Best Teen Movies: Films for and About Teenagers

Best Teen Movies Suggestions

The teenage, high school experience is a rich one, indeed. So rich, in fact, that there are hundreds of movies produced about what its like to be a teenager, getting through the teen years, and/or surviving high school. So many movies, so little time, right?

Well, if you have a hankering to relive your glory days (or perhaps to watch the mean groupies lose in the end), we've created a list of the Best Teen Movies!

Rent them, buy them, check for them on demand.... or download them straight to your computer or tablet. Get out the popcorn and perhaps a hanky or two!

Oh, and if you don't agree with the picks, feel free to add a few of your own suggestions in the comment section below. That's what makes teen movies so great - each of them has its own unique following!

What teen doesn't want to be like Ferris Bueller and his friends?
What teen doesn't want to be like Ferris Bueller and his friends? | Source

Best clips of "Sixteen Candles"

Dead Poets Society: Coming of Age Movie

Mean Girls: One of the Best Teen Movies

The Breakfast Club: Classic 80s Teen Movie

25 (plus 1) Best Teen Movies

1. Grease

2. Election

3. 10 Things I Hate About You

4. Mean Girls

5. The Outsiders

6. Bring It On!

7. American Pie

8. Scary Movie

9. Carrie

10. The Breakfast Club

11. Pretty in Pink

12. Juno

13. Gidget

14. The Graduate

15. Love Story

16. Ferris Bueller's Day Off

17. Sixteen Candles

18. Footloose

19. Risky Business

20. Clueless

21. Never Been Kissed

22. Rebel Without a Cause

23. Dirty Dancing

24. Hoosiers

25. Dead Poet's Society

26. (how did I miss it?) SuperBad!!

Ending of Dead Poet's Society

Clueless: High School Girls Hilarious

Love Story: A Classic Teen Movie

What Makes a Great Teen Movie?

What qualifies these teen movies as the "best"? There are a number of factors including star power, quotable lines, memorable scenes, and the ability to evoke nostalgia and/or sympathy for the main characters. If the audience can relate on a personal level, the film will probably be a hit. Throw in some good looking actors and pretty soon, you have a classic teen movie on your hands. Either you cringe, or you root for the protagonist. Sometimes both.

Who can forget some of these lines? "Are you trying to seduce me, Mrs. Robinson?" (The Graduate); "True love and he didn't lay a hand on you? Sounds like a creep to me." (Grease); "Love means never having to say you're sorry." (Love Story); "We're gonna turn this town upside down!: (Footloose); "Searching for a boy in high school, is like searching for meaning in a Pauly Shore movie." (Clueless); and "Courtney, this is not a democracy, it's a cheerocracy. I'm overruling you." (Bring it On). Ah.... to be a teenager again!

The primary story line for a teen movie involves the main characters at high school, and trying to fit in. Sound familiar? Sometimes, things go very, very wrong, as in "Carrie," the poor young girl who was made fun of because of her supernatural powers and overly controlling Catholic mother. The theme of bad girls in high school is a common one, seen in "Grease," "Mean Girls," and "Pretty in Pink." It can be fun to see these bullies get put in their place! Popular soundtracks add to the marketability and staying power of teen mega-hits.

Other movies are focused in on a particular rite of passage, like first sexual experience (American Pie), death of a loved one (Love Story) or teen pregnancy (Juno). Teen rebellion is celebrated in a number of films, including "Risky Business," "Dirty Dancing," "Ferris Bueller's Day Off," and "Footloose." And, its not high school without sports and clubs. For these movies, you can enjoy "Hoosiers," "Bring it On," and "Dead Poet's Society."

50 First Dates - fun teen movie
50 First Dates - fun teen movie | Source

She's Like the Wind from Dirty Dancing

Why we enjoy Teen Movies

The "Best of Teen Movies" list is reminiscent of our years when we thought the world was: (1) pretty cool; (2) out to get us; and (3) not worth living in, all in the same day. Watching these movies again and considering how the stars in them have evolved over time is also instructive. You may wonder, where is Molly Ringwald or Ali McGraw? On the other hand, Tom Cruise, Kirstin Dunst and Reese Witherspoon all have successful careers. It just goes to show you that Hollywood popularity, much like that in high school, is fickle.

I recommend that, before you put too much thought into it, buy or rent one of these teen movies, and enjoy!

Life - like teenage years - is short!

Trailer for SuperBad!

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Comments 46 comments

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 8 years ago from New Brunswick

Some great movies and movie memories here, thanks

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Thanks Bob - really fun to watch the video clips in putting this one together!

Whitney05 profile image

Whitney05 8 years ago from Georgia

Definitely see a few classics on that list.

vreccc profile image

vreccc 8 years ago from Concord, NH

10 Things I Hate About You was my introduction to Heath Ledger and is an awesome movie. Heath also did a stand up job in Brokeback Mountain. I will miss him

MarloByDesign profile image

MarloByDesign 8 years ago from United States

'The Breakfast Club' - what a classic!!! Glad to see that on your list!

Stacie Naczelnik profile image

Stacie Naczelnik 8 years ago from Seattle

I loved 10 Things I Hate About You & Never Been Kissed.

Sixteen Candles was definitely a favorite growing up.

Peter M. Lopez profile image

Peter M. Lopez 8 years ago from Sweetwater, TX

Great list. The Graduate is a little low on the list for my taste, but you made up for it by having The Outsiders so high. Thus, forgiven.

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Ok, Peter. I should have said that my list was not in order of the best films. I would definitely put Graduate up higher, in that case! :-)

stubbs profile image

stubbs 8 years ago from London

omg, how is superbad not on that list???

good list otherwise though :-)

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Whoops - inevtiably, I would leave one (or more) off. Didn't see it, but I heard that superbad was supergood.

Panic 39 profile image

Panic 39 8 years ago

Yea add superbad!!!

Annette Rozen profile image

Annette Rozen 8 years ago

excellent choices, impressivley, ive seen about 2/3 of your list

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Thanks Annette! There are some classics, indeed. Maybe its time to rent the other 1/3? LOL

desert blondie profile image

desert blondie 8 years ago from Palm trees, swimming pools, lots of sand, lots of sunscreen

Just found this one, and love it! I can watch Never Been Kissed once a month! Pretty much feel the same about Ferris Bueller... and since I like my movies to be pleasant diversions, I've only seen Carrie one time. And the Heath Ledger, high school band, scene ... fantastic!

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Hi Desert Blondie - I love teen movies! They make me feel young. I'm with you on your picks. So many great films. Thanks for stopping by (love your movie hubs too!) Steph

sadonna23 profile image

sadonna23 8 years ago from Alabama

Great memories i love these movies!

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Thank you sadonna! It was a fun trip down memory lane. Time to update Netflix queue! :-) Steph

Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 8 years ago from California

I forgot about some of these. Man, I'm old. Sixteen candles was awesome, so was Breakfast Club. Ferris Bueller's Day off might be top for me (U ever see Biloxi Blues? Broderick was fantastic in that one too, slightly older teen movie). And you need to watch Super Bad. It's fall down funny.

dineane profile image

dineane 8 years ago from North Carolina

Footloose is the only movie I ever paid to see in the theater more than once. Thanks for the walk down memory lane--it does make me want to watch some of these again!

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Shadesbreath - yes, I do need to watch Super Bad! (I'm old too - was a teenager when 16 Candles came out).

Dineane - you're welcome! :-) Steph

N.Sumon 7 years ago

Good! hmm! Well! Good!! Very Good!!! nice movie.I like it.

ipodmovies 7 years ago

I couldn't agree more with your choices. I love the 80's teen movies! Pretty in Pink and The Breakfast Club were classic movies!

Öö 6 years ago

There's no good movies what I want to whach

jharris0805 profile image

jharris0805 6 years ago from Hodgenville, KY

Cool Blog!

Symond 6 years ago

A list which is a mixture of some amazing and some fucking movies name.

kimmy Smith 6 years ago

mean girls is definitley a classic for teens in this age

estranged911 profile image

estranged911 6 years ago from India!

Few names to add: A Lot Like Love, Pineapple Express, Road Trip, He's not just that into you.

Tim Pavlou 6 years ago

You forgot Fast Times at Ridgemont High. For anyone who went to high school in the early 80's in any suburb of America, that movie was practically a documentary.

estranged911 profile image

estranged911 6 years ago from India!

Yea..Ridgemont high One of the earliest flicks of Sean Penn.

How about Dazed and confused?

HelloKitty170 profile image

HelloKitty170 6 years ago

Great choices!

lea 6 years ago

there so old

jane 6 years ago

i such a film were i can laugh like mean girls but the other films are very bad cause there old

Samar Dhwoj Acharya 6 years ago

Thanks a lot for the list.. Downloading some of them: sixteen candles, 10 things I hate about you, mean girls

pricly50 5 years ago

wow!!great job..impressed

immo 5 years ago

hey but this movies are sooo olddd...

i need new ones dear**

trusouldj profile image

trusouldj 5 years ago from Indiana

Here's another Molly Ringwald flick that I love, "For Keeps" where her character is challenged with being a high school Senoir and teen mom.

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 5 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

I remember "For Keeps" too! Molly Ringwald was the queen of Teen Movies in the 1980s!

funmontrealgirl profile image

funmontrealgirl 5 years ago from Montreal

Great movies. Great memories.

AFWife 5 years ago

I see people saying these movies are too old, but i'm 20 years old and LOVE every movie on that list. I watched those movies when i was in my teens, they may seem old, but give them a chance. Besides i happen to think that they just don't make movies like they used too!!!! :) GREAT list btw!!!! :D

claire 5 years ago

I don't know if any of you have heard about the movie "A Walk To Remember". That movie made me cry all night.Believe me, that movie will make any teen cry.

George 5 years ago

Thank you so much for the AMAZING suggestions of GREAT movies....... if you have not seen Bring It On, it a must see for teens!

Alexis smith 5 years ago

You have a pretty good list, but what about these classic films?

Over the edge (1979)

The warriors(1979

a Little romance (1978)

Trip with the teacher (1975)

Cindy and donna (1970)

Red dawn (1983)

Running on empty


The princess bride

The karate kid

Nightmare on elm street (Originals from 80s

Friday the 13th (Originals from 80s

Fright night

Far from home 89



The blue lagoon

Lord of the flies

Children of the corn

The lost boys


Better off dead


One on one

Ice castles (70s one with robbie benson)

qwerty 5 years ago

try the twilight series they are great

jello 14 4 years ago

this movie i never seen befor they look perty good

dusty cake profile image

dusty cake 4 years ago from Cork City

Quality Hub man, only ' grease???????

Miranda 4 years ago

"according to gretta" is a great teen movie. Hilary Duff is the main character. Great hub:)

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