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About A Boy (2002)
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About A Boy (2002)

Twelve year old Marcus Brewer lives with his chronically depressed single mother, Fiona Brewer. Both Fiona and Marcus beat to their own respective drummers. Marcus will do whatever he can to make his depressed mother happy, even if it causes himself grief. As such, he realizes that he is perceived as different than most kids, as even the self-professed weird kids don't want to hang out with him as he is the target of bullying. Part of the taunts against him are the fact that he sings and speaks to himself without even realizing that he is doing it. Meanwhile, thirty-eight year old Will Freeman is a slacker who has lived comfortably off the royalties of a song written by his deceased father, and as such has never had to work a day in his life. He is a solitary man who places himself as the first and only priority in life. He comes across the idea that dating single moms meets his selfish carnal needs. It is in this capacity that Will meets Marcus, as one of Will's single mother conquests, Suzie, is friends with the Brewers. Trying to escape his life but wanting Will to date Fiona, Marcus infiltrates Will's life, much to Will's chagrin. Will slowly begins to realize that Marcus is more than just a nuisance, but rather someone who needs some guidance navigating through the trials of adolescence and the trials of dealing with a suicidal mother, and perhaps he can be a small part of providing that direction. Conversely, Marcus may be able to show Will the path to becoming a real a… (Read More)

Subgenre:
british comedy coming of age 
Themes:
unemployment break up bullying dating unfaithfulness redemption depression loneliness extramarital affair anger fear adultery christmas infidelity suicide friendship  (See All)
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
urban setting london england bathtub school 
Characters:
self centeredness single father single mother bully baby teacher boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
fear of commitment boy girl relationship reference to madonna the singer suicide note reference to xena warrior princess reference to jon bon jovi peter pan complex held upside down swinging single upside down image reference to the spice girls two narrators trust exercise inner dialogue surrogate uncle being cool amnesty international granola music therapy velcro soup kitchen surrogate son tambourine directed by several directors maturity superficiality intergenerational friendship schoolyard breakdancing godfather mcdonald's restaurant overhead shot reference to michael jackson duet talent show teenage crush ferrari hair salon lip synching immaturity cd fatherhood department store stoned peer pressure group therapy urine teasing bachelor selfishness playing pool earphones motherhood age difference thirty something slacker vegetarian absent father hit on the head aquarium mentor shopping charity rejection child's point of view rap music haircut following someone new year's eve womanizer santa claus guitarist slow motion supermarket applause freeze frame class suicide attempt storytelling park football eating montage ambulance guitar classroom tears lie letter watching tv computer food song crying voice over narration three word title singing based on novel flashback sex  (See All)

The Squid And The Whale (2005)
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The Squid And The Whale (2005)

In 1986, In Brooklyn, New York, the dysfunctional family of pseudo intellectuals composed by the university professor Bernard and the prominent writer Joan split. Bernard is a selfish, cheap and jealous decadent writer that rationalizes every attitude in his family and life and does not accept "philistines" - people that do not read books or watch movies, while the unfaithful Joan is growing as a writer and has no problems with "philistines". Their sons, the teenager Walt and the boy Frank, feel the separation and take side: Walt stays with Bernard, and Frank with Joan, and both are affected with abnormal behaviors. Frank drinks booze and smears with sperm the books in the library and a locker in the dress room of his school. The messed-up and insecure Walt uses Roger Water's song "Hey You" in a festival as if it was of his own, and breaks up with his girlfriend Sophie. Meanwhile Joan has an affair with Frank's tennis teacher Ivan and Bernard with his student Lili. (Read More)

Themes:
break up dating unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery infidelity friendship 
Locations:
bathtub school 
Characters:
teacher boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
earphones guitarist class park eating ambulance guitar classroom tears lie letter watching tv food song crying singing sex  (See All)

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Dan In Real Life (2007)
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Dan In Real Life (2007)

Single father Dan Burns dedicates his life to his children, but one day he meets Marie at a bookstore. They get to know each other, but then Dan finds out that Marie is actually dating his brother, Mitch.

Themes:
break up dating 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
bathtub school 
Characters:
single father boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
duet talent show guitarist eating guitar tears computer food song crying singing 

The Perks Of Being A Wallflower (2012)
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The Perks Of Being A Wallflower (2012)

Based on the novel written by Stephen Chbosky, this is about 15-year-old Charlie (Logan Lerman), an endearing and naive outsider, coping with first love (Emma Watson), the suicide of his best friend, and his own mental illness while struggling to find a group of people with whom he belongs. The introvert freshman is taken under the wings of two seniors, Sam and Patrick, who welcome him to the real world. (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
break up bullying dating depression loneliness fear christmas suicide friendship 
Characters:
bully teacher boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
suicide note teenage crush lip synching stoned new year's eve class suicide attempt football eating classroom tears letter watching tv food crying voice over narration singing based on novel flashback  (See All)

August Rush (2007) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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August Rush (2007)

The story of a charismatic young Irish guitarist and a sheltered young cellist who have a chance encounter one magical night above New York's Washington Square, but are soon torn apart, leaving in their wake an infant, August Rush, orphaned by circumstance. Now performing on the streets of New York and cared for by a mysterious stranger, August uses his remarkable musical talent to seek the parents from whom he was separated at birth. (Read More)

Themes:
friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
bully baby boy singer friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
peer pressure absent father child's point of view guitarist class eating guitar tears lie food song crying voice over narration singing flashback 

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Alfie (2004)
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Alfie (2004)

In Manhattan, the British limousine driver Alfie is surrounded by beautiful women, most of them clients, and he lives as a Don Juan, having one night stands with all of them and without any sort of commitment. His girl-friend and single-mother Julie is quite upset with the situation and his best friends are his colleague Marlon and his girl-friend Lonette. Alfie has a brief affair with Lonette, and the consequences of his act forces Alfie to reflect and wonder about his life style. (Read More)

Themes:
unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery christmas infidelity friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
bathtub 
Characters:
self centeredness single mother baby boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend mother son relationship 
Story:
fear of commitment selfishness rejection womanizer freeze frame montage tears food crying voice over narration singing flashback 

Easy A (2010)
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Easy A (2010)

After a little white lie about losing her virginity gets out, a clean cut high school girl sees her life paralleling Hester Prynne's in "The Scarlet Letter," which she is currently studying in school - until she decides to use the rumor mill to advance her social and financial standing.

Themes:
dating unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery infidelity friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
teacher boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
cd peer pressure hit on the head aquarium rap music freeze frame class guitar classroom tears lie letter watching tv song crying singing  (See All)

Me And Earl And The Dying Girl (2015)
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Me And Earl And The Dying Girl (2015)

Seventeen-year-old Greg has managed to become part of every social group at his Pittsburgh high school without having any friends, but his life changes when his mother forces him to befriend Rachel, a girl he once knew in Hebrew school who has leukemia.

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
dating anger friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
single mother boy boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
overhead shot stoned rap music class storytelling eating montage ambulance classroom lie letter watching tv computer food song crying voice over narration singing based on novel flashback  (See All)

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The Woodsman (2004) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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The Woodsman (2004)

After twelve years in prison, Walter arrives in an unnamed city, moves into a small apartment across the street from an elementary school, gets a job at a lumberyard, and mostly keeps to himself. A quiet, guarded man, Walter finds unexpected solace from Vickie, a tough-talking woman who promises not to judge him for his history. But Walter cannot escape his past. A convicted sex offender, Walter is warily eyed by his brother-in-law, shunned by his sister, lives in fear of being discovered at work, and is hounded by a suspicious local police officer, Detective Lucas. After befriending a young girl in a neighborhood park, Walter must also grapple with the terrible prospect of his own reawakened demons. (Read More)

Themes:
unfaithfulness redemption loneliness extramarital affair anger fear adultery infidelity friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
schoolyard playing pool rejection following someone freeze frame park tears watching tv computer food crying sex flashback 

This Is England (2006)
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This Is England (2006)

This is England: Mods, New Romantics, and Skinheads are the major youth sub-cultures of this very English summer of 1983 and young 12-year-old Shaun is left wandering aimlessly alone and lost during the start of his school holidays, until his chance meeting with Woody and his fun and friendly Skinhead pack. Finding a new lease of life; girls, parties, Ben Sherman shirts, Doc Martin boots and shaven hairstyles young Shaun is welcomed, life during this summer holiday has got a whole lot better. That is until Combo arrives on the scene bitter, dangerous, racist, militant and psychotic life for young Shaun has just approached his first major crossroads. This is England is a look back at the early eighties of British working-class life through the eyes of young Shaun and his new gang, and dealing with the bitterness of outside influences such as racism and xenophobia, of mass unemployment and the fall out of the Falkland's War; Thatcher's Britain: Did we ever have it so good? When you see Shaun, ask Him. (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
unemployment bullying fear friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
bully teacher boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship mother son relationship 
Story:
stoned peer pressure teasing rejection haircut slow motion class storytelling montage tears watching tv song crying singing 

Step Brothers (2008)
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Step Brothers (2008)

Brennan Huff and Dale Doback are both about 40 when Brennan's mom and Dale's dad marry. The sons still live with the parents so they must now share a room. Initial antipathy threatens the household's peace and the parents' relationship. Dad lays down the law: both slackers have a week to find a job. Out of the job search and their love of music comes a pact that leads to friendship but more domestic disarray compounded by the boys' sleepwalking. Hovering nearby are Brennan's successful brother and his lonely wife: the brother wants to help sell his step-father's house, the wife wants Dale's attention, and the newlyweds want to retire and sail the seven seas. Can harmony come from the discord? (Read More)

Themes:
unemployment unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery christmas infidelity friendship 
Characters:
bully singer friend father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
lip synching immaturity earphones thirty something slacker rap music guitarist storytelling eating guitar watching tv food song crying singing flashback  (See All)

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Crazy, Stupid, Love. (2011)
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Crazy, Stupid, Love. (2011)

Cal (Steve Carell) and Emily (Julianne Moore) have the perfect life together living the American dream... until Emily asks for a divorce. Now Cal, Mr Husband, has to navigate the single scene with a little help from his professional bachelor friend Jacob Palmer (Ryan Gosling). Make that a lot of help... (Read More)

Themes:
unfaithfulness depression extramarital affair anger adultery infidelity friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Characters:
teacher boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
teenage crush bachelor womanizer applause class montage classroom lie watching tv computer crying 

Paris, Je T'aime (2006) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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Paris, Je T'aime (2006)

Paris, je t'aime is about the plurality of cinema in one mythic location: Paris, the City of Love. Twenty filmmakers have five minutes each; the audience must weave a single narrative out of twenty moments. The 20 moments are fused by transitional interstitial sequences and also via the introduction and epilogue. Each transition begins with the last shot of the previous film and ends with the first shot of the following film, extending the enchantment and the emotion of the previous segment, preparing the audience for a surprise, and providing a cohesive atmosphere. There's a reappearing mysterious character who is a witness to the Parisian life. A common theme of Paris and love fuses all. (Read More)

Themes:
break up dating unfaithfulness depression loneliness extramarital affair fear adultery infidelity 
Locations:
urban setting 
Characters:
baby singer mother son relationship father son relationship 
Story:
directed by several directors hair salon earphones guitarist storytelling park montage ambulance guitar tears watching tv crying voice over narration singing flashback sex  (See All)

The Wave (2008)
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The Wave (2008)

High school teacher, Rainer Wegner, may be popular with the students, but he's also unorthodox. He's forced to teach autocracy for the school's project week. He's less than enthusiastic at first, but the response of the students is surprising to say the least. He forces the students to become more invested in the prospect of self rule, and soon the class project has its own power and eerily starts to resemble Germany's past. Can Wegner and his class realize what's happening before the horrors start repeating themselves? (Read More)

Themes:
unemployment bullying suicide friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
bully teacher boy boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
peer pressure applause class eating montage ambulance classroom tears lie watching tv computer food crying based on novel sex 

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Like Stars On Earth (2007)
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Like Stars On Earth (2007)

Ishaan Awasthi is an eight-year-old child whose world is filled with wonders that no one else seems to appreciate; colours, fish, dogs and kites are just not important in the world of adults, who are much more interested in things like homework, marks and neatness. And Ishaan just cannot seem to get anything right in class. When he gets into far more trouble than his parents can handle, he is packed off to a boarding school to 'be disciplined'. Things are no different at his new school, and Ishaan has to contend with the added trauma of separation from his family. One day a new art teacher bursts onto the scene, Ram Shankar Nikumbh, who infects the students with joy and optimism. He breaks all the rules of 'how things are done' by asking them to think, dream and imagine, and all the children respond with enthusiasm, all except Ishaan. Nikumbh soon realizes that Ishaan is very unhappy, and he sets out to discover why. With time, patience and care, he ultimately helps Ishaan find himself. (Read More)

Themes:
bullying depression loneliness anger fear friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
bully baby teacher singer friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
overhead shot teasing earphones hit on the head aquarium child's point of view following someone applause freeze frame class eating montage classroom tears lie food song crying singing  (See All)

The Sweet Hereafter (1997)
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The Sweet Hereafter (1997)

A small community is torn apart by a tragic accident which kills most of the town's children. A lawyer visits the victims' parents in order to profit from the tragedy by stirring up the their anger and launching a class action suit against anyone they can blame. The community is paralyzed by its anger and cannot let go. All but one young girl, left in a wheelchair after the accident, who finds the courage to lead the way toward healing. (Read More)

Themes:
unfaithfulness redemption extramarital affair anger adultery infidelity friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
single father singer friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
earphones charity guitarist class guitar lie computer food song three word title singing based on novel flashback sex 

Boy A (2007) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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Boy A (2007)

A young man is released from prison after many years and given a new identity in a new town. Aided by a supervisor who becomes like a father to him he finds a job and friends and hesitantly starts a relationship with a compassionate girl. But the secret of the heinous crime he committed as a boy weighs down on him, and he learns that it is not so easy to escape your past. (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
bullying dating redemption depression fear suicide friendship 
Locations:
bathtub school 
Characters:
bully teacher boy boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship mother son relationship 
Story:
surrogate son mcdonald's restaurant applause class ambulance classroom tears lie letter watching tv crying based on novel flashback 

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Muriel's Wedding (1994)
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Muriel's Wedding (1994)

Muriel finds life in Porpoise Spit, Australia dull and spends her days alone in her room listening to Abba music and dreaming of her wedding day. Slight problem, Muriel has never had a date. Then she steals some money to go on a tropical vacation, meets a wacky friend, changes her name to Mariel, and turns her world upside down. (Read More)

Themes:
unemployment bullying unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery infidelity suicide friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Characters:
boy friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
talent show lip synching peer pressure slacker rejection football ambulance tears lie watching tv crying singing sex 

Hesher (2010)
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Hesher (2010)

T.J., a high school freshman, lost his mother two months before in a car accident: his father pops pills and sits on the couch; his grandmother holds things together, chatting and cooking. T.J. wants the car back from the salvage yard where the owner's son is a bully. By happenstance, Hesher, a foul-mouthed squatter, moves in with T.J's family. T.J. also meets Nicole, a grocery clerk near poverty who helps him once. Hesher involves T.J. in crime, the bully is omnipresent, mom's car is slipping away, dad has checked out, T.J. watches Nicole at work, and his grandma invites him to join her morning walk: the odds are long that T.J. can assemble a family to help him thrive. (Read More)

Themes:
bullying depression friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
bathtub school 
Characters:
bully teacher singer friend mother son relationship father son relationship 
Story:
teenage crush group therapy following someone guitarist class storytelling eating guitar classroom tears lie watching tv food song crying singing flashback  (See All)

Good Bye Lenin! (2003)
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Good Bye Lenin! (2003)

East Germany, the year 1989: A young man protests against the regime. His mother watches the police arresting him and suffers a heart attack and falls into a coma. Some months later, the GDR does not exist anymore and the mother awakes. Since she has to avoid every excitement, the son tries to set up the GDR again for her in their flat. But the world has changed a lot. (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
unemployment dating 
Locations:
bathtub 
Characters:
single mother baby teacher boy singer mother son relationship father son relationship 
Story:
absent father supermarket eating montage ambulance tears lie letter watching tv food song crying voice over narration singing flashback 

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In A Better World (2010) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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In A Better World (2010)

Anton is a doctor who commutes between his home in an idyllic town in Denmark, and his work at an African refugee camp. In these two very different worlds, he and his family are faced with conflicts that lead them to difficult choices between revenge and forgiveness. Anton and his wife Marianne, who have two young sons, are separated and struggling with the possibility of divorce. Their older, ten-year-old son Elias is being bullied at school, until he is defended by Christian, a new boy who has just moved from London with his father, Claus. Christian's mother recently lost her battle with cancer, and Christian is greatly troubled by her death. Elias and Christian quickly form a strong bond, but when Christian involves Elias in a dangerous act of revenge with potentially tragic consequences, their friendship is tested and lives are put in danger. Ultimately, it is their parents who are left to help them come to terms with the complexity of human emotions, pain and empathy. (Read More)

Themes:
bullying unfaithfulness loneliness extramarital affair anger fear adultery infidelity friendship 
Locations:
london england school 
Characters:
single father bully baby teacher boy friend father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
peer pressure absent father class ambulance classroom tears lie computer crying sex 

Chocolat (2000)
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Chocolat (2000)

When a single mother and her six-year-old daughter move to rural France and open a chocolate shop - with Sunday hours - across the street from the local church, they are met with some skepticism. But as soon as they coax the townspeople into enjoying their delicious products, they are warmly welcomed. (Read More)

Themes:
friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
single mother boy friend mother son relationship 
Story:
hair salon absent father slow motion class storytelling eating montage guitar classroom tears lie letter food crying voice over narration based on novel sex flashback  (See All)

Billy Elliot (2000)
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Billy Elliot (2000)

County Durham, during the endless, violent 1984 strike against the Thatcher closure of British coal mines. Widower Jackie Elliot and his firstborn, fellow miner Tony, take a dim view of 11 year-old second son Billy's poor record in boxing class, which worsens when they discover he sneakily transferred to the neighboring, otherwise girls-only-attended ballet class. Only one schoolmate, closet-gay Michael Caffrey, encourages Billy's desire, aroused by the teacher, who judged him talented enough for private lesson, to train and try out for the world-renowned Royal Ballet audition. Only the prospect of a fancy career unimagined in the pauper quarter may twist pa and big brother's opposition to indispensable support. (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
unfaithfulness extramarital affair fear adultery christmas infidelity friendship 
Locations:
london england bathtub school 
Characters:
bully teacher friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
earphones child's point of view slow motion class montage classroom tears lie letter crying sex 

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Nowhere Boy (2009)
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Nowhere Boy (2009)

The story of John Lennon's childhood and teenage years from 1944 to 1960, his relationship with his aunt Mimi and his mother Julia -the two dominant women in the first part of his life-, his first meeting with Paul McCartney and George Harrison, their friendship, their love for music and the birth of The Beatles. (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
depression anger friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
baby teacher boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship mother son relationship 
Story:
absent father guitarist eating montage ambulance guitar tears lie letter food song crying singing sex flashback 

White Oleander (2002) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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White Oleander (2002)

Astrid Magnussen is a 15 year old girl, living in California. Her mother, Ingrid, is a beautiful, free-spirited poet. Their life, though unusual, is satisfying until one day, a man named Barry Kolker (that her mother refers to at first as "The goat man") comes into their lives, and Ingrid falls madly in love with him, only to have her heart broken, and her life ruined. For revenge, Ingrid murders Barry with the deadly poison of her favourite flower: The White Oleander. She is sent to prison for life, and Astrid has to go through foster home after foster home. Throughout nearly a decade she experiences forbidden love, religion, near-death experiences, drugs, starvation, and how it feels to be loved. But throughout these years, she keeps in touch with her mother via letters to prison. And while Ingrid's gift is to give Astrid the power to survive, Astrid's gift is to teach her Mother about love. (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
unfaithfulness redemption loneliness extramarital affair anger adultery christmas infidelity suicide friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
single mother teacher boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
absent father haircut class ambulance classroom tears letter watching tv computer crying voice over narration based on novel sex flashback 

Mona Lisa Smile (2003)
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Mona Lisa Smile (2003)

Katherine Ann Watson has accepted a position teaching art history at the prestigious Wellesley College. Watson is a very modern woman, particularly for the 1950s, and has a passion not only for art but for her students. For the most part, the students all seem to be biding their time, waiting to find the right man to marry. The students are all very bright and Watson feels they are not reaching their potential. Altough a strong bond is formed between teacher and student, Watson's views are incompatible with the dominant culture of the college. (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
dating unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery christmas infidelity friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
baby teacher singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend 
Story:
peer pressure thirty something class storytelling classroom tears lie letter watching tv food song crying voice over narration singing 

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School Of Rock (2003)
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School Of Rock (2003)

Down and out rock star Dewey Finn gets fired from his band, and he faces a mountain of debts and depression. He takes a job as a 4th grade substitute teacher at an uptight private school where his attitude and hijinx have a powerful effect on his students. He also meets Zack, a 10-year-old guitar prodigy, who could help Dewey win a "battle of the bands" competition, which would solve his financial problems and put him back in the spotlight. (Read More)

Themes:
depression anger friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
teacher boy singer friend family relationships 
Story:
slacker guitarist class montage guitar classroom lie computer food song singing 

Juno (2007)
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Juno (2007)

A tale told over four seasons, starting in autumn when Juno, a 16-year-old high-school junior in Minnesota, discovers she's pregnant after one event in a chair with her best friend, Bleeker. In the waiting room of an abortion clinic, the quirky and whip-sharp Juno decides to give birth and to place the child with an adoptive couple. She finds one in the PennySaver personals, contacts them, tells her dad and step-mother, and carries on with school. The chosen parents, upscale yuppies (one of whom is cool and laid back, the other meticulous and uptight), meet Juno, sign papers, and the year unfolds. Will Juno's plan work, can she improvise, and what about Bleeker? (Read More)

Themes:
bullying friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
single mother bully baby teacher singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend mother son relationship 
Story:
duet cd guitarist class montage guitar classroom tears computer song crying voice over narration singing sex flashback 

Heavenly Creatures (1994) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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Heavenly Creatures (1994)

Based on the true story of Juliet Hulme and Pauline Parker, two close friends who share a love of fantasy and literature, who conspire to kill Pauline's mother when she tries to end the girls' intense and obsessive relationship.

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
unfaithfulness redemption extramarital affair adultery christmas infidelity friendship 
Locations:
bathtub 
Characters:
teacher singer friend family relationships 
Story:
teenage crush hit on the head slow motion class montage ambulance classroom letter song crying voice over narration singing flashback 

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No Reservations (2007)
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No Reservations (2007)

A master chef, Kate, lives her life like she runs the kitchen at upscale 22 Bleecker Restaurant in Manhattan--with a no-nonsense intensity that both captivates and intimidates everyone around her. With breathtaking precision, she powers through each hectic shift, coordinating hundreds of meals, preparing delicate sauces, seasoning and simmering each dish to absolute perfection. (Read More)

Themes:
depression 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
single mother boy singer family relationships 
Story:
absent father shopping park eating montage tears letter watching tv food song crying voice over narration singing sex 

Closer (2004)
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Closer (2004)

Smart-but-ineffectual journalist Dan "We use euphemisms!" cannot decide between his girlfriend, loving-but-clingy waitress Alice, or his lover cold-but-intellectual photographer Anna; herself indecisive between Dan and honest-but-thuggish "You're bloody gorgeous!" doctor Larry. The film puts the four leading characters in a box and strips them apart. (Read More)

Themes:
break up dating unfaithfulness depression extramarital affair anger adultery infidelity 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
london england 
Characters:
boyfriend girlfriend relationship 
Story:
selfishness aquarium following someone slow motion park tears lie computer crying flashback 

Charlie Bartlett (2007)
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Charlie Bartlett (2007)

Although cheerful, friendly, intelligent, well-dressed, authentic and wealthy, Charlie Bartlett has problems. With his father gone and his mother loopy and clueless, he's been expelled from every private school for his victimless crimes. Now he's in a public school getting punched out daily by the school thug. He ever longs to be popular - the go-to guy - and the true crux of his troubles is that he invariably finds the means to this end, whatever that might be. At Western Summit High, he makes peace with his tormentor by going into business with him - listening to kids' problems and selling them prescription drugs. Charlie's a hit, but attraction to Susan (daughter of the school's laissez-faire principal), new security cameras on campus, a student's overdose, and Charlie's open world view all converge to get him in serious trouble. Can this self-made physician possibly heal himself and just be a kid? (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
bullying dating unfaithfulness depression extramarital affair adultery infidelity friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
single mother bully teacher singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship mother son relationship 
Story:
peer pressure class suicide attempt montage guitar classroom tears computer song crying singing sex 

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Crazy Heart (2009) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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Crazy Heart (2009)

Bad Blake is a broken-down, hard-living country music singer who's had way too many marriages, far too many years on the road and one too many drinks way too many times. And yet, Bad can't help but reach for salvation with the help of Jean, a journalist who discovers the real man behind the musician. (Read More)

Themes:
redemption loneliness 
Characters:
singer mother son relationship 
Story:
duet cd group therapy absent father aquarium guitarist applause eating guitar tears watching tv food song crying singing based on novel sex  (See All)

Dreamgirls (2006)
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Dreamgirls (2006)

Detroit, the early 1960s. Curtis Taylor, Jr., a car salesman, breaks into the music business with big dreams. He signs a trio of young women, the Dreamettes, gets them a job backing an R&B performer, James "Thunder" Early, establishes his own record label and starts wheeling and dealing. When Early flames out, Curtis makes the Dreamettes into headliners as the Dreams, but not before demoting their hefty big-voiced lead singer, Effie White, and putting the softer-voiced looker, Deena Jones, in front. Soon after, he fires Effie, sends her into a life of proud poverty, and takes Deena and the Dreams to the top. How long can Curtis stay there, and will Effie ever get her due? (Read More)

Themes:
unemployment unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery christmas infidelity suicide friendship 
Characters:
single mother singer friend family relationships 
Story:
tambourine absent father rejection new year's eve guitarist applause montage guitar tears watching tv song crying singing sex 

Elf (2003)
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Elf (2003)

Buddy was a baby in an orphanage who stowed away in Santa's sack and ended up at the North Pole. Later, as an adult human who happened to be raised by elves, Santa allows him to go to New York City to find his birth father, Walter Hobbs. Hobbs, on Santa's naughty list for being a heartless jerk, had no idea that Buddy was even born. Buddy, meanwhile, experiences the delights of New York City (and human culture) as only an elf can. When Walter's relationship with Buddy interferes with his job, he is forced to reevaluate his priorities. (Read More)

Themes:
christmas 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
baby boy singer mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
breakdancing department store selfishness santa claus class storytelling park eating montage classroom lie watching tv food song voice over narration singing  (See All)

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Another Year (2010)
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Another Year (2010)

A married couple who have managed to remain blissfully happy into their autumn years, are surrounded over the course of the four seasons of one average year by friends, colleagues, and family who all seem to suffer some degree of unhappiness.

Themes:
unfaithfulness depression loneliness extramarital affair anger adultery christmas infidelity friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
london england 
Characters:
baby boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
earphones vegetarian football eating tears watching tv computer food crying 

Gifted (2017) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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Gifted (2017)

Frank Adler (Chris Evans) is a single man raising a child prodigy - his spirited young niece Mary (Mckenna Grace) in a coastal town in Florida. Frank's plans for a normal school life for Mary are foiled when the seven-year-old's mathematical abilities come to the attention of Frank's formidable mother Evelyn (Lindsay Duncan) whose plans for her granddaughter threaten to separate Frank and Mary. Octavia Spencer plays Roberta, Frank and Mary's landlady and best friend. Jenny Slate is Mary's teacher, Bonnie, a young woman whose concern for her student develops into a connection with her uncle as well. (Read More)

Themes:
bullying unfaithfulness extramarital affair anger fear adultery infidelity suicide friendship 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
bully teacher boy singer friend mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
applause class montage classroom letter watching tv computer song singing sex 

Definitely, Maybe (2008)
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Definitely, Maybe (2008)

Romantic comedy: Will Hayes, a 30-something Manhattan dad is in the midst of a divorce when his 10 year old daughter, Maya, starts to question him about his life before marriage. Maya wants to know absolutely everything about how her parents met and fell in love. Will's story begins in 1992, as a young, starry-eyed aspiring politician who moves to New York from Wisconsin in order to work on the Clinton campaign. For Maya, Will relives his past as a idealistic young man learning the ins and outs of big city politics, and recounts the history of his romantic relationships with three very different women. On the campaign, Will's best buddy is Russell McCormack. They not only have similar political aspirations, they share the same type of girl problems, too. Will hopelessly attempts a "PG" version of his story for his daughter ad changes the names so Maya has to guess who he finally married. Is her mother Will's college sweetheart, the dependable girl next-door Emily? Is she his longtime best friend and confidante, the apolitical April? Or is she the free-spirited but ambitious journalist? As Maya puts together the pieces of her dad's romantic puzzle, she begins to understand that love is not so simple or easy. And as Will tells her his tale, Maya helps him to understand that it's definitely never too late to go back...and maybe even possible to find a happy ending. (Read More)

Themes:
dating unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery christmas infidelity friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
single father boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend 
Story:
cd playing pool earphones new year's eve applause storytelling tears letter watching tv song crying voice over narration singing flashback sex 

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Choke (2008)
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Choke (2008)

Sex addict and colonial theme park worker, Victor Mancini, has devised a complicated scam to pay for his mom's hospital bills while she suffers from an Alzheimer's disease that hides the truth about his childhood. He pretends to choke on food in a restaurant and the person who "saves" him will feel responsible for Victor for the rest of their lives. (Read More)

Themes:
redemption depression loneliness friendship 
Characters:
boy friend mother son relationship father son relationship 
Story:
department store group therapy absent father hit on the head womanizer freeze frame storytelling park eating tears lie watching tv computer food crying sex flashback  (See All)

The Good Girl (2002)
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The Good Girl (2002)

The plot revolves around a young married woman whose mundane life takes a turn for the worse when she strikes up a passionate and illicit affair with an oddball discount-store stock boy who thinks he's Holden Caulfield.

Themes:
unfaithfulness depression extramarital affair adultery infidelity suicide friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
bathtub 
Characters:
baby boy boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
stoned thirty something tears lie watching tv crying voice over narration three word title flashback 

21 Grams (2003) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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21 Grams (2003)

This is the story of three well-meaning but flawed people: Paul Rivers, an ailing mathematician lovelessly married to an English emigre; Christina Peck, an upper-middle-class suburban housewife, happily married homemaker with two young daughters, with hiding a secret past; and Jack Jordan, an ex-convict who has found in his Christian faith the strength to live a law-abiding life and raise a family. They will be brought together by a terrible accident that will change their lives. By the final frame, none of them will be the same as they will have learnt harsh truths about love, faith, courage, desire and guilt, and how chance can change our worlds irretrievably, forever. (Read More)

Themes:
unfaithfulness redemption loneliness extramarital affair anger adultery infidelity suicide 
Mood:
rain 
Characters:
teacher boy father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
stoned playing pool thirty something slow motion class suicide attempt ambulance tears watching tv computer food crying voice over narration singing flashback 

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Happy-go-lucky (2008)
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Happy-go-lucky (2008)

Poppy Cross is happy-go-lucky. At 30, she lives in Camden: cheeky, playful, frank while funny, and talkative to strangers. She's a conscientious and exuberant primary-school teacher, flatmates with Zoe, her long-time friend; she's close to one sister, and not so close to another. In this slice of life story, we watch her take driving lessons from Scott, a dour and tightly-wound instructor, take classes in flamenco dance from a fiery Spaniard, encounter a tramp in the night, and sort out a student's aggressive behavior with a social worker's help. Along the way, we wonder if her open attitude puts her at risk of misunderstanding or worse. What is the root of happiness? (Read More)

Themes:
bullying friendship 
Locations:
urban setting london england school 
Characters:
bully teacher boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
thirty something class park eating classroom lie food song singing 

Head-on (2004)
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Head-on (2004)

In 'Gegen die Wand' Cahit, a 40-something male from Mersin in Turkey has removed everything Turkish from his life. He has become an alcoholic drug addict and at the start of the movie wants to end it all. Sibel a 20-something female from Hamburg wishes to please her Turkish parents yet yearns for freedom. She has had her nose broken by her brother for being seen holding hands with a boy and yet she can not break her mother's heart and run away. She too attempts suicide and she first approaches Cahit there at the Hospital. Sibel asks Cahit to marry her, as she believes this to be the way out of her parent's house. She promises Cahit that their relationship will be like roommates, not like a married couple. The film follows Sibel and Cahit as they get married, become closer and eventually fall in love. (Read More)

Themes:
unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery infidelity suicide friendship 
Characters:
boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend family relationships 
Story:
reference to michael jackson cd stoned earphones age difference haircut freeze frame suicide attempt montage tears lie letter watching tv food song crying voice over narration singing sex  (See All)

Adore (2013)
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Adore (2013)

Lil ('Naomi Watts' (qv)) and Roz ('Robin Wright (V)' (qv)) are two lifelong friends, having grown up together as neighbors in an idyllic beach town. As adults, their sons have developed a friendship as strong as that which binds their mothers. One summer, all four are confronted by simmering emotions that have been mounting between them, and each find unexpected happiness in relationships that cross the bounds of convention. (Read More)

Themes:
unfaithfulness loneliness extramarital affair fear adultery infidelity friendship 
Characters:
baby boy singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
surrogate son overhead shot eating tears lie computer food song crying singing sex flashback 

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Short Term 12 (2013) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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Short Term 12 (2013)

At a foster-care facility for at-risk teenagers, Grace is a young counselor trying to do her best for kids who often have been pulled from the worst kinds of home situations. Even then, life is not easy as Grace and her colleagues care for kids who are too often profoundly scarred, even as they try to have lives of their own. Now, things are coming to a head as Grace readies for marriage even as some her charges are coming to major turning points in their lives. To cope, Grace will have to make difficult perceptions and decisions that could put her career, and more importantly her charges, at dire risk. (Read More)

Themes:
break up depression anger friendship 
Locations:
bathtub 
Characters:
baby singer boyfriend girlfriend relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
group therapy earphones aquarium rap music haircut suicide attempt storytelling eating computer food crying three word title singing sex 

Up In The Air (2009)
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Up In The Air (2009)

Ryan Bingham is a corporate downsizing expert whose cherished life on the road is threatened just as he is on the cusp of reaching ten million frequent flyer miles and just after he's met the frequent-traveler woman of his dreams.

Themes:
unemployment unfaithfulness loneliness extramarital affair adultery infidelity suicide 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
boyfriend girlfriend relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
earphones thirty something applause eating montage tears computer food crying voice over narration based on novel 

Spanglish (2004)
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Spanglish (2004)

John Clasky is a devoted dad whose skills as a chef have offered his family a very upscale life, including a summer home in Malibu and a breathtaking new Mexican housekeeper, named Flor. She and her daughter Cristina have recently emigrated to L.A. from Mexico and are trying to find a better life. When they move in with the Claskys for the summer, Flor has to fight for her daughter's soul as she discovers that life in a new country is perilous! (Read More)

Themes:
unfaithfulness extramarital affair adultery infidelity 
Characters:
boy singer father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
shopping storytelling eating tears letter watching tv food song crying voice over narration singing sex 

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Persepolis (2007)
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Persepolis (2007)

In 1970s Iran, Marjane 'Marji' Statrapi watches events through her young eyes and her idealistic family of a long dream being fulfilled of the hated Shah's defeat in the Iranian Revolution of 1979. However as Marji grows up, she witnesses first hand how the new Iran, now ruled by Islamic fundamentalists, has become a repressive tyranny on its own. With Marji dangerously refusing to remain silent at this injustice, her parents send her abroad to Vienna to study for a better life. However, this change proves an equally difficult trial with the young woman finding herself in a different culture loaded with abrasive characters and profound disappointments that deeply trouble her. Even when she returns home, Marji finds that both she and homeland have changed too much and the young woman and her loving family must decide where she truly belongs. (Read More)

Subgenre:
coming of age 
Themes:
unfaithfulness depression anger fear christmas infidelity friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
bathtub school 
Characters:
teacher boy boyfriend girlfriend relationship friend father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
reference to michael jackson selfishness earphones supermarket class suicide attempt storytelling eating classroom tears lie watching tv food crying voice over narration flashback  (See All)

Diary Of A Wimpy Kid (2010) is one of the best movies like About A Boy (2002)
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Diary Of A Wimpy Kid (2010)

To Greg Heffley, middle school is the dumbest idea ever invented. It's a place rigged with hundreds of social landmines, not the least of which are morons, wedgies, swirlies, bullies, lunchtime banishment to the cafeteria floor - and a festering piece of cheese with nuclear cooties. To survive the never-ending ordeal and attain the recognition and status he feels he so richly deserves, Greg devises an endless series of can't-miss schemes, all of which, of course, go awry. And he's getting it all down on paper, via a diary - "it's NOT a diary, it's a journal!" Greg insists, preferring the less-sissyfied designation - filled with his opinions, thoughts, tales of family trials and tribulations, and (would-be) schoolyard triumphs. "One day when I'm famous," writes Greg, "I'll have better things to do than answer people's stupid questions all day." So was born the Wimpy Kid's diary. (Read More)

Themes:
bullying fear christmas friendship 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
bully teacher boy singer friend father son relationship mother son relationship family relationships 
Story:
boy girl relationship schoolyard breakdancing peer pressure child's point of view class classroom watching tv computer song voice over narration singing based on novel flashback 

Keeping Mum (2005)
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Keeping Mum (2005)

Walter Goodfellow, the vicar for the small English country parish of Little Wallop, has allowed his marriage to Gloria go stale, and he is so detached from his family that he has not taken notice that his 17-year-old daughter Holly is going through a succession of relationships with unsuitable boyfriends, and his son Petey fears going to school owing to being bullied. Out of desperation for affection, Gloria begins to fall for the advances of Lance, an American golf pro who is giving her "private" lessons. The problems upsetting the family start to fade away after Grace Hawkins, the new housekeeper, arrives and starts tending to matters as an older, and rather darkly mysterious version of Mary Poppins. (Read More)

Themes:
unfaithfulness extramarital affair anger adultery infidelity 
Mood:
rain 
Locations:
school 
Characters:
bully boy boyfriend girlfriend relationship mother son relationship father son relationship family relationships 
Story:
teasing womanizer applause football eating tears letter watching tv computer food crying sex 

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