10 Awesome Back To School Movies To Get You In Back To School Mode
It’s that time of year again! A time that sparks joy and relief in parents, and stirs fear and dread in the hearts of students and teachers alike. Yes, it’s time to head “Back To School!” Here are 10 movies that may help ease the transition and help you get in the mood to head back to the classroom.
10. The Breakfast Club
This 1985 John Hughes classic stars Emilio Estevez, Anthony Michael Hall, Ally Sheedy, Judd Nelson and Molly Ringwald as a group of high school students (a jock, a brain, an outcast, a rebel and a princess, respectively) who find themselves stuck in detention on a Saturday morning. At first, the teens seem to have little in common, yet throughout the course of the day, Andrew, Brian, Allison, John, and Claire begin to realize they may share more similarities than they first believed.
9. School of Rock
Featuring Jack Black at his finest, School of Rock tells the story of Dewey Finn, a passionate musician who takes on a job as a substitute teacher at a prestigious elementary school in order to pay the bills, after being kicked out of his own band. He shares his love of hard rock with his students and soon finds himself so inspired by their enthusiasm and talent that he decides to enter them in a Battle of the Bands.
For anyone who has ever felt like they didn’t quite belong in mainstream academia, Accepted offers the possibility of a different kind of higher education. Starring Justin Long, Jonah Hill and Blake Lively, this 2006 film tells the fictional tale of slacker Bartleby Gaines, a recent high school graduate who is rejected from every college he has applied to and is consequently inspired to create a fake college, the South Harmon Institute of Technology.
7. Legally Blonde
Elle Woods is definitely not your typical law student. With an undergraduate degree in Fashion and a pink, scented resume, she certainly makes an impression. Still, she makes no apologies for who she is and is not afraid to speak her mind, to go after what she wants and to fight for what she believes in. After being dumped by her boyfriend, Warner, Elle decides it is time for an image makeover. She initially sets her sights on Harvard Law as a means to win back Warner’s affections. However, once she is a part of the program, she begins to discover her own self-worth and comes to realize this may in fact be a goal she wants to accomplish for herself.
6. Dangerous Minds
You couldn’t turn on the radio in 1995 without hearing Coolio’s anthem “Gangta’s Paradise,” the song made famous by this film’s soundtrack. Based on the book “My Posse Don’t Do Homework,” Dangerous Minds is based on the true story of Louanne Johnson (played by Michelle Pfeiffer), a former marine who takes on a teaching job working with a challenging group of teens. At first, she struggles to connect with the class, but she eventually earns their respect. Using creative lessons and a lot of heart, Johnson helps motivate her students to rise above their challenges and to “rage against the dying of the light.”
5. Dazed And Confused
Set in Austin, Texas in 1976, Dazed and Confused follows a group of teens and young adults as they experience their last day of high school. The stellar cast includes many stars before they were famous such as Jason London, Joey Lauren Adams, Adam Goldberg, Milla Jovovich, Parker Posey, Ben Affleck, Matthew McConaughey (in what many consider to be his breakout role), and even a small, uncredited appearance by Renee Zellweger. The film was directed by Richard Linklater who went on to direct the 12 year passion project Boyhood, as well as the Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, Before Midnight trilogy and School of Rock.
4. Never Been Kissed
In this 1999 romantic comedy, Drew Barrymore stars as 20-something copy editor Josie Gellar who goes back to high school as an undercover reporter. Josie must become friends with the popular students in order to report on their activities for the Chicago-Sun Times. The only problem is Josie “Grossy” (as she was referred to as a teen) dreaded high school; she was never able to fit in with the popular kids the first time around and she still feels insecure as an adult. She seeks advice from her charismatic brother, Rob (David Arquette), who teaches her how to be “cool,” but she soon learns that being popular is not necessarily all it is cracked up to be.
3. 10 Things I Hate About You
Based on Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew, the 1999 romantic comedy 10 Things I Hate About You tells the story of sisters Kat and Bianca. Kat, the eldest sister, is a headstrong feminist with a quick wit and a sharp tongue who has no use for what she refers to as the “unwashed miscreants that go to that school.” Younger sister Bianca, on the other hand, can’t wait to start dating. However, their father has forbidden Bianca to date until Kat does. Meanwhile, new transfer student Cameron falls for Bianca and enlists the help of rebel Patrick Verona to take Kat on a date so he is free to make his move on Bianca. The movie also features several eccentric minor characters, from the hot-tempered, sarcastic English teacher, Mr. Morgan, to the erotic-fiction-writing guidance counsellor, Miss Perky.
2. Old School
Nothing says back to school like “We’re going streaking through the quad!” This 2003 classic stars Luke Wilson, Vince Vaughn and Will Ferrell as three middle-aged friends trying to recapture their youth. After an upsetting breakup, Mitch (Wilson) decides to move in order to regroup and finds himself living near a local college campus. His friends Beanie (Vaughn) and “Frank the Tank” (Ferrell) soon convince him to transform his new house into a fraternity. They recruit several interesting characters as pledges and chaos ensues.
1. Billy Madison
Arguably the best “Back To School” movie ever, Billy Madison stars SNL alum Adam Sandler as a slacker who discovers he only graduated because his wealthy, business mogul father paid off his teachers every single year. Fed up with his son’s antics, Billy’s father announces his plan to hand Madison Hotels over to Eric, Billy’s nemesis. In a final attempt to redeem himself, Billy must head back to school to complete all grades, from elementary school through to high school graduation in just 24 weeks, in order to prove to his father that he has what it takes to be a responsible adult and to claim his place as head of the company!