Growing up is tough. It’s a time when you learn about life and yourself, and it’s a time when you make mistakes and figure out who you are. Many people struggle with this and come out of it with a different outlook on life. If you’re one of these people, then you’ll love this list of the best movies about growing up. These Movies About Growing Up will give you a glimpse into the lives of real people, and they’ll show you that growing up isn’t always easy, but it can be fun!
Movies About Growing Up
We’ve all been there—watching a movie with your parents or friends that are so good, you feel like you’re growing up in the story. Movies can be a great way to learn about the life, and you can even use them to learn more about yourself.
10. Superbad (2007)
Release date: August 17, 2007 (USA)
Director: Greg Mottola
Written by: Seth Rogen; Evan Goldberg
Music by: Lyle Workman
Budget: $17.5–20 million
Distributed by: Columbia Pictures, Sony Pictures Releasing
Superbad appears to be one of the straightforward teen comedy Movies About Growing Up, which it is, but it also contains a pearl of hidden wisdom. Superbad is hysterically funny, with well-written comedy and a basic premise.
However, Superbad’s language excels, particularly the exchanges between Micheal Cera and Jonah Hill’s characters; they feel like real friends, and some of the words they exchange, while caustic and amusing, are genuine. Very realistic, which is uncommon even among the best films.
Superbad is arguably the greatest teen comedy ever made. However, beneath the slapstick humor lies an emotional study of friendship carried by the speech.
9. Legally Blonde (2001)
Release date: July 13, 2001 (USA)
Director: Robert Luketic
Adapted from: Legally Blonde
Screenplay by: Karen McCullah Lutz; Kirsten Smith
Box office: $141.8 million
Distributed by: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 20th Century Studios
This film never fails to impress, from the opening credits and Hoku’s superb ‘Perfect Day‘ (which had me dancing) to the very last shot. It may be utter nonsense, but the ‘feel-good’ factor is high, and Witherspoon once again delivers a flawless performance. As my prior reviews demonstrate, I have a soft spot for Ms. W. – and Selma Blair – partially because I know any film starring them will be worth seeing. They have quite distinct personalities, which are fully utilized in their on-screen conflict.
Once again, these Movies About Growing Up are a blockbuster, and the supporting ensemble shines – there isn’t a bad performance in sight. The plot holds together effectively, despite being pretty superficial, and benefits from some beautifully crafted characters. Even the dog never makes a mistake with his paw placement.
Very easy on the eyes and ears, and one of my most-watched DVDs since, no matter what mood I’m in, a dosage of legal pink always makes me feel better. If you buy the DVD, you’ll also get Hoku, who is both beautiful and talented. It comes highly recommended.
8. Ghost World (2001)
Release date: July 20, 2001 (USA)
Director: Terry Zwigoff
Featured song: Jaan Pehechan Ho
Adapted from: Ghost World
Budget: $7 million
Distributed by: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, United Artists, Icon Productions, Capitol Films
Films that criticize the world might fall into a variety of pitfalls, leaving the audience feeling jaded by the experience. Ghost World’s humorous critique of ‘America’ avoids being childishly sarcastic or self-important and consequently emerges as one of 2001’s best films. We sympathize with Enid (the beautiful Thora Birch), but we are not meant to think that her pessimistic worldview is always correct.
The negativity of Enid (and her closest friend Rebecca) is turned on everyone around them, and their compulsive quest to be cool but on their terms leads them to the ludicrous conclusion of postmodernism.
The film’s main targets are those who betray themselves to fit in, as well as their subsequent idiocy as a result of doing so. However, those who have remained true to their principles (such as Steve Buscemi’s Seymour, who should have been nominated for an Academy Award) are depicted as leading equally empty lives. Seymour’s sporadic attempts at ‘normalcy’ are vexing to watch and nearly soul-destroying for him to go through.
This is one of the fantastic movies About Growing Up. Thora Birch provides her most assured performance to date, and Scarlett Johansson as Enid’s frigid sidekick is delightfully laconic. The supporting cast is fantastic. Strongly suggested!
7. Boyhood (2014)-Movies About Growing Up
Release date: July 11, 2014 (USA)
Director: Richard Linklater
Featured song: Hero
Box office: $57.3 million
Awards: Academy Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, MORE
Distributed by: Netflix, Universal Pictures, 20th Century Studios
Boyhood chronicles the early years of a young boy named Mason, beginning at the age of six and going through middle school, high school, and finally his transition to college at the age of eighteen. Although the plot is very simple and, some could argue, unadventurous, the director’s sheer ambition is reason enough to hand over your money; shot over twelve years with the same cast, audiences can witness the genuine maturation of a character like never before.
However, as Linklater himself stated if the audience perceives this as purely an experiment, he has failed in his mission. The film has its narrative. The Movies About Growing Up might easily be titled ‘adulthood,’ ‘parenthood,’ or even a more generalized title of ‘Life’ – Linklater understands people and is one of the few modern filmmakers who understands the importance of well-rounded, interesting, and relatable characters to tell a story.
You don’t think about the repercussions, the potential problems, or how difficult it must have been to make Boyhood when you’re watching it. Instead, you opt to enjoy it on a superficial level, understanding the full beauty of what has been accomplished only after the film has ended. This is truly a once-in-a-lifetime film, and everybody who sees it will have a once-in-a-lifetime experience. This film is on its way to becoming a modern masterpiece, and it will be remembered as one of the best created.
6. Moonlight (2016)
Release date: September 2, 2016 (USA)
Director: Barry Jenkins
Story by: Tarell Alvin McCraney
Box office: 65.3 million USD
Awards: Academy Award for Best Picture, MORE
Distributed by: A24, Camera Film
Moonlight is one of the most stunning and heartbreaking films I’ve ever watched. Many users are dismissive of it or believe it to be uninteresting. However, viewing it in this light misses the entire idea of the picture. Moonlight wasn’t meant to aggressively wow us or teach us something we didn’t already know. Instead, the movie allowed us to enter and follow a life that I’m sure many people have never considered.
Yes, we understood a little about poverty, queerness, masculinity, and Blackness on its own, but seeing the tension of it all so simply weaved together allowed us to grasp the complexity of some people’s lives in a new light.
Moonlight wasn’t designed to provide a grandiose conclusion or even solutions, but rather to portray a story that we don’t often see. And it’s because of this that it’s so simple, sad, and stunningly beautiful.
It’s also crucial to realize that just because you don’t comprehend something doesn’t mean it’s irrelevant or unimportant. Just because you don’t relate to the full narrative doesn’t mean you can’t learn something from it. Just because a story isn’t widely told doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be taken seriously. Look deep within yourself and examine why you don’t comprehend or feel this film to be a waste.
5. An Education (2009)
Release date: October 16, 2009 (USA)
Director: Lone Scherfig
Music by: Paul Englishby
Box office: $26.1 million
Nominations: Academy Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role, MORE
Distributed by: Entertainment One, BBC Films, FilmFlex, Sony Pictures Classics, Nordisk Film Distribution
The film looked at how far people will justify their conduct based on their perceived material interests. It was an engrossing morality tale that was well-told. Carey Mulligan, who plays 16-year-old student Jenny in 1961 London, did an excellent job as the principal actress. She begins an odd relationship with David, played by Peter Saarsgard. Even though the affair seemed unlikely, David charms Jenny and her family, assuaging their suspicions about his intentions.
By all accounts, he appears to be a wealthy and successful businessman, and Jenny’s father, Alfred Molina, believes that his daughter would be well-provided for, eliminating the need for her to pay for college.
There’s a lot more to the narrative, but suffice it to say that nothing is as it seems. Jenny’s school, her connection with her family, professors, David’s business partner, and her dilemma between her dreams of attending Oxford or the “good life” with her affluent and dashing boyfriend are all depicted in great detail in the film.
The tale was masterfully created and, at the very least, should be nominated for screenplay. Carey Mulligan and Alfred Molina, I believe, are deserving of some praise. The cast as a whole was great. Rosamund Pike was fantastic as Helen, Danny’s (Dominic Cooper) business associate’s street smart but otherwise dense girlfriend.
4. Juno (2007)-Movies About Growing Up
Release date: December 5, 2007 (USA)
Director: Jason Reitman
Featured song: Anyone Else but You
Box office: $231.4 million
Awards: Critics Choice Movie Award for Best Comedy, MORE
Distributed by: Searchlight Pictures, FilmFlex
Ellen Page gives a superb, finely tuned performance as Juno MacGuff, a snarky, cynical, tomboyish teen. Juno receives an unwanted package—a pregnancy—after sort-of-spontaneous (but not really) sex with her best buddy, Paulie Bleeker (Michael Cera of ‘Superbad’). Whoops.
Juno decides to give her kid to Mark and Vanessa Loring, a wealthy couple (Jason Bateman and Jennifer Garner). Everything appears to be going well at first, but the road ahead will be rocky until the baby is born.
I could go on for hours about how fantastic the film ‘Juno’ is, but since I’m not the best writer on the earth, I’ll just say that it has an odd impact on you. I almost felt as if I’d walk out of the movie and find Juno MacGuff standing there, as if she were a typical living, breathing teenager after witnessing it. That’s the caliber of Page. Every performance in the picture is outstanding.
I enjoyed how Allison Janney’s stepmother isn’t transformed into a whiny she-demon like other formula stepmothers; instead, she’s far kinder (albeit a touch hesitant of Juno’s strange ways) than we might think. J.K. Rowling, too.
3. Akeelah and the Bee (2006)
Release date: April 28, 2006 (USA)
Director: Doug Atchison
Music by: Aaron Zigman
Box office: $19 million
Distributed by: Lionsgate
Produced by: Laurence Fishburne; Sid Ganis; Nancy Hult Ganis; Danny Llewelyn; Michael Romersa
Akeelah and the Bee is a fantastic family film. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen a film about the African-American community that isn’t about pimps, rappers, or drugs in any form. This is not something I say lightly. As an aspiring African American actor, I’m well aware that they are the roles written about and for blacks.
That is what makes this film unique; it demonstrates how a community can come together to support a good cause. I can only hope that one day I will be able to demonstrate my abilities in a segment like this. The young actress who plays the lead role is a fantastic find. I believe she will be around for a long time.
Any film that can make me shed a tear or two is good in my opinion. This is a fantastic film for any parent who wishes to teach their child that being smart is okay.
2. Almost Famous (2000)
Release date: September 13, 2000 (USA)
Director: Cameron Crowe
Music by: Nancy Wilson
Box office: $47.4 million
Production companies: Columbia Pictures; DreamWorks Pictures; Vinyl Films
Distributed by: DreamWorks Pictures, Columbia Pictures
“Almost Famous” is nearly ideal as a film about the golden age of rock ‘n’ roll, when we believed our music had the power to alter the world. But this isn’t a documentary about the perils, immorality, and shallowness of rock fans. It’s an achingly sweet coming-of-age story that delves into the challenges that rock performers, their fans, and those on the sidelines experience.
William Miller (Patrick Fugit) is a precocious, fresh-faced 15-year-old who has been filled with the magic of rock by his elder sister, Zooey Deschanel, who has had enough of her controlling, protective mother (played with delight by Frances McDormand) and has left home to become a stewardess.
Overall, this is one of the greatest rock films of all time. The music is fantastic. The cast and performances are outstanding. Fantastic script and cinematography.
I felt as if I was seeing this uplifting and pleasant film with a group of close friends. So much feeling without being sappy. Feeling great at its finest!!
1. Rushmore (1999)- Movies About Growing Up
Release date: December 11, 1998 (USA, Los Angeles)
Director: Wes Anderson
Music by: Mark Mothersbaugh
Box office: $17.1–19.1 million
Production companies: Touchstone Pictures; American Empirical Pictures
Distributed by: Criterion, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Touchstone Pictures, Touchstone Home Entertainment
Rushmore by Wes Anderson is a film that has everything that modern cinematic trash films lack: dry wit, creative script, memorable music, and genuine heart. Max Fischer is the wonderfully imperfect yet completely bright man who attempts to find his place in the world, whether it’s by absorbing himself in extracurricular activities or claiming to be the son of a neurosurgeon, and I believe Rushmore is cinematic brilliance.
All of the characters are well-developed; Herman Blume is a prosperous guy who feels worthless, while Miss Cross is a clever woman who is merely saddened by her husband’s death. However, it is their weaknesses that make them so lovely; they aren’t labeled packages, but raw and real human people struggling to make ends meet. This film is about figuring out what you love and doing it for the rest of your life, as Max puts it.
The camera angles in this film are intriguing, allowing you to interact with the setting and characters. Wes Anderson chooses the ideal music for each moment, particularly the devastating sequence at the end where Miss Cross and Max dance to the Faces’ “Ooh la la.” But it’s how Rushmore makes you feel that’s most brilliant: gloomy yet hopeful, sorrowful yet joyful, confusing yet clear-headed.
A decent Movies About Growing Up makes you think, but a great film alters your view of the world, as Anderson has done. “When one guy, for whatever reason, gets the opportunity to lead an amazing life, he has no right to keep it to himself,” as Miss Cross put it in the Diving for Sunken Treasure book, and I’m delighted Wes Anderson made such an extraordinary film and shared it with us all.
In conclusion, the best movies about growing up are the ones that are about the experience of growing up and not the experiences of the characters. If the movies were about the experiences of the characters, then they would be about how the character became who they are. The best movies about growing up are the ones that are about the experience of growing up and not the experiences of the characters.
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