Movie List

6 Best Student-Teacher Relationship Movies on Netflix Right Now

September 7, 2019
6 min read

Young minds and souls undoubtedly need a guiding hand to help them across troubled times. Inexperience is the greatest stumbling block one has to pass through in life, and the people who are dedicated to making us understand and experience the complexities of the world we see around us deserve more respect than anyone else. These people are our teachers. After our parents, they are the ones who have the most influence on our lives. Our teachers have made us aware of the world around us. They have influenced our lives and helped us understand our true potential. Thus we can safely say that the relationship students share with their teachers is one of the most treasured relationships in life.

Below we have listed certain movies that depict the relationship between students and teachers which you can readily watch on Netflix. Some of these movies depict instances where the sanctity of this relationship has been transgressed by the carnal instinct of man, while others are about teachers who have really been inspirational figures. There is one fascinating observation which can be made while compiling such a list: Netflix has truly become a website to satisfy all our entertainment needs. With that said, here’s the list of really good student-teacher relationship movies on Netflix that are available to stream right now:

6. Miss Stevens (2016)

Directed by Julia Hart, ‘Miss Stevens’ is a 2016 film centering around a young teacher’s experiences as she takes a contingent of high school students to a drama competition. The central character of the film, the eponymous Rachel Stevens, is just 29 years old, and is still in the process of accepting her adult responsibilities. The visit to the drama competition leads to many emotional revelations in Miss Stevens’ life as she engages sexually with a teacher from another school and abstains herself from being romantically involved with one of her students. ‘Miss Stevens’ beautifully paints the picture of a teacher who is slowly fitting into her new role. We can describe ‘Miss Stevens’ as a coming-of-age story of an adult.

5. Handsome Devil (2016)

Private schools always boast of being the option the rich and elite choose to enroll their kids in. These schools indeed have the best facilities; they hire better teachers than government schools; and provide the students with resources which can boost their all-round development. Private schools pride themselves on being better than their public counterparts, and it is this snobbery which ‘Handsome Devil’ attacks. The regimented way of life and a false sense of self-importance these schools foster are strongly reflected in this film by John Butler.

The story centers around the friendship of two students, Ned and Conor, at one such private school where everyone seems to enjoy rugby. When these two characters in question bond over the love of music, they are only supported by one teacher, Mr. Sherry, while others look down upon them. Mr. Sherry is a homosexual and has to be very discreet about his private life considering the homophobic atmosphere in the school where the majority are sports-oriented alpha males. The film criticizes the conservative outlook towards life propagated in the Irish private school system that is detrimental to the overall growth of a child.

4. Loving Annabelle (2006)

‘Loving Annabelle’ is a story about a lesbian relationship between a student and her teacher, and how this equation has drastic effects on their lives. The student in question is Annabelle Tillman, the daughter of a senator who constantly has to change schools because of her unruly behavior. When she is admitted to a strict Catholic boarding school, Annabelle keeps falling in trouble, and is at times saved by the poetry teacher Simone Bradley. As time passes, Simone realizes that Annabelle is falling for her. Despite trying hard to resist Annabelle’s advances at first, Simone slowly begins to give in. The direction of Katherine Brooks really lifts this relatively common plot. She beautifully explores these characters and their backstories while dealing with their emotional conditions in the present.

3. Lean On Me (1989)

One of the most inspirational films on this list, this 1989 feature starring Morgan Freeman is based on the life of Joe Louis Clark, a stern principal whose measures resulted in better performances by the students of Eastside High School in Paterson, New Jersey. When Clark (Freeman) is first made the principal of the school, Eastside High is facing a probable government takeover due to poor performances by the students. Clark discovers that numerous students indulge in either consumption or selling of drugs within the school premises. He takes rather stern measures to rid the school of such nuisance and demands more responsibility from the teachers and parents for the overall growth of the students. The film shows us how one resolute leader can carry a whole bunch of unruly followers into the promised land. Morgan’s commanding performance makes this film absolutely unmissable.

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2. Mona Lisa Smile (2003)

‘Mona Lisa Smile’, directed by Mike Newell (‘Four Weddings And A Funeral’), stars Julia Roberts, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Kirsten Dunst in leading roles. Roberts’ character Katherine Ann Watson is an art history teacher at a conservative girls’ college who encourages her students to think out of the box and try to have strong careers and dreams of their own away from the orthodox ideals of settling down and having children. She is met with both opposition and support from her students, but the school authorities are not happy with her for discussing topics in class which go beyond the scope of the syllabus. As time passes by, life experiences teach some of Katherine’s detractors that what she says in class does have some merit. ‘Mona Lisa Smile’ does preach very important lessons, but it never works as a great film as the tropes used here are quite common. There are not many intense dramatic moments for the viewers to enjoy.

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1. The Physician (2013)

This period drama film takes us to medieval Europe and depicts the development of medical sciences during that period. The central character of the story is a young man called Robert Cole who has an innate ability to guess when someone is terminally ill. Despite being aware of his mother’s imminent death and not being able to help her in any way, Robert decides to go on a journey across Europe to learn more about the medical sciences in Persia where science and philosophy thrived during the Islamic Golden Age. Robert meets a teacher called Ibn Sina who serves as his guiding light. Soon Robert begins to make new discoveries which develop the scope of medical science like never before. The film opens our eyes towards the many discoveries the Islamic world made during the medieval ages and how advanced they then were in comparison to the Christian world.

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