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10 Pay It Forward-inspired Movies

Just think about it. You do someone a favor and tell them not to repay you, but to pay it forward to three other people, who, in turn, pay it forward to three other people, and so on, creating a global outpouring of goodness and humanity.

Here are 10 Pay It Forward-inspired Movies that you can watch with your family on Pay it Forward Day.

What day is National Pay It Forward Day?

Every year on April 28th, the globe celebrates Pay It Forward Day, a worldwide day of kindness.

What is International Pay It Forward Day?

Global Pay It Forward Day, which takes place every year on April 28th, motivates everyone all around the world to perform a simple act of kindness. It’s a day when you can repay someone’s generosity by being good to someone else.

What does pay it forward stand for?

The phrase “pay it forward” refers to when the recipient of a kind gesture does something kind for someone else instead of merely receiving or returning the original generosity.

What is an example of paying it forward?

Simple acts such as holding the door/elevator for others, creating a Facebook fundraiser, donating unused extras, running for a cause; doing the dishes and making the bed, treating someone while treating yourself, volunteering, picking up trash, hosting a drive, and smiling and giving a compliment are ten examples of paying it forward.

Pay It Forward-inspired Movies

Pay It Forward
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Kevin Spacey, Helen Hunt, Haley Joel Osment (Actors)
  • Mimi Leder (Director) - Leslie Dixon (Writer) - Peter Abrams (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

Pay it Forward

The story of a social studies teacher who gives an assignment to his junior high school class to think of an idea to change the world for the better, then put it into action. 

When one young student creates a plan for “paying forward” favors, he not only affects the life of his struggling single mother, but he sets in motion an unprecedented wave of human kindness which, unbeknownst to him, has blossomed into a profound national phenomenon.

As It Is in Heaven
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Michael Nyqvist, Frida Hallgren, Helen Sjöholm (Actors)
  • Kay Pollak (Director) - Kay Pollak (Writer) - Anders Birkeland (Producer)
  • (Playback Language)
  • Audience Rating: NR (Not Rated)

As it is in Heaven

Nominated for Best Foreign Film at the 2005 Academy Awards®, AS IT IS IN HEAVEN is the story of Daniel, a successful international conductor who returns to his childhood village in Sweden.

As It Is in Heaven
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Michael Nyqvist, Frida Hallgren, Helen Sjöholm (Actors)
  • Kay Pollak (Director) - Kay Pollak (Writer) - Anders Birkeland (Producer)
  • (Playback Language)
  • Audience Rating: NR (Not Rated)

Life is Beautiful

With a game, an Italian Jew (Roberto Benigni) shields his son (Giorgio Cantarini) from Nazi horrors in a concentration camp during World War II.

The Mission
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Robert De Niro, Jeremy Irons, Ray McAnally, Aidan Quinn (Actor)
  • Roland Joffé (Director) - Robert Bolt (Writer) - Fernando Ghia (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

The Mission

A visually stunning epic, The Mission recounts the true story of two men – a man of the sword (Robert De Niro) and a man of the cloth (Jeremy Irons).

Slumdog Millionaire
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Dev Patel, Freida Pinto, Madhur Mittal (Actors)
  • Danny Boyle (Director) - Christian Colson (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

Slumdog Millionaire

As 18-year-old Jamal Malik (Dev Patel) answers questions on the Indian version of “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire,” flashbacks show how he got there.

Part of a stable of young thieves after their mother dies, Jamal and his brother, Salim, survive on the streets of Mumbai. Salim finds the life of crime agreeable, but Jamal scrapes by with small jobs until landing a spot on the game show.

Braveheart
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Mel Gibson, Patrick McGoohan, Sophie Marceau (Actors)
  • Mel Gibson (Director) - Randall Wallace (Writer) - Mel Gibson (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

Braveheart

William Wallace is the medieval Scottish patriot who is spurred into revolt against the English when the love of his life is slaughtered.

Leading his army into battles that become a war, his advance into England threatens King Edward I’s throne before he is captured and executed, but not before becoming a symbol for a free Scotland.

The Pursuit Of Happyness
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Will Smith, Thandiwe Newton, Jaden Smith (Actors)
  • Gabriele Muccino (Director) - Will Smith (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

In Pursuit of Happyness

Based on true events – a man struggles to keep himself and his young son from diving headlong into homeless poverty while pursuing his dreams of a better life. An inspirational story, with Jaden Smith.

Power Of One
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Stephen Dorff, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Morgan Freeman (Actors)
  • John G. Avildsen (Director) - Bryce Courtenay (Writer) - Graham Burke (Producer)
  • (Playback Language)
  • Audience Rating: PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)

The Power of One

In racially segregated South Africa, a bullied white boy fights his own battle against apartheid with the help of two mentors – one white, one black. It a stirring drama, with Morgan Freeman and a very early role for Daniel Craig.

A Beautiful Mind
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, Ed Harris (Actors)
  • Ron Howard (Director) - Akiva Goldsman (Writer) - Brian Grazer (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

Beautiful Mind

A human drama inspired by events in the life of John Forbes Nash Jr., and in part based on the biography “A Beautiful Mind” by Sylvia Nasar. From the heights of notoriety to the depths of depravity, John Forbes Nash Jr. experienced it all. 

A mathematical genius, he made an astonishing discovery early in his career and stood on the brink of international acclaim. But the handsome and arrogant Nash soon found himself on a painful and harrowing journey of self-discovery.

The Blind Side
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Sandra Bullock, Tim McGraw, Quinton Aaron (Actors)
  • John Lee Hancock (Director) - John Lee Hancock (Writer) - Gil Netter (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

The Blind Side

Michael Oher (Quinton Aaron), a homeless black teen, has drifted in and out of the school system for years. Then Leigh Anne Tuohy (Sandra Bullock) and her husband, Sean (Tim McGraw), take him in.

The Tuohys eventually become Michael’s legal guardians, transforming both his life and theirs. 

Michael’s tremendous size and protective instincts make him a formidable force on the gridiron, and with help from his new family and devoted tutor, he realizes his potential as a student and football player

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