As if this last year of cabin fever wasn't bad enough, here you are: home sick. There are plenty of maladies that’ll take you out of commission for a day or two, from flus and colds to regular old allergies, and none of them are enjoyable. Luckily,
16 feel-good movies to watch when you’re ill will help nurse you back to health.
Even if you've been washing your hands every five minutes, slamming Vitamin C supplements, and regularly slathering your space in antibacterial gel, one crowded commute or wrong cough in your direction and you'll find yourself laid out for a few days. If the worst has come to pass and you’re feeling (or are already home) sick, at least you have one small consolation — now you'll have some time to catch up on your streaming queue.
When you’re under the weather, there are only two ways to go with movie viewing: leaning into the feverish delirium, or distracting yourself with some feel-good vibes. In either case, you're probably not feeling up for anything too heavy or complicated. Among the films recommended below are surreal romps (
), hilarious comedy specials ( Wine Country Not Normal and Annihilation), and even some nostalgic throwbacks that’ll take you back to your youth ( and Legally Blonde The Mirror Has Two Faces). At the very least, these films won't make you feel worse. 1 Legally Blonde is a mainstay on “best of” lists, and for good reason. This early-aughts movie won’t just lift your spirits — it’ll inspire you to be your best self (once you’re healthy, of course). For those who need a refresher: Legally Blonde Elle Woods (Reese Witherspoon) is a smart, high-spirited blonde who loves all things pink, and yet she’s consistently belittled by more “serious” folks, including her ex-boyfriend Warner. When she is accepted into Harvard Law School, her goal is to prove her worth to Warner and win him back. She ends up proving her worth to herself instead, in one of the most satisfying endings in film history. Click here to watch. 2 Eat Pray Love
What happens when you have everything and it still isn’t enough? You take a year off to travel the world and “find yourself,” as Elizabeth Gilbert does
Based on the Eat Pray Love. wildly-popular memoir of the same name, the movie stars Julia Roberts as Gilbert, who jets off to far-flung locales, hoping the change of scenery and culture will give her clarity. Famed TV tycoon Ryan Murphy directed the film, and also adapted the story for the screen (alongside Jennifer Salt). Click here to watch. 3 The Mirror Has Two Faces The Mirror Has Two Faces is classic Barbra Streisand — she did direct it, after all. The 1996 film stars Streisand as Rose, a Columbia University literature professor who has come to terms with her singledom. That is, until fellow professor Gregory (Jeff Bridges) comes along with a practical proposal: a platonic marriage. Like many Streisand projects, the movie’s meaning is greater than its synopsis. It’s dramatic enough to keep you treading, yet is ultimately a feel-good film for those dreary days in bed — and it might just also help you realize your self-worth. Click here to watch. 4 Love, Guaranteed returns to the screen with She’s All That’s Rachael Leigh Cook . She stars as an attorney, Susan, who experiences a dry spell in her career and takes on an unorthodox case: going undercover to expose an online dating website. When she falls for her client Nick ( Love, Guaranteed Daymon Wayans Jr.), she risks nullifying her hopes of proving that the dating site doesn’t actually work. Like all feel-good movies, this one has a happy ending, of course. You’re guaranteed to love Love, Guaranteed. Click here to watch. 5 Dumplin’ Jennifer Aniston in Netflix's movie 'Dumplin'.'
Jennifer Aniston stars in a film, you know it’ll be a hoot. Based on Julie Murphy’s novel of the same name, Dumplin’ breaks down fatphobia in the pageant world and beyond. It centers on Will, a young woman who is tired of people treating her like a second-class citizen because of her weight — especially by her mother Rosie (Aniston), who plans their town’s annual beauty pageant. In an act of rebellion, and to everyone’s surprise, Will signs up for the pageant. This Netflix Original will not only give you all the feels, but also shed light on how fatphobic society really is. Click here to watch. 6 Hurricane Bianca: From Russia with Hate 7 To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before 9 Wanda Sykes: Not Normal Wanda Sykes knows how to make people laugh, which is exactly what you need when you’re home sick. In her hour-long Netflix comedy special the iconic comedian talks about the former President Trump, opioids, racial inequality and the fact nothing about our country is anything close to normal — from her sane point of view, of course. Wanda Sykes: Not Normal, Click here to watch. 10 Patton Oswalt: Annihilation
Patton Oswalt's first special doesn't shy away from personal tragedy, but thanks to his genius, you’ll end up laughing instead of crying. The first 30 minutes are light-hearted fun, but it’s his nuanced perspective on the
untimely death of his wife that really lands. Patton Oswalt: Annihilation will produce a multitude of emotions. (Bonus: his verbal style makes this totally okay to “watch” with your eyes closed, which ideal for under-the-weather viewers.) Click here to watch. 11 Moxie
Booksmart, Flower, and Promising Young Woman had a three-way love child, the result would be Moxie . Amy Poehler’s second directorial feature follows Vivian, a 16-year-old student who is fed up with the problematic ways her high school handles social issues. So she bands together with like-minded classmates to create the zine “Moxie!,” which calls out the school’s negligence and sexism on campus. It’s both funny and irreverent, but also boasts a deeper meaning beneath the surface. Click here to watch. 12 The Wrong Missy David Spade and Lauren Lapkus star in , an irreverent comedy about what happens when you accidentally text the wrong person. Tim (Spade) intends to invite a potential date named Melissa to a trip to Hawaii, but he ends up texting The Wrong Missy another Melissa — aka “Missy” (Lapkus) — a woman whom Tim had a very strange date with months before. Inevitably, hijinks ensue on what was supposed to be a relaxing trip for Tim. This is a film that will make you glad you’re sick in bed instead of experiencing Tim’s turmoil. Click here to watch. 13 Bad Trip Dimitry Elyashkevich/Netflix
Hidden camera comedy
Bad Trip stars Eric André and Lil Rel Howery as two longtime friends who take a road trip from Florida to New York City, all in the name of love. With the notable exception of that scene at the zoo (it’s really something…), Bad Trip will have you cackling (and coughing) at the same time. The film also stars Tiffany Haddish and Michaela Conlin. Click here to watch. 14 Ken Jeong: You Complete Me, Ho
doctor-turned-comedian brings his comedy skills to stand-up in Ken Jeong: You Complete Me, Ho. The hour-long stand-up focuses on Jeong’s career in comedy, from The Hangover film series to Knocked Up to Crazy Rich Asians, not to mention his many nude scenes in said movies. If you’re a fan of his acting, this comedy special will have you in stitches (that Jeong probably sutured himself). Click here to watch. 15 Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby
Remember the golden era for
Will Farrell comedies — that period in the mid-aughts when the actor repeatedly won audiences over with his movies? Among the biggest successes from that time is Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, a story about the fictional rise and fall (and rise) of NASCAR racer Ricky Bobby (Farrell). Like other Farrell films, a lot of the laughs are derived from raunchy, immature humor. Nonetheless, you’ll still be laughing. Click here to watch. 16 Wine Country is Amy Poehler’s directorial debut, and it will make you wonder why she hasn’t been directing features her entire life. The film is about a group of middle-aged women at various places in their lives who reunite for a 50th birthday trip to Napa Valley. Apparently, the film was Wine Country inspired by a very real vacation the friends-slash-cast took, which includes Poehler, Maya Rudolph, Rachel Dratch, Ana Gasteyer, Tina Fey, and more. Click here to watch.
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This article was originally published on
Feb. 15, 2018