For many high school and college students, as well as their families, December can be a taxing time of year. However, whether you are studying for exams, finishing up those last few admissions essays, or trying to find the perfect gift, you still need some time to relax and recharge. To help you with this, we’re sharing some of our favorite college films:
Originally released in 2003, Mona Lisa Smile is the story of a progressive Wellesley college professor, played by Julia Roberts, trying to teach her 1950s students that marriage is not their only option, while also clashing with the school’s administration.
Whiplash (2014) showcases a talented young drummer (Miles Teller) who attends a competitive music conservatory where he’s physically and mentally abused by his professor (J.K. Simmons) who is so intent on pushing his students to be the best that he can’t see the damage he is doing.
Good Will Hunting, a 1997 film that Matt Damon and Ben Affleck both wrote and starred in, is an entertaining coming-of-age story about a young man, Will Hunting, whose genius has gone unrecognized while he cleans the halls of MIT. That is until he meets a professor who is eager to help him unleash his genius if he can conquer his demons.
Inspired by the story of the MIT Blackjack Team, originally told in Ben Mezrich’s Bringing Down the House, 21 chronicles Ben Campbell’s inability to pay his Harvard tuition, therefore triggering a string of events that lead him into a dangerous world of gambling with other peoples’ money and his own future.
In Pitch Perfect, college freshman Beca feels lonely on campus until she joins an all-girl a cappella group and finds joy in crushing the competition.
Based in an unnamed Pittsburgh university, the 2000 release The Wonder Boys features Carnegie Mellon University and Chatham University while telling the story of Grady Tripp, a creative writing professor and author who is having a hard time finishing his next novel amidst the drama that is unfolding all around him.
Admission is the story of a Princeton University admissions officer, played by the witty Tina Fey, (SPOILER ALERT) who is surprised to find that the gifted student she is visiting may just be the son she gave up years before for adoption.
Undercover cops played by Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill take on the role of college students investigating a drug deal on a college campus in 22 Jump Street and hijinks ensue!
In The Great Debaters, Denzel Washington stars as a professor at a 1935 all-black college in Texas who inspires his students to start a debate team and leads them to the finals against Harvard University. Based on a true story.
St. Elmo’s Fire is a coming-of-age story set in 1985 about a group of recent college graduates of Georgetown University who are adjusting to their adult responsibilities while remaining friends.
The 1973 classic, The Paper Chase, based on a book of the same name, recounts the story of James Hart, a first-year Harvard Law School student, and his complex relationship with a demanding professor, who is also the father of the woman James is dating.