TV For A Bad Day

Image from Marley & Me (2018)

Image from Marley & Me (2018)

Kelsi Boone


Howl’s Moving Castle (2004)


Howl’s Moving Castle is a lovely studio Ghibli film, that although quite different from the novel it’s based on (which I would also recommend!) stands well on its own. If you prefer more wholesome movies, this is a good one for you! It takes place in a fantasy world, and, aided by beautiful animated landscapes, is a great film if you’re looking for feel-good media. Hayao Miyazaki, the director of the film, said: “I would like to make a film that tells children ‘It is good to be alive”. I think this movie exemplifies this sentiment. Howl’s Moving Castle is available to watch on HBO Max, or can be checked out at the library.


Anne with an E (2017-2019)


Anne with an E is a Netflix Original show, based on the novel Anne of Green Gables and its sequels. It takes a couple of episodes to reach the truly heartwarming parts, but it’s a charming show right off the bat, mostly thanks to the exuberant protagonist, orphan Anne Shirley. It’s a historical show as well, taking place in the late 1800s. It’s one of my personal favorite shows, and though it was unfortunately canceled, there are three great seasons of it. If you like the show, I’d also recommend the novel. Since the show is a Netflix Original, it is only available to watch on Netflix.


The Secret World of Arrietty (2010)


The Secret World of Arrietty is another Studio Ghibli film. It’s one I specifically remember watching as a child, and, like Howl’s Moving Castle, is a visually gorgeous film. The movie is about tiny people living in the recesses of a home. The people are called borrowers. It´s a really cute movie and was one of my favorites as a child. It is available to watch on HBO Max or can be checked out from your local library.


Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)


Guardians of the Galaxy is a very popular marvel movie, and although superhero movies aren’t for everyone, I think this one is great if you’re looking for a funny, lighthearted film. I put this movie on the list because the core quality of all these movies is one specific attribute: Escapism. It’s a science fiction/fantasy film, which I think is perfect for this. Guardians of the Galaxy is available to watch on Disney +, or can be checked out from a library.


Midnight in Paris (2011)


Midnight in Paris is a lovely and underrated movie. It’s a romantic comedy, although the main plot focuses on the protagonist’s writing, which he finds suddenly inspired after discovering a way to travel back in time on a trip to Paris. He gets to meet cultural icons of the past, which he spends all his time dreaming about. It’s a visually pretty movie and has interesting thoughts about nostalgia and love. It’s relaxing and occasionally funny, and overall I really enjoyed the movie. Midnight in Paris is available on Netflix, or can be checked out at a library.


Marley & Me (2008)


Marley & Me, (based on the autobiographical novel Marley & Me: Life and Love with the World’s Worst Dog, which I would also recommend), is a funny and endearing movie about a dog that gets into a lot of trouble. It’s all a true story, which makes it even better. I love this movie, although I will warn you, the ending may make you cry. But I think the general happiness overshadows the sad ending. If you love dogs, this movie will definitely help cheer you up. Unfortunately, it’s not free on any streaming services, but you can try to record it on your TV, or check it out at a library. 


Modern Family (2008-2020)

Modern Family is a show I’ve watched (and re-watched!) fairly recently. It’s a show I never really gave a chance, but once I did, I loved it! It’s really funny, and though some of it can come off as a bit cheesy at times, that might be just what you need on a bad day. It’s still on TV often, and although you could drop into any episode just fine, I would start at the beginning. The earlier seasons are the best in my opinion. It´s a mockumentary-style show (Ex. The Office), meaning it’s filmed like it’s done by an invisible documentary crew. It ran for eleven seasons over twelve years, and though the show did decline, it’s overall pretty good for a show stretched that far. The slightly predictable sitcom format, plus funny characters and a general family theme earns its place on this list. Modern family is available to watch on Peacock, Hulu, and Disney +. You can also check out individual seasons at a library.