Top 10 movies to watch with your daughter

by - Saturday, May 11, 2013

Snuggling up on the sofa to watch a DVD together is a wonderful experience, but there's only so many times a parent can watch Disney Princess films with their daughter!

Luckily Princess shares my love of film, and has learned to trust my judgement when I suggest we watch movies she may not have chosen for herself. The ideal recipe seems to include romance, drama, and of course a happy ending - preferably with a female lead and a touch of morality thrown in for good measure.

Here are our top ten favourite films for parents to watch with their daughters, all of which feature storylines and characters for you both to enjoy.

1. Mamma Mia!

Much-loved by mothers and daughters the world over, this uplifting musical is bound to get you both singing along to your favourite songs, and perhaps even dancing around the room!

2. Annie (1982)

This classic movie tugs on the heart strings in all the right ways as little Annie charms us with her fiery personality. Chances are your daughter will recognise some of the musical numbers even if she's never seen the film before.

3. The Wizard of Oz

With both kind and wicked witches, an adorable female lead, a heroic little dog and a hefty dose of magic, what's not to love about this cinematic classic?

4. Legally Blonde

As Elle Woods, Ms. Witherspoon shows us that it's possible to be both sassy and smart: the perfect role model for fashion concious tweens, with a hefty dose of humour thrown in for the entertainment of older audiences.

5. Matilda

This wonderful adaptation of Roald Dahl's children's novel remains one of my personal favourite films of all times, despite having watched it dozens of times over with Princess. While perhaps a little mischievous in showing Matilda overruling adult authority, it encourages a love of shared learning and literature, and expresses how children can have fun with the grown-ups who care for them.

6. The Secret Garden

Based on the classic novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett, this uplifting film tells the story of an orphaned girl who discovers her own sense of compassion as she finds a secret garden in her uncles estate and helps her sickened cousin find his way back to health.

7. Mary Poppins

While I'm sure many of us would love to be considered "practically perfect in every way", the job of Ms. Poppins must surely be exhausting! In the meantime, this frivolous tale of magic and childhood is sure to bring a smile.

8. High School Musical

Though I resisted watching this for years, I found HSM to be a hugely enjoyable film as an adult. It's success as a Disney teen movie is certainly justified, and who wouldn't want to secretly admire a young Zac Efron as he prances across the screen...?

9. Drop Dead Fred

While perhaps a little tongue-in-cheek for younger viewers, your tween daughter is likely to love this frivolous tale of a grown woman and her childhood imaginary friend who returns to rescue her from a doomed marriage and the clutches of her overbearing mother. It may seem a little dated, but I'm sure Rik Mayall's antics will have you both in hysterics!

10. My Girl

This beautiful, though tragic, story of friendship and coming of age is sure to make you both grab for the tissue box! It's a must-see film for older children, and one which will surely stick in your memory as a worthwhile choice for a lazy Sunday afternoon viewing.

What are your favourite parent-daughter films?

Have we missed your favourite family film in this list? Please let us know your own suggestions of movies to watch with your daughter by leaving your comments below.

Photo credit: dr_tr

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