Awe-Inspiring Female Lead Characters — 11 Fierce Movies Where Women Defy Expectations

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Best Movies With Female Lead Characters Who Inspire Us

In a world where perception and aspirations are rooted in stories, here are the best movies with female lead characters that tell the tale of strong, independent female protagonists who inspire us.

Determination takes on new meaning, and courage is given another light to shine from. The strong female leads in these 11 movies come from all walks of life — be it high fashion, intergalactic battles, or magical realms — their worlds deserve exploration because they teach audiences of all ages such valuable lessons.

So this International Women’s Day, let’s celebrate the best movies with female lead characters!

Best Movies With Female Lead Characters Who Inspire Us

1. The Devil Wears Prada” (2006) – Andrea Sachs

Female Lead Characters

If you’re looking for movies with strong female leads, then here’s Devil Wears Prada. It’s about a journalist named Andrea Sachs, played by Anne Hathaway. She starts as an intern in the high fashion industry, however, soon after starting her job, it becomes evident that she might have bitten off more than she can chew.

But as time goes on, we see her toughen up and grow into a confident woman who can hold her own against anybody.

2. Mulan (2020) – Mulan

Mulan represents bravery, determination, and loyalty. She is voiced by Ming-Na Wen and paints the picture of someone doing whatever it takes to protect their family.

When Mulan disguises herself as a man to take her father’s place in the army, she challenges traditional gender roles in society. With this movie, we learn that potential and courage are not defined by gender.

This story is meant to remind us all that no matter how many labels society tries to put on us or box us into, our bravery knows no bounds.

3. Legally Blonde (2001) – Elle Woods

Elle Woods is living proof that you can be smart and stylish at the same time. Played by Reese Witherspoon, Elle challenges preconceived notions about who she should be as a person when something unexpected happens: she ends up in Harvard Law School.

From here on out we watch as Elle achieves great things using just two things; determination and authenticity. The film ultimately teaches viewers an important lesson: brilliance comes in all forms.

4. Wonder Woman (2017) – Diana Prince

Diana Prince embodies three qualities: courage, compassion, and strength – oh yeah… I almost forgot to mention she’s also a warrior princess. Portrayed by Gal Gadot, Diana is a symbol of hope for humanity as she discovers her true destiny.

This is one of the best female lead movies, that encourages us all to fight for justice and to embrace our unique strengths. Above all else, it reminds us that we have the power to make a difference in the world.

5. Hidden Figures (2016) – Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson

Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson are the three women that “Hidden Figures” tells the untold stories of. These three intelligent African American women played large roles in NASA’s space missions.

They were represented by Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, and Janelle Monáe. The barriers they broke from racial and gender aspects inspire people of all ages to chase their dreams even when constrained by society. This movie highlights that diversity isn’t a limitation, it is an asset.

Related: 10 Things All Strong, Confident Women Do Differently

6. The Hunger Games Series – Katniss Everdeen

In “The Hunger Games” series Jennifer Lawrence plays Katniss Everdeen as she becomes the face of a movement. Her journey starts off with her not wanting to be involved but transforms into inspiring others to resist their oppressors.

She shows us that just because someone can seem ordinary does not mean they cannot make extraordinary changes when fighting for justice.

7. Harry Potter – Hermione Granger

Emma Watson brings Hermione Granger to life in the Harry Potter films as a character who is not only smart but also brave while being sorted into Gryffindor.

Her loyalty and courage during dangerous situations teach viewers how important those qualities along with friendship are in this world. This character shows everyone that their true strength lies within themselves and what makes them unique.

8. The Help (2011) – Aibileen

Viola Davis portrays an African American maid raising white children during the 1960s civil rights movement which sheds light on this era in history in the movie “The Help”.

Aibileen’s wisdom and resilience showcase empathy, understanding, and courage when fighting against injustice. She reminds us that no matter how small our voices may seem they can contribute to big societal changes.

9. Erin Brockovich (2000) – Erin Brockovich

Julia Roberts acts as Erin Brockovich in the movie adaptation of her real-life story. This strong woman almost single-handedly takes down a powerful corporation that is accused of polluting a city’s water supply.

Her determination and courage are inspiring as it shows viewers the impact one person can make while fighting for justice. She motivates everyone to do what is right even when faced with overwhelming odds.

10. Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003) – The Bride

The film “Kill Bill: Vol. 1” gives us The Bride who is portrayed by Uma Thurman as a former assassin getting revenge. Her resilience and determination after being betrayed show how strength can come from adversity.

This character exhibits growth, self-discovery, and the pursuit of justice which emphasizes their power.

11. The Silence of the Lambs (1991) – Clarice M. Starling

Jodie Foster and Julianne Moore take on the role of Clarice M. Starling in Thomas Harris’s novels where she is at the center of it all. In the movie adaptations, this character shows intelligence and courage while facing Hannibal Lecter head-on.

Facing fears, seeking knowledge, and standing tall are just a few elements Clarice brings to this story to strengthen society’s understanding of justice.

Related: Strong Women Don’t Have ‘Attitudes’ — We Have STANDARDS

Intrepid, unstoppable, and inspiring, these female protagonists don’t let anything stop them in life.

Some of the best movies with female lead characters will make you want to do better. Others will give you the courage to face your fears. And still others will remind you that there is strength in everyone – if only they wield it!

So, this International Women’s Day, celebrate by watching these strong female leads.


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