Everybody enjoys watching a teenage film every now and then, right? Netflix offers a wide selection of films in this genre. In addition to romantic comedies and musicals, you’ll find dramatic productions that will cause you to reflect on your past, present, and future. These films have been more prevalent recently, and they frequently feature young people who are either socially awkward or abusing drugs or alcohol, young ladies searching for true love, troubled young men trying to make friends, college or high school-like settings with parties, sorority groups, and throngs of troubled teenagers.
Teens are susceptible to many ideologies, many of which they disagree with, but many of which they give in to. The adolescent films on this list illustrate the uncertainty and embarrassment that young people experience and serve as a continual reminder of why many people find teenagers awkward. Adults who have all gone through the strange adolescent years can also relate to these films. These films, which range from discovering love to the verge of losing it, serve as a reminder that the subgenre has not yet reached its full potential.
Table Of Content
- 1 #REALITYHIGH (2017)
- 2 Alex Strangelove (2018)
- 3 Anonymously Yours (2021)
- 4 Candy Jar (2018)
- 5 Carrie Pilby (2017)
- 6 Divines (2016)
- 7 Do Revenge (2022)
- 8 Dude (2018)
- 9 Dumplin’ (2018)
- 10 Enola Holmes (2020)
- 11 Joshua: Teenager vs. Superpower (2017)
- 12 Mixtape (2021)
- 13 Raising the Bar (2016)
- 14 Rim Of The World (2019)
- 15 Rip Tide (2017)
- 16 Rock My Heart (2019)
- 17 See You Yesterday (2018)
- 18 Skater Girl (2021)
- 19 Seventeen (2019)
- 20 Slam (2017)
- 21 Set It Up (2018)
- 22 Step Sisters (2018)
- 23 Tall Girl (2019)
- 24 The Babysitter (2017)
- 25 The Kissing Booth (2018)
- 26 The School for Good and Evil (2022)
- 27 To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018)
- 28 Through My Window (2022)
- 29 True Spirit (2023)
- 30 We Have a Ghost (2023)
- 31 When We First Met (2018)
- 32 You Are So Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah (2023)
- 33 You Get Me (2017)
When it comes to cliched plots in high school romantic comedies, “#REALITYHIGH” isn’t far behind. Not a single thing about the film would set it apart from the others: the predictable love-hate relationship between Dani and Cameron, the drug and alcohol abuse, the profanity, the underage sex, the implied and verbal insults, and the happy ending. The overdone storyline and clichéd characters provide no relief from the dreadful acting and poor humour. “#REALITYHIGH” is a prime example of how not to make a teen romance film, save for the fact that its star cast is diverse, which was about the only redeeming quality of the film. It is available for streaming here.
Alex Strangelove (2018)
“Alex Strangelove” is a peculiar yet realistic tale about a teenage coming-out as gay. Alex, the main character, is in love with Claire, her best friend. When Claire finds out that Alex is hesitant about them having sex during their courtship, she drives him away. Here comes Elliot, a fellow gay adolescent who is cautious in both his friendships and relationships. Then, none other than Claire, arranges for Alex and Elliot to attend the prom because she believes Alex should be more honest and unreserved in his declaration of love for Elliot. Claire is happier and moves on with her life as Elliot and Alex kiss on prom night. Despite being a little overdone, “Alex Strangelove” is still a worthwhile viewing. You can watch it right here.
Anonymously Yours (2021)
“Anonymously Yours,” a Mexican romantic comedy directed by Maria Torres, centres on the high school romance between Alex (Ralf Morales) and Vale (Annie Cabello), two students who despise one another but are unaware that they are each other’s anonymous online pals who communicate via texts. When they discover the truth, what happens? Could it develop into a surprise romance? OR will the online friendship end as a result of the revelation? You can watch the entertaining teen film “Anonymously Yours” right here.
Candy Jar (2018)
While many people are familiar with the concept of competing high school debate championships, there are surprisingly few films that explore the topic. The main characters of “Candy Jar” are Lona and Bennett, two members of the debate club with lofty goals of attending the college of their dreams. Bennett and Lona, as well as their parents, have been portrayed as rivals in their two-person club who never give each other the opportunity to act aggressively against one another. Their rivalry grows even more intense as they discover how much they adore one another and are unable to be apart, even though they were not chosen for the state high school debate championships due to their joint victory in a local competition. When it comes to typical teenage rom-coms, “Candy Jar” is a breath of fresh air, and the performances are the real highlights of the film. Here is a link to stream the film.
Carrie Pilby (2017)
The fact that Carrie (Bel Powley) graduated from Harvard at the age of eighteen is evidence of her intelligence. However, her incapacity to comprehend herself and experience happiness prompts her to ask her therapist why happiness is such a wonderful thing. The therapist gives her a to-do list to help her understand how to enjoy life and asks her to give humanity a chance. What happens next is how Carrie manages everything she needs to do, which should serve as a reminder to all of us that it is our responsibility to be happy, not anyone else’s. Though aimed at teenagers, Susan Johnson’s film is exuberant and perceptive enough for adults to enjoy as well. Here is where you can view it.
“Divines,” a film that is nominated for a Golden Globe, centres on a young girl from a troubled family in Paris who meets a young dancer and has her entire life turned upside down. The plot is incredibly complex, despite its apparent simplicity. Every single scene, every single character, every single setting, every single relationship—everything is so powerful. Almost every moment, from a fight in the classroom to a conversation between a daughter and her mother, is tragic. “Divines” is a movie about surviving in a crazy world where the characters seem very genuine. We can be sure that we will hear more about the amazing actresses Oulaya Amamra and Maimouna in the future. Why? You can learn more about that by watching “Divines” here.
Do Revenge (2022)
In the movie “Do Revenge,” Drea—who was once the high school queen—faces an abrupt fall from grace when Max, the popular king of the school and purported lover—maliciously leaks her private video. Eleanor, an awkward transfer student, finds out she has to go to school with Carissa, her former bully, who had made up a false rumour about her when she was thirteen during a summer camp. After meeting by chance at a tennis camp, Drea and Eleanor form a surprising and secret alliance with the goal of retaliating against their respective bullies. You can watch the movie here to see how that plays out.
“Dude,” which tells the story of four teenage friends in their senior year of high school who are going through a phase where they would have to give up on things like best friends, love, and relationships and have to deal with the death of loved ones and how time flew by them, captures the essence of all losses in a typical teen’s life. What began as stoned friends listening to nonstop hip-hop evolves into a mature yet relatable affair with friends parting ways and moving on with life, combining sadness and nostalgic experiences alike. The journey of Lily, Chloe, Amelia, and Rebecca from being a group of carefree party animals to mature, responsible adults is a charming, if formulaic, tale. The film would have been a complete failure at the box office if Lucy Hale hadn’t been in it. Please have a look at it here.
No regular girl or boy who has not been trained to compete in such competitions can imagine finding themselves on platforms like beauty pageants, which are reserved for the fittest models. Will is very concerned about what people might think of Willowdean Dickson due to her heavyset figure. Willowdean Dickson’s mother Rosie has nicknamed her “Dumplin.” However, she is exposed to her mother Rosie’s world, which is centred on the pageantry, on a daily basis. Rosie frequently serves as a judge in their local beauty pageant competition because she was a previous contestant. Will, encouraged by her friends, makes the unconventional decision to attend the event and try her luck. This movie defies many conventions while giving us a significant and noteworthy lesson about how our preconceived notions of beauty affect how we view beauty. Here is where you can view the film.
Enola Holmes (2020)
In addition to being a detective thriller, “Enola Holmes” heavily draws on the feelings and viewpoints of youth to highlight the lead character, Millie Bobby Brown, who plays the title role to perfection. Enola has three siblings: Mycroft Holmes (Sam Claflin), Sherlock Holmes (Henry Cavill), and herself. She is the youngest of the three. Her mother, Eudoria (Helena Bonham Carter), who homeschooled her and turned her into the knowledgeable person we know Sherlock to be, vanishes out of thin air one day. Enola decides to search for her mother on her own, but she is persuaded to give in by young Viscount Tewkesbury (Louis Partridge), who is the target of a murderous plot. We are treated to an adventure that is fundamentally an investigation of the world through the eyes of a perceptive teenage girl as she solves these two cases. You can watch the movie here if you want to take part in the “elementary” adventure.
Joshua: Teenager vs. Superpower (2017)
Everyone is aware of the Chinese Communist Party’s constant desire to subjugate Hong Kong into its own territory. However, when Britain gave them Hong Kong in 1997, they pledged to treat it as a separate entity. On the other hand, the CCP has never been willing to grant Hong Kong the independence that was promised. This sparked massive demonstrations in the area in 2014 that became known as the Umbrella Revolution.
The documentary’s subject, Joshua Wong, is a teenager who spearheaded the youth mobilisation and led the demonstration from the front despite persistent attacks from the police, the triad, and other government agencies. The documentary tracks Wong’s activism from 2012 to 2016 and demonstrates how he rose to prominence as one of Hong Kong’s most well-known public figures. Here is a link to stream Joshua: Teenager vs. Superpower.
After raising her grandmother, Beverly Moody (Gemma Brooke Allen), discovers a mixtape her parents made before they died when she was two years old, and she decides to look up the songs to learn more about them. Her new pals Ellen, Nicky, and Anti—the man who works at the neighbourhood antique record store—join her in the project. “Mixtape” is a charming and enjoyable film that, when you watch it, almost always makes you smile. “Mixtape” is a lovely and wholesome teen drama experience because of how Beverly bonds with each song while meeting new people. You are welcome to watch the film here.
Raising the Bar (2016)
“Raising the Bar,” another film starring a Disney star, centres on Kelly, a talented gymnast who sustains an injury and is rejected by her father and the team coach along with her fellow competitors. Kelly moves to Australia with her mother despite the humiliation, as her parents are about to separate. Kelly begins tutoring her friend Nicola, a member of her school’s gymnastics team, at her new high school in Australia. Kelly continues to mentor Nicole and assist her in winning the competition, even though she is still receiving backlash on social media for her “defeat” in the US. Raising the Bar’ is a worthy film that tells a typical ‘rising from the ashes’ tale with a competitive sport as the background. Enjoy the movie by streaming it here.
Rim Of The World (2019)
“Rim of the World,” a movie helmed by McG, is based on a script written by Zack Stentz. The film centres on the lives of four teenagers who spend their summer vacations at a summer camp. The four of them stray far into the jungle while the other kids are having a blast. They see the sky turning orange at this point, and soon after, aliens invade the region. These four friends are startled to see a NASA spacecraft land in front of them. The four children are given a key by an astronaut who exits the spacecraft and informs them that it is the only object that can prevent the aliens from occupying Earth. The teenagers need to get this key to a NASA station as soon as possible in this extremely dangerous situation. Netflix should definitely watch “Rim of the World,” a movie that is brilliantly done and has an intriguing premise. Each of the four young actors has delivered a superb performance, vividly bringing their characters to life. It is available for streaming here.
Rip Tide (2017)
For those who love surfing, “Rip Tide” may present a slightly different plot. Debby Ryan plays the lead character Cora in the film. The main character of the film is Cora, a struggling model employed in upstate New York City. She wants to be creative and forward-thinking at work, but her directors constantly reject her, so she has to dance to their beat. She suffers a long-lasting embarrassment when she trips down the stairs during a photo shoot; she intends to take a break by going to her aunt’s home in coastal Australia. Her next move will decide whether she has to return or return to her previous boring but labor-intensive life. Although “Rip Tide” is a decent film in certain areas, it is not a very coherent work. Here is where you can watch “Rip Tide” so you can see it for yourself.
Rock My Heart (2019)
After a minor accident, a 17-year-old girl with a congenital heart condition receives a visit from a horse and finds companionship in it. She makes her way back to the ranch, where the proprietor notices that the young girl has calmed the usually ferocious horse known as “Rock My Heart.” Soon after, we witness her beginning her jockey training while keeping her illness and her training a secret from her parents. The stallion appears to be her only remedy. Hanno Olderdissen’s German film “Rock My Heart” is a powerful teen drama that is driven by the performers’ sincere performances, which carries a lot of emotion. You can watch the movie online here.
See You Yesterday (2018)
“See You Yesterday,” a science-fiction adventure with a few teens, is a fun watch and a reliable source of entertainment. The protagonist of this Netflix original movie is C.J., a teenage girl. Walker is one of her school’s top students and a science whiz. She is so brilliant that she managed to construct a time machine that resembles a backpack. Since her brother passed away not too long ago, C.J. thinks this is the only way to make him return. Despite C.J. finds a way to use her time machine to bring her brother back, she disregards the possibility that any tampering with time could have permanent consequences. In addition to shattering long-standing racial stereotypes in American film. The movie “See You Yesterday” is incredibly entertaining. Remarkably, it is writer-director Stefon Bristol’s first motion picture. It is available for streaming here.
Skater Girl (2021)
Manjari Makijany, the director of the Indian film “Skater Girl,” narrates the coming-of-age tale of Prerna (Rachel Saanchita Gupta), a teenage girl who discovers freedom in skateboarding. However, skateboarding is too much for a poor girl in a backward Rajasthani village to even consider as a dream. How then did she manage to obtain a skateboard? Jessica (Amy Maghera), who travelled from London to hunt for her father’s birthplace and learn more about her family history, gave her this information. “Skater Girl” tackles a variety of topics, including the rise of skateboarding culture in India and the influence placed on girls who wish to participate in sports, all the while illuminating Prerna’s love for the activity that gave her a sense of independence she never would have imagined possible. Here is a link to stream “Skater Girl.”
The fantastic comedy-drama film “Seventeen” tells the tale of Hector, a young man who gets into trouble with the law and ends up being held in a juvenile detention facility. One of his counsellors there advises Hector to try making a dog friend as part of his therapy regimen while he is incarcerated. Hector begins going to a dog rescue shelter nearby every day, where he quickly bonds with a dog he calls Sheep. Hector escapes his prison facility to find Sheep at any costs after the dog is adopted by a family, demonstrating the strong bond between the two of them.
Ismael, his older brother, chooses to travel with Hector. A dog’s love for the humans in its life is unmatched and unadulterated. Here, we witness how love has the power to transform a person and transform them into better human beings. You are welcome to watch the film here.
“Slam,” an Italian Netflix original movie, tells the tale of a teenage skateboarding enthusiast named Samuel (Ludovico Tersigni) who was raised in Italy but had a strong desire to travel to California. While he is busy creating these kinds of dreams and formulating strategies to make them come true, Samuel receives some shocking news. He had always imagined himself in a Hollywood-style romance with his girlfriend Alice (Barbara Ramella), but she ends up pregnant. Samuel must now choose whether he wants to assume the role of father after receiving poor treatment from his father as a child. The film shifts between imagination and reality with a great deal of coherence, making it easy to follow. Its strongest points are the screenplay and the performances. You can watch the movie right here.
Set It Up (2018)
It sounds like a good idea to set up your bosses with each other to lighten their workload! ‘Set It Up’ opens with two overworked bosses in an unprecedented plot: Rick, a venture capitalist who works in the same building as Kirsten, an editor at a major sports magazine, and Kirsten. Their assistants, Harper and Charlie, are always alert because of their exacting supervisors. Harper and Charlie get together one day while out to dinner for their bosses and devise a scheme to get their bosses laid. After learning of their bosses’ engagement, Harper and Charlie experience success after a few early setbacks. Charlie and Harper reunite as the film ends rather abruptly, with Kirsten and Rick calling it quits. A rom-com that has been remastered, “Set It Up,” has a completely different flavour but the same basic plot. Here is where you can view the film.
Step Sisters (2018)
If you take any high school comedy and add dance to it, you end up with “Step Sisters” without any memorable performances. Jamilah, the president of her school’s black sorority, opens the film. Jamilah is the dean’s liaison in addition to being the leader of the school’s dance team, the Step Team. She decides to give a group of white sorority sisters a lesson in self-respect after they damage her school’s reputation. In order to fulfil her dream of attending Harvard Business School, Jamilah must teach the white girls how to step dance as “Steptacular,” a highly regarded dance competition, approaches. The outcome is expected: sisterhood triumphs over all cultures and customs. Everything else in this film is mediocre at best, with the exception of a few rhythmic dance moves near the end. You can watch the movie right here.
Tall Girl (2019)
Any physical characteristic of ours that sets us apart from others will inevitably cause us to feel alienated or unmotivated. Because of her height, the main character of this Netflix original movie, Jodi, is likewise going through a similar situation when she meets Stig, a foreign exchange student. Jodi is devastated to learn that Stig has moved on to another student in her class and turns to her sister Harper for support. Together, Harper and their mother purchase new clothing for Jodi, instilling in her the confidence she has always lacked. Jodi is finally able to feel secure in who she is because of this. Stig and Jodi quickly become close because they both enjoy musicals. Despite being a very significant movie given its subject matter, “Tall Girl” stays true to clichés and offers its viewers nothing particularly novel. Here is where you can view the film.
The Babysitter (2017)
In case you have a fondness for horror comedies and are unsure about where to find them on Netflix, you ought to watch “The Babysitter.” The film revolves around twelve-year-old Cole Johnson, whose parents abandon him to be cared for by a babysitter named Bee after they go out one night. Cole hears noises coming from the living room while he is sound asleep in his room, so he goes to investigate. He sees Bee and a few of her friends killing one of the guests rather brutally after they play a game of truth or dare.
Cole discovers that Bee and her friends practise human sacrifice and are members of a cult. Cole quickly goes to his room and pretends to be asleep because he doesn’t know what else to do. He hears Bee and her friends heading up the stairs to his room shortly after that. “The Babysitter” is violent and hilarious, but it might not be the most engaging movie to watch. Though the performances could have been far better, if you enjoy teen films, you could overlook this one. Here is a link to stream the film.
The Kissing Booth (2018)
The protagonists of “The Kissing Booth” are Elle and Lee, childhood friends who are essentially like siblings because they were born on the same day. Elle and Lee make the decision to set up a kissing booth for their upcoming school carnival. Elle hates Lee’s older brother Noah at first, but she ends up liking him—the kissing booth gets the best part of this. Elle had to conceal her relationship with Noah until Lee discovered it and began to distance himself from both of them because the two had a clear agreement that said they would not date any of their relatives. The story ends with an open-ended scene where Elle is riding his motorbike and Noah is leaving to go somewhere. Because Joey King played the lead, the movie did well even though it was criticised for being “genre denigrating” and possibly sexist. Here is where you can view the film.
The School for Good and Evil (2022)
The story of two best friends, Sophie (Sophia Anne Caruso) and Agatha (Sofia Wylie), who are drawn into The School for Good and Evil, is told in the teen fantasy film “The School for Good and Evil,” which is based on the Soman Chainani novel series of the same name. Agatha is placed in the School for Good, which is run by Professor Dovey (Kerry Washington), while Sophie is sent to the School for Evil, which is run by Lady Lesso (Charlize Theron). The drawback? Agatha has the potential to be a witch, and Sophie’s dream of becoming a princess is a major one. They attend different schools, therefore. Is there a way to go home, or a way to make things different? ‘The School for Good and Evil’ effectively blends teen drama and fantasy. Just picture Draco Malfoy being in Gryffindor and Harry Potter being in Slytherin. Fascinating, isn’t it? You can watch it here and make up your own mind.
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018)
‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before,’ as the title implies, tells the story of junior high school student Lara Jean Covey. She writes passionate love letters to boys, but she never posts them—instead, she locks them away in the closet. One day, to her worst fears, her younger sister Kitty mails the five letters to each of her five past crushes, resulting in awkward exchanges, guilt trips, and explanations. Fortunately for her, Peter, one of the boys, falls in love with Lara before they even kiss. A well-structured film, “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” features endearing characters and heart-stopping romances that are hard to forget. You can view the movie right here.
Through My Window (2022)
“Through My Window,” a Spanish teen drama directed by Marçal Forès, centres on Raquel (Clara Galle), who is enamoured with Ares (Julio Peña), his otherworldly neighbour and member of the affluent Hidalgo family. She watches everything he does from her window, but it becomes evident from an encounter that he doesn’t care that she wants him to be with her. However, as the narrative goes on, we learn that Ares is also drawn to her, but he is unable to fall in love because his father laid out his blueprints. Will Raquel and Ares’ love be fulfilled? Will Ares refuse to give Raquel his rightful inheritance? You can watch the novel adaptation of the same name by Ariana Godoy right here to find out.
True Spirit (2023)
“True Spirit,” a biographical drama directed by Sarah Spillane, is about 16-year-old Jessica Watson (portrayed by Teagan Croft), who decided to become the youngest person to circumnavigate the globe by setting out on her boat, Ella’s Pink Lady, by herself from Sydney, Australia. She reached Sydney Harbour safely after a 210-day voyage. The film tells the story of her journey and the struggles she faced both before and during. It is based on Watson’s eponymous memoir from 2010. The film is a monument to the bravery and tenacity of the human spirit because it stars a teenager who succeeds in accomplishing the goal. Here is where you can view the film.
We Have a Ghost (2023)
Since the beginning of time, numerous films have included a scene showing how teenagers respond to something they cannot understand. But it’s Steven Spielberg’s “E.T.” that cast doubt on the perspective. the “extra-terrestrial,” but that’s not what we’re discussing here. We are discussing the movie “We Have a Ghost,” in which James Di’Allo Winston plays Kevin, whose family recently moved into a new home. However, there is already a silent ghost (David Harbour) who has lived there for a long time. The ghost’s shirt bears the name “Ernest,” which Kevin calls him after they become friends. The remainder of the film shows how Kevin helps Ernest remember his past because he is unable to recall it. It is genuinely important for teens and people of all ages to reach out to those who are suffering and in need of assistance. It is a teen horror comedy film, but it also has a profound message. Here is where you can watch it.
When We First Met (2018)
When We First Met is a romantic comedy that starts with a time-traveling sequence that is implausible for a romantic comedy. It centres on Avery and Noah and opens with Avery’s engagement party, where she announces her engagement to Ethan, much to Noah’s dismay as he is also there. After passing out inside a picture booth and remembering their first meeting, Noah wakes up on the day he met Avery three years prior. Noah goes back to the day they met at least twice in an attempt to make things right with the girl he is truly in love with, which completely changes the course of events.
Regretfully, Noah comes to the realisation that Avery might not be the right fit for him and finds himself back at her engagement party, albeit with a slightly happier attitude. Adam DeVine’s performance and his nuanced characterization in an otherwise unimpressive plot garnered critical acclaim for the movie. Here is where you can watch “When We First Met.”
You Are So Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah (2023)
“You Are So Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah,” a coming-of-age teen drama based on Fiona Rosenbloom’s 2005 novel, gave Adam Sandler’s daughters Sunny and Sadie a lovely introduction. It tells the story of BFFs Stacy (Sunny Sandler) and Lydia (Samantha Lorraine), whose dream is to celebrate their bat mitzvahs (a Quinceañera for Jews). However, their friendship is put in jeopardy when Stacy sees Lydia kissing Andy, the former’s crush, and that’s when Stacy tells Lydia the line that ends up being the movie’s title. “You Are So Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah” is a true-to-form coming-of-age film that is enjoyable to watch and has a fair share of misunderstanding, forgiveness, love, warmth, and humour. You can watch it right here.
You Get Me (2017)
In the thriller “You Get Me,” Bella Thorne plays a mentally unstable adolescent in a high school drama with a twist. Tyler is dating Alison at the start of the film, but their relationship is about to end because of Alison’s lavish lifestyle. Furious, Tyler encounters Holly (Thorne), who shares a massive mansion with her stepmother. Tyler is taken aback when Holly starts pursuing him excessively. As Alison gets to know Holly and they become friends, Alison looks into Holly’s mental illness and discovers that she is not who she says she is. The conclusion plays out almost exactly as predicted, with Holly attempting to get even with Alison while also making a last-ditch effort to reach Tyler. However, the antagonist is always defeated. This film suffers from predictability, which is a shame because it could have been a good film a few decades ago. Here is where you can view the film.