21 Nostalgic Movies To Watch When You're Feeling Anxious

Warner Bros. Pictures

I know a spoonful of sugar is supposed to help the medicine go down, but a good movie has the ability of being both the sugar and the medicine. When you're feeling blue, having a bad day, or you're stressed and overwhelmed, a well-chosen film can lift your spirits and turn your frown upside down. Don't believe me? The below  21 nostalgic movies to watch when you're feeling anxious are guaranteed to make your anxiety melt away.

Nostalgic movies, here meant by any film that makes you feel nostalgic, be it nostalgic for a decade past or for the feeling you got watching the movie when you first saw it. For example, Saturday Night Fever will make you nostalgic for the disco age, but Legally Blonde will make you nostalgic for when you and your girlfriends would stay up all night giggling and watching Elle Woods defeat sexism in her own life. Nostalgic movies are the perfect antidote to your anxiety because they'll take you far away from your problems while also bringing you joy. Seriously, when's the last time you watched an '80s teen classic and didn't feel happy? So, next time you're in a bad move, just pop in one of these 21 nostalgic movies to watch when you're anxious and let yourself relax.

1'Footloose' (1984)


Footloose is a ridiculous film. It's also pure '80s fun with lots of dancing and Kevin Bacon.

2'Winning London' (2001)


Remember the feeling of cuddling up on a Saturday afternoon to watch the most recent Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen movie?

3'Ghostbusters' (1984)


When there's something very wrong in your neighborhood, call on Ghostbusters to distract you from it.

4'Clueless' (1995)


Clueless is '90s perfection. That is all.

5'Back To The Future' (1985)


Back to the Future is peak nostalgia. But with better music and Michael J. Fox.

6'Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade' (1989)


Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade is the best Indiana Jones movies, don't @ me.

7'When Harry Met Sally...' (1989)


Perfect for when you're close to giving up on love and need a healthy dose of romantic hope.

8'The Princess Bride' (1987)


The Princess Bride will make you nostalgic for a time you never knew existed. Oh, to be Princess Buttercup's BFF...

9'Shrek' (2001)


Any child of the '90s knows that Shrek is a classic animated comedy and will never not be anything but perfect.

10'October Sky' (1999)


Young, innocent Jake Gyllenhaal is the cure for all that ails you.

11'Alien' (1979)


Alien will get your blood pumping, perfect for those times you want to work through your anxious energy without actually dealing with whatever it is making you so anxious.

12'You've Got Mail' (1998)


Two words: Tom. Hanks.

13'Hocus Pocus' (1993)


Nothing will make you feel more like a kid on Halloween than watching Hocus Pocus. (Except for maybe a large bag of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups.)

14'Grease' (1978)


Why is watching John Travolta thrust in a tight, leather outfit a cure for anxiety? And does it even matter?

15'Working Girl' (1988)


A movie so '80s, it will make millennials feel like they were there.

16'Rush Hour' (1998)


Rush Hour might be a little dated, but if it doesn't help you laugh your worries away, I don't know what will.

17'Sister Act' (1992)


Whoopi Goldberg goes undercover as a nun to give you two hours of pure love and entertainment.

18'Pirates Of The Caribbean: The Curse Of The Black Pearl' (2003)


Remember when Johnny Depp was funny and Orlando Bloom was your biggest Hollywood crush?

19'Miss Congeniality' (2000)


Miss Congeniality is probably the most happy, feminist, fun, delightful, insert-positive-emotion-here, nostalgic movie you will ever see.

20'Say Anything...' (1989)


Say Anything... is one of the more depressing or emotional movies on this list, but it also has peak John Cusack, so...

21'Aladdin' (1992)


Finally, if all else fails, nothing will take you away from your anxiety faster than a Disney animated classic like Aladdin.