17 Kickass Movie Quotes From Strong Female Characters

by Julie Sprankles
Sep 13, 2017 at 4:00 a.m. ET

Movies can do so much for us. They can make us laugh, they can make us cry, they can see us through gut-wrenching breakups. If we look back on pretty much every phase of our lives, there's always a movie that can take we can single out as a lifesaver.

Maybe movies are so important because they have the ability to inspire and empower. Nowadays, we're turning to films more and more to make us feel good — and more than that, to make us feel like we can take control in this crazy world. Thank God we have so many kickass female characters to look up to. 

Whenever we're in need of a little cinematic girl power, these fictional characters are our heroes. 

Updated by Sarah Long on 9/13/17.

1 /17: 'Wonder Woman'

1/17 :'Wonder Woman'

When it comes to female empowerment, Wonder Woman is kinda the be all, end all.

2 /17: 'The Incredible Jessica James'

2/17 :'The Incredible Jessica James'

It's all about confidence, and Jessia Williams' character has got it in spades. 

3 /17: 'Whip It'

3/17 :'Whip It'

Why is it that we often forget we don't need someone to come along and rescue us? Lace up, ladies! It's time to reclaim our rightful spots as heroes of our own lives. That Maggie Mayhem sure knows her stuff.

4 /17: 'The Wizard Of Oz'

4/17 :'The Wizard Of Oz'

If ever you hit a rough patch this year and feel lost, repeat after Dorothy: There's no place like home, there's no place like home, there's no place like home. There's such reassuring comfort in knowing you can always go back to the place that holds a special space in your heart.

5 /17: 'Mona Lisa Smile'

5/17 :'Mona Lisa Smile'

If, by chance, you're feeling lost and Dorothy's words just don't do it for you, then think of Wellesley girl Betty Warren's words in Mona Lisa Smile. If you set out to achieve a higher purpose in life, there will undoubtedly be times when you feel aimless. Just stay the course and remember the virtue you seek.

6 /17: 'Harry Potter'

6/17 :'Harry Potter'

As modern women, we place a premium on things like academic degrees and job titles. But, proving as always that she truly is the cleverest young witch of them all, Hermione Granger reminds us that all the cleverness in the world can't trump true friends and courage in the face of fear.

7 /17: 'Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind'

7/17 :'Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind'

Since when did we start letting the expectations others place on us make us feel guilty? By nature, humans aren't perfect. We're inherently imperfect — and that's OK. When you start to feel weighed down by pressure from everyone around you, breathe and reboot.

8 /17: 'Finding Nemo'

8/17 :'Finding Nemo'

Yep, she's a fish. But hey, if you ask us, she's a pretty smart one. Despite suffering from the worst short-term memory ever, she never forgets to stay positive... and keep on swimming.

9 /17: 'Steel Magnolias'

9/17 :'Steel Magnolias'

Have you heard of a little something called the b****y resting face, or BRF? It's a bit of a phenomenon, probably pointed out by a man, in which women always seem to be sporting an angry look whenever their face is in its relaxed state. And who can blame us? We've got a lot on our minds. But Truvy's right — nothing can turn the "b" in BRF to "beautiful" better than a simple smile.

10 /17: 'The Terminator'

10/17 :'The Terminator'

Listen, this woman saw the future world end, knew that the fate of mankind hung in the balance and depended entirely on her son, spent years hardening up in an asylum and then nearly got assassinated by rogue robots from the future. If she can find hope in humanity, so can we. Am I right?

11 /17: 'Sex and the City'

11/17 :'Sex and the City'

Carrie Bradshaw speaks the truth. Things change. Life moves on... sometimes in the way you thought it would and sometimes not. But — bottom line — you'll always have your girls to lean on.

12 /17: 'Mansfield Park'

12/17 :'Mansfield Park'

What a beautiful sentiment! Fanny Price is not your typical heroine — she is often depicted as timid and fearful. However, she grows in confidence and courage over time — enough, in fact, to utter this profundity, which encourages dreaming and wishing but cautions us to keep our wits about us.

13 /17: 'Precious'

13/17 :'Precious'

So many of the things that happened to Precious are inconceivable to the rest of us. And while her misfortunes were tragic, she managed to teach us all about the resolve of the human spirit and the fact that no one can take away your tenacity.

14 /17: 'Legally Blonde'

14/17 :'Legally Blonde'

There's more to Elle Woods than an effeminate Chihuahua and perfectly manicured nails. This sorority sister dug down deep to draw out strengths she never even knew she had. In the process, she shared a couple of pearls of wisdom every woman (and man and child!) can benefit from hearing.

15 /17: 'Brave'

15/17 :'Brave'

Sure, she may only live within the confines of a Disney film and the imagination of children everywhere, but Princess Merida's got the kind of gumption any woman would be proud to have.

16 /17: 'Where the Heart Is'

16/17 :'Where the Heart Is'

Today, tragic headlines are so common in the media that people barely bat an eye at them. We've narcotized ourselves with cynicism and apathy. But, as Novalee Nation so poignantly reminds us, we all possess something worth fighting for and believing in: goodness. Women, more than ever, need to know that.

17 /17: 'Gone With the Wind'

17/17 :'Gone With the Wind'

She may not have always been an enlightened woman, but Scarlett O'Hara eventually came around. In the end, she delivered a mantra worth repeating whenever you feel like folding: Tomorrow is another day. And each tomorrow is a new beginning.