The Ten Most Spiritually Literate Films
Ten More Spiritually Literate Films
The Ten Most Spiritually Literate Foreign Language Films
The Ten Most Spiritually Literate Documentaries
Ten More Spiritually Literate Documentaries
The Five Most Spiritually Literate Animated Films

Each year we see hundreds of movies and review those we can recommend to you as good companions for your spiritual journey. We encourage you to see these movies in the theater or via DVD or a streaming service. Click on the links to read full reviews.

The Ten Most Spiritually Literate Films

George MacKay as Scofield in 1917 1917
Directed by Sam Mendes
An uncommonly good antiwar film about two British soldiers in World War I sent on a mission of mercy.

Tom Hanks in A Beautiful Day in the NeighborhoodA Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
Directed by Marielle Heller
A moving drama about the transformative spiritual practices of Fred Rogers.

Viveik Kalra as Javed in Blinded by the LightBlinded by the Light
Directed by Gurinder Chanda
A buoyant tribute to the power of music to change lives.

Diane
Directed by Kent Jones
A deeply spiritual movie that provides a slice of a caregiver's life.

The Farewell
Directed by Lulu Wang
A sweetly moving portrait of a family facing its matriarch’s impending death.

A Hidden Life
Directed by Terrence Malick
An immersive story of a conscientious objector to the Nazis, his wife who supported him, and the community who didn't.

Light of My Life
Directed by Casey Affleck
An extraordinary and deeply spiritual drama about the power of stories and the parent-child bond.

Little Women
Directed by Greta Gerwig
The classic novel creatively recast as an exploration of sisterhood and the family as a school of love.

Rosie
Directed by Paddy Breathnach
Moving drama about a suddenly homeless family dealing with the challenges of this increasingly common situation.

The Two Popes
Directed by Fernando Meirelles
An enlightening drama about the humanity and differing visions for the church of Pope Benedict and Pope Francis.

Ten More Spiritually Literate Films

Aga
Direxcted by Milko Lazarov
Visually stunning portrait of the spiritual struggles of indigenous people to survive.

Dark Waters
Directed by Todd Haynes
A chronicle of courageous and tenacious investigations by a lawyer into harm caused by unregulated DuPont chemicals.

The Friend
Directed by Gabriela Cowperthwaite
A deeply spiritual drama about the beauties and bounties of friendship.

Harriet
Directed by Kasi Lemmons
A moving biopicture of Harriet Tubman as a courageous and charismatic freedom fighter.

Jirga
Directed by Benjamin Gilmore
A powerful story of a soldier seeking forgiveness and to make amends for a war crime in an Afghan village.

The Last Black Man in San Francisco
Directed by Joe Talbot
A uniquely affecting meditation on race, gentrification, and belonging.

Little Woods
Directed by Nia DaCosta
A bleak but edifying slice of small town drama in the midst of an opioid crisis.

Mary Magdalene
Directed by Garth Davis
A creative, relevant, and reverent film about Mary Magdalene, a deeply spiritual woman for all ages.

Peterloo
Directed by Mike Leigh
A mesmerizing historical drama about democratic fervor met with ruthless brutality.

The Report
Directed by Scott Z. Burns
The story of the long Congressional investigation into the CIA use of torture with suspected terrorists.

The Ten Most Spiritually Literate Foreign Language Films

And Breathe Normally
Directed by Isold Uggadottir
A moving story that showcases the need for openness and hospitality in our increasingly constricted world.

Ash Is Purest White
Directed by Zhangke Jia
An affecting epic melodrama exploring time, regret, and change.

In the Aisles
Directed by Thomas Stuber
A portrait of life after hours in a warehouse supermarket that illustrates the way of tenderness.

Non-Fiction
Directed by Olivier Assayas
A dramedy about all the ways digital technology is shaking the book publishing world to its core.

Pain and Glory (Dolo y Gloria)
Directed by Pedro Almodovar
A career-high glimpse into an artist’s triumphs and tribulations.

Parasite (Gisaengchung)
Directed by Bong Joon Ho
A masterpiece in filmmaking and class warfare dissection.

Portrait of a Lady on Fire (Portrait de la Jeune Fille en Feu)
Directed by Celine Sciamma
A sensitive and exhilarating period piece about forbidden love.

Tigers Are Not Afraid (Vuelven)
Directed by Issa López
A haunting fairy tale with an urgent message.

Transit
Directed by Christian Petzold
An elusive but effective exploration of migration and liminal space.

Woman at War
Directed by Benedikt Erlingsson
A watershed Icelandic film which will speak to the hearts and minds of all committed women who are working toward the creation of an ecological civilization.

The Ten Most Spiritually Literate Documentaries

Always in Season
Directed by Jacqueline Olive
A harrowing and revealing interrogation of the legacy of lynching in the United States.

Angels Are Made of Light
Directed by James Longley
An engaging documentary about Afghanistan's youth that activates our empathy.

The Biggest Little Farm
Directed by John Chester
The hopeful story of a natural farm built on biodiversity and a recognition of interconnections, impermanence, and transformation.

The Cave
Directed by Feras Fayyad
An emotionally rich portrait of an inspiring young doctor caring for her patients in the Syrian war.

For Sama
Directed by Waad al-Kateab, Edward Watts
A heart-wrenching and unflinching documentary filmed by a young mother and citizen journalist living through the siege of Aleppo, Syria.

Gift
Directed by Robin McKenna
A documentary showing how art keeps moving in circles of sharing, giving, and generosity.

Honeyland
Directed by Ljubomir Stefanov, Tamara Kotevska
A heart-stirring eco-documentary about a nurturing female beekeeper in Macedonia.

The Lavender Scare
Directed by Josh Howard
Another shocking and horrific expose of American hatred and ignorance.

Los Reyes
Directed by Bettina Perut, Ivan Osnovikoff
A gentle portrait of canine friendship in an urban skate park.

Raise Hell: The Life & Times of Molly Ivins
Directed by Janice Engel
Thought-provoking documentary on the journalist whose humor challenged government incompetence and social injustices.

Ten More Spiritually Literate Documentaries

American Factory
Directed by Julia Reichert, Steven Bognar
Documentary about how culture clashes in factories highlight changes in the global economy.

American Heretics: The Politics of the Gospel
Directed by Jeanine Butler, Catherine Butler
An educational and intriguing exploration of progressive Christians attempting to reclaim the radical potential of their faith.

Knock Down the House
Directed by Rachel Lears
A brisk and meaningful look at four women running for Congress and hoping to change American politics.

Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice
Directed by Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman
A top-drawer documentary about the longtime reigning queen of pop music.

Midnight Traveler
Directed by Hassan Fazili
A moving story of migration captured on three iPhones.

Mother
Directed by Kristof Bilsen
A touching documentary about the three virtues of a compassionate caregiver.

One Child Nation
Directed by Nanfu Wang
A deeply personal journey through a nation’s shadowy population control policy.

Sea of Shadows
Directed by Richard Ladkani, Sean Bogle, Matthew Podolsky
A documentary that unreels like an action thriller to tell the story of attempts to save the vaquita porpoise from extinction.

The River and the Wall
Directed by Ben Masters
A remarkable documentary that gives us hope that young people documenting the consequences of a border wall will make a difference.

Ximei
Directed by Andrew Cohen, Gaylen Ross
An affecting portrait of a fierce social justice fighter.

The Five Most Spiritually Literate Animated/Family Films

Abominable
Directed by Jill Coulter, Todd Wilderman
A magical animated film about the power of friendship and music.

Another Day of Life
Directed by Raúl de la Fuente, Damian Nenow
A poignant animated documentary which is an unforgettable anti-war film.

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
Directed by Dean Deblois
A beautiful animated feature celebrating supportive friendships between humans and animals.

Steven Universe: The Movie
Directed by Rebecca Sugar
A delightful and moving animated fable about change and community.

Toy Story 4
Directed by Josh Cooley
The latest adventure from a franchise that focuses on being true to yourself.