The 13 Best Movies to Fall Asleep To
Movies have been helping people fall asleep long before "Netflix and chill" entered the scene. However, experts agree that it's not such a great idea. After all, the blue light emitted by our screens is just as powerful and nearly as damaging as the dreaded UV rays. At the same time, it can seem hard to fall asleep without a little screen time. Around 10% to 30% of the adult population has chronic insomnia, which doesn't exactly bode well for your overall health. With that, we aren't going to judge if you want to indulge every now and then. In fact, we even put together a list of the best movies to fall asleep to.
Why Do I Like Falling Asleep To Movies?
Watching movies in bed is, admittedly, not the healthiest choice. For one, it can increase your sleep dept. Watching movies may feel relaxing to you, but you may not be getting the amount of sleep you need with your screens on. Especially if you choose a particularly action-packed one, it's easy to be pulled into the scenes and just watch until the end. And then move on to the next one.
Watching TV before bed may also decrease your melatonin production, so technically speaking it's not helping you sleep at all. It also has adverse effects on your health and increases the risk of obesity.
Still, many people watch movies as a sleep aid. Around 60% of people reportedly watch television in the hour before bed, because this is exactly the type of mind-numbing, relaxing activity that gets you in the mood to sleep. Listed below are a few more reasons why we like watching movies before bed.
1. It acts as white noise
We know that white noise helps people fall asleep. We've all heard how much easier it is to sleep with the sound of rain pitter-pattering on your bedroom window. There are tons of Spotify playlists available strictly on rain sounds, wind blowing, keyboards tapping what have you. Turning the TV on with low audio acts similarly to those playlists. It's background noise that will lull you to sleep in no time flat.
2. It's comfortable
We all take comfort in familiarity. Rewatching familiar TV shows is restorative and a tremendous help with self-control. Listening to familiar sounds also helps, because music has been known to help with sleep and some people believe watching the same shows, again and again, has the same effect.
Tuning in to the same romantic comedy or a familiar comedy-drama may comfort you enough to induce sleep. It's also less stressful than watching a new movie which you don't know the ending to.
3. It poses fewer blue light issues than other devices
While TV does still emit blue light and comes with as much danger as any other screen, Healthline says that compared to other gadgets it may produce a considerably lesser amount of the stuff. It's also less of a problem since you normally watch TV at a farther distance than say, a laptop or a cellphone, which makes all the difference.
The 13 Best Movies for Falling Asleep
Now that we know both the pros and cons of falling asleep while watching movies, we can probably agree that while it's not the worst idea, it's not the best either. Still, if you need to watch movies before sleep, you may want to choose something soothing and familiar over dramas and action-packed flicks. This may go without saying, but horror should probably also be avoided. Unless you find ghosts and blood and serial killers somewhat soothing.
Here are the 13 best movies to fall asleep to, in our opinion.
1. Mamma Mia
Who doesn't want to see Meryl Streep and Amanda Seyfried singing all the ABBA hits? In a gorgeous Greek castle, no less. Filled with an all-star cast and beautifully shot backdrops, this musical film adapted from a musical play is sure to give you all the familiar feel-good stuff that hits just the right spot.
2. Before Sunset
This romantic drama movie was Oscar-nominated, so it should be good, right? The film stars Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy and is filled with romance and engaging dialogue, something that's lacking in a lot of films, sadly. For some, Before Sunset is one of the greatest movies of all time. And after watching it the tenth time, it might even help out you to sleep/
3. About Time
There's something about Rachel MacAdams that's just so soothing. It could be her voice, her mesmerizing laugh, the charming personalities of the characters she plays, but one thing's for sure: all her movies make you feel good. And sure, the films are pretty decent as well.
Though not without its flaws, About Time is an easy movie to catch before bed. It doesn't make you think too hard, and it doesn't try to be too clever. Also, the soundtrack rocks.
4. Happy Go Lucky
Happy-Go-Lucky is a British comedy-drama movie that is both light-hearted and fun. It's enchanting, dazzling, and a bit odd. And that's what makes it the best kind of quirky. If you're up for a good laugh before bed, you should definitely check it out.
5. Good Will Hunting
Ben Affleck and Matt Damon's breakout movie is easily one of the best comfort movies of all time, at least according to Indiawire. We would like to agree. Will Hunting is a flawed character, but seeing his journey to slow and steady redemption while achieving his dreams is a gentle reminder of all we could achieve. It depicts an underdog working his way up, and who doesn't love that?
6. The Half of It
Life is tough for LGBTQ people. But things are moving forward. The Half of It is just one step forward towards total inclusivity, but it's a heartwarming effort into representing the minority. The fact that Ellie "gets the girl" in the end is satisfying, even if it's in the form of an LDR.
Disney is fond of the villains lately, and while some villains are irredeemable, Maleficent is certainly one you'll grow to love them. And not just because she's played by Angelina Jolie.
Maleficent shows a darker, more real side to fairy tales, but it still somehow manages to enforce that classic happily ever after. The young queen and her relationship with Maleficent are worth exploring. Mothers and daughters everywhere would agree.
8. Julie and Julia
It's Meryl Streep again, but this time she's playing opposite Amy Adams this time. Julie and Julia is a biographical film about two women who share their love of cooking during two different times in life. It's light-hearted and entertaining, not to mention the great performances provided by both Streep and Adams.
9. Love, Actually
Some people love it, some people don't. Still, this Christmas-themed flick is a great one to throw on before bed, especially when nearing the holiday season. The film involves ten separate stories, and all provide some unique charm. Plus, the all-star ensemble cast is hard to beat. It'll definitely leave you feeling, comfy, cozy, and ready for bed.
10. Princess Diaries
Adapted from one of Time's best YA books of all time, Princess Diaries is somewhat of a classic. Anne Hathaway plays an unsuspecting young woman who comes to find out she's actually a princess; a fantasy for anyone who's ever spent time as a little girl. That's certainly something worth falling asleep to.
11. Spirited Away
Speaking of fantasies, don't we all want to live in a world of magic? Spirited Away certainly delivers in that regard. Beautiful and enchanting, the film follows a strong, female character trying to save her parents. While some creatures might be a little creepy, it ends on a happy note; the perfect way to wrap up your night.
12. Howl's Moving Castle
Howl's Moving Castle is another classic based on the 1986 novel by British author Diana Wynne Jones. It's animated, it's fantasy, and it's so, so pretty.
There's just something about Ghibli films that make them so beloved by people. The art is clean and beautiful, the story moving, and the characters so well-defined. It also delivers powerful messages of hope, which can help us feel relaxed and even ready for bed.
13. Your Name
Your Name (Kimi no Nawa) is a Japanese animated film about a pair of young lovers. The way the art is directed, the stunning visuals, and the soothing music are just delightful. It sets you in a fluffy kind of mood, and if you're not hooked on the official soundtrack by the end of it, well. We don't know what to tell you.
Other Ways to Fall Asleep
While it is pretty common to drift off to sleep while watching movies, it's not super beneficial for your sleep hygiene. If you want your full eight hours of sleep, there are much more holistic and healthier habits that you can develop to foster good sleep habits, and consequently, better sleep.
You may want to try:
- listening to music
- sleep supplements
- having a proper diet and regular exercise
- breathing exercises
- investing in good pillows and mattresses
- lowering the temperature in your room and
- taking a warm bath
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With an enormous collection of films and TV shows, Netflix will never run out of movies for you to fall asleep to. Some of the most popular seem to be Clueless, Edge of Seventeen, The Little Prince, Always Be My Maybe, all the Studio Ghibli films, and the entire collection of Disney Movies. There are others, of course, but it's best to stick to the drama-free flicks before bed.
Most animated movies are a good choice before bed. Some are created with a younger audience in mind, so you don't have to worry about being kept up by disturbing plot lines, frightening twists, or loud scenes. Try exploring the Disney collection. Other popular animated studios include Ghilbi, Pixar, Dreamworks, and Warner Brothers.
Try Charmed, Adventure Time, Designing Women, Under the Tuscan Sun, Passport to Paris, America's National Parks, 144th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations, and Bob's Burgers. You can learn more about the best Hulu picks here.