Best & Surprising Family Easter Movies 2024

Is your Spring semester jammed packed with extra curricular activities? Do you blink and before you know it THE Resurrection Sunday is upon the fam? I’ve got you! Put up your tired feet and grab the popcorn. This AMAZING Holyday doesn’t have to be overlooked. Check out my Easter Movie & Discussion Guide. There’s some oldies in here but also some surprises.

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  1. Theo Presents

Do you every wish you could teach Biblical truths with humor and well-done animation that rivals Mickey Mouse and his friends? This 15-episode mini-series created by Whitestone Media is by FAR my favorite contemporary family creation. The episodes are short: 15 minutes or less. The episodes always begin with two mice who are shenagan-ing (ie. sneaking fresh cookies from the kitchen) and wise grandfather-like Theo setting them on a better path through Bible story-telling and contemporary analogies.

Wonderful for children 10 year-olds younger, “Saving Grace” and “Salvation” lay some great ground work for these $10 Easter terms that kids may hear but might not fully understand. Heck, they’re great review for me–and you 😉

So IF you need something simple but well-done and mixed with well-timed humor for the Easter season start here.

2. Moses: Prince of Egypt

An animated, musical rendition on Moses’ role as God’s delivery agent for freedom for the enslaved Hebrews–a great foreshadowing of Christ’s ultimate rescue for you and me from an enslaved, sinful DNA to an adopted child of God via Jesus’ substitutional death and resurrection.***

On lighter note, this movie also is a great way to:

  1. Ponder the possible brotherly connection of Moses to Pharaoh
  2. Provide a visual framework for related holidays like Passover and cornerstone Bible Events like Baby Moses rescue from the Nile River, Meeting God at the Burning Bush, the 10 Plagues and The parting of the Red Sea

During this Family Easter Movie, ponder these questions as family:

  1. Moses’ family had to be brave in keeping him safe as an infant. What ways did Mary and Joseph also put faith to action to keep Jesus as a child safe from harm?
  2. Moses lived in the desert unseen for 40 years before coming into the public spotlight. Did Jesus have a time when he lived anonymously? Why do you think God allowed for this time? Do you feel pressure to live in the public eye about your faith? Why or why not? Do you think there is a time to live more publicly than privately?
  3. How did God appear to Moses? Did you like the way the director choose to retell the story of the burning bush? Why or why not? Be specific. While Jesus lived on earth, how did he hear from God?
  4. Which plague would you like to witness but not experience? If you had to experience one plague which one would you choose?
  5. Moses told the people to brush lamb’s blood on their doorposts to keep away the Angel of Death. The Angel of Death: SIN still exists today and poisons our heart. One of Jesus’ nick-names is “the Lamb of God”. Do you think this a great name or a puny name? Why?

***Whew!! if that last sentence made your head spin or you have NO idea what I mean by Christ’s ultimate rescue plan. Take heart. Here’s some resources . . .

3. Ben-Hur

The 1959 version starring Charlton Heston. Not the newer one. Yes, this is long movie at 3 hours and 42 minutes ,😯 but it has worked great with our younger kids (4 and 7) when we have broken it up into 3-5 sections over say a week or two. With the film covering 620-page book than contemporary films the character development is rich.

Judah Ben-Hur’s experience brutal Roman slavery as a fallen Jewish aristocrat when his boyhood best friend betrays him for the sake of Caesar. While Judah journeys towards freedom and revenge, he is peppered with multiple Jesus encounters. In the end, he witnesses Christ’s suffering and resurrection and is found elated and challenged by the counter-attitude Jesus exudes towards his own enemies.

Reflecting on this family Easter movie, ask:

  1. What did Judah Ben-Hur need when Jesus first served him? What is one of Jesus’ nick-names? (He is the Living Water) Verse
  2. Why do you think the director choose not to show Jesus’ face?
  3. When Judah Ben-Hur first met the slave master of the Roman row-ship how would you describe their feelings towards each other? How did this change? How would you describe God right now to someone else? What event could change this answer?
  4. Why did the slave master decide to adopt Judah? What special ways did he show Judah was his son?
  5. Jesus wants to adopt us into his family. How does Jesus choose who he will adopt into his family? Is it based on good behavior? Good looks? Good grades? Athletic ability? Read . . .
  6. Judah’s mother and sister became lepers. How were they treated? How did they view their own worth? Who helped them have hope again for the future? Where are you lacking hope and need someone to come along beside you and renew your spirit?
  7. Besides Jesus’ resurrection, what miracle would you most like to have witnessed?
  8. Like Judah’s mother and sister, people can be shunned because of their behavior, sickness or bad habits. Is there a family or friend who might feel isolated? How can we encourage them?

Another MEGA Easter film?! Yes our littles❤️ ’em!

**Mommy-guilt prevention tip: Please don’t pressure yourself to watch all of these movies during the LENT season. I love rotating them around. We probably watch one of these two Heston movies each year due to their length and other movie we enjoy using as object lessons.

Movies can be a great imagination starters. You get remind your fam these are TRUE stories, not Hollywood fairy tales! And it can spark some great discussion or lively debate about which parts of the movie are actually in the Bible–buckle up!–you *might* just discover some new details yourself 🙂

With that said, having variety of family Easter movies to choose gives you a chance to revel in the LENT season without exhausting yourself! 😘 On the other hand, if you’re itching to create a more robust yet playful LENT season before Easter Sunday check out How to Celebrate Easter as a Christian Family with Pizazz.

3. The Ten Commandments

Charlton Heston movie #2. A great addition to the animated version, Moses: Prince of Egypt. Again, our young kids have still enjoyed this because it:

  1. Provides longer story-telling of the plagues, including the first celebration of Passover, than the Prince of Egypt
  2. Shows the possible tension among royal family members as Moses steps up his loyalty to his Hebrew family
  3. Gives a lengthier story line after the parting of the Red Sea such as:
    • worshipping the golden calf
    • acquiring water from a rock
    • miracle of manna
    • Joshua’s role friendship with Moses

Questions to consider (or use Prince of Egypt Question Guide):

  1. When do you think Moses realized he was adopted? When do you think Jesus knew he wasn’t Joseph’s son? Do you think Mary told him or did he just know? Or . . .
  2. Do think there were items the Isrealites couldn’t take with them when they were freed that they wished they could pack? What items would be hard for you to leave if you could only fill a backpack with belongings? What “belongings” did Jesus have to leave at his heavenly home when he lived on earth to come and save us?
  3. Did Jesus ever celebrate Passover?

4. The Iron Giant

This is one of those out-of-the box Easter recommendations. If you’ve been with me for a bit, you’re familiar with my conviction: Biblical truths can be hidden in experiences that are not blatantly “Christian”.

in the heat of the Cold War, a ginormous robot befriends nine-year old boy, Hogarth, and in the end sacrifices himself to protect the boy’s hometown from nuclear attack.

Is it a perfect allegory to Jesus’ life and resurrection? No. But the robot’s origin is mysterious–other world-y and his friendship bring life to Hogarth’s spirit it hadn’t experienced since his dad’s death. And there’s more, but I don’t want to spoil it 😉

Best way to approach this film for Family Easter discussion:

  1. Compare and Contrast: Name ways the Iron Giant is similar to Jesus. How is he different?
  2. How and why did people misunderstand the Iron Giant? How could this have been prevented? Do you think we ever misunderstand God?
  3. Agree or disagree: The same rule applies to understanding God as to the Iron Giant.
  4. Personal Parenting Question: Hogarth didn’t feel safe telling his mom about the Iron Giant. Are there topics or questions that you have made “no-fly” zones for my kids? **Remember if you aren’t your kids’ first point of reference, they’re going to seek answers out from somewhere/one else.
  5. What hope did Hogarth have at the end of the movie that the Iron Giant wasn’t gone/dead forever? What evidence do we have that Jesus really resurrected? Is it ever hard to believe that this event isn’t a fairy tale?
    • For tweens and teens this is such a pivotal question. Quick read books like More than a Carpenter by Josh McDowell or Cold Case Christianity for Kids can be a great read aloud to educate yourself on outside sources affirming the validity of the Gospels (First four books of the New Testament) as well as other pieces of the Bible and the events therein.

5. SuperBook Episodes

Looking for a fresh, short, animated visual of Jesus’ last days before the crucifixion, death and resurrection appropriate for your younger kids? The Superbook Series created by CBN provides up-to-date graphics and Seasons 1-3 can usually be streamed freely through platforms such as Amazon Prime, Rightnow Media or Superbook’s Homepage for free. The Last Supper and He has Risen! (Season 1) are both 27 minutes long and can provide a great frame work for your children to the Easter season.

Tangent Alert . . .

Check out CBN free discussion guides and kids Superbook Game App for further enrichment. The games are pretty basic, 😯😁 nothing that competes with Nintendo Switch platforms! Buuuut while the games aren’t uber impressive, the short movies are engaging and well done. CBN is continually creating new episodes retelling various Bible Stories every 4-6 weeks and now has 5 Seasons of material. By becoming a CBN Animation Club Member AKA donating $25 and thereafter every 4-6 weeks (when a new episode is released) you gain access to Seasons 1-5 and ability to stream on up to 3 devices. No cancelation fee.

** I know you may have different feelings about CBN, whether politically or theologically, but these episodes are puurty solid in their Bible story-telling and animation quality. Not to mention, adding a little humor and relatability for kids through the main characters Joy, Chris and his antic-filled robot Gizmo. What I appreciate: the membership “donations” are specifically returned to CBN’s animation efforts in creating more Superbook episodes. Period. So for all the sup-pare Christian B-rated kids TV series out there, this is not one of them. Help ’em keep going! (AND no, I don’t get compensation for saying this.) I wish Theo Presents (See Item #1) had continuing creation momentum like Superbook because their material truly is superb. In fact, I prefer Theo Presents style even more than Superbook but they have waaaay less episodes. 😥

6. The Lion King

Whaaat?! Well, I’m here to challenge and encourage you to approach this classic Disney tale with fresh eyes. The following questions don’t require lengthy answers but they might just be a way to help your family investigate emotions and motives of characters in the Easter story . . . and your own identity in God’s great story:

  • What emotions did Mufasa show when his cub Simba was presented to the Pridelands? Do you believe God views you similarly? (VERSE)
  • What challenge did Scar give to Simba about going to the Elephant Graveyard? Did he make Simba doubts Mufasa’s good intentions towards him? How does this relate to Satan’s dialogue with Eve in the Garden? (VERSE)
  • When Mufasa sacrificed himself to save Simba, Scar basically made Simba believe he had performed an unforgivable wrong. Was this true? Is our sin unforgivable?
  • When Simba meet Rafki again as a grown cub, he encouraged Simba to remember his origins again as Mufasa’s son. As a believer in Christ, do we ever forget our worth and authority as God’s children. For further additional study check my Designer Righteousness Devo.

That’s a wrap on Family Easter Movies annnd don’t forget the popcorn!

So there’s some movie ideas to keep the Easter story fresh! I considered adding some other titles but they’re more for high school and college age families with more mature content.

For some, participating in LENT (AKA giving up something for the 40 days before Easter starting on Ash Wednesday) is a great way to remind ourselves that Easter Sunday is around the corner. Who wouldn’t get excited about consuming relinquished chocolate again if you gave it up for almost 8 weeks?! Sweets aside, I encourage you to pick 1 or 2 flicks from above, let your hair down and make the viewing time special with sweet treats or rarely purchased, fun beverage. Our kids love celebrating Passover every year partially because it’s a seldom occasion to drink bubbly grape cider in mini-wine glasses 🤣🥳 Who knew?!

Remember if you pick one of the uber long films don’t obligate yourself to watching it all even in one weekend. Or address all the questions I’ve provided. Let the plot marinate in those little hearts! Parenting is a long-term game. Dumping a seedling with a 5-gallon bucket of water doesn’t make the plant sprout any faster!

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