Monday, September 28, 2009

Monday Movie Meme - School Days

Today's Monday Movie Meme from the Bumbles is all about school in all its variations. It IS September, the time when all parents say a silent prayer of thanks that the dear angels are back in the classroom. (Actually, mine have been back since mid-August, but who's counting?) There are also the college students, who have gathered their supply of Ramen noodles, No Doze and cheap beer and are back on campus. So shall we delve into all of those great films that focus on the hallowed halls of educational institutions? There are literally hundreds to choose from - you could close your eyes and throw a dart. But here are a few of my favorites:

School of Rock - OK, why couldn't I have had Jack Black as a teacher? He is in his element in this fun flick where kids learn everything they need to know about rocking out, believing in yourself, and playing a mean guitar. This one is a favorite at my house.

American Graffiti - Another favorite in our house, even though the kids do not fully appreciate seeing Ron Howard, Richard Dreyfus, Cindy Williams and Harrison Ford in the impressionable years. (If I recall, this movie is what landed Harrison with the role of Hans Solo.) This one is a true classic.

Napolean Dynamite - Even Jon Heder would not have imagined the almost cultish success of this goofy movie about a goofy kid and his goofy friends. Vote for Pedro, dudes!

Grease - This is the movie of my youth. My friends and I saw it hundreds of times, we knew the dances, but I would forever regret having the name "Sandy". Junior high can be pretty cruel about stuff like that.

Donnie Darko - Originally, Donnie Darko flew under the radar at the box office...WAY under. But somewhere along the line, it became a cult classic. Although it is slightly off the wall (it involves visions of a giant, demonic bunny), it is amazingly entertaining. It features a great cast with Jake Gyllenhal and his sister Maggie, Mary McDonnell, Jena Malone, Seth Rogan, Noah Wylie, Drew Barrymore, and an unforgettable performance by the late Patrick Swayze as a motivational speaker/pedophile.

Harry Potter (every darned one of them) - What kid wouldn't want to be shipped off to school to a place like Hogwarts? Every element of school are in these movies, and more. We have seen these movies more than any of the other ones combined, so I'd be remiss if I did not list them!

The Breakfast Club - I think this is the ultimate '80's movie. When you flip through the channels on Saturday afternoon, and see it playing, you must stop and watch it every time, right? For its genre, it is perfection. It's even one of my mom's favorite movies of all time, so you don't necessarily even need to be a child of the '80's to love it.

Please Vote for Me - it isn't a Monday Movie Meme unless I mention something way off the beaten path. This is my contribution for the week. This is a documentary about a class of 8-year-olds in China that learn about democracy by holding a campaign and election for class monitor. For a group of teachers, students and parents that have never experienced anything but communism, they figure things out pretty quickly. In fact, if you change the names and faces, it could be any school in the US. Competitive and domineering parents, emotional kids, chaos in the classroom, you would think their lives were at stake. This is a must-see...its is fresh and entertaining.

I could have listed thirty more movies with the topic. Everything about the dymanics of school is fodder for great entertainment. But I must go back and finish off my last day of the kids' Book Fair. After today, I WILL have my life back. Happy Monday!


Susan said...

"Look at me I'm Sandra Dee, lousy with virginity..." I love that song! And that movie! Did you know that Stockard Channing's first name is Susan? See how I'm connected with her? lol

And my other favorite end-of-summer movie American Graffiti, which reminds me, we never got around to watching it this summer like we always do. There's still time, right?

Beth F said...

Great list! I can't think of anything else to add (perhaps not enough coffee!)

Ana S. said...

What a great list! You know, School of Rock was one of those movies I watched expecting not to think much of wrong I was!

Unknown said...

Please Vote for Me goes right into my Netflix queue. Do the kids in American Graffiti go to school?

I'd like to add Heathers which is the anti-Breakfast Club. Very dark, very funnny.

Pump Up the Volume - A little scene movie about an outsider with a pirate radio program.

If The World Were Mine - A wonderful, flawed, movie about a boy playing Puck in the school play who falls in love with the boy playing Lysandar. Through a magical teacher Puck gets the ability to put a spell on people making them fall in love with the first person they see, just like the "real" Puck does.

My school day's movies are all very edgy. That's me. I'm edgy. ;-)

kayerj said...

So many to choose from, I had some of the same. excellent choices. My top 10 are are here

Iliana said...

Some of these are great - one of my favorites is of course The Breakfast Club.

Hope all is going great with the school book fair! Can't wait to hear about it.

The Gal Herself said...

I am soooo with you on The Breakfast Club. Every character rang so true!

Heather said...

Love American Grafitti, Grease, The Breakfast Club and the HP movies! My post is HERE

Unknown said...

You named some great movies here! Donnie Darko is a favorite in my house. And I loved School of Rock, The Breakfast Club and American Graffiti!

Sandy Nawrot said...

Susan - yes, this is what I heard fifty times a day in junior high. Not exactly the highlight of my life! As far as end of summer, it is still 90+ degrees here, which classifies as summer to me!

Beth - tell me about it! It is a challenge for me to get up at the crack of dawn on Monday mornings and do this meme!

Nymeth - I know, I had my doubts too. Little did I know I would laugh my butt off through the entire movie!

James - I don't remember any classroom scenes, but they do have their prom at the school. That counts right? I loved Heathers by the way...forgot about that one. I can always count on you for edginess!

Kaye - I am off to check yours out!

Iliana - I'm not sure you will hear a damn word about it. I'm over it! Its done, we made great money, and I'm ready to have my life back!

The Gal - I think they hit on every personality in school!

Heather - we have alot in common! I am off to check out yours!

Amy - don't you love Donnie Darko? They just don't make movies like that every day!

Lisa said...

Donnie Darko is definitely off the wall but my kids love it. My fav school movie growing up was "To Sir, With Love"--that shows you how old I am!

Frances said...

How about Election, The Dead Poet's Society, and The Wonder Boys? Some of my favorites. My family really loves School of Rock also. Will check Please Vote For Me out asap.

Sandy Nawrot said...

Lisa - I've not seen that one! I love older movies. I'll check it out!

Frances - embarassingly, I have not seen any of those! I think I just disappear into a cave now and again, when I think of all the great movies I've missed.

Elizabeth said...

You haven't seen Dead Poet's Society?? "Oh Captain, my Captain"'s brilliant.

I've seen Please Vote for Me - on the PBS Independent Lens series, I think, which is one of my favorite series. It's such a fascinating character study.