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Top Ten Movies for Post-SAT Emotional Rehabilitation

By: Aidan Policelli

10. Superbad
Director: Greg Mottalta

Analysis: This movie walks the impossible path of being both a fun-loving teen comedy and a heartfelt motif for transitioning beyond high school. As a recent victim of the SAT, your future is going to devour your thoughts and dictate many of your actions. Amidst this chaos, you can find Seth and Evan discovering themselves as adults and individuals, encouraging you to do the same. Enhancing this is the movie’s lighthearted tone, which penetrates your defenses, making you vulnerable to its powerful message.
9. Pitch Perfect
Director: Jason Moore
Analysis: A movie with "perfect" in its name is destined for the stars. The constant uplifting tone of the film allows you to feel emotionally satisfied despite the nuances of the story. There is no hiding the simplistic format of this movie, and in many ways, that is its appeal. To fully appreciate this piece, you must turn off your brain and let it fill your thoughts. The SAT requires constant brain activity, and Pitch Perfect requires none. This perfect balance gives it a unique ability to soothe your aching brain and recharge your soul.


8. 10 Things I Hate About You
Director: Gil Junger
Analysis: "I hate the way you talk to me and the way you cut your hair.
I hate the way you drive my car. I hate it when you stare.
I hate your dumb, big combat boots and the way you read my mind.
I hate you so much it makes me sick; it even makes me rhyme.
I hate it. I hate the way you're always right. I hate it when you lie.
I hate it when you make me laugh, and it's even worse when you make me cry.
I hate it when you're not around, and I hate the fact that you didn't call.
But mostly, I hate the way I don't hate you. Not even close, not even a little bit, not even at all."

7. The Parent Trap
Director: Nancy Meyers
Analysis: To revert to one’s time of innocence is to find one’s inner peace. Lindsay Lohan is so delightfully charming in this movie that her performance seared itself into every child who grew up with it. The SAT is big, it is daunting, and it is a taste of the real world. This is stressful and pushes all those thrust upon it out of their comfort zone. The SAT is necessary, but that doesn’t mean its impact should last forever. Stop the SAT with the power of two parents in harmony, and stop your worries with the two little girls who have the power to unite them.


6. The sure thing
Director: Rob Reiner
Analysis: Rob Reiner is an artist with dialogue. This movie has a unique reason for being placed on this list. Its impact will not relieve the mental energy required for the SAT; rather, it will indulge it. The witty responses and the playful banter don’t allow you to turn off your brain, which in turn gives you an effortless method of easing out of the SAT. The mixture of this dialogue and the charisma of John Cusack gives you mental stimulation without pushing you as the SAT does. After watching, you will want to travel across America, but instead of chasing the sure thing, you will be running from standardized evaluations of intelligence.


5. Miracle 
Director: Gavin O’Connor
Analysis: The only thing more powerful than a good story is a good story that is real. The Miracle on Ice is possibly one of the most iconic sports events of all time, and this movie perfectly encapsulates it. Seeing the underdogs push themselves for both themselves and each other inspires all those watching to be the best they can be. To fully experience the effect, watch this movie with friends. Surviving the SAT is a miracle, and much like the boys on the ice, you must come together to make such a miracle possible.




4. Ratatouille
Directors: Brad Bird and Jan Pinkava (co-directors)
Analysis: Remy did not need tests. Remy did not need college. Remy did not need a transcript. He found success with nothing but passion in his heart. If all things go south and nothing works out in the end, Remy shows us that success can still be found. Imagine Anton Ego as the SAT; it is judgmental, arbitrary, and unnecessarily intimidating. But if you practice like Remy, find help like Remy, and, most importantly, believe like Remy, you will serve your critic perfectly.


3. The Princess Bride
Director: Rob Reiner
Analysis: Ep. 2, Reiner Strikes Back Everything the Sure Thing does well is aptly incorporated in The Princess Bride, but with some key additions: "fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, giants, monsters, chases, escapes, true love, miracles". Most people have seen this movie. Most people think they have felt its full impact. Most think incorrectly. The concept of good and evil is simplistic in this movie, as is the idea of using what you have learned to outsmart your enemy. Post-SAT overthinking is a well-documented condition, so seeing a fictional world thrive based on overthinking will help you see the bright side. You are implored to stand upon your seat when the credits roll (with tears in your eyes) and pronounce to the hilltops, "Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya, you killed my free time and social life, prepare to become optional for most colleges."


2. Love Actually 
Director: Richard Curtis
Analysis: This movie’s ability to culminate so many unrelated stories and still show how they all have love is exemplary. It pulls in so many kinds of betrayal, regret, risk, and tension that can only be seen by something like the SAT. The message of the movie is that "love is all around," and this is true. Love is in that test room. The test stays in the room, but the love leaves with you. Find others to love at this time, and possibly more importantly, find the love in yourself. Watch this with all of the negative feelings you have and relate to all of the characters that feel the same way. Change and find acceptance and optimism along with the characters. They all have love at the end of the movie, so you will have love at the end of the movie.


1. When Harry Met Sally
Director: Rob Reiner
Analysis: Ep 3, Return of the Rob. The single greatest romantic comedy of all time. This movie has no deep intellectual or emotional contribution to your mental state post-SAT. All it will do, and all it is designed to do, is make the audience feel unequivocally overflowing with optimism. Throughout the movie, there are cuts to couples telling their stories of falling in love. They are all different, yet they all ended up happy. You can get a 1560 or a 560, and you will never be any less deserving of a happy ending. If you let the emotions and the complexities of Harry and Sally consume you, the way you see the world will change. You will not be seen based on scores or standings. You will be judged based on how you treat those around you. Harry loves Sally from the very beginning of the movie until the end. Such a pure concept is riddled with denial and conflict in this movie because that is how the real world is. The real world is not how much money you make or what college you go to. The real world is complex, but as long as you have those people to love throughout it all, it is only a matter of time before you profess that love on one fateful Christmas Eve.

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