In the image, a hand hovers over several films placed against a dark blue background

Three Coming of Age Films You Should Add to Your Watchlist

By Jernice Kelley                         
Web Content Contributor

Coming of age films have been a major staple in the world of cinema. While it is easy to get lost in the sea of the more lackluster coming of age films, there are also a few gems that make every minute worth it.

Booksmart (2019)

There is a lot to be said about Booksmart and why it is so great; this is a hilarious and heartfelt coming of age film that focuses on two teenage girls who wish to break out of their mundane roles and let loose on the last day of classes.

While the concept of the film is not very original, its execution is near perfection.

 One of my favorite things about the film is how genuinely funny it is. Of course, everyone’s sense of humor is different, but the jokes in the film landed well and were done in good taste.

It is entertaining, well-paced and has some amazing characters. Booksmart gives off a familiar yet fresh feeling, not to mention, it has a pretty great soundtrack.

This is one coming of age film that will leave you in high spirits.

Moonlight (2016)

Moonlight is one of the most beautiful and artistic movies created. The movie centers on a young man and his discovery of his sexuality.

 The story showcases what it feels like to grow up as a gay black man and points out very real issues in the lives of real people.

As the viewer, you experience the heartbreak, the emotional pain and the growing pains of manhood that the main character experiences in his journey of accepting himself.

The casting, acting, screenplay, cinematography… everything about this movie pulls together and creates an intimate masterpiece onscreen. This film is truly an eye-opener.

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl (2015)

Despite making me cry my eyes out, this film is truly a revolutionary wonder. The film follows an awkward teen and his best friend, who befriends a classmate that was recently diagnosed with cancer.

There are several aspects of the film that makes it so great to watch, one of them being the realism of the subject. Not very many films can capture what it is like to see someone go through having such a devastating disease in such a vivid and realistic manner.

Also, to tackle this subject matter without forcing a romance story or adding in dying confessions of love, yet still making it clear that these characters care greatly for one another is truly amazing.

The cinematography was very refreshing, and the characters were well-developed and likable. I have seen this film so many times and the third act is hard-hitting each time; the details and symbolism in this movie are impressive.

Honorable Mentions

The Edge of Seventeen (2016)

Lady Bird (2017)

Boyhood (2014)

Eighth Grade (2018)

Stand By Me (1986)

All these films have unique things to offer and they are great to watch regardless if you are into the coming of age genre or not.

Featured image by Jernice Kelley via Canva.

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