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12 Family Friendly Movie Heroes

Captain America stars as the hero of Captain America: The First Avenger. Watch for his return in the new movie Captain America: The Winter Soldier releasing in 2014.

Photo ©Paramount Pictures

Get ready to honor movie heroes at the 2014 Oscars. According to the show’s producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, this year’s gala will give the nod to big-screen movie heroes of all types—real-life, super, popular and even animated.

“Sometimes the best heroes are the people in our family.”

To get in the spirit of the celebration here’s some of our favorite movie heroes for family viewers.

What says hero better than a caped crusader in tights. Superman is the iconic film hero. In 2011 Warner Brothers released an 8-disc Blu-ray package featuring their big screen adaptations of the humble hero made between 1978 and 2006. While Christopher Reeves may be the most famous Superman, some other actors who’ve since donned the suit include Dean Caine in Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, Brandon Routh in Superman Returns and Henry Cavill in Man of Steel.

While Marvel’s The Avengers brought the whole gang of comic book heroes onto the screen for one big epic adventure, Captain America gets our vote for movie hero. This wanna-be soldier that went from scrawny to sculpted thanks to a government experiment. But he doesn’t let his bulky build go to his head. Always the gentleman and patriot, Captain America (played by Chris Evans) goes about saving the day without looking for accolades.

For many young viewers, it’s easy to relate to sports heroes—especially the underdogs. No one seems like more of a long shot than Rudy. Undersized and academically challenged, this protagonist dreams of a spot on the team of Notre Dame’s Fighting Irish. Thankfully this character, based on a real life person, has the persistence to disregard the odds and pursue his dream. Another film based on a real life team follows a group of football players that become heroes when they put tragedy behind them to rebuild a team and a town in We Are Marshall.

An underdog contender gets his day in the ring in the movie Rocky. Written by Sylvester Stallone, the making of this movie is almost as entertaining as the story of the small time boxer who makes good. Fighting for money to feed his family, the character of James J. Braddock in Cinderella Man became a boxing legend in the 1930s and inspired a defeated and struggling generation of Americans.

The Civil Rights movement in the United States called for all kinds of heroes. Atticus Finch (played by Gregory Peck) in the movie To Kill a Mockingbird is asked to defend a black man accused of assaulting a white woman in the community. Despite the town’s reaction, Finch remains true to his values and exemplifies them to his children.

George Bailey has big dreams to travel the world. But in the movie It’s A Wonderful Life, this character (played by James Stewart) shows that heroes don’t have to jump over tall buildings, wear capes or even make news headlines. Working from his office in the Bailey Building and Loan, he becomes a hero to the families that he helps to buy a home.

A hero isn’t defined by age as shown by our next choices. Early in his school career at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Harry Potter discovers he has a role to play in protecting the school and the other students from a yet unnamed villain. Luckily with the help of his friends Hermione Granger and Ronald Weasley, he meets the challenge. Another young heroine discovers how brave she can be when her father goes missing at sea. Left alone on the family’s tropical island, Nim contacts her favorite author and asks her to help. All kinds of people find their courage in the movie Nim’s Island.

Sometimes the best heroes are the people in our family. When a little fish goes missing, it is his father who saves the day. Braving all kinds of threats in Finding Nemo, a nervous clown fish puts his fears behind him in order to find his son. The Incredibles are an entire family of superheroes who are forced into hiding when the public turns against them. But when the family faces a new threat, they along with their other superhero friends all work together to save the day.

Whether they fly through the sky or live within the walls of your own home, here’s the chance for us all to celebrate heroes.


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