Just to clarify, to me, a ‘school film’ is not a film that has to be centered around the academic lives of its characters, but instead a film in the school setting and classroom environments. This isn’t my favourite ‘genre’ (if you’d call it that…) of film, but it certainly brings entertainment and comedy. In terms of honourable mentions, School of Rock was a close contender, as well as She’s the Man. I didn’t add High School Musical (as cheesy as it may sound!), as it wasn’t the film/storyline itself that particularly drew me in at the time, it was purely the catchiness of the music. You may be wondering as to why The Breakfast Club is not featured among my list. The answer is simple, I may be in the minority here, but I feel it is greatly overrated, and I wouldn’t describe it as “iconic”. So here is my top ten! Let me know in the comments section below as to whether you agree or disagree with my choices! Thanks for reading!
10. Wild Child (2008) – I know, I know, it’s not the best film of all-time, God knows why, but it has always been a somewhat favourite ‘teen film’ of mine when I was young. Possibly Emma Roberts’s best role. It is funny, yes, it is cheesy and it’s a lot of fun. It teaches us a valuable lesson too.
9. Bad Teacher (2011) – I understand this film has been torn apart by critics in the past, but to my personal taste, I found it hilarious. Cameron Diaz steps into this character with ease. Oh and this film is NOT for kids, so don’t let them watch it. Bad Teacher did what every comedy should set out to do- make you laugh, and make you feel joyful in some way. For me, it did exactly that. I’d say give it a chance.
8. The DUFF (2015) – I’d give it a shot, even if you aren’t a teenage girl. This film presents us with a much stronger, sweeter message than the majority of teen-comedies nowadays. It deals with inner-issues such as finding yourself and staying true to your personality. Perhaps check out my review here if you are interested.
7. Dead Poet’s Society (1989) – This is one of those films which is better watched only once, instead of repeatedly diminishing it’s glory. One of Robin Williams’ best and young Ethan Hawke gives a great performance too. It’s one that will stay with you for a long time.
6. Scream (1996) – A great blend of comedy and suspense. Also one of the best post-modern films to date, incorporating a mix from the slasher genre. In fact, it’s not so much a horror flick. While watching, you must keep in mind that it isn’t meant to be taken seriously, as there is nothing too universal in the film. I wouldn’t have enjoyed it nearly as much if it wasn’t so cleverly written.
5. Superbad (2007) – I only watched this film last year, as I didn’t think to expect much from it, I was very wrong. Three ‘nerdy’ sex-obsessed schoolboys are on a mission to buy alcohol for a party. In that respect it sounds like a dumb teen comedy like American Pie…but trust me, it’s much better and juicer, and in a peculiar way, particularly more moral.
4. Mean Girls (2004) – Many would place Mean Girls at the top of their list…it’s good, but it’s not my favourite. There may be some very clichéd scenes and jokes, but these are usually exceeded by some very funny scenes. The themes throughout are made clear, without being stated in a cheesy or preachy way. I was surprised how it had my attention the whole time.
3. Easy A (2010) – Excellent casting, narrative and dialogue; this witty chick flick is very enjoyable. Emma Stone is perfectly cast. And with Stanley Tucci as Olive’s ex hippie Father, it’s a must see. Highly recommend!
2. The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012) – One of the most underrated films out there. Along with a great soundtrack, The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a heartfelt and emotionally romantic journey of self-discovery, filled with plenty of drama and humour that adds up to an extremely enjoyable, well-written and wonderfully acted film.
1. Clueless (1995) – The most original teen film to be made to date. It’s smart, it’s funny and Brittany Murphy is absolutely great. As is Alicia Silverstone. A sweet natured, modern day representation of Jane Austin’s classic: “Emma”.