Whether you were bullied in school, or simply feel like “sometimes you just don’t belong,” here are some pick-me-ups to remind you that it’s okay to be different.
7 Movies To Watch (Or Rewatch) If You’ve Never Fit In School
Bartleby Gaines (Justin Long) just isn’t suited for school. After failing six college entrance exams, including his safe bet – the State University – Bartleby (or “B” as his friends, fondly call him) ultimately decides that college is simply not for him. The high school fresh grad therefore thinks of a creative way to present his case to his parents without disappointing them. He even provides graphs and equations stating that college is basically just a waste of time and money, but both his mom and dad are not buying his erratic statements. B then has to abort “Plan A” aka “convincing,” and switch to “Plan B” aka “confessing.” That doesn’t go too well, either, though.
Still wanting to gain their approval, B decides to build his own fake college: South Harmon Institute of Technology (abbreviated as S.H.I.T.,) just to give his ‘rents an illusion of what they had hoped for him: “go to college, graduate, and get a high-paying job.” Things go too far when other “rejects” actually start enrolling in the S.H.I.T. university. How long can B keep up his lie?
LESSON LEARNED: As they say, “grades don’t define you” and what you can do. Also, it’s totes okay to have an unconventional take on what is “normal” for you. You don’t need to be like everyone else. Follow your own rhythm. You’re also not required to adhere to the predefined structure the world has created. Do what works for you. Do you. Okay?
6. Legally Blonde
The ever-so-perfect Elle Woods (Reese Witherspoon) just got dumped by her long-time boyfriend Warner Huntington III (Matthew Davis.) The reason? She doesn’t look “serious enough” to be a future lawyer’s girlfriend. (Ugh.)
Elle, not knowing when to give up on love, enrolls in Harvard Law School and eventually becomes classmates with her former beau. After one bumpy semester, however, the blonde beauty realizes that she’s just never going to be “good enough” for Warner. Still, she picks herself back up and decides that Elle Woods is going to slay Harvard Law: with heels, a scented resume, and her knowledge about perms – all for herself. (“Goodbye, Warner! You’re on your own now.”)
LESSON LEARNED: “Do not judge a book by its cover” and never judge a girl by her hair color or her love for all things pink. Also, just because you don’t look the part, doesn’t mean you can’t do things better than those who do. You can still be “kikay,” while understanding legal jargon, for example – the contrast doesn’t make you less of a person.
5. High School Musical
Gabriella Montez (Vanessa Hudgens) met Troy Bolton (Zac Efron) on New Year’s Eve. The two get along really well after an impromptu duet, but first impressions aren’t always what they seem. As school starts, the could-have-been-lovebirds realize that they are actually nothing alike: Gabriella is classified as a campus nerd, while Troy is the captain of the basketball team. Will music bring their hearts together or will their differences make them grow apart?
LESSON LEARNED: It’s okay to do something totally unexpected, even if it seems out of character. If it works, it works. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t. You won’t really know unless you try.
4. Easy A
Olive Penderghast (Emma Stone) is a virgin, and also an “anonymous” student at the Ojai North High School. Things change when the prude and pretentious Marianne Bryant (Amanda Bynes) overhears something about Olive’s allegedly wild night with an unnamed college guy. Soon, the social outcast becomes the most talked about girl in school. From a nobody to Ojai North’s resident tramp, Olive, with her new stereotype, embraces the title and even starts dressing provocatively like it’s nobody’s business.
Moreover, Olive also doubles as the unpopular guys’ female Robin Hood. In exchange for gift cards, the 17-year-old pretends that guys have done “the deed” with her to raise their social status, even if it means her reputation will be destroyed in the process – all because she knows the feeling of being ignored and pushed aside. What happens when the students find out that Olive actually hasn’t given up her V-card yet?
LESSON LEARNED: People may judge you based on what they see, but you are the only one who truly knows what kind of person you really are.
3. Geek Charming
All her life, Dylan Schoenfield (Sarah Hyland) has tried to hide her geeky side. Hanging out with the “It crowd,” the 16-year-old is practically teenage royalty, and getting caught is not exactly part of her plan in becoming the school’s next Blossom Queen. Desperate to win the crown, little miss Schoenfield even agrees to star in aspiring director Josh Rosen’s (Matt Prokop) mini-film project: documenting her extravagant lifestyle as his entry for the Puget Sound Film Festival.
As days passed, however, Josh can no longer stand Dylan’s shallow personality, diva-like ways, and obviously harsh attitude. That’s until he finds out about her “hidden self:” the sweet and caring Dylan who wears nerdy glasses at home, that is. After getting to know more about her life outside “the ramp (the spot in the cafeteria where only the jocks and socialites can pass through,)” Josh even begins to pick up on Dylan’s mannerisms and a bit of her lingo, while Dylan starts becoming more and more like her old dorky self around Josh.
LESSON LEARNED: Knowing a lot of people and still feeling alone is not exactly the best thing ever. Don’t fret, though. Someday someone’s going to stick by you – quirks and all.
2. The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Charlie’s (Logan Lerman) life turns upside down after befriending two outgoing seniors: Sam (Emma Watson) and her stepbrother Patrick (Ezra Miller.) The introverted teen may seem to have nothing in common with the two, but as he spends more time with them, he finds out that Sam and Patrick are also hiding their painful pasts behind their carefree antics.
LESSON LEARNED: You are not alone. Other people also feel out-of-place in this world just like you; some are just better at concealing it. Also, it’s always okay to ask for help.
Back in the 1980’s, awkward transfer student Im Na-mi (Shim Eun-kyung) becomes friends with a group called “Sunny;” consisting of gutsy leader Ha Chun-hwa (Kang So-ra), foul-mouthed Hwang Jin-hee (Park Jin-joo), hotheaded bookworm Seo Geum-ok (Nam Bo-ra), aspiring Miss Korea candidate Ryu Bok-hee (Kim Bo-mi), the vain Kim Jang-mi (Kim Min-young), and the school’s goddess Jung Su-ji (Min Hyo-rin.)
Fast forward to 2011, the girls are no longer who they used to be. After finding out about Chun-hwa’s illness, a rather successful Na-mi tries to gather all of the members of Sunny together for a quick get-together before Chun-hwa’s condition worsens. While trying to contact her old friends, Na-mi finds out about the girls’ personal struggles and how much life has changed for them after 25 years: Jin-hee is now ladylike with an adulterer for a husband, Geum-ok is unemployed, Bok-hee is mentally unstable and has had to give up on her dreams, Jang-mi is wasting her days away in a job she hates, and Su-ji hides her life away after an accident ruined her perfectly pretty face. Will the girls still be able to smile like the old days?
LESSON LEARNED: Who you were in school will not assure who you will be after you graduate. People change. Situations change. Even your environment can change. However, even if your old self seems foreign to the current you, deep inside, that “child” who used to believe in fairy tales still exists in your heart. You just have to look and dig deeper.
Do you have any other movies to add to this list? Share them with us! :)