1. Ferris Bueller's Day Off
"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop to look around once in a while, you could miss it."
Ferris Bueller, a charming and clever high schooler decides to play hooky for a day from high school with his two best friends. From Wrigley Field to a Polish Pride parade, Ferris and his friends make the most of their day off. With such a lovable main character and an over-the-top story, this movie never fails to make anyone smile.
2. Almost Famous
"One day, you'll be cool. Look under your bed. It will set you free."
A young boy receives boxes of records from his older sister seconds before she leaves their family, specifically their compulsively strict mother, behind. The boy takes the records and his talent for writing on the road for a crazy adventure full of sex, drugs, and rock and roll. Set in the 1970s, this film tells a story that everyone should see to truly understand the time period.
3. Harry Potter (1-8)
"'Ah, music,' he said, wiping his eyes. 'A magic beyond all we do here!'"
Harry Potter, a courageous and determined boy learns he is a wizard on his eleventh birthday. The seven books and eight movies follow his adventure growing up as a famous wizard, a wonderful friend, and "the boy who lived." Watching the movies or reading the books is an essential part of understanding the massive empire that is Harry Potter and the magical feelings the seven-year story gives anyone who indulges in it.
4. Sixteen Candles
"Can I borrow your underpants for ten minutes?"
A teenaged girl wrestles with the fact that her entire family forgot about her sixteenth birthday in lieu of her sister's wedding. Sixteen Candles is the perfect film to relate to for a high school student who feels like they don't belong. The story travels between funny, sad, and sweet as the main character finds love where it seemed like there was none.
5. The Breakfast Club
"We're all pretty bizarre. Some of us are just better at hiding it, that's all."
Five teens are required to serve a sentence of high school detention on a Saturday. The main characters, who are seemingly completely different, learn to understand and care about each other despite their drastically different reputations over the course of one long day. The film is an earnest, angsty, and deeply heartfelt story that anyone can connect to.
6. Forrest Gump
"Mama always said life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get."
Forrest Gump, a strong and lovable man, finds himself reviewing his life of heartbreak, struggle, and growth to a complete stranger on a bus. This movie will break your heart and put it together again countless times with its sweet yet bitter tone. The film made movie history as a classic in 1994 and has remained one of the most treasured movies ever made.
7. The Spectacular Now
"The best thing about now, is that there's another one tomorrow."
Sutter Keely, a charming, strong, and witty teen wrestles with the ambiguity his future. Amy, an intelligent and caring girl with her future set out for her struggles with finding herself and self-confidence. Despite their differences, they fall in love. The movie explores what it's truly like to be in love as a teenager. The main characters are heartfelt and real through their sensitivity and wistfulness, making the story one many people can connect to.
"Adventure is out there!"
Carl, an old man grieving his wife, ties thousands of balloons to his house and flies over the world to live a lifelong dream- originally all by himself. But seconds before leaving the ground, Russell, a young boy scout, gets caught on the porch. Through the story of their adventure, the two unlikely characters form an inseparable bond, making the movie a wonderful multi-generational and uplifting story.
9. The Perks of Being a Wallflower
"We accept the love we think we deserve."
An alienated, unpopular teen named Charlie is befriended by a group of older, cooler, and non-conformist students that change his life forever. Through Charlie's story of depression, grief, love, and friendship over the course of a year, this honest and bold story connects any adolescent or adult who has felt like they are on the outside looking in.
"The past is just a story we tell ourselves."
In a future world, technology can talk back- but more importantly, it can also feel. The story follows Theodore, a man who is heartbroken after his last relationship, and his spiral into love with a complex technology system named Samantha. This film is able to show true love through something completely unexpected in a story about what relationships can truly amount to.
11. Moonrise Kingdom
"We're in love. We just want to be together. What's wrong with that?"
A young boy and girl in 1965 fall in love and run away together to an island where no one can find them. But, a storm is approaching the island, forcing multiple adults to form a search party and find the two before they get hurt. In this absolutely precious Wes Anderson film, it's impossible not to fall in love with the main characters. They are twelve years old, a little bit strange, and hopelessly in love- what's not to like?
12. Good Will Hunting
"Real loss is only possible when you love something more than you love yourself."
Will Hunting, a young man with a misguided childhood yet now a qualified genius, takes a job MIT as a janitor. When he unexpectedly solves an unsolved math problem, he is brought in by a professor to reach his full potential. But, when Will attacks a police officer, he is required to see a therapist to help him through his depression and grief. This compelling story gives the perfect combination of sadness and happiness through two complex main characters that help each other learn about what intelligence truly means.
13. The Princess Bride
"Is this a kissing book?"
A young boy asks for a story from his grandpa on a sick day home from school. The movie goes back and forth between a live-action of the fairytale to the boy and his grandpa telling the story through a riveting tale of love, adventure, and separation. This absolute classic will give you the perfect fantasy story mixed with a real-life take on a fairytale.
14. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
"Come back and make-up a goodbye, at least. Let's pretend we had one."
Joel, a hopeless romantic, retells the story of his relationship with his former girlfriend, Clementine, through frantic memories in this science-fiction-romantic-comedy-drama. Their twisted and surprising love story is sweet yet sour, starring Jim Carey and Kate Winslet in roles you never expected them to fill so well.
15. Back To The Future
"Roads? Where we're going, we don't need roads!"
Made in the 1980s, Marty Mcfly, teen heartthrob, is thrown back in time to the 50s with a crazy scientist named Doc only to encounter his parents when they were in high school. As he uncovers the true story of his parent's young lives, he finds himself slowly changing time, causing his life as he knows it to possibly disappear in the chaos. As one of the classics, this movie is known for its cherished humor and laid back attitude towards time travel.
16. The Matrix
"To deny our own impulses is to deny the very thing that makes us human."
In this science-fiction thriller, the matrix is an artificial reality where almost all human lives are unknowingly controlled by machines who thrive off of human body heat. But, when main character Neo has a dream where he is taught about the matrix offered a way out, he takes it. Neo is then forced to accept the real world outside of the matrix as a wasteland it is, and save the world from the machines. One of the most classic movies in the world will eat up at your insides as you watch, and make you question if what you believe is reality is actually true.
17. Ten Things I Hate About You
"Hello Katrina. Make anyone cry today?" "Sadly, no. But it's only 4:30."
Cameron, the new kid in school, falls for it-girl Bianca. But, Bianca likes golden-boy Joey. Bianca is Katrina's sister whose father won't let them date, but Katrina refuses to go out anyone. In order to get a date with Bianca, Joey pays bad-boy Patrick to date Katrina so he can date Bianca, while Cameron is still working for Bianca's affections. Not chaotic at all, right? In this classic high school love story loosely based on Shakespeare, this tale encompasses the innocence and rebellious stories of high school students falling in love.
18. The Social Network
"Drop the 'The.' Just 'Facebook.' It's cleaner."
In the compelling and true story of how Facebook was made, Mark Zuckerburg and his friend Eduardo create Facebook during their time at one of the most elite universities in the country. As more people catch onto the idea, their creation gets out of hand. This truthful and honest story about fairness and intelligence is one not to be missed.