Storytelling is one of the most powerful ways we have of connecting with others. And when we use film to do that there are probably no better way to get through. Here are five stories that really grabs a hold of your heart.

I’ve written about storytelling using films a couple of times before. The first time I showed you three examples of companies telling stories about their past. And more recently I compared two films with that used historical events.

I wanted to share with you five examples of stories that evoke strong emotions in me, but of very different kinds. The first one makes my heart beat faster, because it’s such a powerful story told in a very impressive way. The second has me conflicted because it turns a very old story on its head, and the third one just melts my heart every time I watch it. The fourth and the fifth were actually recommended by others, when I posted this on LinkedIn, but they are equally powerful. Both of them explores abrupt and tragic changes in life.

1. Johnnie Walker – The Man Who Walked Around The World

Robert Carlyle tells the story about the man behind the famous whiskey brand. In one take, with a great accent, for over six minutes. And it has bagpipes in it. What’s not to love?

2. The Guardian – Three Little Pigs

The Guardian tells a powerful story about the importance of investigative journalism by taking an old fairy-tale and twisting it around, and around. Very impressive, and very well executed.

3. Embrace Life – Always Wear Your Seatbelt

To me this is one of the most impressive short films ever made. It tells such a powerful story in such a simple way – and it gets me every time I see it. And if you consider the topic it’s even more impressive. Well done, Sussex Safer Roads

4. Mistakes (suggested by Youri Penders)

This is in the same vein as Embrace Life, and shares the same emotional way of narration. In some ways it’s even more naked and filled with anguish. Great job NZ Transport Authority.

5. Odds or Evens (suggested by Andrew Taylor)

Unlike the others, this is not a commercial. Rather it’s a short feature. Made by John Venable and Jay Gormley it tells a harrowing story very well. I’m not going to give away anything – just watch it.

If you want to learn more about storytelling you should catch this great TED talk by Andrew Stanton – The clues to a great story. Some strong language in it, so be warned:

Got any other examples of great storytelling using film? Share them in the comments.