Coming of age movies are special. They help us understand how we became who we are. They remind us what growing up was like and what our kids are going through now. Witness all the highs and lows of growing up from the comfort of your adult sofa or watch these together with your teens!
Juno (2007) | 13+
We’re kicking this list off with a classic — Juno, a well-written, warmhearted comedy that tackles a very serious subject: teen pregnancy. Iffy for younger viewers, but a great movie for older teens.
Eighth Grade (2018) | 13+
Eighth Grade will take you back to your own eighth-grade years — the excitements and struggles of discovering who you are as a person.
Love, Simon (2018) | 13+
Love, Simon is an affecting and lovable romcom about Simon Spier who keeps a huge secret from his family, his friends and all of his classmates: he’s gay. When that secret is threatened, Simon must face everyone and come to terms with his identity. The movie is positive and affirming, with messages of courage, integrity, and empathy.
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018) | 13+
This Netflix romcom tells the story of a teenage girl whose secret love letters are exposed and wreak havoc on her life. Note that there are some mature topics, but overall this is a great teen show as it has many great role models and messages.
Boyhood (2014) | 14+
Boyhood went down in history for its innovative filming technique. It was filmed over the course of 12 years, following the main character, Mason, who evolves from a playful kid into a thoughtful young man.
Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012) | 15+
An introvert freshman is taken under the wings of two seniors who welcome him to the real world. Consider watching it before your kids since it deals with many heavy topics and there’s also a big reveal about tragic childhood trauma.
Lady Bird (2017) | 16+
Lady Bird is a touching, funny, personal, and mature comedy about a high school senior and her loving but turbulent relationship with her strong-willed mother.
The Fundamentals of Caring (2016) | 16+
A man suffering an incredible amount of loss becomes a disabled teen’s caregiver. This Netflix movie is witty, open and honest with wonderful characters who bring humor (sometimes dark) to every situation.
Almost Famous (2000) | 16+
A high-school boy is given the chance to write a story for Rolling Stone Magazine about an up-and-coming rock band as he accompanies them on their concert tour. Almost Famous wonderfully captures growing up during rock ‘n’ roll era, breaks the age barrier and pulls all generations in.
Lean on Pete (2017) | 16+
A teenager gets a summer job working for a horse trainer and befriends the fading racehorse, Lean on Pete. Lean on Pete is a touching, slowly-paced movie with wonderful acting performances and it deals with the cruelties of real life.
Beautiful Boy (2018) | 17+
Based on a true story, Beautiful Boy is a heartbreaking and inspiring movie about survival, relapse, and recovery in a family coping with addiction over many years. Note that this is a heavy and intense movie with a strong language. If you feel your child is mature enough to watch it, this movie can help you start discussions about addictions and how they hurt and affect families.