In every decade we come across countless numbers of teen films. Of course the 80’s had some of the most memorable teen movies of all time with “The Breakfast Club,” “Sixteen Candles,” “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” “Some Kind of Wonderful,” “Fast Times at Ridgemont High,” and many more. But I feel like the 90’s had the best teen movies.
Teen movies of the 90’s defined a generation. No other generation provided more teen movies than the 90’s. It seemed that the majority of films in the 90’s were about teenagers. What really makes teen films so wonderful is the uniqueness of them all. Everyone was a teenager once and the films of the 90’s really make you feel young and rebellious again.
The Top 10 Teen Movies of the 90’s in my opinion are:
10. She’s All That (1999)
“She’s All That” is the story of a high school jock, Zack Siler, who makes a bet with his friends after being dumped by the most popular girl in school that he can turn any normal girl into prom queen. After picking a weird art student named Lanie Boggs and giving her a makeover Zack ends up falling in love with her. Not only does the movie star the king of the 90’s rom-com, Freddie Prinze Jr, but it also has one of the most memorable prom scenes ever where Lanie and Zack dance to “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None the Richer. With a little help from well-known 90’s teens like Rachael Leigh Cook, Matthew Lillard, Paul Walker, Gabrielle Union, and Usher, this movie definitely deserves a spot in the Top 10.
9. Varsity Blues (1999)
“Varsity Blues” is about a small town in Texas that is obsessed with football. As soon as Friday night rolls around, everyone in town is at the local football game. “Varsity Blues” is all about the trials and tribulations of the teammates. This movie is memorable for many things, but maybe nothing as memorable as Ali Larter in a whipped cream bikini. With breakout performances from “Dawson’s Creek” star James Van Der Beek, Paul Walker, Ali Larter, Scott Caan, and Amy Smart, this film is a definite staple of teenage life in the 1990’s.
8. I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997)
“I Know What You Did Last Summer” is about four teenagers who are out partying one night when they accidentally run over a local fisherman. Being young and scared, the four kids do what anyone would have done and dump the body. Traumatized by the experience the four teens all go their separate ways and try to forget what happened. A year later the fisherman comes back to seek revenge on the four teens who thought they committed the perfect crime. “I Know What You Did Last Summer” was one of the best slasher films in the 1990’s. With impeccable acting from young stars like Sarah Michelle Gellar, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Freddie Prinze Jr, Ryan Phillippe, and Johnny Galecki, this movie proved that you don’t have to be a grown up to make life changing decisions.
7. Can’t Hardly Wait (1998)
“Can’t Hardly Wait” is a teen comedy about the events of high school graduates at a party on the evening of graduation. This movie stars many 90’s megastars such as Jennifer Love Hewitt, Ethan Embry, Seth Green, Peter Facinelli, Jamie Pressly, Melissa Joan Hart, Brecklin Meyer, and Lauren Ambrose.
6. American Pie (1999)
“American Pie” could possibly be considered the greatest teen comedy of all time. It was a cultural phenomenon in the 90’s and still is today, living on with multiple sequels that aren’t remotely as funny as the first. “American Pie” is about a group of friends who make a pact to lose their virginity before prom night. This hilarious comedy starred Jason Biggs, Allyson Hannigan, Chris Klein, Tara Reid, Shannon Elizabeth, Sean William Scott, Mena Suvari, Thomas Ian Nicholas, Eddie Kaye Thomas, and Natasha Lyonne. “American Pie” left a huge impression on audiences, and gave us multiple scenes we will not soon forget.
5. Dazed and Confused (1993)
Though “Dazed and Confused” was about a group of high schoolers in the 70’s, it was made in the 90’s. “Dazed and Confused” was about a group of high schoolers hazing new freshman on the last day of school. It starred many future A-list actors like Matthew McConaughey, Ben Affleck, and Milla Jovovich.
4. Clueless (1995)
As if “Clueless” wouldn’t be in the Top 10 Teen Movies of the 90’s. “Clueless” is about a typical California girl named Cher who passes the time by shopping and hanging out with her friends. “Clueless” had the best one-liners of all the 90’s teen movies combined. The little quips Cher said are still quoted by many people to this day. Alicia Silverstone, Brittany Murphy, Paul Rudd, Stacey Dash, Donald Faison, Brecklin Meyer, and Jeremy Sisto all starred in this hilarious comedy that embodied California in the 1990’s.
3. Cruel Intentions (1999)
Possibly the most provocative teen film ever is “Cruel Intentions.” “Cruel Intentions” is about a step-brother and sister who make a bet with each other about sleeping with the headmistresses virgin daughter. The outrageous subject content and grown up themes made “Cruel Intentions” one of the most talked about movies in the 1990’s. Sarah Michelle Gellar played the conniving step-sister Kathryn, Ryan Phillippe played the wicked step-brother Sebastian, and Reese Witherspoon played the virginal headmistresses daughter Annette. These three actors received rave reviews for their roles in the film. Selma Blair, Joshua Jackson, Eric Mabius, Sean Patrick Thomas, and Tara Reid were also in the film.
2. 10 Things I Hate About You (1999)
“10 Things I Hate About You” is a modern-day retelling of “The Taming of the Shrew.” It is all about a prude girl named Kat being swooned by a rebellious boy named Patrick Verona. What Kat doesn’t know is that Cameron is paying Patrick to go out with her so he can go out with Kat’s younger and wilder sister Bianca. This film introduced American audiences to the very talented Heath Ledger and it also was a star making vehicle for Julia Stiles, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Larisa Oleynik, David Krumholtz, Gabrielle Union, and Andrew Keegan.
1. Scream (1996)
The number one teen movie of the 90’s in my opinion is Wes Craven’s “Scream.” Not only did this movie end up increasing the sales of caller-id nation wide, but it managed to recreate the horror genre for an entirely new audience. “Scream” is about a young girl named Sidney Prescott who keeps getting mysterious calls from “ghost-face,” who is a murdering psychopath out to kill Sidney and all of her friends. “Scream” is the best slasher film ever made in my opinion. It stars Neve Campbell, Drew Barrymore, Courtney Cox, Rose McGowan, Matthew Lillard, Skeet Ulrich, David Arquette, and Jamie Kennedy. With psychological thrills, hot young actors, and the most memorable opening of any movie in history, it is no wonder “Scream” is number one on this list.