TEAM ZOELLA JUNE 10, 2020

17 Feel-Good Movies To Get You Through 2020

For all those times you need your spirits lifted and your wobbly bottom lip steadied, these are the feel-good movies to add to your watch list. Now go and show your sofa a good time.

So you’ve had a bad day, a bad week or, as is the case for most of us, a pretty effing wild YEAR and we’re only 5 months in. Can we consider this a false start and just start this 2020 over?

You embark on a journey of finding something cheery to watch, something that will make your little toes and your belly button tingle with inexplicable human joy.

Horrors and thrillers are strictly off limits, this is a period meant for low stakes drama, animations, rom-coms and wholesome movies that soothe your soul.

For all those times you need your spirits lifted and your wobbly bottom lip steadied, these are the feel-good movies to add to your watch list.
Now go and show your sofa a good time.

1 Clueless (1995)

We couldn’t compile a feel-good movies list and not include this coming-of-age 90’s sleepover classic, could we? Clueless follows the life of Cher Horowitz, a rich high school girl from Beverly Hills as she navigates, teenage life, designer labels, love and self-discovery. Full of charm, quotable one-liners and a wardrobe of plaid dreams, a gem like this is hard to find. Fun fact: it was loosely based on Austen’s novel Emma.

2 The Blind Side (2009)

Based on a true story, this heart-warming movie will have you cheering (and crying) from the side-lines.

3 The Goonies (1985)

If you haven’t seen this movie, we’re sorry for your loss because this is basically the original Stranger Things. A ragtag gang of kids called The Goonies stumble across an old map and embark on an adventure to find the lost treasure. But it’s not all plain sailing. This is 80’s nostalgia at its best!

4 Elf (2003)

To the people that say you can only watch a holiday movie at Christmas, you sit on a throne of LIES. Sometimes, you just need to escape to a world where a fully-grown man in an elf suit eats spaghetti with maple syrup and radiates positivity. It’s a perennial great for a reason. Watch it 365 times a year until smiling is your favourite thing to do.

5 Big (1998)

The ultimate feel-good movie. Things don’t get more wholesome than Tom Hanks and that toy shop piano scene.

6 Slumdog Millionaire (2008)

Starring Dev Patel and Freida Pinto, Danny Boyle’s Oscar-winning film tells the story of how a kid from the slums in Mumbai ends up competing for the big prize on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? Humour, romance and a toe-tapping Bollywood soundtrack are what cement this movie as one of the feel-good greats.

7 The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)

Will Smith stars alongside his son Jaden Smith in this moving film based on the true story of Christopher Gardner, a hard-pressed single parent who loses everything and builds a life from nothing. Inspiring, emotional and will most definitely make you cry those salty happy tears.

8 Sister Act (1992)

Restore your faith in life with this troupe of all-singing, all-dancing nuns. It was one of the first movies to have given nuns a real voice and personality behind the habit, and oh what personalities they had. One of the most underrated and important movies of our time.

9 Grease (1978)

Nothing will get those chills multiplying quite like a sing-a-long with Sandy, Danny and the rest of the gang. If you don’t know all the words, you haven’t watched it enough times. We don’t want your excuses.

10 Girls Trip (2017)

Four best pals known as the legendary Flossy Posse reunite for a boozy girls holiday to New Orleans. You will laugh so hard, pee will greet your knickers. Cheers to sisterhood!

11 Sex and the City (2008)

There’s no sh*t storm too BIG for these girls to handle. This unbreakable foursome never fail to remind us of the power and importance of good friendships and regular orgasms.

12 Dumplin’ (2018)

Based on Julie Murphy’s young adult novel of the same name, a plus-size teenage daughter of a former beauty queen signs up for her mum’s pageant as an act of rebellion. Together with her friends, she works to revolutionise the meaning of pageants and their unattainable beauty standards. That’s right, a movie about a curvy girl who is confident in her own skin, unapologetic and doesn’t need to shrink herself to love herself. Every body is a swimsuit body – say it louder for the people at the back. A bomb movie with an equally bomb soundtrack full of Dolly Parton jams – it’ll charm your country socks off.

13 Legally Blonde (2001)

Having an off-day? Get everybody’s favourite lawyer, Elle Woods, on the case. She’ll win every time.

14 The Parent Trap (1998)

A tiny Lindsay Lohan plays the part of two identical twins who were raised without knowing the other existed. When they reunite at Summer camp, they hatch a plan to swap places and get their divorced parents back together again. As feel-good movies go, it’s a double win.

15 Mrs Doubtfire (1993)

When life gives you lemons, watch Robin Williams! Daniel Hillard, a divorced actor attempts to win back his wife and spend more time with his kids by getting a job… as their female nanny. Williams is pure unparalleled sunshine, obvs. Especially when he sets fire to his t*ts.

16 The Greatest Showman (2017)

Of course it made the list. It IS the list for crying out loud.

17 Billy Elliot (2000)

Set against the backdrop of the 80’s miner’s strike in North East England, Billy Elliot tells the heart-warming story of an 11-year-old boy who wants to swap his boxing gloves for ballet slippers. It will make your heart do pirouettes.

What’s first on your list of feel-good films to watch when you need cheering up?

TEAM ZOELLA JUNE 8, 2020

May Book Club 2020: This Lovely City by Louise Hare

We’ve just finished reading Louise Hare’s utterly compelling debut novel, This Lovely City for May’s book club.

We’ve just finished reading Louise Hare’s utterly compelling debut novel, This Lovely City for May’s book club.

Set in post-Windrush London, This Lovely City could just as easily have been called This Lonely City as Hare writes a poignant story of young love, shameful prejudice and belonging.

A soaring debut set in the past but with disturbingly accurate contemporary resonance. Let’s find out what the team made of it!

The drinks are flowing. The music is playing. But the party can’t last.
With the Blitz over and London reeling from war, jazz musician Lawrie Matthews has answered England’s call for help. Fresh off the Empire Windrush, he’s taken a tiny room in south London lodgings and has fallen in love with the girl next door. Touring Soho’s music halls by night, pacing the streets as a postman by day, Lawrie has poured his heart into his new home – and it’s alive with possibility. Until, one morning, he makes a terrible discovery. As the local community rallies, fingers of blame are pointed at those who had recently been welcomed with open arms. And, before long, the newest arrivals become the prime suspects in a tragedy which threatens to tear the city apart.

Atmospheric, poignant and compelling, Louise Hare’s debut shows that new arrivals have always been the prime suspects. But, also, that there is always hope.

This June we’ll be reading two books, The Switch by Beth O’Leary and Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge

TEAM ZOELLA JUNE 5, 2020

Our #ComeWhatMay Favourites

Last month, we introduced a daily photo challenge to remember our days in lockdown and get our creative juices flowing. To mark the end of the challenge, we've rounded up a selection of a few of our favourite #ComeWhatMay moments!

Last month, we introduced a daily photo challenge to remember our days in lockdown and get our creative juices flowing.

We included photo prompts to inspire you to share your beautiful imagery from both past and present. Some of us posted beachy wanderlust shots from the deep depths of our holiday archives whilst others lived in the moment, embracing the instant nature of Instagram.

There were so many brilliant and original ideas and we have loved seeing how many of you took part.

To mark the end of the challenge, we’ve rounded up a selection of a few of our favourite #ComeWhatMay moments!

We’d love to know if you took part in our photo challenge and if would like to see more of these? Let us know!

TEAM ZOELLA JUNE 1, 2020

Black Lives Matter Resources

Following the tragic news surrounding the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers, many people are asking themselves, ‘what can I do, what can I say, what action can I take?’ to eradicate systematic racism and fight for justice.

Following the tragic news surrounding the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers, many people are asking themselves, ‘what can I do, what can I say, what action can I take?’ to eradicate systematic racism and fight for justice.

Overt and covert racism isn’t just an American problem. It’s a worldwide injustice. We are all accountable for the energy and actions that cause harm to BIPOC. We must ask more of ourselves and our friends and interrogate tough truths; to lean into the discomfort and denial and seek to understand our privilege as white people and what that power and protection has afforded us.

It’s never too late to cultivate change, empathy and education. To be better and do better. If you’re wondering where to start with your learning, or how to dismantle institutional racism in your own life and immediate circles – because, yes, it exists – we’ve rounded up some insightful resources to help you begin this life-long work.

It’s not up to our black friends to do the work, they are exhausted enough and still, we dare to ask more of them; to carry more weight for us. Enough.

The obligation to challenge the ways white supremacy resides within you is no one else’s job but your own. We all have to put in the work to undo the silence. Start now – speak up, be an active ally and, if nothing else, make it a priority to listen and learn.

Now more than ever, we need to use our voices to verbalise a narrative that doesn’t belong to us but that was systematically created by us, and to keep the volume up until black people and POC can breathe.

Below is by no means a comprehensive list, and we will look to constantly update it. If you think we are missing something important, drop it in the comments.

Accounts you can follow

Nova Reid – @Novareidoffical on Instagram Nova runs in depth and comprehensive anti racism courses. For anyone in a financial position to do so the knowledge you gain about becoming a better ally to POC is invaluable.

Munroe Bergdorf – @Munroebergdorf on Instagram

Donté Colley – @Dontecolley on Instagram

Stephanie Yeboah – @StephanieYeboah on Instagram – be sure to check out Stephanie’s IGTV ‘I’m tired of the white tears’ Her blog, her book, and her Patreon here. Steph has also hosted a Tuesday Takeover on Zoella, you can watch it here.

Chrissy Rutherford – @Chrissyford on Instagram. Chrissy uploaded a very helpful IGTV titles “It’s not enough to just say “I’m not racist”

Nicole Ocran – @Nicoleocran on Instagram. Nicole’s BLM highlight is really insightful and points out the emotional labour that POC go through when white people continually ask for help/directions/resources.

Jameela Jamil – @JameelaJamilOfficial on Instagram

Florence Given – @Florencegiven on Instagram

Rachel Elizabeth Cargle – @Rachel.cargle on Instagram.

Layla F. Saad – @Laylafsaad on Instagram Layla is the author of Me and White Supremacy.

Dom Roberts – @Domrobxtrts on Insgagram.

The Grief Case – @Thegriefcase on Instagram. Specifically, take a look at this post about supporting black communities.

The Conscious Kid – @theconsciouskid on Instagram. If you are a parent take a look at this post discussing the idea that children may be ‘too young’ to learn about race issues and how racism can be reinforced by the silence of white care givers.

Mireille C Harper – @Mireillecharper on Instagram. Be sure to read her post on education and advice regarding non-optical-allyship.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez – @AOC on Instagram congresswoman for NY has been sharing helpful information for those protesting.

Janaya Future Khan – @Janayathefuture on Instagram. Janaya has uploaded a live-stream to her IGTV aimed at white people only, to teach and educate, for people wanting to know what else they can do to help.

Gal-Dem Magazine – @galdemzine on Instagram.

From Privilege to Progress – @Privtoprog on Instagram.

Yazzie – @Standforhumanity on Instagram. Yazzie has also hosted a Tuesday Takeover on Zoella, you can watch it here.

Black Lives Matter – @Blklivesmatter on Instagram.

Books you can read

Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge. Reni is also asking people who buy her book to purchase from small independent sellers or better yet borrow from a friend and spend the money on donating.

Me and White Supremacy: How to Recognise Your Privilege, Combat Racism and Change the World by Layla F. Saad.

White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo. Find Robin’s other literature, podcasts, articles and more here.

I Am Not Your Baby Mother by Candice Braithwaite

So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

Girl, Woman, Other by Bernardine Evaristo

Race Matters by Cornel West

I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a world made for whiteness by Austin Channing Brown

Shows, Documentaries and Ted Talks you can watch

When They See Us – Netflix – “Five teens from Harlem become trapped in a nightmare when they’re falsely accused of a brutal attack in Central Park. Based on the true story”

I Am Not Your Negro – Documentary Amazon – “The memoir recounts the lives of James Baldwin’s close friends and civil rights leaders Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr., and Medgar Evers.”

Dear White People – Netflix

The Hate U Give -Hulu

What happens when I try to talk race with white people – YouTube – Insightful short video ft Renni Eddo-Lodge (author of Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race) that really succinctly sums up the issues at play when discussing racism with white people. Easy and accessible language amongst maybe some of the more academic content online.

White People, Enough: A Look at Power and Control | Jaelyn Coates | TEDxCSU

Let’s get to the root of racial injustice | Megan Ming Francis | TEDxRainier

Not all Superheros wear capes-how you have the power to change the world | Nova Reid | TEDxFrankfurt

Petitions you can sign

List of petitions you can sign from Black Lives Canada – This includes area codes you can use if you are not based in the US

Petition to Defund the police

Colour of Change petition to charge all officers involved with George Floyds murder be charged with murder

Change.org petition for jusitce for George Floyd

Black Lives Matter, two petitions you can sign to help black communities dealing with coronavirus and demanding racial data.

Black Lives Matter petition to defund the police

Places you can donate

Official George Floyd Memorial Fund Go Fund Me Page

List of funds for victims from Black Lives Matter

List of ways you can donate to help protestors

Important places you can donate to including the BLM Fund

Protest Information

Important information and numbers for those protesting in the US

UK Protest Information

What to bring and wear to a protest

Brighton Protest Information

Articles you can read

Why You Need to Stop Saying “All Lives Matter” By Rachel Cargle

10 Habits of Someone Who Doesn’t Know They’re Anti-Black

How to be a white ally by Stephanie Yeboah (Patreon)

100 Ways White People Can Make Life Less Frustrating For People of Color

Podcasts you can listen to

Code: Switch NPR – “Hosted by journalists of color, our podcast tackles the subject of race head-on.” Explores everything from pop culture, to politics, to sport. Race impacts every part of life.

Momentum: A Race Forward – Features movement voices, stories, and strategies for racial justice.

Intersectionality Matters! – Intersectionality Matters! is a podcast hosted by Kimberlé Crenshaw, an American civil rights advocate and a leading scholar of critical race theory.

About Race – Hosted by Reni Eddo-Lodge

Nova Reid and Vicki & Selina from loveprojectlove – A powerful conversation about race, racism and white privilege with Nova Reid

TEAM ZOELLA JUNE 1, 2020

A Little Bit Of Good News

Our weekly edit of sunshine through the trees. Find four stories that cheered us up last week.

SpaceX Reaches ISS

On Saturday 30th May SpaceX Nasa launched 2 US astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken into space. The journey marked the first time a private company has sent humans into space and nearly a decade since the US have sent humans to space. They have now docked and entered the International Space Station, however they didn’t travel alone, bringing a sequined dinosaur with them!

UK hotels host to host ICU workers

A brand new initiative launched by four travel industry professionals across the UK has united to offer two-night stays to all ICU frontline workers called Nights on Us. In an act of gratitude and appreciation to our NHS heroes, Tom Harding, James Wales, Jacob Pickering and Greg Früchtenicht are hoping to band together with the UK hotel industry to thank workers for their heroic efforts during coronavirus pandemic.

JK Rowling releasing new children’s book

One of the most successful authors of our time, JK Rowling has delighted fans with the announcement of a new children’s book. This will be her first non-Harry Potter that is aimed at children and is called The Ickabog. The story is coming in daily instalments on her website for free and will also have an illustration competition attached to it. Having written the story a decade ago she feels like now is the right time to release it.

Drive through Hellos

A care home in Devon has created a way to have loved ones see their residents in a drive-through restaurant set up with separate stations and PPE. After weeks of isolation people, we’re finally able to see their family. Watch the Video over on the BBC.

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