20-something movies every 20-something should watch, IMHO
Don’t get me wrong – I love Mean Girls. It taught me that fetch is never gonna happen and mused over whether or not butter is a carb, after all. But for as much as I will always be happy to settle with the familiar and wonderful roster of films like Mean Girls, Clueless and You’ve Got Mail, there are some serious underrated gems that deserve a special shout out of their own. Listed in alphabetical order (because ranking would be impossible), let’s hear it for these 20-something girl power lovin’ movies every 20-something lady (and actually just every person) needs to watch. Because the 20-something struggle? It’s real. But you’re not alone.
Who wouldn’t fall for a quiet Parisian girl with a taste for the simple pleasures in life and a big imagination – and even bigger heart devoted to helping others find true happiness? Amelie is a gem of a tale, not just because it shows that just because you’re shy or introverted doesn’t mean you can’t have grand adventures—both IRL and in your own imagination.
For thirty-something Jane, obsessing over the novel Pride and Prejudice is a way of life. She decides to deplete her savings and fulfill her dreams by heading to Austenland, a Jane Austen-themed resort in England where nothing – and everything – is quite like she imagined it.
It’s like the cousin to Bridesmaids, only wilder and crazier. Thirty-something high school BFFs Regan, Katie, and Gena reunite for their friend Becky’s wedding day. Their antics from the bachelorette party nearly destroy Becky’s wedding dress, forcing the trio on a hilarious all-nighter around New York City to fix the gown in time for the vows.
Bend It Like Beckham
Jess is a Londoner and daughter of a conservative Punjabi Sikh couple who dreams of being able to play football professionally like her hero, David Beckham. When her parents tell her no way, Jess rebels by joining a local girls team where she finds a friend in player Jules and a love interest in her coach Joe.
Beyond the Lights
Pop star Noni seems to have it all – fame, success, and a life full of glamour, but she nearly kills herself struggling with the pressures of stardom. Kaz, a police officer and aspiring politician, saves Noni and through their romance she finds the strength and support she needs to take control of her career.
When Elise’s plans to get married suddenly derail, she returns to her old job as a summer camp counselor reuniting with former friends who never left the camp. BTW, if this cast looks super familiar it’s because the stars are some of our favorite YouTube ladies – Grace Helbig, Hannah Hart, and Mamrie Hart.
Celeste and Jesse Forever
Can two best friends who marry and get separated still remain close? For Celeste and Jesse, maintaining friendship while getting divorced is tougher than it looks as the pair attempts to move forward with their newly single lives.
“Have courage and be kind.” The 2015 version of the classic fairytale is incredibly well acted and a visual feast for the eyes with an endless parade of dazzling costumes and cinematography.
High school senior Bianca is horrified to find out that her classmates refer to her as the DUFF, or “Designated Ugly Fat Friend,” in Bianca’s circle of her more popular friends. In order to change what the school and resident mean girl Madison think of Bianca’s DUFF standing, she’ll need the help of her childhood friend Wes and a lot of inner confidence to stay true to her own unique identity.
For a Good Time, Call…
If frenemies Lauren and Katie want to afford living in a fabulous New York apartment, they’ll have to make ends meet with a side hustle twist – starting a phone sex line together. As business booms with 1-900-mmmhmmm, so do the beginnings of an unexpected best friendship.
Frances is a dancer hurtling through the all-too familiar growing pains of figuring out her way in the world as a post-grad especially when it comes to maintaining her friendship with BFF Sophie.
Girl Most Likely
Kristen Wiig plays Imogene, a struggling New York playwright who is dumped by her boyfriend and fired from her job, after staging a suicide attempt in the hopes of getting his attention. The plan fails and she moves back home to New Jersey to live with her eccentric family – all of whom she gradually grows to accept and lean on for support.
The Hundred-Foot Journey
It’s the war of the foodie worlds when the Kadam family leaves India and heads to France to open up a restaurant across the road from an upscale French eatery – much to the displeasure of the owner, Madame Mallory. A light feud erupts, but emphasis on light as this movie is heavy on romance and scene after scene of decadent fine dining prep.
Lawyer Paige and musician Sasha couldn’t be more different from each other, but have been co-dependent besties forever. But when Paige begins dating Tim, a doctor with whom she begins to plan a serious future with, Sasha and Paige have to keep the sudden shift from disrupting their bond as BFFs.
Awkward and ABBA obsessed Muriel has always dreamed of getting married, but has never even gone on a date. With the help of her former classmate Rhonda, Muriel moves from her small town to Sydney and begins facing the reality of what it means to fulfill her dreams.
Naomi and Ely’s No Kiss List
Naomi and Ely have been best friends since childhood. Naomi loves Ely, who is gay, and doesn’t accept that he is because she has always secretly hoped he would fall in love with her. The pair share a “No Kiss List” of people that neither is allowed to be romantically involved with until Ely finds himself falling for his dream guy – who just happens to be Naomi’s boyfriend.
Dumped by her boyfriend, stand-up comic Donna has a drunken one-night stand with nice guy Max and winds up getting pregnant when she remembers they didn’t use a condom. She decides to have an abortion and the film brims with heart, soul, and humor at what happens when a rebound can turn into an unexpected life decision.
Bronx high school student Alike slowly embraces her identity as a lesbian, much to the dissatisfaction of her mother, and writes poetry as a creative outlet of self-expression. The theme of “not running, but choosing” runs deep in Alike’s navigation through her family relationships, friendships, heartbreak, and sexual growth.
What’s a Delhi girl to do when her fiancé dumps her the day before her wedding? For Rani, it’s an opportunity to cash in on her honeymoon to Paris and Amsterdam and see the world, meeting new friends, refining her cooking skills, and regaining her confidence along the way.
Save the Date
Sisters Beth and Sarah are dating two guys in the same band. Beth is content and planning her wedding while Sarah is unsatisfied with her relationship. After being proposed to during a concert, Sarah ends her relationship and embarks on a new one while Beth obsesses over her wedding, causing a rift between the two sisters as they both struggle with entering the next phases of their lives.
They Came Together
If you’re anything like me, you’re probably dying for a movie that teases the “meet cute” formula. This is that movie and Amy Poehler and Paul Rudd are that couple in a romcom that pokes fun at virtually every film in this genre.
Fresh from graduating from college, Aura moves back in with her mother and sister as she attempts to figure out what to do next with her life. Believe me, we’ve all been there with this film.
Astrid is the daughter of Ingrid, a talented artist who kills her boyfriend and is sent to prison. This leaves Astrid in the care of various foster homes ranging from compassionate to cruel in nature. As she comes of age within these homes, Astrid learns how to become her own person and free herself from her mother’s presence.
Image courtesy of imdb.com.