It’s not a complete list like EW did for the 25 Greatest High School films of all time of all time but it’s some of my personal favorites and other cheese ball goodies for those of us 80s bred HBO junkies.
Yep, I’m phoning this list in with no long drawn out commentary. Sorry. It’s the weekend.
Back to School
Rodney Dangerfield’s finest performance. Zabka in College. The Triple Lindy. Excellent.
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
The King of 80s Pop Culture, John Hughes, will be missed more than we have really let on at this time. How to cut school and get more of an education and not get caught.
College bound Freshmen should be required to watch this if they are thinking of any technical or engineering programs, because who doesn’t want to try and perfect the Space Laser Cooked Popcorn trick…since Mythbusters proved it busted.
Outsider, new kid in school, Zabka, Miyagi-do karate, wax on wax off, 80s montage at a fun park. YES!
Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Learn it, know it, live it…..and lock the bathroom door.
Technically, not a back to school type movie. In fact, I found it rather odd that a wedding took place in the suburbs of Chicago during the school year and the weather was extremely nice. So, that puts it closer to summer but who cares….the donger needs food.
Another list on another blog post. I must be stalking this film…
Some Kind of Wonderful
Pretty in Pink for the rest of us realists.
3 O’Clock High
Only a handful of people will probably admit to have watched this multiple times. Casey Siesmaszko, Richard Tyson, Jeffrey Tambor and a pre X-Files Mitch Pileggi all can be seen in this day in the life of a teenager headed for a fight in the parking lot after touching the new kid.
Here is a school that self-destructed not because society didn't care but because the school was society. Or at least that’s what was supposed to happen.
For all of us who looked at our teachers like they were aliens…here’s a slick little number from the director of From Dusk till Dawn and Planet Terror, written by the guy who wrote Scream and Dawson’s Creek, and starring Frodo, Jean Grey, The T-1000, Santanico Pandemonium, and that guy from the Daily Show…
Pump Up the Volume
Underground radio before the days of the Internet. They shy introvert who hides behind a microphone and a pirate signal. Was Not Was, The Pixies, Bad Brains, Descendents, Henry Rollins, and a slew of other punk and alternative music before it was trendy and a sell out.
Thanks to Harold er John Cho, the word Milf entered into the lexicon of dirty minded teenagers. Thanks to Jason Biggs, apple pie was never safe again.
Varsity Blues and Friday Night Lights
For some towns, high school football is like church. Friday night is as revered as Sunday. Varsity Blues is the MTV version of Friday Night Lights choosing to focus more on the kids lives instead of the impact of football on the town and the adults who love it so much.
As far as plot devices go, the cop or adult pretending to be a student was done a lot in the 80s. 21 Jump Street, Hiding Out, and the lesser known Plain Clothes with Arliss Howard, Suzi Amis, and George Wendt.
Jeremy Piven, Jon Favreau, David Spade, and George Clinton. The Pit, the Balls and Shaft club. The complete disregard for conformity among college students. Awesome.