Tag Archive | Disney

My Top 12 Favorite High School Movies & What it’s like to be DONE

It’s been a little over two weeks since I walked across a stage, hugged my friends, accepted my diploma, and became a high school graduate. This post, therefore, is pretty long overdue.

So, first, what’s graduation like, and what is it like being a high school graduate?


Graduation, a full week-long ordeal, is a time of parties and joy and nostalgia. Everything is happening all at once, and it’s both exhilarating and terrifying. It’s sad because you know you will never do certain things ever again, but exciting because you have even more to look forward to. Yearbook entries bring tears, as do mass two a.m. Facebook photo uploads. You finally realize that all of your hard work thus far has paid off, especially since college and internships are mere weeks away. It means that, other than working a little, you can rest, breathe, like some crazy extended weekend that belongs to you.


During this “time of rest,” I’ve been able to watch so many movies and read so many books that I didn’t have time to before. Yesterday, for example, I watched Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, in honor of June 5th being his actual “day off” thirty years ago. Somewhere around the part where they bust Sloane out of class, it finally sunk in: I’m no longer in high school.

I will no longer run around school delivering boxes of cinnamon rolls instead of going to class, have people throw tennis balls down the hall over my head, or narrowly avoid getting hit by outrageous bouquets of birthday balloons. (These things all happened to me at least once in the last month of high school alone.) I won’t be attending any high school parties in the Valley like Cher. I won’t be seeking revenge at the home basketball game on any two (or three) timing boyfriend like John Tucker. And I won’t become famous in high school for accidentally publishing my journal, like Jamie Bartlett. No musical numbers in the cafeteria, no plaid skirts and headbands.

Watching Cameron stare at Seurat’s A Sunday on La Grande Jatte (a painting that I would love to see in real life too), I also realized this: so many of my favorite movies take place in high school. So many movies that I love, have grown up with, can quote like the back of my hand, run to when I need them. They’ve taught me lesson after lesson, introduced me to so many characters that I have grown to admire and relate to. I love them. But I no longer share this stage of life with them.


As soon as I realized all this, I also knew: it’s okay.

These movies are still valid, still applicable. They always will be. Not only are they mostly classics, but they have shaped who I am today. I have laughed with Olive, flipped my hair like Cher, cried with Charlie, hated my friends like Winona, studied like Kate, and been reckless with Ferris. And every time I watch them, with their big “musical numbers for no apparent reason,” I will remember what it felt like to be in high school. I’ll remember what I was going through when I watched these films, what my favorites quotes and scenes were and why. I’ll remember the music and punchlines and laugh five minutes too soon. I’ll think of them, and high school, fondly.


I don’t know what the future holds, don’t know what adventures and mishaps may come my way. But if these movies have taught me anything, it’s that I’ll make it through whatever challenges I may face. My hair may be a little singed, but everything will be alright in the end.


Without further ado, here are my Top 12 (…and okay, yes, I was going to do Top 10 but couldn’t make up my mind…) favorite movies set in high school~

Heathers (1988)


Clueless (1995)


The Breakfast Club (1985)


10 Things I Hate About You (1999)


Easy A (2010)


Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)


Mean Girls (2004)


Sixteen Candles (1984)


She’s The Man (2006)


Freaky Friday (2003)


Read It and Weep (2006)


The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012)


Zootopia Movie Review

Ok but…why was Zootopia so freaking good?

It seems like it would be silly, another random animated “kid” Disney movie. It seems like it would be cute, definitely—but juvenile. Ok, it was obviously adorable…but “juvenile,” shallow? Far from it. The storyline was full of twists and turns, full of action and adventure.

And holy cow were there twists and turns. (See what I did there?) I got more antsy during this movie than I have for an episode of CSI or any Bond movie in forever. It was well-paced, smart. I had no idea what was going to happen next, and I was shocked and pleasantly surprised by how complicated and well-thought out everything was. Like, the animation was great, obviously, but the STORYLINE! The storyline won.


It was really heavy on low-key (and ok, maybe not so low-key) life lessons, as well as action. This is typical of animated films, but each point was so thought-provoking, so valid. “Predators versus prey” easily translated into “the big kids and the bullies versus kids, little people.” It also emphasized determination and perseverance. The main character, Judy Hopps, for example, is one of these said “little people”—she’s a rabbit, she’s prey. But she wants to be a police officer so badly that she lets nothing stop her. It doesn’t matter that she’s the First Bunny Cop Ever (an official title), it doesn’t matter that Zootopia, her idealistic haven of equality and justice, is not as fair and perfect as she imagined. Judy keeps trying, keeps sleuthing, keeps working hard. She tries to prove the “big guy” wrong. And, not even spoiling anything, she does. She gets two-hundred parking tickets in one day. She catches a bad guy on her own. She out-wits a fox. And she’s so sassy all the while, it’s great.


This movie also emphasized teamwork, and not judging others based on how they look. Which goes back to the whole “animal-instincts/predator-prey thing:” the predators are not always the bad guys. Foxes can be kind. Lions can be weak.

…And moles can be the Godfather. Because ok, OH MY GOD THE GODFATHER REFERENCES. Sorry to change the subject completely from morals and everything, but there were so many Godfather references! Entire scenes, the mole daughter getting married off, the “deal [they] couldn’t refuse”…. This was one of many of the movie’s clever highlights for me, one that absolutely no little kid would get (except maybe mine one day, obviously).


There was a Frozen reference as well, which I really appreciated (*cough* Weaselton *cough*). And the SATIRE. There was a whole thing on cops generally being big tough males, and THAT got slammed. Oh, and SLOTHS RUNNING THE DMV? Perfect. It was these little dialogue details and connections, this satire, as well as Judy’s quick banter, that was essentially icing on the already excellent metaphorical cake.


I highly recommend this movie with a target audience of less than half my age, a movie that made me yell at the screen, a movie that I wish I had written and designed, a movie that I was blown away by and can’t wait to watch and marvel at again. Zootopia was wild. Pun intended.

Rating: 9/10 stars