Three teenage boys talk to each other after school in "Superbad"
(Columbia Pictures)

The 10 Best Movies for Those Raunchy Teen ‘Superbad’ Vibes

Ah, Superbad … the first movie I ever snuck into. My sheltered eighth-grade mind didn’t know how to process the copious amount of dick humor that would shock even a One Piece fan. Superbad is one of the greatest coming-of-age comedies of all time. I just hadn’t come of age enough to get it, unlike these characters.

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Booksmart

Image of Kaitlyn Dever in a scene from the film 'Booksmart.' She is a teenage girl with long brown hair wearing a blue jacket over a red polo shirt. She looks like she's making a sarcastic comment.
(United Artists)

Olivia Wilde’s Booksmart is Superbad for the girls. After four grueling years trying to be the best academics they can be, best friends Amy and Molly realize that they haven’t done much high school living. There’s only one way to fix that: Party and hook up, Superbad style. How are they gonna cram four years into one night before they graduate? They didn’t study for this, and Sparknotes can’t help them. Just gotta get in the car, find booze, and see where the night takes them.

Diner

Five boys in tuxes sit around a table in "Diner"
(Universal)

Barry Levinson’s Diner is an odd one, a film unlike many others made at its time. The action takes place in Baltimore in the 1950s and revolves around five high school friends who are slowly transitioning into adulthood. It feels like a mumblecore film before mumblecore was even a thing. Many of the scenes take place in the titular diner, and the dialogue has a raunchy, improvised feel. They fake car crashes, get in fights, break windows and churches, and show up to each other’s weddings. The plot is thin, the emotions are thick.

Dope

Zoë Kravitz and Shameik Moore in Dope (2015)
(Sony Pictures)

Rick Famuyiwa’s Dope is about the unlikeliest of drug mules. High schooler Malcom is an honors student with Ivy League dreams, a real good egg. He uncharacteristically attends a party thrown by a local drug dealer with his friends, and somehow ends the night with a backpack full of contraband. Naturally, he has no idea how he ended up with the stuff, but the dealers don’t feel sympathetic to his plight. He’s gotta get rid of the dope while dodging drug dealers in sunny Los Angeles.

21 Jump Street

Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill in 21 Jump Street (2012)
(Columbia Pictures)

Need to see more high school buddy comedy with Jonah Hill? Phil Lord and Christopher Miller have your answer. The pair of directors created the 10’s defining comedy 21 Jump Street. Two down and out rookie cops are invigorated by a new uncover assignment: infiltrate a high school to bust a teenage drug lord. Things have changed quite a bit since they themselves graduated high school. It’s not cool to beat up nerds anymore. Hell, sports aren’t even that cool. Everyone cares about the environment. They’ve got a lot to learn before they’re ready to bust anyone.

American Pie

A boy sheepishly tries to hide the mess he made of a pie in "American Pie"
(Universal)

Paul and Chris Weitz’s American Pie is the blueprint for the teen sex comedy. It’s practically a museum piece, a look into the bygone age of late ’90s high school yore. It’s about a group of teens who make a pact to lose their virginity by the night of their senior prom. One of them decides to get nasty with their mom’s freshly baked apple pie. I’m not sure if that counts. Meanwhile, at band camp, the kids are doing unnamable things to each other and themselves with woodwind instruments.

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

Michael Cera and Satya Bhabha in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)
(Universal)

Edgar Wright’s Scott Pilgrim vs. The World is about a Canadian 22-year-old named Scott, who spends his time playing bass in indie bands and dating a high schooler. Scott … no. You have to break up with her. After he meets the manic pixie girl of his dreams while she is quite literally rollerblading through them, everything changes. He falls madly in love with Ramona Flowers, but has to conquer her seven evil exes before they can date in peace.

Cooley High

a group of high school boys stand on the street and smile into the camera in "Cooley High"
(American International Pictures)

Michael Schultz’ Cooley High takes place in 1960s Chicago and is about four friends who (I’m sensing a theme here) are about to graduate from high school. It starts out as a lighthearted romp about a group of boys playing hooky and trying to make out with girls, but the film quickly matures as the weight of harsh reality sinks in. The film has been called a classic of Black cinema and was selected to be preserved in the Library of Congress due to its cultural significance. You don’t see Superbad in the Library of Congress now do you?

Fast Times at Ridgemont High

A surfer dude sits at a classroom desk looking confused in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High"
(Universal)

Fast Times at Ridgemont High directed by Amy Heckerling stars a baby-faced Sean Penn as Brad Hamilton, a high school senior, surfer, and Burger Joint employee. Like so many teen sex comedy main characters, Brad is a simple sort. He only wants one thing, and I’m sure you can guess what it is. Brad isn’t the only teen looking for some boom boom, he’s part of a whole horny ensemble cast. They do it in baseball dug outs and pool houses, and somehow still manage to end up featured in the Library of Congress.

Dazed and Confused

Two high school boys grin while cruising in a car in "Dazed and Confused"
(Universal)

Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused is about a group of kids on the last day of school in 1976. There’s no one plot, no Goldschlager to deliver to the girl at the party. Instead, ninth graders are hazed, football stars succumb to drugs, and the unwashed teen masses shoot the shit in the pool hall. Oh, and lots of mailbox baseball. You know, when you hang outside the window of a moving car and practice your swing on your neighbors’ mailboxes? The real American pastime. A cult classic.

Easy A

Emma Stone holding sunglasses in her hand
(Sony Pictures)

Do you remember having to read The Scarlet Letter in school? Director Will Gluck does too. Easy A is about a high school girl who pretends to have sex with her closeted gay friend Brandon in order to save him from being bullied. She gains a reputation for being a “harlot” and decides to embrace her new image, stitching a scarlet letter A to her shirt a la Hester Prynne. She begins turn her reputation into a business, pretending to have sex with the boys at school in exchange for money and gifts. Get your bag, girl. Don’t let the church camp pearl-clutching prudes get you down.

(featured image: Columbia Pictures)


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Jack Doyle
Jack Doyle (they/them) is actually nine choirs of biblically accurate angels crammed into one pair of $10 overalls. They have been writing articles for nerds on the internet for less than a year now. They really like anime. Like... REALLY like it. Like you know those annoying little kids that will only eat hotdogs and chicken fingers? They're like that... but with anime. It's starting to get sad.