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6 Motivational, Inspiring Films well worth a watch

I enjoy watching films that challenge me, inspire me, set me dreaming or that jolt me to action.
Here are a few.

1. Deep Water (trailer). “Deep Water is the stunning true story of the first solo, non-stop, round-the-world boat race, and the psychological toll it took on its competitors. Sponsored by the Sunday Times the event attracted a field of nine, including amateur sailor Donald Crowhurst. They set out to circumnavigate the globe in late 1968. Part adventure yarn and part metaphysical mystery, Deep Water is an unforgettable journey into one man’s heart of darkness.” Even before departure Crowhurst realises that neither he, nor his boat, is capable of the journey. That he still begins is alarming, admirable, stupid, and a cautionary tale for me.

2. Into the Wild (trailer). A film that touched me deeply. Parts of it reminded me of why I love to travel, and of the glories and rewards you reap from living simply. The film reminded me of the freedom of the open road – freedom of movement, freedom of choice, freedom of thought and ambition. It reminded me how beautiful the world is, how good many of the people are. It reminded me of the futility of chasing pay cheques and ‘stuff’. It reminded me not to forget all that. It reminded me of the importance of family, and the overwhelming importance of that.

3. Touching the Void (trailer). Everyone knows the story behind Joe Simpson’s “Touching the Void”. A climbing trip gone wrong. A man cutting the rope that holds his friend. Horrible injuries, an argument between moral courage and turpitude, a brave escape… There’s plenty to get you thinking!

4. Man on Wire (trailer). “It’s impossible, that’s sure. So let’s start working.” I’ve written before about this mad, bold attempt to tightrope between the Twin Towers and the impact it had on me. “Why did you do this?” “There is no why.” Chapeau! Marvellous!

5. In the Shadow of the Moon (trailer). You’re probably sick of me banging on about my fascination for standing on the moon. So just watch the film!

6. Encounters at the End of the World (trailer). During this weird but wonderful Antarctica documentary, I grew more eager than ever to experience the cathedral-like aura and majesty of Antarctica. This film, about “the professional dreamers” who call Antarctica ‘home’, reminded me of the staggering size of the place, and of its unique allure. Of all the wonderful places I want to experience, Antarctica remains number one on my list.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this list. Let me know in the comments what films you suggest that I should watch. Thank you!

You might also be interested in some of the videos I have made on my expeditions.

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  1. James Paterson Posted

    Hoping that Big River Man, out this Friday (though on limited release by the looks of it) will be an inspiring watch. Swimming the Amazon is certainly quicker than walking it…

  2. James Paterson Posted
  3. Thank you for great tips! I would like to add few more, but these movies are not based on true stories, but I still like their spirit:
    Gandhi –
    Le Grand Bleu –
    Valley of Flowers –

  4. Ahh.. the Gandhi is true story ofcourse 🙂

  5. Cool runnings!

  6. Just watched 180 degrees South ( Wonderful, especially as I am about to enter Patagonia and be there for a while, but I think it is very inspirational anyway, in many ways.

  7. Thanks for the post, I appreciate watching movies that test me, move me, set me envisioning or that shock me to activity. I personally liked Man on wire movie.



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