Four Great Films Spotlighting Disabilities To Watch Over The Weekend

With the four-day weekend coming up, there is no better time than the next couple of days to catch up on great movies you may have missed. If you’re a movie buff, you’re well aware that the list of Academy Award (or Oscar) nominations have just been announced. With 8 nominations, “The Silver Linings Playbook,” starring Bradley Cooper as man living with bipolar disorder, is the first film in 31 years to receive Oscar nominations in all four acting categories and the coveted “Best Picture” nom.

Of course, for a movie to be great, it doesn’t need any awards. But for a film to spotlight disabilities in a respectful manner along with a compelling story, well, that deserves major kudos. This is why we’ve round up the four best films that spotlight disabilities that we think parents and kids will enjoy.

Finding Nemo (Rated: G)

Movie with Disabilities

In this stunning underwater adventure, with memorable characters, humor and heartfelt emotion, Finding Nemo follows the comedic and momentous journey of an overly protective clownfish named Marlin and his new friend Dory as they search for Marlin’s son, Nemo. Unfortunately when Nemo was younger he sustained a minor injury from a barracuda attack which makes his right fin so tiny that it limits his ability to swim.




The Boy Who Could Fly  (Rating: PG)

Movie on Autism

Jay Underwood plays an autistic boy who provides a source of fascination to a new family in town. Never uttering a sound, Underwood spends hours in his backyard, attempting to fly like the birds. Lucy Deakins, the daughter of the new family, befriends Underwood; she is encouraged by teacher Colleen Dewhurst to try to draw the boy out of his shell, and to keep a journal on the subject.




Dear John (Rating: PG-13)

Movie with Autism

Savannah Curtis was on spring break when she first met John Tyree, who was home on temporary leave. For the smitten soldier it was practically love at first sight. Over the course of the next seven years, when each deployment seemed more treacherous than the last, the love letters that Savannah sent to John were one of the only things that kept him going. In one of the most heated scenes of the film, Savannah mentions to John that his father may have high functioning autism. The blog, Rethinking Autism, says “Dear John” is “one of the best autism portrayals” to come out of Hollywood.



Radio (Rating: PG)

Movie with DisabilitiesWhen Coach Jones meets the mentally challenged student who goes by the name of Radio (Cuba Gooding Jr.), he allows him to help out with his football team. While the townsfolk just aren’t sure about Radio hanging around the team, the star player Johnny Clay (Riley Smith) is downright mean about it. Nevertheless, Radio continues to support the team for the next three decades.


Do you have any additional films to add to this list? Let us know in the comments!