About High School Movies
Movies about High Schools and Teenagers have been a stable in the mainstream of pop culture storytelling since the 60s. From the sex crazed High School teenagers in American Pie to the loser geeky girl dating a jock in She’s All That, movies about High Schools will never not be popular as long as teenagers keep going to high school.
I’ve put together a list of movies about high schools that range from dramatic story telling to unforgettable rom-coms.
1. 10 Things I Hate About You (1999)
Directed by Gil Junger, 10 Things I Hate About You is a modern day reinterpretation of William Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. Focusing on a high-school kid named Cameron, who wants to date Bianca, who is then told by Bianca that her dad won’t let her date anyone until her older sister has a boyfriend.
This leads Cameron to pay school yard bad boy, Patrick, to date Bianca’s sister, Kat. Which results in Kat falling for him. In which the typical teenager drama ensues, resulting in Kat getting really upset when she learns the truth of Cameron and Patrick’s agreement.
10 Things I Hate About You also has one of the best soundtracks of any of the films on this list. So it’s certainly worth diving back in to this classic!
2. Easy A (2010)
Easy A is a comedy in which a high-school student finds herself labelled as promiscuous after some gossip is overheard, a clean cut high school girl sees her life paralleling Hester Prynne’s in “The Scarlet Letter,” which she is currently studying in school until she decides to use the rumor mill to advance her social and financial standing.
Now her classmates are turning against her and the school board is becoming concerned, including her favorite teacher and the distracted guidance counselor. With the support of her hilariously idiosyncratic parents and a little help from a long-time crush, Olive attempts to take on her notorious new identity and crush the rumor mill once and for all.
3. Eighth Grade (2018)
Directed by YouTube star Bo Burnham, Eighth Grade follows quiet, socially anxious Kayla (Elsie Fisher) as she navigates her last couple of weeks of middle school, the end of her thus far disastrous eighth grade year before she begins high school.
4. Fired Up! (2009)
Directed by Will Gluck, Fired Up! is a sex comedy starring Nicholas D’Agosto, Eric Christian Olsen, Sarah Roemer, Molly Sims, Danneel Harris, Adhir Kalyan, AnnaLynne McCord, Philip Baker Hall and John Michael Higgins. It was released in the year 2009.
Fired Up! is about two star high school football players who decide to attend a cheerleading camp to try and score with its 300 female cheerleaders. Unfortunately, for the two footballers, things are never that easy – and neither are cheerleaders.
5. Mean Girls (2004)
Mean Girls is another teen comedy movie you would love to watch. Teenage Cady Heron moves to the suburbs of Illinois and joins public school, She gets a quick primer on the cruel, tacit laws of popularity that divide her fellow students into tightly knit cliques.
She unwittingly finds herself in the good graces of an elite group of cool students dubbed “the Plastics,” but Cady soon realizes how her shallow group of new friends earned this nickname.
6. Porky’s (1981)
Directed and written by Bob Clark, Porky’s is a teen sex comedy starring Kim Cattrall, Scott Colomby, Kaki Hunter, Nancy Parsons, Alex Karras, and Susan Clark. It was released in the year 1981.
Porky’s is the originator of the teen sex comedy phase and was well ahead of its time. It follows a group of Florida high school students and their plans to lose their virginity which involves a notorious strip club called (yes, you guessed it): Porky’s.
7. The Basketball Diaries (1995)
Based on the autobiographical journals of poet Jim Carroll, Basketball Diaries depicts the story of a Catholic high school student Jim how he transforms from star basketball player to drug addict. Jim and his friends wander the streets of New York City as loafers, robbers, and druggies.
He gets kicked out his house, in addition to being expelled from school for using drugs. Moreover, Leonardo Dicaprio’s amazing acting skills will surely captivate you. Add this movie to your watchlist !
8. Accepted (2006)
Directed by Steve Pink, Accepted is a comedy starring Justin Long, Blake Lively, Anthony Heald and Lewis Black. It was released in the year 2006.
Accepted is about a group of recently graduated high schoolers who fake their own college because they fail to get into any real ones. However, they soon learn that it’s hard to keep a college running – even a fake one.
9. Can’t Buy Me Love (1987)
Directed by Steve Rash, Can’t Buy Me Love is a romantic comedy starring Patrick, Amanda Peterson, Courtney Gains, Tina Caspary, Darcy DeMoss, Seth Green, Sharon Farrell and Dennis Dugan. It was released in the year 1987.
Can’t Buy Me Love is about Ronald, a nerd who convinces his next-door neighbour and popular cheerleader, Cindy, to pose as his girlfriend in an effort to try and look cool. Eventually, the pair fall for each other after a series of mishaps and uncomfortable scenarios, which is exactly how these high school teen comedies tend to go!
10. American Pie (1999)
Directed by Paul Weitz, American Pie is a teen sex comedy starring Jason Biggs, Chris Klein, Eugene Levy, Natasha Lyonne, Thomas Ian Nicholas, Seann William Scott, Tara Reid, Mena Suvari and Eddie Kaye Thomas. It was released in the year 1999.
American Pie follows a group of high school friends as they navigate their way through the ups and downs of teenage life, including first loves, heartbreak, and the quest to lose their virginity before graduation.
With its relatable characters, raunchy humor, and timeless themes, American Pie has become a beloved staple of pop culture and has spawned numerous sequels and spin-offs. Whether you’re a fan of the original or new to the franchise, American Pie is sure to leave you laughing, cringing, and feeling nostalgic for your own high school days.
11. American Pie Presents: Girls’ Rules (2020)
Directed by Mike Elliott, American Pie Presents: Girls’ Rules is a comedy set within the American Pie franchise. It stars Madison Pettis, Lizze Broadway, Piper Curda, Natasha Behnam, Darren Barnet, Zachary Gordon, Barry Bostwick, Ed Quinn, Sara Rue and Danny Trejo. It was released in the year 2020.
American Pie Presents: Girls’ Rules is a standalone sequel which focuses on Stifler’s cousin, Stephanie, and her misadventures with her group of gal pals.
12. Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion (1997)
Directed by David Mirkin, Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion is a comedy starring Mira Sorvino, Lisa Kudrow, Janeane Garofalo, Alan Cumming, Julia Campbell, Vincent Ventresca and Camryn Manheim. It was released in the year 1997.
Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion is about two women in their late-20s who live together and haven’t achieved much in their lives. So they create fake careers to try and impress their former classmates at their upcoming 10 year school reunion.
13. Booksmart (2019)
Directed by Olivia Wilde, Booksmart is a sweet coming of age film starring Kaitlyn Dever, Beanie Feldstein, Jessica Williams, Lisa Kudrow, Will Forte and Jason Sudeikis. It’s about two best friends in their last few days of high school, Amy and Molly, who rule the school inside their heads. It was released in the year 2019.
The pair get excellent grades and Molly is convinced they are the only ones who got into really good universities because they spent their time studying and not doing frivolous things like going to parties.
However, on the eve of their high school graduation they realize they should have worked less and played more. Determined to never fall short of their peers, the girls set out on a mission to cram four years of fun into one night.
14. Freaky Friday (2003)
Directed by Mark Waters, Freaky Friday is a fantasy-comedy movie starring Jamie Lee Curtis, Lindsay Lohan, Mark Harmon, Chad Michael Murray, Harold Gould, Rosalind Chao and Lucille Soong. It was released in the year 2003.
Freaky Friday is about teenager Anna Coleman who lives with her mother, Tess, and after they get into a big fight at a chinese restaurant they read the messages from their fortune cookies out aloud simultaneously in the restaurant’s bathroom. The next morning they wake up to find they have switched bodies and have to adapt to their new lives in their new bodies.
15. Pretty Persuasion (2005)
Directed by Marcos Siega, Pretty Persuasion is a black comedy film a high school student. Its plot follows a 15-year-old student Kimberly, at an elite Beverly Hills academy who convinces her friends Brittany and Randa to falsely accuse their English teacher of sexual assault. However, things spiral out of control when the media gets involved. It was released in the year 2005.
16. Bring It On (2000)
Directed by Peyton Reed, Bring It On is a comedy about cheerleaders starring Kirsten Dunst, Eliza Dushku, Jesse Bradford and Gabrielle Union. It was released in the year 2000.
Bring It On focuses on two high school cheerleading teams who are preparing for the National Championships and who eventually go head-to-head. Not to mention the teenage drama that happens in and around the two teams.
17. Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)
Directed by Amy Heckerling, Fast Times at Ridgemont High is a comedy starring Sean Penn, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Judge Reinhold, Phoebe Cates, Brian Backer, Robert Romanus, and Ray Walston. It was released in the year 1982.
Fast Times at Ridgemont High is about two sophomore students, Stacy Hamilton and Mark Ratner, and their older friends Linda Barrett and Mike Damone. The later of which believe themselves to be eons wiser in the ways of romance. Definitely a must watch for those of you interested in coming-of-age high school movies.
18. Disturbing Behaviour (1998)
Directed by David Nutter and written by Scott Rosenberg, Disturbing Behaviour stars James Marsden, Katie Holmes, Nick Stahl, Bruce Greenwood and William Sadler. It was released in the year 1998.
Disturbing Behaviour mixes it up in the genre department with elements of teen horror, science fiction and psychological thriller vibes. The plot follows a group of high school outcasts who discover their seemingly perfect “Blue Ribbon” classmates are part of an elaborate mind control experiment. Big brother, anyone?
19. Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse (2015)
Directed by Christopher Landon, Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse is a zombie comedy starring Tye Sheridan, Logan Miller, Joey Morgan, Sarah Dumont and David Koechner. It was released in the year 2015.
Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse is about a trio of high school students; Ben, Carter and Augie, who are forced to try and survive a sudden outbreak of zombie and the impending zombie apocalypse.
20. Fish Tank (2009)
Fish Tank depicts the life of Mia Williams, a volatile and socially isolated 15-year-old girl who is hurtling toward a lifetime of misery. She lives on an East London council estate with her single mother, Joanne, and younger sister, Tyler. Mia has an altercation with her best friend and her relations with her verbally abusive mother and sister aren’t good.
She is expelled from school and is awaiting admission to a referrals unit and spends her days aimlessly. She starts an awkward friendship with Joanne’s cunning boyfriend, Connor, who embolden her one interest, dancing.
21. She’s All That (1999)
Directed by Robert Iscove, She’s All That is a teen romantic comedy film starring Freddie Prinze Jr and Rachael Leigh Cook. The movie follows Zack Siler, a high school student who is popular and confident who is suddenly dumped by his girlfriend. As a result, he makes a bet with his friends that he can transform any girl into the school’s next prom queen.
Zack sets his sights on Laney Boggs, a socially awkward and introverted artist who has just been ostracized by her friends. As Zack sets out to transform Laney into the school’s prom queen, he discovers that she is not the person he thought she was, and he starts to fall in love with her. As a light hearted feel good 90s film, it’s now considered a rom-com classic.
Ugh. Now I feel old.
22. Foxfire (1996)
Foxfire is a 1996 American teen drama film directed by Annette Haywood-Carter. Based on the Joyce Carol Oates novel Foxfire: Confessions of a Girl Gang, it examines the coming of age of four high school girls who form an unlikely bond after beating up a teacher who has sexually harassed them. They build a solid friendship but their wild ways begin to get out of control.
23. Wild Child (2008)
Directed by Nick Moore, Wild Child is a teen comedy starring Emma Roberts, Natasha Richardson, Shirley Henderson, Alex Pettyfer and Aidan Quinn. It was released in the year 2008.
Wild Child focuses on privileged teen brat, Poppy Moore, who is sent to boarding school in England. Poppy’s own privileged American attitude is eventually seen be a mask she puts up due to the pain of having lost her mother to a plane crash. As the movie goes on Poppy begins to accept her English peers and they begin to accept her.
24. John Tucker Must Die (2006)
Written by Jeff Lowell and directed by Betty Thomas, John Tucker Must Die stars Jesse Metcalfe, Brittany Snow, Ashanti, Sophia Bush, Arielle Kebbel, Penn Badgley and Jenny McCarthy. It was released in the year 2006.
John Tucker Must Die is a teen comedy in which three teenage girls discover basketball star, John Tucker, has secretly been dating all of them at once. The trio of girls plot to break his heart and ridiculous teenage girl drama ensues.
25. The Craft: Legacy (2020)
Written and directed by Zoe Lister-Jones, The Craft: Legacy is a supernatural horror film. The main character Lily moves into a new town to live with her mother’s boyfriend, she gets recruited by three other high school girls in order to form a coven of witches, where they begin to test the boundaries of their newfound magical abilities.
26. Juno (2007)
Written by Diablo Cody and directed by Jason Reitman, Juno stars Elliot Page, Michael Cera, Jennifer Garner, Jason Bateman, Allison Janney and J. K. Simmons. It was released in the year 2007.
Juno is about Elliot Page’s character, Juno, who is a 16 year old student suddenly faced with the pressures of adult life due to an unplanned pregnancy. Not to mention her relationship with Paulie and how the two with come to terms with how they are very much in love and how they will raise their baby together.
27. Sex Drive (2008)
Directed by Sean Anders and co-written by Sean Anders and John Morris, Sex Drive is a road trip comedy starring Josh Zuckerman, Amanda Crew, Clark Duke, Seth Green, and James Marsden, while Katrina Bowden, Alice Greczyn, Michael Cudlitz, Dave Sheridan and David Koechner. It was released in the year 2008.
Sex Drive is about a high school graduate who goes on a road trip to have sex with a girl he has an online relationship with – and the mishaps he gets into along the way.
28. Superbad (2007)
Directed by Greg Mottola, Superbad is a comedy film about two best friends, Seth and Evan (two absolute losers), who are about to graduate high school and desperately want to lose their virginity before heading off to college.
What follows is a hilarious ensemble of bizarre adventures as they try to secure alcohol for a party in an effort to impress a pair of girls and make the most of their final days of adolescence. There isn’t a movie on this list which captures the awkwardness of adolescence and just how hilarious it can be more than Superbad!
29. You & Me Forever (2012)
You & Me Forever is a drama film about friendship, jealousies, and growing up. Laura and Christine are both 16 years old and best friends. But a young, more cosmopolitan girl, Maria, arrives at their school, and she proves to be mysterious and exciting. The relationship between the three takes an intense twist as Maria acknowledges bisexual encounters. For Laura, the new friendship upends the world she thought she knew.
30. The Boy Next Door (2015)
Directed by Rob Cohen and written by Barbara Curry, The Boy Next Door is an erotic thriller starring Jennifer Lopez, Ryan Guzman, John Corbett, Ian Nelson and Kristin Chenoweth. It was released in the year 2015.
The Boy Next Door is about a 19-year-old who becomes with his high school teacher after having sex with her. He develops a dangers obsession which is deranged and volatile.
31. Cherry Falls (2000)
Directed by Geoffrey Wright, Cherry Falls stars Brittany Murphy, Jay Mohr, Gabriel Mann and Michael Biehn. It was released in the year 2000.
Cherry Falls focuses on a serial killer who’s targetting teenage virgins which was somehow still a sticking point for horror films in the early 2000s. Despite its simple storyline, Cherry Falls isn’t without its own brand of interesting kills and a twist at the end which isn’t exactly Psycho but it does involve a crossdressing character. So there’s that.
32. The DUFF (2015)
Directed by Ari Sandel, The DUFF is a teen comedy starring Mae Whitman, Robbie Amell, Bella Thorne, Bianca Santos, Skyler Samuels, Romany Malco, Ken Jeong and Allison Janney. It was released in the year 2015.
The DUFF, an acronym standing for Designated Ugly Fat Friend, is about Bianca who is the DUFF that everyone uses to get to the more popular kids in school. The movie concentrates on Bianca’s journey to growing more confident and becoming less of a DUFF, despite the intentions of high school mean girl Madison to do whatever she can to make Bianca’s life a living hell.
33. The Girl Next Door (2004)
Directed by Luke Greenfield, The Girl Next Door is a romantic comedy starring Emile Hirsch as Matthew Kidman, a high school student who has lived a sheltered life and is on track to become valedictorian. But his life gets turned upside down when a former porn star named Danielle (played by Elisha Cuthbert) moves in next door.
As Matthew gets to know Danielle, he discovers that she is much more than the pornstar stereotype. The Girl Next Door mixes coming-of-age, teen and even p*rnstar stereotypes to deliver a unique (at least for the time) story that is as entertaining as it is tongue in cheek. Sorry, bad pun.
34. The Edge of Seventeen (2016)
The Edge of Seventeen is a poignant and hilarious look at what it’s like to be a teenager today. Growing up is hard, and life is no easier for Nadine, who is already at peak awkwardness when her best friend Krista begins dating her all-star brother Darian.
All at once, Nadine feels more alone than ever. With the help of her reluctant sounding-board, she soon discovers that what feels like the end of the world may just be the beginning of growing up.
35. The Perks of Being A Wallflower (2012)
Socially awkward teen Charlie is a wallflower, always watching life from the sidelines, until two charismatic students become his mentors. Free-spirited Sam and her stepbrother Patrick play a key role in assisting Charlie discover the joys of friendship, first love, music and more, while a teacher sparks Charlie’s dreams of becoming a writer. Charlie’s new pals graduate and prepare to leave for college, Charlie’s inner sadness threatens to shatter his newfound confidence.
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