Whether you transform the backyard into a sit-down drive-in or the living room into a theater, you always need a few good movies for kids

Few activities bring the whole family together for a few (mostly) quiet hours of fun than hosting a movie night at home! But whether you transform the backyard into a sit-down drive-in or the living room into a theater, you always need a few good movies that will keep both kids and parents happily entertained. From the nostalgia of old faves to the newest hits, check out the best movies for families with 7-9-year-olds.

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Moana is a Disney film with strong female characters
Walt Disney Pictures

This animated musical about a Pacific Islander Disney princess who leaves home to find a way to save her people (with the help of a few animal and magical friends) has become a beloved family favorite since it was first released in 2016. Full of delightful songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda, heartfelt moments, and plenty of adventure, it’s a must for this age group and can be enjoyed on Disney+.


'Up' is a good movie for 7-9-year-olds
Pixar Studios

This magical Pixar pick about finding meaning and second chances within unexpected friendships is an ideal animated movie for kids of all ages—especially your seven, eight, or nine-year-old. A great story that helps children understand lessons in persistence, patience, and kindness, though be mindful of the first 15 or so minutes which touch on the subject of loss (odds are you’ll cry more than they will, though). Rated G, the 2009 film is available to stream on Disney+.


E.T. is a good movie for 7-9-year-olds
Amblin Entertainment

The 1982 iconic pic about a group of kids befriending and helping an alien still holds up today. Chances are, you watched this PG flick when you were eight or nine too! Starring a young Drew Barrymore, Henry Thomas (who you’ll recognize from many Mike Flanagan Netflix horror films), and some old-school special effects, this coming-of-age story should have your kids cheering by the end. Available to rent or buy on Amazon Prime and Apple TV. 

The Lion King

movies for 7 to 9 year olds

As if the original animated version wasn’t enough entertainment for the whole family, Disney went and remade the classic with a live-action 2019 version (rated PG). We honestly recommend watching both–kids will love the animated antics of the original, but the realistic look of the cubs in the remake is too adorable to be missed. Word of warning that Mufasa’s fate may prompt a few tears in more sensitive littles!

Charlotte’s Web

charlotte's web is a good movie for 7-9-year-olds
Paramount Pictures

Charlotte’s Web is a long-beloved book that teaches children about the importance of good friends and believing in yourself, while touching on the impermanence of life. The 2006 remake of the classic timeless tale featuring Dakota Fanning, Julia Roberts, and Oprah is a live-action animal-filled story your older child will absolutely adore, but we recommend reading the story and also watching the original from 1973 to compare and contrast. 


Ecanto is a family movie with strong female characters
Walt Disney Pictures

Disney’s smash hit from 2021 will have (or already has) everyone singing about Bruno. It’s the story of the magical Madrigals, a Colombian family where everyone has a special gift, save for Mirabel. But the film serves as a reminder that you don’t need a special “gift” to be truly special. Enjoy this wonderfully diverse, animated musical with your entire household, now on Disney+.

The Princess Bride

The Princess Bride
Act III Communications

This quotable classic from 1987 is a great pick for when you’re looking for a family-friendly film that brings you back to your own childhood. A story about the lengths someone will go to to be reunited with their one true love (and the interesting friends they make along the way) is part adventure, part comedy, part romance, and all fun. 

Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse

Into the Spiderverse is a good movie for 7-9-year-olds
Sony Pictures Animation

Kiddos will love this fast-paced, often hilarious comic book hero film that introduces Miles Morales, an Afro-Latino teen whose life turns upside down when he becomes Spider-Man. It’s a great film with a diverse hero at the forefront to look up to, with an excellent soundtrack to boot. Watch it before the sequel comes out later this year! Available to rent or buy on Apple TV and other streaming services.


Matilda is a family movie with a strong female character
TriStar Pictures

Based on the book by Roald Dahl, this classic story about a brilliant young girl with telekinetic powers who is frequently ignored and brushed aside by the grown ups in her life is a perfect movie for 7-9-year-olds. Kids will be thrilled to see all the creative ways little Matilda manages to get revenge and stick up for herself and her beloved teacher, Miss Honey. Make sure to read the book first!

Spirited Away

Spirited Away is a good movie for 7-9-year-olds
Studio Ghibli

Instill an early love of Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki films by watching this phenomenal, otherworldly film as a family. It follows Chihiro, a 10-year-old girl whose parents are unexpectedly turned into giant pigs while they visit an abandoned amusement park. It only gets wilder from there as Chihiro has to figure out how to reverse the spell that transformed her parents, all the while having to interact with supernatural creatures—some friendly and others foes. 

The Nightmare Before Christmas

The Nightmare Before Christmas is a good movie for 7-9-year-olds
Walt Disney Pictures

This popular stop animation film can be your child’s introduction to the work of director Tim Burton and is so good it can be enjoyed both during and after the holidays. Your littles will surely be singing along with Jack Skellington by the end of his journey from Pumpkin King to Sandy Claws—a journey that will teach them that you don’t actually have to change drastically in order to find a bit of joy in your life.

Mary Poppins” and “Mary Poppins Returns

Mary Poppins and Mary Poppins Returns are good movies for 7-9-year-olds
Walt Disney Pictures

A true classic starring Julie Andrews, Mary Poppins features catchy sing-a-longs and enough entertainment to keep even the most tech-loving Gen Alpha littles happy. The story revolves around a magical nanny who shows up at a time when a family is struggling to connect and reminds them to take a moment to stop and appreciate one another. The 2018 sequel starring Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda will also give you major nostalgic vibes as you watch it with your family. 

Star Wars Film Series

The Star Wars series are good movies for 7-9 year olds
© Lucasfilm Ltd

By the time your kids reach this age, they’ll no doubt begin to hear about Star Wars from their peers, and for good reason. These films are among some of the most beloved for the last few decades and show children the importance of friendship, teamwork, and allyship in the face of adversity (in this case, the Dark Side). Some of the action and fighting sequences may be a bit much for some of the younger kiddos, so tread carefully. 

Song of the Sea

Song of the Sea is a good movie for 7-9 year olds

This animated film (rated PG) follows a young Irish boy named Ben who discovers his mute sister Saoirse is a selkie (a mythical creature from Irish folklore). Together they set off to free the fairies from the spell of a Celtic goddess (and find her voice along the way). It’s a wonderful story about the bond of siblings, and with a 99% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, this movie for 7-9-year-olds will be sure to please the whole family. 


Pixar Studios

If you’re looking to prompt a conversation about climate change and/or the importance of caring for our environment with your kiddos, this is the movie! It’s a cautionary tale about what might happen to our planet if we continue to pollute it to the point of being inhabitable, through the eyes of a sweet little robot. Watch this movie for 7-9-year-olds on Earth Day or any other day on Disney+.


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