10 movies that will get you in the mood to go back to school

Ten movies that will get you in the mood for back to school

The end of summer is always the best and worst part of the season, holding on to the summer moments while dreading what fall brings with it: a new school year. But don’t fret, these ten movies will put you in the mood to crack open those books and start the new year.

1. Clueless

Nothing makes you think of back to school like matching plaid outfits and fuzzy pencils. While you may or may not identify with Cher, a shallow and well-to-do high school student, you’ll certainly understand the back-and-forth of cliques, romance and finding your way.

2. Mean Girls

Cady Heron takes us along on her journey of figuring out how to fit in in a new place, juggling new friends with social expectations and what it means to be a part of the “it” crowd. The movie is a roller-coaster of hilarious one-liners and more serious lessons like learning to be true to yourself, which doesn’t sound much different from real life.

3. Breakfast Club

While hopefully, you won’t find yourself in detention, you’ll probably have learned the lesson at some point about how people from all different walks of life can come together to learn about themselves and each other. Take it from them, the world is a better place if you take a chance on people different than yourself.

4. Legally Blonde

While you probably didn’t go to college to prove an ex wrong (though props if you did), Legally Blonde is about so much more than revenge. It’s another classic about staying true to yourself and fighting for what’s right, even when it’s not the easy thing to do.

5. Monsters University

There’s nothing like seeing how two of your favorite Pixar monsters ended up as successful Scarers – they went to college! And like anyone else, they figured out that having a roommate isn’t always easy, but it usually rewards you with a life-long friend.

6. Sydney White

This modern day spin on the classic Snow White imagines what her seven dwarves would be like in college, the seven dorks! And they’re just as lovable as the ones in the original. Add in the craziness of rushing, Greek Life and a hint of romance and you’ll be prepared for anything this year throws at you.

7. Pitch Perfect

Pitch Perfect began the acapella craze that hit many college campuses. If you’re new to college, you’ll probably find that the acapella groups are some of the coolest, most talented people on campus. Anna Kendrick plays Beca, who finds herself in one of the groups and they have to overcome their differences and find their sound together, creating a hilarious and heartwarming comedy that isn’t too far off from reality.

8. Drumline


This movie goes out to all of those marching band members that get way more excited about halftime than the rest of the game. Finding balance between dedication, respect and individuality is one of the hardest lessons to learn in college, but you can learn to do it with the help of others. As they say,  “One Band, One Sound.”

9. Good Will Hunting

Back to school movies aren’t all comedies about the misadventures of navigating the social sphere, movies like Good Will Hunting are heartwarming stories about those who have to work to overcome their adversities, embrace their potential and reimage their identity in their new world. This classic will remind you to cherish the opportunities you have and to be loyal to the ones who pushed you there.

10. Mona Lisa Smile

Being inspired to be more than what you are expected to do is one of the greatest gifts of getting an education. Going to class teaches you so much more than which theorems make up a proof and which constellations you can see in the night. Like the movie, college shows you what the world has to offer. It expands your horizons and unfurls your dreams. And best of all, it gives you people around you to help you along the way.

It’s always difficult to break back into the schedules and hard work that come with a new school year, but these movies, and the lessons they bring with them, will have you excited to pack up your backpack and head back to class.

Iris Proctor
Iris is the director of ArborWoman.