Yours 20s may be the most turbulent years of your life; Charles Dickens' opening line from A Tale of Two Cities applies perfectly: "It was the best of times. It was the worst of times." As you finish college and enter the so-called "real world," you may feel a bit lost. Remember the line from the Friends theme song: "Your job's a joke. You're broke. Your love life's DOA"? Luckily, we've found that for every curve ball your 20s throw you, there's a movie for it. Check our subjectively definitive list of movies you need to watch during your 3rd decade on earth; we even tell you when you should be watching them!
Dead Poets Society
What it's about: A quirky, yet profound English teacher (Robin Williams) teaches students the beauty of poetry, and in doing so, inspires them to discover their own talents and voices. There are plenty of things you can be in this world. In your 20s, many people will try to persuade you to be one of those many things. But remember, the best thing you can be is yourself.
When to watch it: You feel like you're no longer chasing your dreams in life. You're losing your voice. Watch this movie and reconnect with what makes you special, what lights your fire.
The Devil Wears Prada
What it's about: A young, struggling writer (Anne Hathaway) gets a job interning at a major fashion magazine run by an icy fashionista (Meryl Streep). Hilarity and drama ensue as the young woman both loses and finds herself again in a job that is seemingly going nowhere.
When to watch it: When you hate your entry level position at work and think, "What am I doing with my life?!"
Into the Wild
What it's about: A young college graduate (Emile Hirsch) sells all his earthly possessions in order to take a self-reflective journey through Alaska.
When to watch it: The world no longer seems to make sense; there's no direct path forward after college. When you're looking for answers or feeling existentialist, this movie is perfect.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
What it's about: A socially awkward wallflower (Logan Lerman) makes friends with a pair of quirky step-siblings (Emma Watson and Ezra Miller). Adventures follow and a story of love, friendship, and what it means to accept yourself, and your friends, unfolds.
When to watch it: You feel alone, and friendless, like nobody quite understands you anymore. This film will reminds you that there are people who do and love you for who you are. You just either have to reconnect with or find them.
What it's about: Four friends (Winona Ryder, Ethan Hawke, Ben Stiller, and Janeane Garofalo) flounder about in the years right after college. Their jobs suck. Their sex lives are a mess. They just don't seem to get it; they feel stuck.
When to watch it: Basically, any moment post-college when you feel like sh*t about being in your 20s.
Toy Story 3
What it's about: Andy is heading to college, and your favorite gang of toys, led by Woody and Buzz, go on a final, crazy adventure. (Well, considering there will be a 4th film, maybe not a final adventure).
When to watch it: If you ever feel nostalgic about childhood or the past, take out this flick and grab some popcorn. Toy Story 3 reminds us that it's ok to have difficulty moving on, to cherish your youthful memories.
In A World
What it's about: The daughter (Lake Bell) of an A-List voiceover artist (Fred Melamed) dreams of becoming a voiceover artist in her own right. She must fight a rather sexist industry to achieve her professional dreams.
When to watch it: If you feel like the patriarchy is getting you down, pull out this film that lead Lake Bell also wrote and directed! Talk about girl power!