Why do we love travel movies?

Why do we love travel movies?

Travelling is one thing that has always been with us humans from the dawn days. We are always in the process of travelling to a new place either in reality or inside our mind. Almost all of us have a deep desire to spend time near a lake lying in a green grassy hill but our complex day to day work prohibits us from doing so. 

Imagine one thing you always have wanted to do but not being able to. It feels suffocating, right?

But don’t worry we all are in the same boat. And travel movies address our repressed desires through beautiful landscapes, emotionally charged human stories and up spirited music. And we all seem to love them. So, what is it that makes all of us fall in love with travel movies? What is it that pushes us to watch those movies time and again?

When we think of travel movies, pieces like Before Trilogy, Into The Wild, The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty and The Darjeeling Limited cross our minds. These movies show us the power of traveling in the process of self-discovery.

In most of these travel movies also referred to as road movies, a person in a personal crisis due to some circumstances sets up in the journey which will change them inside out as a person which also happens to be our unaddressed desire. We all want a break from our daily routine and go on the journey of self-discovery. We, from an early stage of our life, wire our mind in such a way where nonstop work seems to be an ideal thing to do whereas traveling is a pleasure act which only a few can afford. But our natural traits as a human is a polar opposite to what we have wired ourselves to become. 

Working vigorously for 10 months and spending the rest of the days for ourselves is not the way we have achieved as humans. Introspecting and storytelling is what has enabled our mind and body to stay at the top of the food chain regardless of being one of the weakest animals walking on the planet. And what would be a better way to do so than travelling. This hidden knowledge is what attracts us towards road movies.

In today’s world, all of us are having some sort of crisis in our life and through these movies where a person having problems just like us discovers the inner joy we tend to see them as the personification of our lost hopes. We tend to root for them in their journey which gives us a feeling of our own victory. These protagonists represent all the mediocre people who are living in the thin line between happiness and sadness. Their win consoles us and motivates us to pursue our dreams. 

One thing in road movies that excels its experience regardless of the storyline is the portrayal of beautiful geographical landscapes. We all want to eat delicious food and travel to beautiful places. If given a chance we wouldn’t hesitate to experience those moments and release our dopamine every day of our life. And watching traveling movies gives us some sort of mini experience. This experience works as an energy drink in our busy schedules.

When we see places where we want to go on the screen along with an uplifting background score our mind diverts itself from the hectic schedule and takes us on the same journey the movie is going. We enjoy the panoramic view of islands when the protagonist takes a dive in the ocean, we get scared along with him/her when a shark comes out of that ocean and we sigh and breathe along with the character when he gets back in the bank.

This emotional investment with the story and character triggers our desire to overcome inhibitions. We all have our fair share of our fears and inhibitions which we hardly try to analyze and address. These strong emotions don’t let us enjoy every moment of life. We feel bound to stay in the chain of our daily routine and what these traveling movies do is they in a way influence our perception of life, relationships and career.

These movies not only explore the geographical and personal stigmas but also showcase the bonding and relationship between two people. We all have a stranded relationship with someone dear to us.

We have our differences and disagreements. And just like us the characters in the movie too suffer from dysfunctional relationships with their close ones. Now what these movies successfully do is show the depth of the vulnerability of the relationships and then showcase how one can simply turn that vulnerability into a strong bonding. This journey of the relationship arc not only feels good while seeing it on the screen but also enables itself to connect with our dry emotions and help us understand it. One way or another we all want to forgive and be forgiven. We all want to get rid of catecholamines which take us to the fight or flight situation which is also released during anger. 


And the most important thing that makes us enjoy traveling movies is the story of an unbroken human spirit. Just like us the characters in the movie face various ups and downs. They experience personal losses that we can connect to. They are beaten up by life again and again but in the end, they overcome those situations. They represent the undying nature of human desire to overcome obstacles and adapt to new situations. This trait of the character is what we all fantasize about.

No matter how complicatedly we tangle our lives we all want to untangle and find inner peace with courage and humility. We all go through harsh phases time and again but our prefrontal cortex which is in front of our brain always finds a way to process an escape from the situation. It does every single bit to help us out from the darker shades of our lives. Problem-solving traits are naturally wired in our brain and whenever we see the uplifting spirit of it in others we relate to them and empathize with them. 

Although they are just a movie they gracely create a story of human nature and its undying desire to get up ninth time after being knocked eighth. These movies depict the vulnerable nature of our lives and showcase how vulnerable things too can be the most beautiful thing ever to be witnessed just like the soft petals of flowers flowing with the force of the wind. We see our weaknesses, fear, inhibitions and strength to overcome them in these movies which is why we all love traveling road movies. 

Right now all over the world, we are facing a major crisis. Everything is uncertain but one thing that for sure will come stronger as ever after this phase makes its way out is the human spirit. No matter how hard the situation will get we as a human race will definitely come victorious as we always have been.

Till then we suggest you some of those travel movies that will help us to keep our morals high and perception wide.

  1. Central Station (1998)
  1. Tracks (I) (2013)
  1. The Motorcycle Diaries (2004)
  1. Encounters at the End of the World (2007)
  1. The Bucket List (2007)
  1. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)
  1. Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (2011)
  1. Lost in Translation (2003)
  1. Before Sunrise (1995)
  1. Into the Wild (2007)

6 thoughts on “Why do we love travel movies?

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