10 Movies Like School Rock You Must See

Richard Linklater’s ‘School of Rock‘ is a comedy-drama film with a stellar cast consisting of Jack Black, Kevin Clark, Miranda Cosgrove, Stephanie Finochio, and several others. The story follows Dewey Finn a guitarist struggling to pay his bills. Hopeless and clueless, he slyly takes on the job of a substitute teacher in place of his friend at a prep school, despite lacking the qualifications needed to teach the class.

However, when he notices the musical talent the students possess, he decides to train them and form a rock band that would participate in the ‘Battle of the Bands.’ The film has received rave reviews and appreciation from all corners for its stellar cast, musical numbers, and overall intriguing narrative. Here’s a list of more movies like ‘School of Rock’ that might strike a familiar chord.

10. Rock ‘n’ Roll High School (1979)

‘Rock ‘n’ Roll High School’ by directors Allan Arkush and Joe Dante, stars Joey Ramone, P.J. Soles, Johnny Ramone, Dee Dee Ramone, Joe Dante, and Vincent Van Patten in key roles. The film follows Riff Randall and her friends, a group of students obsessed with rock and roll at Vince Lombardi High School. When the school’s principal decides to take matters into her own hands and stop the rock and roll obsession in school, the students, with the help of the band, Ramones, decide to get even with her. ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll High School’ and ‘School of Rock’ both show rebellion from the students out of their love for music and their desire to break the rules for something they hold so dear.

9. Bandslam (2009)

Director Todd Gaff’s ‘Bandslam’ starring Venessa Hudgens, Aly Michalka, Lisa Kudrow, Gaelan Connell, David Bowie, and Scott Porter is another film quite similar to ‘School of Rock.’ The story follows popular high school girl Charlotte Banks and her bond with newbie oddball Will Burton, as the two work together to bring together a fledgling rock band that’s capable of partaking in a school competition. Both movies revolve around rock music and the coming together of bands filled with newbies with nothing but a love and talent for music, that pushes them to success.

8. The Rocker (2008)

Peter Cattaneo’s ‘The Rocker’ stars Rain Wilson, Bradley Cooper, Emma Stone, Teddy Geiger, Will Arnet, and Josh Gad in pivotal roles. The story follows Robert ‘Fish’ Fishman, a drummer who is abandoned by his band just as they set out on tour. Heartbroken and rejected, Fish decides to give up on his dream. Fast forward twenty years later, Fish finds another opportunity to live his dream of stardom by performing in his nephew’s high school rock band. Fish, like Dewey Finn, is also a down-on-his-luck musician who gets another shot at doing what he loves, albeit in a high school band, with a group of young, musically talented kids.

7. Pitch Perfect (2012)

Directed by Jason Moore, ‘Pitch Perfect‘ has a stellar star cast, consisting of Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Britany Snow, Skylar Astin, Anna Kamp, and Elizabeth Banks. The film follows Beca Mitchell, an aspiring DJ, who enrolls as a freshman in university and reluctantly joins an all-girls acappella group called the ‘Barden Bellas.’ She decides to introduce something new and different into their repertoire, giving them the confidence to take on an all-male acapella group in a competition in which only the best will win. Both films show how it’s okay to go astray a little as long as it’s in the right direction especially when it comes to music and passion.

6. Sing Street (2016)

Directed by John Carney, ‘Sing Street’ stars Ferdia Walsh-Peelo, Jack Reynor, Mark McKenna, and Lucy Boynton in pivotal roles. The story follows Conor Lalor, as his father forces him to go to a new school, where he comes across a pretty girl with whom he gets smitten. Hoping to win her attention, he decides to start a band. Young Conor will have to battle struggles of poverty, bullying, and everyday woes, to ensure his heart doesn’t break. Similar to ‘School of Rock,’ ‘Sing Street’ also treats music as an escape and means to gain confidence in a life that’s riddled with adversities.

5. The Chorus (2004)

Christopher Barratier’s ‘The Chorus’ is a heartwarming French musical. It is the story of Pierre Morhange, a thriving orchestra instructor, who decides to come back home after his mother’s passing. Upon arrival, a former friend of his, Pépinot, arrives with an old diary that belonged to their teacher Clément Mathieu. The boys were in a French boarding school for troubled boys, when Mathieu, a failed musician, joined the school.

Seeing the treatment being meted out to the students, Mathieu decided to use humor and discipline with music to win them over and disciple them. As the two boys proceed to read the diary, they fondly recollect the memories of their music teacher and his impact on their lives. Both films show how a bit of kindness, humor, and music can alter lives and inculcate a sense of purpose in a person.

4. The Commitments (1991)

Director Alan Parker’s film ‘The Commitments,’ stars Robert Arkins, Angeline Ball, Michael Ahern, Andrew Strong, and Maria Doyle Kennedy in pivotal roles. The film follows young Irish music fanatic Jimmy Rabbitte and his dream of assembling an Irish soul band, akin to the African-American recording artists of the ’60s. Rabbitte wants to get the best talent, so he decides to hold auditions at home but is left disappointed with what he finds. This leads him to decide to put together a band with members comprising of the friends and people he encounters in everyday life. Like Dewey Finn of ‘School of Rock,’ Jimmy Rabbitte too decides to utilize the hidden talents of those around him to create something he believes will leave a lasting impact.

3. Napoleon Dynamite (2004)

Written and directed by Jared Hess, ‘Napoleon Dynamite stars John Heder, Efren Ramirez, Jon Gries, Aaron Ruell, Haylie Duff, and several others in pivotal roles. The film follows Napoleon, a geeky boy with a quirky family, as he finds love and support from his friends to stand up for himself, despite constantly getting bullied. Along the way, he also manages to help his new friend achieve the role of class president and find his true calling in dancing because of the backing of those around him. Like ‘School of Rock,’ ‘Napoleon Dynamite’ also looks at the life of a misfit and how he finds something he is truly good at and decides to take it forward in life.

2. Airheads (1994)

Director Michael Lehmann’s film ‘Airheads’ stars Brendan Fraser, Steve Buscemi, and Adam Sandler in titular roles. The story follows Chester Ogilvie, Rex, and Pip, the three members of the hard rock band ‘The Lone Rangers’ as they desperately try to get their song heard. Left dejected and humiliated, they decide to hold a radio station hostage to get them to play their song on air. The film is considered to be one of the finest Rock and Roll movies to have been released in the ’90s. Both ‘School of Rock’ and ‘Airheads’ make use of comedy to put through the message of how resilience and determination eventually bear fruit.

1. Almost Famous (2000)

Directed by Cameron Crowe, ‘Almost Famous,’ with a stellar cast including Hate Kudson, Billy Crudup, Patrick Fugit, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Zoey Deschanel, is a heartfelt coming-of-age film widely loved and appreciated. It follows the story of William Miller, a young and aspiring Rock and Roll journalist. He manages to get himself a press pass that allows him to tour with his favorite rock band and write on them. The journey takes him through a process of self-realization as well. Much like ‘School of Rock,’ ‘Almost Famous’ also focuses on the world of rock and roll music and the desire to turn one’s dreams into reality.

Read More: Is School of Rock Based on a True Story?