Teachers The Best Movies For and About Teachers, Ranked  

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List Rules Movies featuring teachers only

A list of the best teacher movies. These are films that focus on teachers, teaching, and the conflicts our educators often go through when trying to teach. We believe we've thought of them all, but if your favorite teacher films aren't on here, please feel free to add them to the list of the best teacher films. This teacher movie list includes all genres, although teacher movies tend to always lean toward "inspirational".

All types of schools are also included such as elementary, high school, preparatory, public schools, and colleges/universities. Best of all, a number of these films are based on real teachers. So if you're looking for inspiration and have respect for education, these teacher films are the ones for you.

What are the best teacher movies? Take a look here and see for yourself. There are some great selections on this list like School of Rock, Bad Teacher and Mr. Holland's Opus.

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Dead Poets Society Robin Williams, Ethan Hawke, Lara Flynn Boyle Dead Poets Society is a 1989 American drama film written by Tom Schulman, directed by Peter Weir and starring Robin Williams. Set at the conservative and aristocratic Welton Academy in the ...more

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Lean on Me Morgan Freeman, Tony Todd, Regina Taylor Lean on Me is a 1989 dramatized biographical film written by Michael Schiffer, directed by John G. Avildsen and starring Morgan Freeman. Lean on Me is loosely based on the story of Joe Louis ...more

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Dangerous Minds Michelle Pfeiffer, Andy Garcia, Paula Garcés Dangerous Minds is a 1995 American drama film directed by John N. Smith, and produced by Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer. It is based on the autobiography My Posse Don't Do Homework by retired ...more

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Carly Kiel added To Sir, with Love Sidney Poitier, Lulu, Patricia Routledge To Sir, with Love is a 1967 British drama film, starring Sidney Poitier, that deals with social and racial issues in an inner-city school. James Clavell directed and wrote the film's screenplay, ...more

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Mr. Holland's Opus Alicia Witt, William H. Macy, Terrence Howard Mr. Holland's Opus is a 1995 American drama film directed by Stephen Herek, produced by Ted Field, Robert W. Cort, and Michael Nolin, and written by Patrick Sheane Duncan. It stars Richard ...more

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Stand and Deliver Andy Garcia, Edward James Olmos, Lou Diamond Phillips Stand and Deliver is a 1988 American drama film based on the true story of high school math teacher Jaime Escalante. Edward James Olmos portrayed Escalante in the film and received a nomination ...more

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School of Rock Sarah Silverman, Jack Black, Miranda Cosgrove School of Rock is a 2003 American comedy film directed by Richard Linklater, written by Mike White, and starring Jack Black. The main plot follows struggling rock singer and guitarist, Dewey ...more

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AndrewW.Curley added Freedom Writers Hilary Swank, Patrick Dempsey, Imelda Staunton Freedom Writers is a 2007 drama film starring Hilary Swank, Scott Glenn, Imelda Staunton and Patrick Dempsey. It is based on the book The Freedom Writers Diary by teacher Erin Gruwell who wrote ...more

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Kindergarten Cop Arnold Schwarzenegger, Odette Annable, Angela Bassett Kindergarten Cop is a 1990 American comedy film directed by Ivan Reitman and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger as John Kimble, a tough police detective, who must go undercover and pose as a ...more

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The Great Debaters Denzel Washington, Forest Whitaker, Jurnee Smollett The Great Debaters is a 2007 American biopic period drama film directed by and starring Denzel Washington and produced by Oprah Winfrey and her production company, Harpo Productions. It is based ...more

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Coach Carter Channing Tatum, Samuel L. Jackson, Ashanti Coach Carter is a 2005 American biographical sports drama film directed by Thomas Carter. It is based on a true story of Richmond High School basketball coach Ken Carter portrayed by Samuel L. ...more

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October Sky Jake Gyllenhaal, Laura Dern, Chris Cooper October Sky is a 1999 American biographical film directed by Joe Johnston, starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Chris Cooper and Laura Dern. It is based on the true story of Homer Hickam, a coal miner's ...more

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The Principal is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Movies For and About Teachers, Ranked
Bootsdad added The Principal Jim Belushi, Louis Gossett, Jr. The Principal is a 1987 crime thriller action film starring James Belushi and Louis Gossett, Jr. It was written by Frank Deese and directed by Christopher Cain. It was filmed in Oakland, ...more

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Renaissance Man Mark Wahlberg, Danny DeVito, Stacey Dash Released: 1994 Renaissance Man is a 1994 American comedy film directed by Penny Marshall, and stars Danny DeVito, Gregory Hines, James Remar, Cliff Robertson and Mark Wahlberg in his film debut. In Australia, ...more

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Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit Jennifer Love Hewitt, Lauryn Hill, Maggie Smith Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit is a 1993 American comedy film loosely based on the life of Crenshaw High School choir instructor Iris Stevenson, and starring Whoopi Goldberg. Directed by Bill ...more

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Carly Kiel added Half Nelson Ryan Gosling, Denis O'Hare, Anthony Mackie Half Nelson is a 2006 American drama film directed by Ryan Fleck, written by Fleck and Anna Boden. The film stars Ryan Gosling, Shareeka Epps and Anthony Mackie. It was scored by Juno ...more

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Lon Harris added Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire Mariah Carey, Lenny Kravitz, Paula Patton Released: 2009 Precious is a 2009 American drama film, directed and co-produced by Lee Daniels. Precious is an adaptation by Geoffrey S. Fletcher of the 1996 novel Push by Sapphire. The film stars Gabourey ...more

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The Emperor's Club Kevin Kline, Patrick Dempsey, Jesse Eisenberg The Emperor's Club is a 2002 American drama film directed by Michael Hoffman and stars Kevin Kline. Based on Ethan Canin's short story "The Palace Thief," it tells the story of a prep ...more

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Take the Lead Antonio Banderas, Jenna Dewan, Alfre Woodard Take the Lead is a 2006 musical drama film starring Antonio Banderas, Rob Brown, Alfre Woodard, Dante Basco, Elijah Kelley, Marcus T. Paulk, Jenna Dewan, Lauren Collins and also features former ...more

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algirdas-preisogolavicius added The Ron Clark Story Matthew Perry, Ernie Hudson, Brandon Mychal Smith The Ron Clark Story is a 2006 television film starring Matthew Perry, that premiered on TNT on Sunday, August 13, 2006. Based on the real-life educator Ron Clark, it centers on a white teacher ...more

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bojanthebest added The Substitute Tom Berenger, Marc Anthony, Luis Guzmán The Substitute is a 1996 American action-crime-thriller film directed by Robert Mandel and starring Tom Berenger, Ernie Hudson, Marc Anthony, William Forsythe, Raymond Cruz and Luis

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but chickens double d added Hoosiers Gene Hackman, Dennis Hopper, Barbara Hershey Hoosiers is a 1986 sports film written by Angelo Pizzo and directed by David Anspaugh. It tells the story of a small-town Indiana high school basketball team that wins the state championship. It ...more

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but chickens double d added The Karate Kid Elisabeth Shue, Ralph Macchio, Pat Morita The Karate Kid is a 1984 American martial arts romantic drama film directed by John G. Avildsen and written by Robert Mark Kamen, starring Ralph Macchio, who was 22 years old during principal ...more

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Waiting for "Superman" Waiting for "Superman" is a 2010 documentary film from director Davis Guggenheim and producer Lesley Chilcott. The film analyzes the failures of the American public education system by ...more

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One Eight Seven is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Movies For and About Teachers, Ranked
Lon Harris added One Eight Seven Samuel L. Jackson, Method Man, Clifton Collins One Eight Seven is a 1997 drama/crime/thriller film directed by Kevin Reynolds. It was the first top-billed starring role for Samuel L. Jackson, who plays a Los Angeles teacher caught with gang ...more

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AndrewW.Curley added The Class Arthur Fogel, François Bégaudeau, Valérie Benguigui The Class is a 2008 French drama film directed by Laurent Cantet. Its original French title is Entre les murs, which translates literally to "Between the walls" or "Within the ...more

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The Chorus Kad Merad, Jacques Perrin, Didier Flamand The Chorus is a 2004 French drama film directed by Christophe Barratier. Co-written by Barratier and Philippe Lopes-Curval, it is an adaptation of the 1945 film A Cage of Nightingales, which in ...more

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Blackboard Jungle is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Movies For and About Teachers, Ranked
beernbugs added Blackboard Jungle Sidney Poitier, Glenn Ford, Anne Francis Blackboard Jungle is a 1955 social commentary film about teachers in an inner-city school. It is based on the novel of the same name by Evan Hunter.

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Carly Kiel added Bad Teacher Cameron Diaz, Justin Timberlake, Jason Segel Bad Teacher is a 2011 American comedy film directed by Jake Kasdan based on a screenplay by Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky, and starring Cameron Diaz, Justin Timberlake, Lucy Punch and Jason ...more

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emmatiede added Front of the Class Patricia Heaton, Treat Williams, James Wolk Front of the Class is a 2008 American drama film based on the book by Brad Cohen, Front of the Class: How Tourette Syndrome Made Me the Teacher I Never Had, co-authored by Lisa Wysocky. The book ...more

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algirdas-preisogolavicius added Akeelah and the Bee Angela Bassett, Laurence Fishburne, Keke Palmer Akeelah and the Bee is a 2006 American drama film written and directed by Doug Atchison. It tells the story of Akeelah Anderson, an 11-year-old girl who participates in the Scripps National ...more

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beernbugs added Up the Down Staircase Jean Stapleton, Esther Rolle, Sandy Dennis Up the Down Staircase is a 1967 American drama film about the first, trying assignment for a young, idealistic teacher played by Sandy Dennis. Robert Mulligan directed the film and Tad Mosel ...more

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beernbugs added Taps Tom Cruise, Sean Penn, George C. Scott Taps is a 1981 drama film starring George C. Scott and Timothy Hutton, with Ronny Cox, Tom Cruise, Sean Penn, and Evan Handler in supporting roles. Hutton was nominated for a Golden Globe award ...more

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beernbugs added Hamlet 2 Amy Poehler, Elisabeth Shue, David Arquette Hamlet 2 is a 2008 American comedy film directed by Andrew Fleming, written by Fleming and Pam Brady, and starring Steve Coogan, Catherine Keener, Amy Poehler, and David Arquette. It was ...more

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Remember the Titans Hayden Panettiere, Ryan Gosling, Denzel Washington Remember the Titans is a 2000 American sports drama film produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and directed by Boaz Yakin. The screenplay, written by Gregory Allen Howard, is based on the true story of ...more

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beernbugs added The Hobart Shakespeareans Ian McKellen The Hobart Shakespeareans of Hobart Boulevard Elementary School is a 2005 documentary film that tells the story of the inspirational inner-city Los Angeles school teacher Rafe Esquith whose ...more

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beernbugs added As It Is in Heaven Per Morberg, Michael Nyqvist, Helen Sjöholm As It Is in Heaven is a 2004 film directed by Kay Pollak and starring Michael Nyqvist and Frida Hallgren. It was a box office hit in Sweden and several other countries. It was nominated for Best ...more

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Finding Forrester Anna Paquin, Matt Damon, Sean Connery Finding Forrester is a 2000 American drama film written by Mike Rich and directed by Gus Van Sant. An African-American teenager, Jamal Wallace, is invited to attend a prestigious private high ...more

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The Miracle Worker Anne Bancroft, Patty Duke, Beah Richards The Miracle Worker is a 1962 American biographical film directed by Arthur Penn. The screenplay by William Gibson is based on his 1959 play of the same title, which originated as a 1957 ...more

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The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie Maggie Smith, Pamela Franklin, Celia Johnson The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie is a 1969 British drama DeLuxe Color film, based on the novel The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark. The novel was turned into a play by Jay Presson Allen ...more

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John Stump added The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

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Educating Rita Michael Caine, Julie Walters, Maureen Lipman Educating Rita is a British 1983 drama/comedy film directed by Lewis Gilbert with a screenplay by Willy Russell based on Russell's stage play. The film stars Michael Caine, Julie Walters, and ...more

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Conrack Jon Voight, Paul Winfield, Hume Cronyn Conrack is a 1974 film based on the 1972 autobiographical book The Water Is Wide by Pat Conroy, directed by Martin Ritt and starring Jon Voight in the title role, alongside Paul Winfield, Madge ...more

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Goodbye, Mr. Chips Peter O'Toole, Petula Clark, Michael Redgrave Goodbye, Mr. Chips is a 1969 American musical film directed by Herbert Ross. The screenplay by Terence Rattigan is based on James Hilton's 1934 novella of the same name, which was first adapted ...more

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Good Morning, Miss Dove Jennifer Jones, Chuck Connors, Robert Stack Good Morning, Miss Dove is a 1955 DeLuxe Color and CinemaScope film which tells the sentimental story of a beloved schoolteacher who reflects back on her life and former students when she is ...more

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Madame Sousatzka Shirley MacLaine, Twiggy, Shabana Azmi Madame Sousatzka is a 1988 British drama film directed by John Schlesinger, with a screenplay by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala. It is based upon the novel of the same name by Bernice Rubens.

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The Edge of Seventeen Hailee Steinfeld, Woody Harrelson, Kyra Sedgwick The Edge of Seventeen (originally titled Besties) is a 2016 American comedy-drama film directed and written by Kelly Fremon Craig. The film stars Hailee Steinfeld, Haley Lu Richardson, Hayden ...more

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To Be and to Have To Be and To Have is a 2002 French documentary film directed by Nicolas Philibert about a small rural school. It was nominated as an "Out of Competition" film at the 2002 Cannes Film ...more

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KittyBermuda added Call Me Mister Betty Grable, Dan Dailey Call Me Mister is a 1951 musical film released by Twentieth Century-Fox. The feature was directed by Lloyd Bacon and re-written from the 1946 Broadway play version by Albert E. Lewin and Burt ...more

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punksnotdead added Class of 1984 Michael J. Fox, Roddy McDowall, Perry King Class of 1984 is a 1982 Canadian action-thriller movie about a newly hired music teacher at a troubled inner city school, where students have to pass through a metal detector due to problems ...more