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Coming of Age Movies – Best Teen Movies

Samuel Ting



Coming of Age Movies - Best Teen Movies

Teen movies and coming-of-age films are a genre of their own. They capture the essence of adolescent lives. Many films over the years have addressed different questions associated with teenagers. Movies address teenage life’s instability and put it up for a broader debate. Teenagers can relate to the characters. Movies for teens let them feel represented and create more awareness around them. Here is a list of 20 films that captured the confusions of teenage life:

1. To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You (2020)

Again, this is based on Jenny Han’s novel To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You, a 2020 sequel to To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. The film is directed by Michael Fimognari and written by Sofia Alvarez and J. Mills Goodloe. 

2. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018)

A teenager finds her life turned upside down when her secret love letters reach all of her crushes. Based on Jenny Han’s 2014 novel of the same name, the teen movie is directed by Susan Johnson. It stars Noah Centineo, Lana Condor, and Janel Parrish.

3. Alex Strangelove (2018)

When high school student Alex decides to lose his virginity, he begins to question his sexuality. He meets Elliot and explores his sexual orientation. The film was written and directed by Craig Johnson and stars Daniel Doheny, Antonio Marziale, and Madeline Weinstein. 

4. The Half of It (2020)

Half of It follows Ellie Chu, a shy but intelligent teenager who ghostwrites essays. She helps her friend Paul to woo another girl, Aster. Eventually, Ellie develops feelings for Aster. Directed by Alice Wu, Leah Lewis, Daniel Diemer, and Alexxis Lemire play the lead roles.

5. Dumplin’ (2018)

Willowdean is the daughter of yesteryear’s beauty pageant, Rosie Dickson. Will competes in the local beauty pageant her mother hosts to protest against the society that bullies her due to her physique. Anne Fletcher directed the teen movie and starred Danielle Macdonald and Jennifer Aniston.

6. Let It Snow (2019)

Let it Snow is an American Christmas romantic comedy directed by Luke Snelling. It is based on a novel of the same name by Maureen Johnson, John Green, and Lauren Myracle. The movie narrates the story of a group of young people coming together when a snowstorm strikes a town. 

7. Candy Jar (2018)

Two competitive high school students help each other to get into the college of their dreams. They eventually develop feelings for each other. Directed by Ben Shelton and starring Sami Gayle and Jacob Latimore, the movie deals with the weight of competition on the shoulders of high school students. 

8. All the Bright Places (2020)

All the Bright Places narrates the story of Violet and Theodore. Both of them were dealing with their tragedies and were going through emotional disturbances. They slowly develop a connection between themselves. Directed by Brett Haley, it stars Paula Mazur and Mitchell Kaplan in the lead roles.

9. The Perfect Date (2019)

A high school student develops an app and offers his services as a fake date. He seeks money for college this way. But when he starts to have real feelings, problems emerge. The movie is based on the novel The Stand-In written by Steve Bloom. It is directed by Chris Nelson and stars Noah Centineo and Laura Marano in the lead roles.

10. Do Revenge (2022)

Drea and Eleanor are two students seeking revenge for the harms done to them. They team up to take action against their violators. Directed by Jennifer Kaytin Robinson, the movie stars Camilla Mendes and Maya Hawke as Drea and Eleanor.

11. You Are So Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah (2023)

Two best friends engage in a fight over the same boy. The movie was based on the 2005 young adult novel of the same name. Directed by Sammi Cohen, it stars Sandler, his wife, and two daughters playing the main characters.

12. Moxie (2021)

To support her friends facing several types of bullying and harassment, sixteen-year-old Vivian starts a feminist magazine. Directed by Amy Poehler, the movie stars Hadley Robinson, Alycia Pascual-Peña,  and Lauren Tsai.

13. The Baby Sitter (2017)

This movie is about a Satan worshipper coming as a babysitter to kill a twelve-year-old boy. She and her group have decided to sacrifice him. Falling under the teen black comedy slasher, and directed by McG the film stars Samara Weaving and Judah Lewis. 

14. Work It (2020)

Due to her own clumsiness, Quinn Ackerman was fired from her position at Senior School. The movie narrates how she and her new set of misfit friends win a dance championship to get into her dream university. Sabrina Carpenter, Liza Koshy, and Keiynan Lonsdale play the lead characters under the direction of Laura Terruso.

15. Deidra & Laney Rob a Train (2017)

  With a mother’s bail to be paid and two siblings about to be taken away, two sisters decide to rob trains. They also realize the real and fake connections they have. Under Sydney Freeland’s direction, Ashleigh Murray and Rachel Crow played the lead roles.

16. Tall Girl (2019)

Jodi is a sixteen-year-old girl who is insecure about her height. Nzingha Stewart, the movie directed the film showing these insecurities of Jodi. She finds a companion in Jack Dunkleman, who consistently pursues her. The film focuses on Jodi overcoming her insecurities. Ava Michelle and Griffin Gluck enact roles of Jodi and Jack.

17. The Kissing Booth (2018)

Elle is worried that her best friend Lee would find out about her relationship with his brother Noah. The movie revolves around these confused teenagers. Joey King plays the lead role of Elle, with Joel Courtney and Jacob Elordi playing the roles of the brothers Lee and Noah.

18. Dude (2018)

Dude is about four friends—Lily, Chloe, Amelia, and Rebecca—and how they understand losses. Each character deals with loss on different levels. The film looks through the emotional crises they go through. Olivia Milch directed the film. Lucy Hale, Kathryn Prescott, Alexandra Shipp, and Awkwafina play the four friends.

19. All Together Now (2020)

Amber Appleton navigates a troubled teenage life. The movie shows how she handles an alcoholic mother, homelessness, detachment, and lost opportunities. Brett Haley is the director, with Auli’I Cravalho and Rhenzy Feliz as Amber and Ty.

20. Along for the Ride (2022)

Born to separated academicians Victoria and Robert, Auden looks for new connections around her. She finds it in Eli, in the town of Colby, where her father lives with his new partner and child. Auden eventually connects and influences the people around her. Along for the Ride was directed by Sofia Alvarez with Emma Pasarow and Belmont Cadeli playing the leads.