White Savior Movies, Ranked

16. Avatar (2009)

White savior narratives aren’t limited to drama. They often pop up in science fiction as well, in movies where extraterrestrials are often coded versions of minorities. Take James Cameron’s Avatar, featuring a white man (Sam Worthington) who disguises himself as the foreign race Na’vi in order to save them. It’s a typical white savior story in that it portrays a race that simply can’t survive unless someone white swoops in to help. Naturally, it was nominated for nine Oscars.