50 Best High School Movies of All Time


Superbad (2007)

Adjusted Score: 93.566%
Critics Consensus: Deftly balancing vulgarity and sincerity while placing its protagonists in excessive situations, Superbad is an authentic take on friendship and the overarching awkwardness of the high school experience.
Synopsis: Operating under the assumption that by procuring alcohol for an upcoming party they will finally be able to break their... [More]
Directed By: Greg Mottola


Rushmore (1998)

Adjusted Score: 94.685%
Critics Consensus: This cult favorite is a quirky coming of age story, with fine, off-kilter performances from Jason Schwartzman and Bill Murray.
Synopsis: "Rushmore" chronicles a year in the life of Max Fischer, a student at Rushmore Academy, one of the finest schools... [More]
Directed By: Wes Anderson


Election (1999)

Adjusted Score: 96.531%
Critics Consensus: Election successfully combines dark humor and intelligent writing in this very witty and enjoyable film.
Synopsis: In this satiric comedy, Jim McAllister is a popular and well-respected instructor at George Washington Carver High School in Omaha,... [More]
Directed By: Alexander Payne


Ghost World (2001)

Adjusted Score: 96.86%
Critics Consensus: With acerbic wit, Terry Zwigoff fashions Daniel Clowes' graphic novel into an intelligent, comedic trip through deadpan teen angst.
Synopsis: Set during the summer after they graduate from high school, two ultra-hip friends, Enid and Becky fear drifting apart when... [More]
Directed By: Terry Zwigoff


House Party (1990)

Adjusted Score: 97.032%
Critics Consensus: House Party is a light, entertaining teen comedy with an infectious energy.
Synopsis: House Party is an infectious, engaging comedy starring the rap duo Kid 'N Play. Kid (Christopher Reid) decides to throw... [More]
Directed By: Reginald Hudlin

Adjusted Score: 97.709%
Critics Consensus: Featuring an excellent ensemble cast, a precise feel for the 1970s, and a killer soundtrack, Dazed and Confused is a funny, affectionate, and clear-eyed look at high school life.
Synopsis: Like George Lucas' American Graffiti, Richard Linklater's Dazed and Confused is an affectionate look at the youth culture of a... [More]
Directed By: Richard Linklater


Hairspray (2007)

Adjusted Score: 97.931%
Critics Consensus: Hairspray is an energetic, wholly entertaining musical romp; a fun Summer movie with plenty of heart. Its contagious songs will make you want to get up and start dancing.
Synopsis: Sixteen years after the release of the original film, New Line Cinema brings a feature film adaptation of the Tony... [More]
Directed By: Adam Shankman


Heathers (1988)

Adjusted Score: 98.117%
Critics Consensus: Dark, cynical, and subversive, Heathers gently applies a chainsaw to the conventions of the high school movie -- changing the game for teen comedies to follow.
Synopsis: A deliciously nasty black comedy, Heathers is set at a cliquish high school in Ohio. The most exclusive of those... [More]
Directed By: Michael Lehmann

Adjusted Score: 97.389%
Critics Consensus: The Spectacular Now is an adroit, sensitive film that avoids typical coming-of-age story trappings.
Synopsis: With sly humor and an intensity of feeling, THE SPECTACULAR NOW (directed by James Ponsoldt) creates a vivid, three-dimensional portrait... [More]
Directed By: James Ponsoldt


Carrie (1976)

Adjusted Score: 99.5%
Critics Consensus: Carrie is a horrifying look at supernatural powers, high school cruelty, and teen angst -- and it brings us one of the most memorable and disturbing prom scenes in history.
Synopsis: This classic horror movie based on Stephen King's first novel stars Sissy Spacek as Carrie White, a shy, diffident teenager... [More]
Directed By: Brian DePalma

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