The Top 5 - High School Movies

The Top 5 - High School Movies

Only joking! Did you really think I would have High School Musical in this list!!?? Get'cha head in the game!

The High School film genre has long been a tried and tested formula for great cinema from teen angst and heartbreak to comedies and improbable adventure. Many leading men and women rose to fame or indeed faded away following a breakthrough performance in a High School genre film. Here I kick off our Top 5 series with our Top 5 High School Movies of All Time. Class is in session.

5 Can't Hardly Wait (1998)
Before American Pie blew up and changed the way we look at Apple Pie forever there was another teen comedy of note released just a year earlier. While this largely remains unknown to the masses I would argue that this is a far better film than the credited birthplace of "MILF". The cast list reads like a who's who from Before they were famous. Jennifer Love Hewitt (Party of Five, I Know What You Did Last Summer), Jason Segel (How I Met Your Mother), Seth Green (Austin Powers), Donald Faison (Scrubs), Jerry O' Connel (Jerry Maguire), Melissa Joan Hart (Sabrina, The Teenage Witch) and a whole host of others. This is set on the last day of school set over one day and has more laugh out loud moments that the entire American Pie franchise put together. It is also the inspiration for the name of this blog. Go see it immediately.

4 The Breakfast Club (1985)
This film is the first in the list by THE director of the 1980's John Hughes (Weird Science, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Uncle Buck). He pretty much wrote at least one film that was your favourite film growing up. Don't belive me? Go on IMDB right now and look it up, oh he got you with Home Alone did he? Good to have you back. This film is set during a Saturday all day detention with five students who are totally different on the surface but soon realise are a lot alike. Molly Ringwald, Emilio Estevez (Charlie Sheen's bro), Ally Sheedy (War Games) and Judd Nelson are names you should all know. Teen angst and social acceptance has rarely been better portrayed than in this film. It is quite simply an acting masterclass. Go rewatch it, it's just as good as you remember.

3 Dead Poet's Society (1989)
The late Robin Williams is known to each person for a certain special film, be it you and your parents loving Good Morning VietnamMrs Doubtfire or Good Will Hunting. He has too many outstanding films to mention in one post. In this film you have a film so moving it is rare to hear it hasn't brought physical tears to its viewers. An inspirational yet unconvential teacher in Robin Williams inspires the students of a traditional all boys boarding school to take risks and follow their own path. The avenue for the kids to stand up for themselves is unusual, an underground poetry club, however it is as powerful as anything you are likely to see.

2 Superbad (2007)
This film is one of the funniest films of any genre and any decade no questions asked. It spawned the successful film careers of Jonah Hill (The Wolf of Wall Street), Michael Cera (Arrested Development), Seth Rogen (who wrote this as well), and Emma Stone (Crazy, Stupid, Love) and stars a host of other household names. We once again see the vehicle for this story set across one day in the three stars final year in high school. The film centres around three geeky teenagers who long to be a part of the cool crowd and to realise their daytime fantasies with the girls in their class. I would challenge anyone to find a flaw in this film from the awesome soundtrack to the perfectly paced screenplay.

And at Number One....

1 Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986)
For me there could be no other film to better emody the high school movie genre than a yound Matthew Broderick faking a sick day off school to have one of the best days ever lived. Written and directed by John Hughes and featuring the best ever version of the classic Beatles song Twist & Shout sung on a parade milk float in a busy downtown Chicago. From the genius schemes to avoid school and his spying headmaster to the stunning 1961 Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder the kids conveniently borrow for the day, this film has it all. It also spawned one of the most quoted film lines of all time, "Bueller, Bueller, Bueller...".

Special mention
Back to the Future, yes this film is incredible but for me it fits in the time travel genre not the high schoool one.
Menace II Society over Boyz N the Hood I would also argue is a hugely underrated film that deserves a revist. Weird Science and The Outsiders were also two of my favourites growing up.


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