As summer vacation draws to a close and kids get ready to head back to school, we can't help but reminisce about our own high school experiences. The teenage angst, the braces, the unfortunate wardrobe decisions (and the photographic evidence our mothers have stockpiled). We can't say we'd want to do it all over again, but it's still fun to watch movies that transport us back to that time in our lives.
But have you noticed that when it comes to high school–centered films, many of them are completely unrealistic? Maybe it's just us, but the hallways of our high schools weren't filled with models who somehow skipped the whole acne thing and ran around completely unsupervised all the time.
The glaring discrepancies between high school in the movies and high school IRL are hilarious, which is why we compiled a list of the all-time best examples of Hollywood's "creative" accounts of adolescence. Read on for seven of the most unrealistic high school portrayals that are so bad, they're good!
Easy A (2010)
This hilarious high school flick may have made a superstar of ultra-cool redhead Emma Stone, but it's pretty unrealistic. Sure, it totally captures the power of campus gossip, but it basically revolves around a school-wide sex ring. Of course, our faux-promiscuous protagonist Olive (portrayed by Stone) wasn't actually trading sexual favors for Amazon.com gift cards, but even one whiff of these kinds of shenanigans by any high school administrator in America would definitely result in punitive measures.
Bring It On (2000)
First of all, the fact that Bring It On turned 16 this week is completely mind-boggling, but there's something else a little baffling about this spirit finger–filled film: There are no cheer coaches in sight! Try-outs, practices, and choreography are all led by the Toros' and Clovers' cheeky team captains Torrance (Kirsten Dunst) and Isis (Gabrielle Union), but we call foul! There's no way high school students would be given permission to toss each other in the air without an adult supervisor present. And no, Sparky Polastri doesn't count!
Freaky Friday (2003)
The discord that can exist between teen girls and their moms, the nuances of blended families and the importance of having a go-to Chinese restaurant are all things this movie got right. And to be fair, it isn't exactly meant to be realistic (what with the whole body-switching storyline—as far as we know, that's still impossible). But the thing we just can't let slide? Lindsay Lohan's character Anna's dreamy crush Jake (played by Chad Michael Murray) rolls up to high school on a motorcycle. It's not likely, even for the hunkiest of bad boys.
Let's be clear about one thing: Cher Horowitz (Alicia Silverstone) is one of our undisputed style icons. But this Beverly Hills princess and her popular crew were almost too fashionable to be believable as high school students. How many teens do you know who prance across their campuses in high heels? The plaid co-ords, we could see (and would totally wear), but a sexy Alaïa ensemble, Dionne (Stacey Dash)'s Dr. Seuss–inspired hats and, well, all the pieces in Amber (Elisa Donovan)'s closet were just too far out there for a group high schoolers, even wealthy ones in the '90s.
American Pie (1999)
Here's another classic high school movie that encapsulates the mass hysteria attached to "certain" teenage rights of passage. It's a relatable theme and, for that, we can appreciate the film. What we have a harder time wrapping our heads around is the overly sexualized foreign exchange student Nadia (Shannon Elizabeth). Is it just us, or is she so unlike any exchange student, ever? On second thought, maybe it's just the terrible attempt at a Czechoslovakian accent that's throwing us off here (no shade!).
She's All That (1999)
There's nothing better than a good ol' makeover to take a movie from semi-believable to totally unrealistic. That's not to say that we don't love a good makeover sequence, but the fact that Laney Boggs (Rachael Leigh Cook)'s classmates considered her so wretched for wearing glasses and boyfriend jeans is beyond us. Her big reveal basically debuted the same exact girl, with a haircut (the then-popular bob), a dress, and a pair of contact lenses. Oh, and her best accessory, Zack Siler (Freddie Prinze Jr.).Take that, high school bullies!
High School Musical (2006)
This Disney Channel original movie put stars like Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens on the map and captivated audiences for not one, but three films (and likely a fourth). We're going to go ahead and state the obvious here: High school kids don't spontaneously burst into song and extensive choreography between classes or during basketball practice! It just doesn't happen. But hey, the song and dance is what we love about this franchise; realistic or not, we wouldn't change it for the world.