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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Five Best: College Movies

courtesy of

March Madness started last week and we're already down to the sweet sixteen. But, instead of doing another sports themed list, let's take a look at the five best college films of all time. These are films either set (mostly) at a college or with going to college or graduating from college as a main plot device. Without further ado, here are the five best college movies of all time, in chronological order.

P.S. This was a tough list, both to narrow down and to discourage my personal tastes, rather than judging on quality alone.

Dustin Hoffman in "The Graduate" courtesy of

The Graduate (1967)

Figuring out what you want to do with your life is tough enough without your parents' friend hitting on you. Benjamin Braddock (Hoffman) comes home from college, clueless about where his life is going. But, when he begins an affair with Mrs. Robinson (Anne Bancroft), he unwittingly falls in love with her daughter Elaine (Katharine Ross). It's funny, insightful, and an honest picture of how clueless we all are at that age.
Scene from "Animal House" courtesy of

Animal House (1978)

It's one of, if not the funniest film of all time. A portrait of a rowdy fraternity at a Pennsylvania college, John Landis directs this hysterical look at young recklessness and rebellion. Anchored by the late John Belushi, along with hilarious turns from Tim Matheson, Tom Hulce, and Peter Riegert, Animal House stands the test of time and makes us all yearn for a time when wearing a toga to a party was commonplace.
Anthony Edwards and Robert Carradine in "Revenge of the Nerds" courtesy of

Revenge of the Nerds (1984)

Adams College is a pretty difficult place for freshmen to fit in; especially nerds. But Gilbert (Edwards) and Lewis (Carradine) decide to fight back against the "jock order" in this hilarious look at college friendship. Banding together and forming their own fraternity, these nerds turn the tables on their athletic counterparts and gain much more than respect. A wonderful movie full of hilarious moments tailor-made for the 80's.

Scene from "Good Will Hunting" courtesy of

Good Will Hunting (1996)

Written by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, the heartfelt story of an orphan janitor in Boston smarter than all the college kids around him is a funny, emotional trip from director Gus Van Sant. With a bulletproof cast - Damon, Robin Williams, Minnie Driver, etc. - what usually gets lost is how good Affleck is. It's still his best role, playing an arrogant south Boston townie just hoping for a break. How do ya like them apples?

Andrew Garfield and Jesse Eisenberg in "The Social Network? courtesy of

The Social Network (2010)

Going way back for this one, David Fincher's 2010 film version of the book The Accidental Billionaires about the creation of Facebook at Harvard was the critics' darling last year. It's a brilliant tale of power, money, and betrayal, whether intended or not. With near flawless editing, music, and acting, I have no problem saying it: it was the best movie of 2010, regardless what any academies or guilds might tell you.

Like I said, my tastes could have highly influenced this list. Some other college movies worth checking out:

The Paper Chase (1973)
St. Elmo's Fire (1985)
PCU (1994)
With Honors (1994)
Dead Man on Campus (1998)
Road Trip (2000)
Old School (2003)
National Lampoon's Van Wilder (2002)


  1. Aww, is it just me or the frame is not perfectly mounted. Maybe it has something to do with my screen resolution? Or is it the size of the new layout? The slide only loads to The Graduate (19.. and the rest disappeared. Does it look okay in yours?

  2. yeah, it's fine when I look at it...interesting...maybe I'll go back to my table format

  3. Looks all better now with tables!

    I agree with your comment on Good Will Hunting. When Ben Affleck was on the lowest point of his career, I used to look back and ponder how did he got from that to Gigli? Turns out Ben is indeed talented afterall. The movie is one of my favorite. Very much impressed with the movie and the awesome script.