Celebrate female force with these women-centric movies

This International Women’s Day, get into the spirit of cherishing the creative work of women by indulging in some on-screen feminism that celebrates womanhood in all its myriad forms. These are stories of rousing triumphs, tales of everyday rebellions and celebrations of small wins that depict how far we as a generation have come from women being restricted to the kitchen to successfully running the world. Here are the best titles on Disney+ Hotstar that put women front and center. From stories of women empowerment to women in the animation, this lineup including Aarya, Turning Red and November Story  is a marathon nobody can afford to miss.  


Directed by Ram Madhvani, the Hotstar Specials show is led by Sushmita Sen who plays the role of Aarya, an independent mother. She is focused on returning to India and facing her family and enemies. With multiple attacks jolting her, can she and her children escape the threats of the past? 

Turning Red

The upcoming movie introduces Mei Lee, a confident, dorky 13-year-old torn between staying as her mother’s dutiful daughter and the chaos of adolescence. Her protective, if not slightly overbearing mother, Ming, is never far from her daughter—an unfortunate reality for the teenager. As if changes to her interests, relationships, and body weren’t enough, whenever she gets too excited, she “poofs” into a giant red panda! Directed by Domee Shi, the film stars the voices of Rosalie Chiang, Sandra Oh, Ava Morse, Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, Hyein Park, Orion Lee, Wai Ching Ho and James Hong. This is the first Pixar film to be solely directed by a woman. 

A Thursday

The film centers around Naina (played by Yami Gautam), a play school teacher who takes 16 students hostage. Ratting the police and the lectures, her demands send shockwaves through the country.  Directed by Behzad Khambata, the film also stars Dimple Kapadia , Neha Dhupia, Karanvir Sharma  and Atul Kulkarni in pivotal roles. 


The film is about the rebellious early days of one of cinema’s most notorious and notoriously fashionable villains, the legendary Cruella de Vil. Directed by Craig Gillespie,  Emma Stone stars as the title character, with Emma Thompson, Joel Fry, Paul Walter Hauser, Emily Beecham, Kirby Howell-Baptiste, and Mark Strong in supporting roles. 

Netrikann (Tamil)

When fear grips Chennai as girls get abducted in the city, blind ex-cop Durga (played by Nayanthara) becomes the prime witness in the case and the kidnapper’s object of obsession. Directed by Milind Rau, the film also features  Ajmal Ameer, K. Manikandan, and Saran Shakthi in supporting roles. 

The Eyes Of Tammy Faye 

The film takes an intimate look at the extraordinary rise, fall, and redemption of televangelist of the 1970s and 80s Tammy Faye Bakker (played by Jessica Chastain). Directed by Micheal Showwalter, the film has been written by  Abe Sylvia, while Jessica Chastain is also one of the film’s producers.


When Mirabel, the only ordinary member of the madrigal family, discovers the magic surrounding their house is in danger, she may be her family’s last hope. Directed by Jared Bush and Byron Howard, the movie stars the voices of Stephanie Beatriz, María Cecilia Botero, John Leguizamo, Mauro Castillo, Jessica Darrow, Angie Cepeda, Carolina Gaitán, Diane Guerrero, and Wilmer Valderrama. 


An ambitious cop and a bored government employee make one quirky team. With the clock ticking away, will this roller-coaster ride get them what they want. The action comedy series stars Lara Dutta and Rinku Rajguru in lead roles. The show has been directed by Ruchi Narain, Ashutosh Shah and Taher Shabbir. 

Little fires everywhere 

Little Fires Everywhere follows the intertwined fates of the picture-perfect Richardson family and an enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives.  It features Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington as mothers from different socioeconomic backgrounds. While the series is based on the 2017 novel of the same name by Celeste Ng, it is directed by Lynn Shelton.  

Raya and the Last Dragon

Raya, a fallen princess, must track down the legendary last dragon to stop the evil forces that have returned and threaten her world. Directed by Don Hall and Carlos López Estrada, the film is based on traditional Southeast Asian cultures. It stars Kelly Marie Tran, Awkwafina, Izaac Wang, Gemma Chan, Daniel Dae Kim, Benedict Wong, and Sandra Oh.

November Story 

A celebrated crime novelist suffering from Alzheimer’s is found at a murder scene with no memory of what happened. Now, it is up to his daughter to save him. Directed by Indhra Subramanian, this Hotstar Specials series stars Tamannaah in the lead role along with Pasupathy M, GM Kumar and Namita Krishnamurthy.  

Mookuthi Amman (Tamil)

Small-time reporter Engels’ life changes drastically when he meets his ancestral goddess Mookuthi Amman. What happens when she puts forth an intriguing plea? Written and directed by RJ Balaji in his directorial debut, the film stars Nayanthara  and Balaji. 

Better Things 

Sam Fox (played by  Pamela Adlon), a divorced Hollywood actress, juggles between raising her three daughters and focusing on her professional commitments. The show was created and led by Pamela Adlon. Directed by Louis CK, the show also features Mikey Madison, Hannah Alligood,  and Olivia Edward as Sam Fox’s daughter. 

Somebody Somewhere 

Reeling from her sister’s death, Sam learns to reconnect with herself – and her hometown – with the help of an unconventional congregation.  Created by Hannah Bos and Paul Thureen, the show is led by Bridget Everett, who plays Sam. 

She Builds 

She Builds unravels the powerful story of female founders who have redefined what is to be a woman and an entrepreneur in 21st century India. 


It’s 1984- a tender love story succumbs to the anti-sikh riots. In 2016, IPS officer Amrita Singh uncovers a secret connecting that past to her present. The Hotstar Special series is led by Zoya Hussain who plays the lead role of Amrita Singh. Directed by Ranjan Chandel, the series also features Pawan Malhotra and Anshumaan Pushkar in supporting roles.