Movies & Strengths

Click here for definitions of the Positive Psychology strengths

Codes: Bold = Movie; Parentheses = Positive Psychology exercises

Achievement Collection

Research shows that the foundation of self-esteem and one’s sense of worth is developed through performance.  As these strengths develop, students work harder and complete their education.

Responsibility = Captain Phillips (Positive Introduction)

Honesty and Integrity = Captain America 2

Courage = The Maze Runner (Core Strengths and Character Challenges)

Grit and Perseverance = Unbroken (Best From Worst)

Self-Control = 42 (Go Cold)

Humility = Cinderella (Active Listening)

Excellence = The Imitation Game

Leadership = Star Trek: Into Darkness (Lead with Strengths)


Relationship Collection

As students learn to have healthy relationships, they are more tolerant, secure, and confident.  Bullying decreases, cliques diminish, and “bad boys” and “mean girls” are no longer cool.

Confidence and Respect = Divergent (Savoring)

Kindness = Warm Bodies

Love and Care = Frozen (Arrival of Happiness)

Trust and Social Intelligence = Hunger Games

Tolerance and Discernment = The Hobbit (My Greatest Strength and Growth)

Fairness = The Help (Best Self Story)

Forgiveness = Maleficent (REACH to Forgive)

Cooperation = Avengers: Age of Ultron


Motivation Collection

Students’ academic achievement correlates most with their intrinsic desire or motivation.  Motivation is the result of deepening insight and a sense of transcendence.

Love of Learning = Interstellar

Peace = Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close (Let Worries Go)

Purpose = Selma (Life Purpose)

Gratitude = Blindside (3 Good Things)

Optimism = The Martian

Wisdom and Decision-Making = Inside Out (My Favorite)

Curiosity and Creativity = Saving Mr. Banks

Awe and Humor = Secret Life of Walter Mitty (LOL)


Sample Lesson: Introduction to Character Strengths and “The Science of Character” video (15-minute lesson including 8-minute video)


Interesting Facts About C2’s Movies


  • One third of the above movies are based on true stories.
  • Seven are historical and four of these involve restorative justice.
  • Ten or more are literary or based on books.
  • Eight are science fiction.
  • At least nine deal with social-emotional and psychological health.

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