Cultural Representations of Higher Ed, No. 4
I am working backwards through this list. Here are films 201 to 250, which are still generally ridiculous, but perhaps somewhat less ridiculous than those numbered 251-400.
The rankings are my own and in most cases somewhat arbitrary. The descriptions of the films are paraphrases of summaries found in a half-dozen print and online film guides. I compiled the list about a decade ago, and it needs some updating.
201. She’s Working Her Way through College: Virginia Mayo is a burlesque queen who decides to enroll in college.
202. Start Cheering: a Hollywood star goes back to college.
203. Dancing Coed: Lana Turner is a dancer who returns to college in a convoluted effort to advance her career.
204. Cinderella Jones: a Busby Berkeley film about a ditz who enrolls in college to find a smart husband and thereby secure an inheritance.
205. Mother Is a Freshman: a mother and daughter enroll in college at the same time and fall for the same professor.
206. Kilroy Was Here: a former G.I. named Kilroy goes to college and is plagued with witticisms about his name.
207. The Alumni Reunion: a woman tries to find a new job or even a new career for her husband at his college reunion.
208. Class of ’63: at a college reunion, a woman struggles with the choice of staying with her husband or resuming her relationship with a former lover.
209. Campus Honeymoon: a male and female student pose as a married couple to gain access to better campus housing.
210. Mugssy’s Girls: Ruth Gordon is the sorority’s unconventional housemother.
211. Call Her Mom: Connie Stevens is a “shapely” waitress who creates a sensation when she agrees to become a fraternity’s housemother.
212. Fraternity Row: an expose of fraternity life in the 1950s.
213. The Hazing: a film that explores the premise that even the best fraternities are Delts at heart.
214. For Men Only: the hazing death of a fraternity pledge rocks a small college.
215. Strange Behavior: a very off-centered film about a series of murders in a Midwestern college town.
216. A Love to Remember: a made-for-television film about how a cruel practical joke the colors the experiences of a group of college students.
217. A Life for a Life: psychological experiments at a university, suicide, and murder.
218. Mind Games: a sadistic psychology student torments a family already unraveling because of all sorts of emotional issues.
219. Three in the Attic: three young women imprison a college lothario in an attic.
220. Drive, He Said: a college student’s life gets complicated when he has an affair with the dean’s wife and becomes involved in both campus politics and political protests.
221. The Strawberry Statement: campus radicals occupy buildings and press their demands.
222. The Time Is Now: in this made-for-television film, a college president is murdered shortly after meeting with student radicals.
223. Forgotten Commandments: a college student enters into a triangle that leads to murder.
224. Cuckoo Bird: a triangle involving a professor, his wife, and his mistress.
225. Threesome: a triangle involving three dormmates.
226. Summer Lovers: a triangle involving a college student and two women on a Greek island.
227. First Affair: a made-for-television film about an inexperienced college student gets involved with the husband of one of her professors.
228. Forbidden Nights: an American professor at a Chinese university violates the code of conduct for foreigners when she falls in love with one of her students.
229. Nightingales: a treatment of the personal and academic lives of eight student nurses brought together in a university residence hall.
230. College Confidential: a researcher creates controversy by surveying her students about their sex lives.
231. Consenting Adult: a college student “comes out of the closet.”
232. Didn’t You Hear: a college student who feels that he isn’t allowed to be himself retreats into a fantasy world.
233. Listen to Me: a high school debating champion finds college more contentious.
234. The Kid with the 200 I.Q.: Gary Coleman is a diminutive genius who enters college at a very young age and has to find a way to fit in.
235. Freddie Steps Out: a college student’s life changes after he finds an abandoned baby.
236. Fluffy: Tony Randall is a professor who sets out to prove that he can domesticate wild animals, including a lion.
237. Big Man on Campus: out of intellectual curiosity, a college student moves in with a hunchback.
238. Hero for a Day: a campus security guard is mistaken for an influential alumnus.
239. The Steagle: a professor reacts to the Cuban missile crisis by deserting his family for the life of a revolutionary.
240. T.A.G.: The Assassination Game: a college strategy game becomes shockingly real.
241. High Time: a middle-aged man enrolls in college after his wife’s death and falls for his French professor.
242. Encounters in the Night: Donna Mills and James Brolin co-star in this film about a bored housewife who returns to college and becomes increasingly obsessed with sexual fantasies.
243. Paranoia: Carroll Baker is a wealthy widow who gets involved with a college student with more than a passing an interest in drugs and sexual experimentation.
244. Life 101: a somewhat lifeless initiation story.
245. Fresh Horses: a rich college student dumps his pretentious girlfriend for a very idiosyncratic young woman from the other side of the tracks.
246. Where the Boys Are: perhaps the prototypical spring-break movie.
247. Ocean Drive Weekend: college students head for the ocean as a reprieve from their studies.
248. Fraternity Vacation: neither farce nor drama.
249. 5 against the House: college buddies scheme to steal from a Vegas casino to pay off their debts–makes Oceans 11 seem like King Lear.
250. Summer City: an excursion turns terrifying for a group of university students–Mel Gibson’s film debut.
The first post in this series, covering films ranked 351 to 400 is available at: https://academeblog.org/2013/07/09/400-films-about-higher-education-or-at-least-set-on-campuses-351-400/
The second post in this series, covering films ranked 301-350 is available at: https://academeblog.org/2013/07/10/400-films-about-higher-education-or-at-least-set-on-campuses-301-350/
The third post in this series, covering films ranked 251 to 300 is available at: https://academeblog.org/2013/07/11/400-films-about-higher-education-or-at-least-set-on-campuses-251-300/