Must watch movies before graduation


Sylvia Kline, Editor

With graduation rapidly approaching, the Class of 2023 is preparing for a momentous change as adulthood begins. Coming-of-age films aid unite adolescents in this highly emotional time and further prepare young adults for change. Before walking the stage and closing the final chapter of high school, these movies provide nostalgia, acceptance, and excitement for the future. 

High School Musical 3 (2008)

HSM 3, directed by Kenny Ortega, is a classic depiction of the typical sentimental senior year. The film follows the beloved core group of friends as they prepare for the important basketball championship game and the spring musical. High school seniors are united in their anxious anticipation for graduation and weariness for the future of their most cherished relationships—making it a must-watch before turning the tassel.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012)

The Perks of Being a Wallflower (TPOBAW), directed by Stephen Chbosky, follows introverted Charlie Kelmickis, who—although a freshman— befriends a group of seniors. His large group of older, outgoing friends not only introduce him to a number of mature experiences, but also bring him out of his shell and inspire confidence within himself. The film depicts the healing process from immense trauma, the universal adolescent stress over the SAT, and the devastation of unrequited teenage love. It is imperative for all graduating seniors to watch TPOBAW before they embark on adulthood because it eloquently expresses the end of an era in such a way that is optimistic while simultaneously heartbreaking.

Lady Bird (2017)

Lady Bird, directed by Greta Gerwig, follows the senior year of Christine “Lady Bird”. She expresses serious contempt for her current living situation, social and economic status and longs to leave Sacramento and attend school on the east coast. Lady Bird navigates a turbulent senior year as she struggles with her relationship with her mother, longs to fall into the ‘popular’ crowd, handles teenage ‘love’ and works to repair her lifelong struggles. Lady Bird’s universal teenage experiences are what makes the film so great—and a must-watch for graduation— because it allows the audience to see somewhat of a reflection of themselves in her.

Among many others, these three films provide a sense of comfort, unity and nostalgia to all graduating classes as they begin their journey into adulthood.