If your passion was a thing of the past, it’s high time to reignite your enthusiasm towards your dreams. Do so with the help of critically acclaimed films from ingenious studios and clever directors. The list of films in such theme is too long, so we fit our favorites under the magic number.
Directed by Damien Chazelle
Whiplash asks us the old-age question, “Would you sacrifice your relationships to achieve your goal in life?” The movie stars 19-year-old Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller) who dreams to be a great jazz drummer but is unsure how, until band conductor, Terence Fletcher (J.K. Simmons) invites him to join his ensemble. This film shows how maniacal passion affects a person and their surroundings. Because, the closer to perfection Andrew achieves, the narrower his circle of intimate relationships becomes. Was it all worth it? It’s for you to find out.
Directed by Pete Docter and Bob Peterson
Up is one of those films that make you cry at the first few minutes (it’s Pixar, all right). This Pixar animation stars Carl Fredricksen (Ed Asner) who dreams to visit South America with his beautiful wife. When we meet the right partner and build a life together but lose it all at the end, it is difficult to recover. This movie sympathizes with people who lost a loved one, whom they thought they could achieve a dream with; it inspires them to honor their memory by pursuing their dream, alone.
Directed by Ryan Coogler
If you liked the Rocky franchise, this is a must-watch. In pursuit of getting a title shot, Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan), son of boxing champion Apollo Creed, tracks Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) and seeks mentorship. Rocky agrees and trains his drive, but developing the true heart of a fighter is in his hands. It’s a film about pursuing your dreams, trying to make a name for yourself and not just be known as your father’s son.
The Theory of Everything (2014)
Directed by James Marsh
Many people, particularly those with a fear of being forgotten, can relate to The Theory of Everything. Cambridge University student and future physicist Stephen Hawking (Eddie Redmayne) conducts a study of the marriage of space and time, of which he has little left because of his motor neuron disease. Together with Jane (Felicity Jones), they defy odds and unearth discoveries in medicine and science, all while fighting a life-changing disease. It is a powerful film about trying to leave a mark in the world, no matter how unforgiving enough it is.
The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)
Directed by Gabriele Muccino
Went over a divorce and evicted from their apartment, Chris Gardner (Will Smith) struggles to maintain a living and fulfill his duty as a single father for his young son (Jaden Smith). Its premise is simple, but its closeness to reality is daunting. The Gardners represent families who live day-by-day but will willingly play a gamble in life which, in Chris’s case, is an unpaid internship at a brokerage firm. This film is for those who’re afraid to step foot in unknown waters but have to, for a better future.
Dead Poets Society (1989)
Directed by Peter Weir
“Breaking the rules is okay sometimes,” is what the message John Keating’s (Robin Wiliams) character wants to send to the audience. With Keating’s unorthodox method of teaching and the so-called “Dead Poets Society,” his students leave their comfort zones and pursue their dreams.
We all know being too assertive isn’t a good practice. With freedom, we have a better view of the world and can then create anything like, well, poetry in motion.
La La Land (2016)
Directed by Damien Chazelle
When aspiring actress Mia (Emma Stone) and jazz musician Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) meets in modern day Los Angeles, both admired their perseverance in pursuing what they love. Soon, they discover the toll it takes to be successful. There’s a bit of Mia and Sebastian in us Manilennials: struggling to live in a city that does not forgive, crawling towards an aspiration we may or may not accomplish. It also touches on how not only failures but also successes affect relationships.
If the premise of the films on this list is any indication, dreams truly don’t work unless you do. Get inspired, step foot on the door to your dreams, aim for greater things, and then be an inspiration yourself.
This post originally appeared on InsideManila.ph.