At The Movies: Triumph Over Adversity

Scott Woller

In This Series We Are Using Movie Clips As Jumping Off Points To Dialogue

What do the top ten movie themes tell us about community, culture, faith and church?


If you walk out of a film feeling all warm and fuzzy, there is no doubt that it probably centered on the theme of Triumph Over Adversity. In almost all movies, the main character faces an obstacle that he or she needs to overcome. However, in films with this theme, characters’ lives and stories are defined by the adversity they face. For instance, The Blind Side tells the story of a homeless boy who becomes an All American football player. Slumdog Millionaire tells the story of a Mumbai teen who becomes a successful contestant on the Indian version of “Who Wants to be a Millionaire.” The theme of Triumph Over Adversity almost always revolves around an exceptional person in a horrible and hopeless situation. Whether they are born into it or fall into it, these stories show how the human spirit can rise up time and time again over tyranny, injustice, or just plain bad luck.