frida Khalo (Salma Hayek), the iconic Mexican painter, takes viewers from the inside of her tumultuous marriage to artist Diego Rivera (Alfred Molina) to the pain that inspired the art that has touched the lives of many.


7. Amélie


This 2001 film stars Audrey Tautou as the title character Amélie, a young woman in Paris who develops elaborate plans to ameliorate the lives of those around her. What she doesn’t plan on is falling in love. Grab a cheese plate, and get ready to spend the evening in France with Amèlie.


8. Legally Blonde


When her boyfriend breaks her heart, following him to Harvard Law is the only logical thing for Elle Woods (Reese Witherspoon) to do. In this beloved film, Elle proves that a woman can break out of a stereotype, and become successful on her own terms by kicking ass at being herself.


9. The Kids Are All Right

The children of two lesbian mothers get curious about the man who donated sperm for their conception. Cue Paul (Mark Ruffalo), the sperm donor father of both Laser and Joni, to completely mess with the family dynamic. This is a feel-good film with themes about family in the modern era. Grab a glass of wine and get ready to laugh and cry along with the Nic (Annette Bening) and Jules (Julianne Moore), as they navigate parenting and their marriage.


10. Cake

Behaviors behind suffering and coping with tragedy are explored in this film starring Jennifer Aniston. Dealing with the death of her son in a car crash that left her partially disabled, as well as the suicide of a friend makes life difficult for Claire (Aniston). A box of tissues will probably go well with your helping of Cake.


11. Dear White People


When Sam (Tessa Thompson) and her “Dear White People” radio show stir up controversy at her college, a conversation about race turns into an ongoing controversy as the campus then finds itself with a black-themed party, a protest and a satirical take on the notion that “post-racist America” is still an actually racist America.


12. Terms of Endearment


Seriously, go get your box of tissues. You will need it, and a hug in order to watch this 1983 flick starring Shirley MacLaine and Debra Winger appearing as a mother-daughter duo that can never seem to get along. This film touches right at the heart of female relationships, and will totally tug on your heartstrings.


13. For A Good Time Call


Two girls. One phone-sex business. Unexpected roommates Lauren (Lauren Miller) and Katie (Ari Graynor) put their college feud behind them as they take ownership of their sexuality by starting a phone-sex line out of their apartment. This movie is seriously a good time.


14. Tiny Furniture


This film by Lena Dunham is all about what it’s like to be a recent college grad living with the parents. It probably been all of us at some point, which is why this is a relatable film that ventures into the basic philosophy of a person’s life: What is my purpose? 

Catch these titles before they leave Netflix on Sept. 30!

 15. The Skeleton Twins


With Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader as main characters, you’d expect this would be a LMAO comedy. In reality, The Skeleton Twins is a heartfelt tale of a brother and sister who reconnect after not speaking for years.


16. Saved!


Saved! is a satire about being a teenager at a Christian high school. Calling out hypocrisy is one of the main functions of this hilarious film that shows what happens when Mary (Jena Malone) and her boyfriend break up because he comes out as gay—after getting her pregnant. Mary copes with her pregnancy by becoming friends with a pack of other misfits at their conservative school as “good girls” like Hilary Faye (Mandy Moore) try to save Mary from her “sinful” ways.

Even though we are losing some, we are gaining some too. Watch these titles, which will be streaming soon!

 17. Philomena


Having her baby taken away from her by nuns because he was born out of wedlock, Philomena (Judi Dench) hasn’t gone a day without thinking about where her boy could be. Journalist Martin Sixsmith (Steve Coogan) takes Philomena on the road as they search to find her long-lost child. Catch this encouraging flick, which starts streaming Sept. 22. 


18. Iris


Iris Apfel is one of the most celebrated women in fashion for her knockout sense of personal style. Pair her collection of costume jewelry with her hilarious one-liners, and a hilarious documentary will ensue. If her giant glasses, obvious sass and her one-liners don’t make you want to watch this documentary, I’m not sure what will.

Now Netflix just needs to get Obvious Child and Trainwreck streaming, and all will be right in the world. What’s your favorite feminist flick on Netflix?

More from BUST.com: 

20 Photos And Quotes From The Badass Simone De Beauvoir That Will Inspire You

10 Lady Podcasts You Should Tune Into (And A New Festival That Brings Them Together!)

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