From “Tall Girl” to “Hidden Figures,” these are the best movies for tweens to watch with you or with their friends

Parents of tweens know that sometimes their TV and movie tastes can be a bit tricky. They’re too big for “little kid stuff” but not quite ready for more grown-up content aimed at teens and adults. Finding something suitable for kids in this in-between phase isn’t always easy, but we’ve aimed to make it easier by tracking down the best movies for tweens.

No matter which streaming services you subscribe to, we’ve compiled a list of movies for tweens that will be fun and engaging but still wholesome and age-appropriate. From fairy-tale re-tellings to mystery thrillers, there’s a little something for every tween, no matter how picky they may be.

Enola Holmes 2

Enola Holmes is one of the best movies for tweens.
Netflix

 

When we’re introduced to Enola Holmes in the first movie, she’s living in her super-sleuth brother Sherlock Holmes’ shadow. In Enola Holmes Part 2, she’s a detective for hire in her own right, who teams up with friends and the super-sleuth himself to solve a mystery that brings in all the twisty dark turns detective movies deliver, but styled to keep a younger audience’s attention.

Where to watch: Netflix
Rated PG-13. 

Dumplin’

Netflix

 

Dumplin’ (Danielle Macdonald) is the plus-size, teenage daughter of a former beauty queen (Jennifer Aniston), and let’s just say being the plus-size daughter of an aging beauty queen who is obsessed with looks and bodies ain’t easy. But Dumplin’s amazing (now deceased) aunt taught her to love herself and be herself, so she signs up for her mom’s pageant as a protest that escalates when other contestants follow her footsteps. This is such a great movie to teach the lesson to tweens that all bodies are pageant-worthy.

Where to watch: Netflix
Rated PG 13. 

Cinderella

Cinderella is one of the best movies for tweens
©Amazon Prime Video

 

The classic fairytale gets a modern makeover in this 2021 movie musical. Singer Camila Cabello stars as Cinderella, with the iconic Billy Porter as fairy godparent Fab G. The stacked cast also includes Idina Menzel as the evil stepmother and Minnie Driver and Pierce Brosnan as the King and Queen alongside Nicholas Galitzine’s Prince Robert.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video
Rated: PG

RELATED STORIES: 16 Kids’ Movies That Parents Love Too

Princess Diaries

Anne Hathaway and Julie Andrews in The Princess Diaries, which is one of the best movies for tweens.
©Buena Vista Pictures

 

Anne Hathaway stars in this 2001 comedy as Mia Thermopolis, a typical teen who gets the surprise of a lifetime when she finds out she’s royalty. The Queen of Genovia—who just so happens to be Mia’s long-lost grandmother (and the amazing Julie Andrews)—is on a mission to make Mia fit for the throne, but there are some hilarious hiccups along the way. This is a true classic, so get your kid on board before Princess Diaries 3 comes out so you can enjoy that one together.

Where to watch: Disney+
Rated G. 

The Sleepover

The Sleepover is one of the best movies for tweens.
Netflix

 

Imagine finding out your mild-mannered, super-protective mom is a former high-end thief in the witness protection program. That’s what happens to siblings Clancy and Kevin, and when they realize both their mom and dad have been kidnapped to pull off one last job with an ex-flame of their mom’s—the siblings and some friends team up to rescue their parents. This is one of the best movies for tweens out there right now, and it’s fun for the whole family.

Where to watch: Netflix
Rated PG.

Freaky Friday

Freaky Friday is one of the best movies for tweens
©Walt Disney Pictures

 

A rebellious teen and her uptight mom swap bodies after eating a magical fortune cookie in this hilarious and heart-warming comedy. To set things right, the two will have to learn to see things from the other’s perspective, which is easier said than done. Lindsay Lohan and Jamie Lee Curtis star.

Where to watch: Disney+
Rated PG.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before

Netflix

 

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them… all at once? Lara Jean Covey writes love letters to her crushes, as a diary of sorts—that are meant to be for her eyes only. When they all get mysteriously mailed out, her crushes confront her one by one, wreaking havoc on her life.

Where to watch: Netflix
Rated PG 13

Stargirl

Disney+

 

An unassuming high schooler finds himself inexplicably drawn to the free-spirited new girl, whose unconventional ways change how they see themselves—and each other. If your family are fans of America’s Got Talent, you’ll recognize Grace Vanderwaal, as the angelic-voiced ukulele player who captured Simon Cowell’s heart.

Where to watch: Disney+
Rated PG.

We Can Be Heroes

A group of children stares toward the camera with arms crossed
©Netflix

 

A band of kids with extraordinary talents has to fend off an alien invasion after their superhero parents are kidnapped. The team is led by Missy—the only kid who doesn’t have any superpowers of her own. This is a fun, empowering movie that shows kids that they can shine in their own right—even when their parents are superheroes!

Where to watch: Netflix
Rated PG.

Yes Day

A mother and father smile at their daughter between them
©Netflix

 

A family reconnects for a day of fun and adventure after mom and dad promise to say Yes! to anything their kids want in this funny flick starring Jennifer Garner and Jenna Ortega. Just be prepared for your kids to ask for a yes day of their own. All the time.

Where to watch: Netflix
Rated PG

Tall Girl

A tall girl walks with her arm around a shorter boy's shoulders
©Netflix

 

At 6’1, Jodi Kreyman has towered above her classmates for as long as she can remember, and her insecurities have grown just as quickly as her height. She’s gotten so used to slouching, thanks to ruthless classmates who’ve always made fun of her. But when a seemingly perfect exchange student shows up who’s even taller than her,  she’s ready to embrace who she is—and maybe find love in the process.
Where to watch: Netflix
Rated PG.

RELATED STORIES: The Top 10 Most Kid-Friendly Marvel Movies

School of Rock

Paramount

 

Who can believe this movie is already 20 years old? This 2003 classic finds Jack Black as Dewey Finn, an aging rocker kicked out of his rock band. Dewey becomes a substitute teacher at an uptight elementary private school, to try to turn his class into a serious rock band. What ensues is a super funny and endearing story your kids will love.

Where to watch: Paramount+
Rated PG.

Finding ‘Ohana

Four kids look back in front of a lagoon in Finding 'Ohana
©Netflix

 

Parents who loved watching The Goonies in the ’80s will likely love checking out this Netflix offering with a similar vibe. A brother and sister from Brooklyn spend a summer with family in Hawaii and end up on the hunt for glory and gold in the form of pirate treasure.

Where to watch: Netflix
Rated PG.

The Karate Kid

The Karate Kid is one of the best movies for tweens.
©Sony Pictures

 

This 2010 remake sees the titular kid practicing not karate, but kung fu. Jaden Smith plays Dre, who butts heads with a bully after he moves from Detroit to Beijing. Jackie Chan plays Mr. Han, the martial arts master who teaches Dre how to stand up for himself.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video
Rated PG.

Hidden Figures

A group of black women wearing badges walk down a hall
©Twentieth Century Fox

 

The unsung heroes of space exploration are given their due in this enlightening 2019 flick. Hidden Figures tells the story of the team of Black women mathematicians—Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson—who guided the first American astronaut into orbit. The film gives a critical look at racial tensions that existed at the time, and the terrible treatment Black Americans endured in the workforce.

Where to watch: Disney+
Rated PG.

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