20 of the Most Memorable Prom Movies of All Time – and Where to Watch Them
The prom plays a major part in To All the Boys: Always and Forever, and we’re not too surprised. After all, the prom as a plot point is pretty much a teen-movie staple! All the heightened emotions and romance of prom – not to mention tons of glitter – make it the perfect setting for a teen movie, whether it’s a thoughtful coming-of-age drama, a light romantic comedy, or even a horror flick. If you’re feeling a little nostalgic for your own prom memories (or for the memories of your favourite teen movies), we’ve got plenty of movie suggestions for you! Keep reading to see our picks for the best prom movies you can stream right now.
Alex Strangelove revolves around that age-old teen-movie trope: a young couple planning to attend prom together and lose their virginities that night. Alex’s plans get thrown into a tailspin, however, when he meets a charming guy and starts questioning his sexuality as prom looms nearer.
Another “prom night and sex” comedy, with a twist. This one is from the perspective of three parents who think their kids have made a pact to lose their virginities on prom night. To try to put a stop to it, the parents resort to increasingly ridiculous hijinks, all while their kids go through their own drama.
The original version of this horror classic has one of the all-time iconic prom scenes of all time. Carrie, a social outcast with a religious, abusive mother, thinks that things might be looking up when she’s asked to prom by one of the most popular boys in school. As we all know, though, there’s a nasty surprise waiting for her that will turn prom into a deadly nightmare.
The 2013 remake of Stephen King’s teen-girl horror tale stars Chloe Grace Moretz as Carrie and Julianne Moore as her terrifying, controlling mother. A few things are altered in this version, but the bloody finale at the prom remains as horrifying as ever.
High School Musical 3: Senior Year
The third and final instalment of the megapopular Disney franchise centers on senior year for Troy, Gabriella, and all their friends, as they struggle to figure out what they want to do with their futures and how they can stay connected when they go to college. Of course, the preparations for prom take a big piece of their attention (though not nearly as much as their big spring “musicale!”).
Based on a 1980 horror flick starring Jamie Lee Curtis, the 2008 remake of Prom Night combines two popular genres: high-school movies and cheesy slasher flicks. A group of teens are targeted by a mysterious killer on their prom night, apparently in revenge for the death of another girl six years earlier. Instead of the best night of their lives, they’re stuck fighting for their lives.
This sweet 2011 rom-com is an ensemble story of a group of high school seniors trying their best to plan the most amazing prom they can. Amidst different crushes, heartbreaks, and dramas, the class president tries to keep everything together, but she’s also dealing with a frustrating attraction to the school’s bad boy, who’s been forced to help with prom preparations in order to graduate.
Based on a Broadway show, The Prom is a bright and splashy musical packed full of stars. When a teenager in small-town Indiana faces pushback over wanting to take her girlfriend to the prom, a group of self-absorbed Broadway actors swoop into town to try to bring attention to her plight – and resurrect their own careers while they’re at it.
10 Things I Hate About You
Like most great teen movies, prom marks the climactic conflict in 10 Things I Hate About You. The prom confrontation is great, but what really makes this movie is the humour and the sparky banter between Kat, an exasperated and ambitious student, and Patrick, the school’s bad boy who agreed to date her as part of a business deal, but finds himself developing real feelings.
Never Been Kissed
Prom serves as bookends for the story of Josie, a journalist who goes undercover as a high-school student to research a story. We get flashbacks to her traumatic prom experience as a deeply uncool teenager years earlier, contrasted with the prom she attends “undercover” as she deals with feelings for one of the teachers and the increasing weight of her ruse.
Pretty in Pink
Quirky teenager Andie has a lot on her plate, from her single father’s inability to find work to bullying from the rich girls who judge her for being from “the wrong side of the tracks.” It seems like things are starting to look up when her crush, sweet but wealthy Blane, reciprocates her feelings, but there’s plenty of time between now and prom for heartbreak (and maybe some redemption, too).
She's All That
After his girlfriend dumps him for a reality-TV star, a popular jock bets his friends that he can transform the school’s resident awkward artist into the prom queen. Although their friendship gets off to a rocky start, he succeeds in drawing her out of her shell, but the truth of the bet looms large as prom gets closer and closer.
The very existence of prom is threatened in this classic teen movie. Ren, a teenager from Chicago, moves to a small town, only to find that dancing is banned by the strict and religious town leaders in reaction to a past tragedy. As Ren pushes to overturn the ban, he and his family face serious pushback, but he’s determined to give his class the prom they deserve.
The 2011 remake of Footloose costars Julianne Hough as the rebellious preacher’s daughter who helps Ren with his fight to allow dancing. It’s a little more intense and modern than the original, but the basic story, about a group of teenagers who fight to lift a dancing ban in time for a senior prom, remains the same, as do many of the iconic musical moments (though rerecorded by current artists).
The Spectacular Now
The prom is the backdrop of the pivotal moments in this coming-of-age drama. A popular, slacker senior befriends and eventually falls for his sweet, introverted classmate, even taking her to prom, but his personal demons threaten to ruin everything about their relationship and their futures.
The Girl Next Door
The oddball comedy The Girl Next Door has one of the most unexpected prom premises you’ll see: a high-school senior falls for his new next-door neighbour, only to discover that she’s a former adult film star. As they try to evade the plotting of her sleazy ex, they wind up enlisting their friends for a project that takes everyone by surprise.
Like so many coming-of-age films, the prom marks a major moment of revelation for Lady Bird, a quirky high-school senior whose final year of high school is filled with drama-club shenanigans, secret family struggles, and two separate doomed romances. Its prom scene, though, is unusually touching – and not focused on romance in the least.
21 Jump Street
Prom marks the moment where cops Schmidt and Jenko finally crack the case they went undercover as high school students for. Maybe a drug bust isn’t the typical high-school prom experience, but it’s par for the course in this intentionally over-the-top action comedy!
Whatever It Takes
The classic Cyrano switcheroo gets a teen twist in this comedy about two guys advising each other on getting their dream girls. Sweet geek Ryan writes emails so that jock Chris can woo Ryan’s BFF Maggie, while Chris teaches Ryan how to win over popular Ashley. In the process, both guys struggle to get outside of their comfort zones and realise what they’re missing out on.
Drive Me Crazy
There’s more than a few similarities between Peter and Lara Jean and Drive Me Crazy‘s central characters, Nicole and Chase. Longtime friends and next-door neighbours, they hatch a fake-dating plot in order to attract attention and jealousy from the real objects of their romantic interest. But, as you’ve probably guessed, what starts out fake slowly turns real, just in time for prom.