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Top 13 Movie High Schools in Existence

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Last week, I wrote an article on my top TV high schools ever. As someone who’s leaving a portion of her savings to Netflix in her will, this was a relatively easy and fun task. It was my first article for Crushable so, naturally, I was caught in the sweaty anxiety limbo that either no one would read it, or everyone would read it and hate it. However, after pitting out two and a half shirts, I received awesome and supportive comments (wahoo!) and even one who suggested that I write about the top movie high schools ever and, as they say, the rest is history.

I hope I continue to entertain you, or at least give you something new to read in the bathroom, with my bigger, badder, but not bossier, definitive list my top 13 movie high schools! (Please don’t sue me for using the number 13) The list is forever growing — I had several brain blasts while writing — and is in no particular order. So keep posting whatever I may have missed in the comments!

1. Bronson Alcott High School, Clueless

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Before Dr. Phil, there was Cher Horowitz. (even Queen Iggy knows that Clueless is a cult classic.) Though Cher taught me everything from how to get boys by drawing attention to my mouth, to learning the proper pronunciation of Haitians, I don’t think we’d be friends because “I (Lily) am majorly, totally, butt crazy in love with Josh” and I’d swipe up Paul Rudd and his rad dance moves faster than you can say, “that was way harsh, Tai.”

2. North Shore High School, Mean Girls

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As if you needed more reason to kowtow to Tina Fey, she expertly adapted one of the most quotable movies of all time, put all her friends in it, and changed ‘Jingle Bell Rock’ forever. Though I’d like to say I’d hang out at Damien and Janice’s table, I’d be lying if I said I would be able resist the pull of the pink-clad, Planned Parenthood posing Plastics.

3. Shermer High School, The Breakfast Club

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All hail John Hughes and his supremely superior teen movie mind. I love when movies introduce a socially diverse clique while justifying my angst-filled teenage rage, and The Breakfast Club does both like no other. (Dancing in the library?! Talk about your oxymoron!) Hopefully they’d accept me for my stereotype, ‘self-deprecating lunatic’, and I could pair off with Anthony Michael Hall.

4. Ridgemont High School, Fast Times at Ridgemont High

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I appropriately rented this movie right before I went off to high school (with my parents and yes, the pool scene was sufficiently awkward) and if having pizza delivered to your history class isn’t the dream, I don’t know what is. Also, I have a divine wish for Jackson Brown’s ‘Somebody’s Baby’ to start playing every time I find myself in a romantic entanglement.

5. Rydell High School, Grease

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Neither Urban Dictionary nor I can properly tell you what “shoo-bop sha wadda wadda yippity boom de boom” means, but I can tell you that Rydell High has everything I’ve ever wanted in a high school. Specifically: expertly choreographed musical numbers, leather body suits, and an unexplainable flying car.

6. Welton Academy, Dead Poets Society

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With Maya Angelou’s passing, it’s only fitting to add this tear jerking, heart-wrenching film about an inspirational teacher who taught a group of high school boys how to read and appreciate poetry. Fun experiment: defiantly recite Whitman’s ‘O Captain! My Captain’ to your favorite teacher while standing on your desk and see how he or she reacts. You won’t regret it.

7. (High School Unknown) Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

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Ok, so he never quite makes it to school, but Ferris essentially follows a typical school schedule: art history, check, P.E., check, successfully bullshitting every adult around you, double check. Sloane will forever be my widow’s peak hair-inspiration and expert on all things pertaining fringe jackets and I love her for it.

8. Hogwarts, Harry Potter

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My favorite trifecta started Hogwarts when they were eleven, but I don’t think I’m alone in saying that the books got especially enjoyable when the gang experienced hormones and non-Voldemort-related adventures. Though I’m pretty sure I’d be a Hufflepuff (multiple online quizzes have supported this claim) I’d take being stuck with all the nice kids if it meant seven years of charms, Fred and George Weasley pranks, and snogging down by the lake.

9. Padua High School, 10 Things I Hate About You

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Confession: I am a Shakespeare fanatic, I love the Bard like no other, and any adaptation gets my Elizabethan mind twirling (this might just be the nerdiest sentence I’ve written to date, but, I digress…) Heath Ledger simultaneously touched girls’ hearts and ruined boys’ lives when he changed the world of dating forever by singing ‘Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You’ on the bleachers. Nice try, kid, but your varsity letterman jacket ain’t gonna cut it no more.

10. Lee High School Dazed and Confused 

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Aside from finally putting a context to the millions of “alright, alright, alright” references you pretended to understand this past awards season, this brought hazing into the high school sphere. I’d give good money to watch Matthew McConaughey in his natural, laid back habit and document it à la National Geographic.

11. East Great Falls High School, American Pie

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Another movie it took me a couple years to actually understand what was going on (RIP to the days when “I’m coming” had one, single interpretation) But, innocence chucked out the window aside, this movie changed the band camp, prom, and apple pie forever, and I want to be a part of that history making.

12. Illyria, She’s the Man

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Another Shakespearean adaptation, so, obviously, I love it. This movie is a clear example of one of the many benefits of Title IX (I’d run passing drills with ‘Channing Tate-Yum’ any day) Pretty sure Amanda Bynes, Channing Tatum, and I would wax poetry on the wonder that is Gouda while nursing our nosebleeds with tampons.

13.  East High School, High School Musical 3 

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Anything you can say about this movie, Zac Efron’s abs and moves can say better. “Ayo Gabriella, it’s going down. Theater. Two Minutes. Interpretive sing/dance off. Winner gets Troy’s ‘T’ necklace and bragging rights.”

 

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  • Samantha Escobar

    #6, ALWAYS. And #7. And 9, 10…Okay, I just love this list. Also, so true about American Pie–that was when I learned the, ahem, other meaning of “I’m coming.”

    Sad side note: I wish Sean Penn weren’t such an awful person. I loved him in Fast Times.

  • Bri

    Spot on! Especially with OINTB’s Dazed and Confused shoutout this week

  • Nbl

    According to my mother, the school fom Dazed and Confused was her high school to a T in sunny San Diego. The school from 10 things was beautiful. There are college campuses smaller and uglier than that school.

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