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The Best Teen Movies Of All Time

Updated October 26, 2020 514.6k votes 70.6k voters 2.5m views294 items

List RulesVote up and add all of your favorite movies that are geared towards and feature teenagers.

Need great teen movies to watch? Here's a list of the best teen movies and films about teenagers, adolescence, and high school. What are the best teen movies of all time? Teenagers and young people have long been an ideal target market for film producers. They have more free time than adults, but can get themselves around and choose their own entertainment more easily than children. As well, they have disposable income, and typically spend more of their money on entertainment than their adult counterparts. What's the best teen movie ever? As this has steadily been true for several decades, it has led to a glut of films designed with teenagers in mind during that time.

Though there is no set definition on what makes a film a "teen movie," other than featuring teenagers (or at the very least, teenaged character) in significant roles, the genre has developed some defining features and common motifs over the years. Often, popular teen movies will explore high school as an environment, and specifically the high school community and the social cliques that form therein is a constant source of interest and observation. Much of the time, this is done with a snarky or cynical worldview, attempting to reflect the way that jaded teens often see the world of adults. Overwhelmingly popular recent entries in the high school movie sub-genre include Easy A and Mean Girls, while cult films such as Donnie Darko and Pump Up the Volume explore the same issues with an even darker or more subversive outlook. Some of these movies can even be considered teen adventure movies. With that being said, it's easy to see that this is far more that just a top 10 teenage movies list but all of them can be considered a must watch  teen movie.

Teens are also frequently cast as the leads in horror films, particularly the sub-genre known as "slasher films." In these films, attractive young people are typically placed in precarious situations with serial murderers, and audiences can then delight in seeing them ripped apart. 

The top teen movies on this list span all of these sub-genres and more, including genre mash-ups combining several different storytelling modes into one film (such as the horror-comedy Scream franchise.) It's an open list, so after you're done voting, if you see any good teen movies that aren't on here, add them at the bottom of the page.

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  • 1
    Mean Girls is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    15,487
    4,101

    Mean Girls

    Lindsay Lohan, Rachel McAdams

    Released2004

    Directed byMark Waters

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  • 2
    Clueless is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    9,762
    2,589

    Clueless

    Alicia Silverstone, Brittany Murphy

    Released1995

    Directed byAmy Heckerling

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  • 3
    10 Things I Hate About You is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    10,823
    2,659

    10 Things I Hate About You

    Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Gabrielle Union

    Released1999

    Directed byGil Junger

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  • 4
    The Breakfast Club is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    12,986
    3,824

    The Breakfast Club

    Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald

    Released1985

    Directed byJohn Hughes

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  • 5
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    10,966
    3,572

    Ferris Bueller's Day Off

    Charlie Sheen, Matthew Broderick

    Released1986

    Directed byJohn Hughes

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  • 6
    Easy A is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    9,960
    3,161

    Easy A

    Emma Stone, Amanda Bynes

    Released2010

    Directed byWill Gluck

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  • 7
    Back to the Future is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    8,964
    3,221

    Back to the Future

    Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd

    Released1985

    Directed byRobert Zemeckis

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  • 8
    She's the Man is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    6,546
    1,926

    She's the Man

    Amanda Bynes, Channing Tatum

    Released2006

    Directed byAndy Fickman

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  • 9
    Grease is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    9,761
    3,403

    Grease

    John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John

    Released1978

    Directed byRandal Kleiser

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  • 10
    The Princess Diaries is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    7,185
    1,897

    The Princess Diaries

    Anne Hathaway, Mandy Moore

    Released2001

    Directed byGarry Marshall

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  • 11
    Harry Potter and the Prisoner  is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    4,982
    1,568

    Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

    Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe

    Released2004

    Directed byAlfonso Cuarón

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  • 12
    The Karate Kid is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    4,486
    1,649

    The Karate Kid

    Elisabeth Shue, Ralph Macchio

    Released1984

    Directed byJohn G. Avildsen

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  • 13
    Pitch Perfect is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    3,000
    923

    Pitch Perfect

    Anna Kendrick, Elizabeth Banks

    Released2012

    Directed byJason Moore

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  • 14
    Harry Potter and the Goblet of is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    3,918
    1,274

    Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

    Emma Watson, Robert Pattinson

    Released2005

    Directed byMike Newell

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  • 15
    Stand by Me is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    4,017
    1,479

    Stand by Me

    Kiefer Sutherland, Corey Feldman

    Released1986

    Directed byRob Reiner

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  • 16
    The Parent Trap is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    2,811
    814

    The Parent Trap

    Lindsay Lohan, Dennis Quaid

    Released1998

    Directed byNancy Meyers

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  • 17
    The Perks of Being a Wallflowe is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    3,970
    1,401

    The Perks of Being a Wallflower

    Emma Watson, Nina Dobrev

    Released2012

    Directed byStephen Chbosky

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  • 18
    Sixteen Candles is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    7,558
    2,954

    Sixteen Candles

    John Cusack, Molly Ringwald

    Released1984

    Directed byJohn Hughes

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  • 19
    Dirty Dancing is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    5,198
    1,927

    Dirty Dancing

    Patrick Swayze, Jennifer Grey

    Released1987

    Directed byEmile Ardolino

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  • 20
    The Outsiders is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    4,048
    1,548

    The Outsiders

    Tom Cruise, Nicolas Cage

    Released1983

    Directed byFrancis Ford Coppola

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  • 21
    The Goonies is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    6,343
    2,493

    The Goonies

    Corey Feldman, Josh Brolin

    Released1985

    Directed byRichard Donner

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  • 22
    A Cinderella Story is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    3,919
    1,285

    A Cinderella Story

    Hilary Duff, Jennifer Coolidge

    Released2004

    Directed byMark Rosman

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  • 23
    Harry Potter and the Deathly H is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    2,619
    900

    Released2011

    Directed byDavid Yates

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  • 24
    Footloose is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    4,853
    1,932

    Footloose

    Sarah Jessica Parker, Kevin Bacon

    Released1984

    Directed byHerbert Ross

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  • 25
    13 Going on 30 is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Teen Movies Of All Time
    3,324
    1,206

    13 Going on 30

    Jennifer Garner, Ashley Benson

    Released2004

    Directed byGary Winick

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