18 Coming-of-Age Movies You Need to See Before You Turn 18

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Well I Guess This Is Growing Up

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One of the best movie genres out there is the coming-of-age genre because you always feel like you grew up with the characters as you watched them. And that’s super nice, touching and will probably make you cry. But, like, good and happy tears. Well, sometimes sad ones. Basically, there are just a lot of emotions going on all over the place, but it’s always great — we promise!

So, before your teens are done and over with, you have to watch some (or all; shoot for all) of these 18 movies. They’ll probably change your life a little.

The Breakfast Club

The quintessential teen movie with every type of character, all of whom you'll adore by the end.

Photo: Universal

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

For when you're feeling alone in the world and need a reminder that no one is ever all alone.

Photo: Summit

The Spectacular Now

Because it is an amazing teen love story that everyone deserves to witness at least once. But also a million times, if you end up loving the movie like we know you will.

Photo: A24

10 Things I Hate About You

Another absolute classic, which just so happens to be based on Shakespeare's play The Taming of the Shrew.

Photo: Buena Vista Pictures


As if we would let you reach your 18th without having seen one of the best teen movies of its decade and possibly ever!

Photo: Paramount

Easy A

One of Emma Stone's best movies, which is saying a lot because, duh, she's Emma freaking Stone.

Photo: Screen Gems

Mean Girls

It's honestly surprising if you've made it this far without having seen this. But, just in case, we think you should do so like yesterday.

Photo: Paramount

The To Do List

In which Aubrey Plaza's character goes on a quest to lose her virginity before college and ends up learning a whole lot about who she is as a person in the process.

Photo: CBS

It's Kind of a Funny Story

Good book, even better movie.

Photo: Focus Features

Stuck in Love

Are you ready to CRY? Because that's what you're going to do when you watch this movie, which you totally should start doing, like immediately.

Photo: Millennium Entertainment

Like Crazy

The heart-wrenching story of a long distance couple just trying to make it work overseas and trying to make us bawl like babies as well

Photo: Paramount


What are teen years without arguably the best Wes Anderson movie to date?

Photo: Touchstone Pictures

Never Been Kissed

We're all a little bit like Josie Grossie, aren't we?

Photo: Twentieth Century Fox

Garden State

Everyone who finishes watching this movie is all, "yeah man, but what's the meaning of life?" So, join the club.

Photo: Fox Searchlight

Charlie Bartlett

In which the guy from Like Crazy learns to manage the craziness that is his life like a mature adult.

Photo: Twentieth Century Fox

The Kings of Summer

You'll never want to go on an epic adventure more than you will after watching this movie. Go for it.

Photo: CBS Films


The movie follows 12 years of ups and downs in a boy's life and was actually filmed over 12 years. This will be the coolest movie you watch all year, hands-down.

Photo: IFC Films

An Education

We heart Carey Mulligan in this precocious-schoolgirl-in-love role, and you probably will, too.

Photo: BBC Films

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  • Winter

    Nice list. I’ve been wanting to watch movies that will make me cry and happy.

  • M

    Ummm, what about Dead Poets Society?!?!

  • N

    Okay, for the last time, THE MOVIE IS NOT EVER BETTER THAN THE BOOK
    okay, okay

  • ines

    accidentally watched most of these before i turned 18, success

  • Rejjia Camphor

    I have seen 13 out of 18 of those movies!