5 Best Family Movies on Starz

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Family movies have something for everyone. They are clean family fun and hold tough lessons too. A good family movie can help you draw your kids in and have a deep conversation with them. They are especially helpful aids when the dialogue is about abstract but critical topics.

If you need to expound further on heavy topics such as character building, turn to the best family movies on Starz. Coraline, for instance, can teach children, on the importance of appreciation. Frozen has deep lessons on sibling loyalty, hope, and healing.

5 of the best family movies worth watching on Starz – 2020 update

  1. Hachi: A Dog’s Tale
  2. Frozen
  3. Coraline
  4. October Sky
  5. A Dog’s Way Home

Let family movies do the heavy lifting. Have a family movie night and learn the weighty issues of life through the stories featured in these outstanding five family movies.

1. Hachi: A Dog’s Tale

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Hachi: A Dog’s Tale – IMDb

IMDb ratingRotten Tomatoes ScoreWhere to watch
8.1/1064/100Starz Free Trial
Hulu Free Trial

Hachi: A Dog’s Tale is an exceptional drama released in 2009. It’s about the boundless love between a fiercely loyal Shiba Inu and a college professor. A tearjerker Hachi is also about respect between the two. The story is based on true events in Japan in the 1920s. Hachi’s setting however is in the 90s in New England.

In this background, you will first get to meet Ronnie, an 11-year-old, telling his class why his grandpa’s dog is the embodiment of heroism. The movie then flashes back to a dark snowy night, when the music professor, on his way back home, rescues a Shiba Inu puppy lost during shipping.

He takes him home as he awaits news of his owner or an adoption. His wife Cate is not receptive to a dog at home, but she later gives in to Hachi’s charms as her husband and daughter Andy falls head over heels in love with it. Hachi grows up as the family dog, accompanying the professor to the train station daily.

The loyal dog would go back home and then make the journey back to the station in the evening to escort the professor home. When his master cannot return home one day, Hachi is stuck at the train station.

This loyal dog keeps vigil for his loving friend at the station, making this sentimental tale bittersweet to its very end. Hachi has a G rating, but its sad premise can upset some children. It is a great flick for children at ease with grief and death.

2. Frozen

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Frozen – IMDb

IMDb ratingRotten Tomatoes ScoreWhere to watch
7.4/1090/100Starz Free Trial

Disney’s Frozen is based on The Snow Queen, one of Hans Christian Andersen’s most loved stories. It is a story that features a strong heroine, the powerful bond of sisterhood, and fantastic sing-along songs. In this 2013 film, Elsa, a freshly crowned queen, unintentionally releases her magic, changing her kingdom into an eternal winter state.

Since her childhood, Elsa has sadly borne the curse of a power that freezes the things that matter to her. Elsa then runs off to the rugged mountains for solace, leaving her kingdom Arendelle trapped in the bitter cold. Her brave optimist sister Anna takes an epic journey to the Everest-like mountain conditions looking for her.

On her way, Anna encounters Kristoff, a rugged mountain man, and his trusty reindeer Sven, who comes to her aid. Their journey has all the exciting ingredients of the best fables, including mystical mountain trolls and vengeful magic. Fumbling and funny snowman Olaf will win all your family’s hearts as you join Anna, Kristoff, and Sven’s race against time and winter’s icy grip. 

Frozen is an amazing family movie full of charm and expressive characters. The animation has so much detail; you can easily see fine points such as the freckles on Anna. The glacial landscapes are very impressive and will keep you glued to your screen until the very last beautiful song ends.

3. Coraline

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Coraline – IMDb

IMDb ratingRotten Tomatoes ScoreWhere to watch
7.7/1090/100Starz Free Trial

Coraline is a rather dark, cautionary fairy tale about an 11-year-old girl who hates her boring life. Coraline, a blue-haired girl in an old big house in Oregon, feels that her writer parents are neglecting her. As she broods over her misfortune, she discovers a hidden new world right inside her home.

Behind a small door veiled by wallpaper, Coraline who feels left to her own devices finds a sphere where every other person has buttons for eyes. Her finding is an amazing mirror image of her real-life and home and she even has a dad and mom in there. Her button-eyed parents however make her pancakes, give her presents and she has their full attention. 

At first, Coraline is bedazzled by her finding, failing to realize that her new set of parents do not have to work and are too good to be true. She loves the dazzle of the mirror world’s intense night world, gardens with snapping dragons, yummy endless treats, and mice performing in a circus.

This 2009 movie is intense and a tad disturbing, hinging on the scary depending on the age of the child watching it. It is the perfect Brothers Grimm type of classic fantasy story with an excellent lesson at the end.

4. October Sky

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October Sky – IMDb

IMDb ratingRotten Tomatoes ScoreWhere to watch
7.8/1091/100Starz Free Trial

October Sky is a modest but well-crafted movie about Homer Hickam Jr played by Chris Cooper. Homer’s father John Hickam is a coal miner in Coalwood, West Virginia. The year of this 1999 movie’s setting is 1957 and Homer has just seen Sputnik 1 tearing through the sky in its orbit, turning him into a rocket science enthusiast. 

Unfortunately, Homer’s dad expects him to follow him into the coal mines, the town’s principal source of employment. John is the mine superintendent, and he believes that his sons Homer and Jim will assume his role. Jim receives a college football scholarship, leaving Homer as his father’s focus. Fortunately, his mother inspires him to reach out for more. 

Homer builds a rocket for the science fair, much to the amusement of his schoolmates and the locals. Homer however teams up with the area math geek Quentin who also is into rocket engineering. With the support of their science teachers and a few believer friends, Homer launches his rocket and fails a few times.

He experiments with diverse designs and novel fuels, and soon, his innovation catches the eye of the media. Homer and friends are soon arrested, accused of starting a forest fire with a stray rocket. The pressure mounts and Homer throws in the towel, dropping out of school and going to the mines after his dad’s accident.

A book his science teacher gave him rouses him up. He clears his name and that of his friends, using math. He rejoins school and the school fair, winning and going national. Later Homer becomes Coalwood’s hero and meets his destiny.

5. A Dog’s Way Home

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A Dog’s Way Home – IMDb

IMDb ratingRotten Tomatoes ScoreWhere to watch
6.7/1059/100Starz Free Trial

A Dog’s Way Home, released in 2019, is the story of a dog called Bella. Found by Lucas and Olivia on a construction site alongside some kittens and their mother, Bella goes home with Lucas. Lucas and his dog become inseparable companions, and he ensures that the cats at the construction site are fed as well.

The site’s owner, Günter, tries to put a stop to Lucas’s efforts with the cats and calls the city about the cat menace. Things take a turn for Günter. The authorities halt any further demolition activities on the site which further infuriates him.

As revenge, Günter reports that Bella is a dangerous pit bull, and she eventually goes to the pound. Fearing for Bella, Lucas sends her off to live in New Mexico with an aunt, as his mother finds a new safer home for them all. Bella cannot stand being away from Lucas, and so makes a 400-mile journey back to her owner.

A Dog’s Way Home is a heartwarming story about Bella’s two-year journey and the friendships she makes and the dangers. Bella will take you through mountains, a veteran’s hospital, and diverse human relationships as the star of the story. It is the perfect family flick for kids of all ages.

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