Movies like Up the Down Staircase

If you like "Up the Down Staircase" you are looking for rough, bleak and serious movies about / with teacher, education, high school, dedicated educator, racism, business and school teacher themes of Drama genre shot in USA.
Find your next favorite and similar movies in two steps: 1. Identify all themes of interest from this film (block below). 2. Look for them in the presented list.
Up the Down Staircase (1967)
 7.3
 2K
Up the Down Staircase (1967)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 124 min.
Story: Sylvia Barrett is a rookie teacher at New York's inner-city Calvin Coolidge High: her lit classes are overcrowded, a window is broken, there's no chalk, books arrive late. The administration is concerned mainly with forms and rules (there's an up and and a down staircase); bells ring at the wrong time. Nevertheless, she tries. How she handles the chaos and her despair in her first semester makes up the film: a promising student drops out, another sleeps through class, a girl with a crush on a male teacher gets suicidal, and a bright but troublesome student misunderstands Sylvia's reaching out. A discussion of Dickens, parents' night, and a mock trial highlight the term. Can she make it?
Style: rough, bleak, serious, realistic, disturbing, gloomy
Plot: teacher, education, high school, dedicated educator, racism, business, school teacher, english teacher, friendship, high school life, culture clash, fish out of water, high school teacher, youth, misfit, teachers and students, life is a bitch, rebellion, teenage life, society, innocence lost, idealism, against the odds, hopes, hardcase students ...
Time: 60s
Place: new york, usa

Movie in categories

Most similar movies to Up the Down Staircase

The list contains related movies ordered by similarity. Recommendation engine sorted out realistic, serious, sincere and touching films with plots about society, youth, power relations, high school, school, teacher and teachers and students mostly in Drama and Biography genres. Some movies like Up the Down Staircase: Dangerous Minds (1995), Stand and Deliver (1988), To Sir, with Love II (1996), To Sir, with Love (1967), Detachment (2011). The matching attributes are highlighted in bold.
Dangerous Minds (1995)
Genre: Biography, Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 99 min.
Story: Former Marine Louanne Johnson lands a gig teaching in a pilot program for bright but underachieving teens at a notorious inner-city high school. After having a terrible first day, she decides she must throw decorum to the wind. When Johnson returns ...
Style: sentimental, touching, inspirational, rough, sincere ...
Audience: teens, kids, girls' night, teen drama
Plot: high school, teacher, school teacher, teenager, coming of age, hip hop, amusement park, teenage life, hopes, school, gang, life ...
Time: 90s, 20th century, 80s
Place: california, new jersey, usa, san francisco
⇓ similarity ⇓
100%
Stand and Deliver (1988)
Genre: Biography, Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 103 min.
Story: Jaime Escalante is a mathematics teacher in a school in a hispanic neighbourhood. Convinced that his students have potential, he adopts unconventional teaching methods to try and turn gang members and no-hopers into some of the country's top ...
Style: inspirational, touching, sentimental, feel good, realistic ...
Audience: teens, kids, girls' night, family outing, teen drama
Plot: teacher, education, teenager, mathematics, high school, school, dedicated educator, gang, civil rights, bullying, coming of age, idealism ...
Time: 80s, 1930s, 20th century
Place: los angeles, california, usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
100%
To Sir, with Love II (1996)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 92 min.
Story: Mark Thackeray (Poitier) is a West Indian, who in the 1967 film had taken teaching in a London East End school. He spent twenty years teaching and ten in administrative roles. He has taught the children of his former pupils, but is now retiring.
Style: political, realistic, serious, uplifting, touching ...
Plot: teacher, education, juvenile delinquency, high school, society, dedicated educator, hardcase students, youth, hopes, urban ghetto, undisciplined, gain trust ...
Time: 90s, 20th century
Place: chicago illinois, usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
100%
To Sir, with Love (1967)
Genre: Drama
Country: UK
Duration: 105 min.
Story: Idealistic engineer-trainee and his experiences in teaching a group of rambunctious white high school students from the slums of London's East End.
Style: realistic, sentimental, touching, inspirational, talky ...
Audience: teens, girls' night, kids
Plot: teacher, high school, education, school, dedicated teacher, teenager, dedicated educator, coming of age, teaching, dancing, racism, idealism ...
Time: 60s, 20th century, 80s
Place: london, england, east end london, europe
⇓ similarity ⇓
100%
Movie in collections
 7.7
 87K
Detachment (2011)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 98 min.
Story: A chronicle of three weeks in the lives of several high school teachers, administrators and students through the eyes of substitute teacher, Henry Barthes. Henry roams from school to school, imparting modes of knowledge, but never staying long ...
Style: psychological, thought provoking, serious, bleak, depressing ...
Audience: teens
Plot: teacher, depression, suicide, teachers and students, dedicated educator, human relationship, school, unhappy, social problems, life is a bitch, social decay, unhappiness ...
Time: 21st century, contemporary
Place: usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
100%
 7.3
 2K
Conrack (1974)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 106 min.
Story: A young, white teacher is assigned to an isolated island off the coast of South Carolina populated mostly by poor black families. He finds that the basically illiterate, neglected children there know so little of the world outside their island.
Style: serious, realistic, thought provoking, uplifting, sincere ...
Plot: teacher, school, racism, youth, island, education, black history, family relations, interracial relations, hardcase students, misfit, fighting the system ...
Time: 70s, 20th century, 60s, year 1969
Place: south carolina, usa, southern usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
73%
The Explosive Generation (1961)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 89 min.
Story: Peter Gifford is a likable, dedicated schoolteacher that teaches a senior life skills class. When student Janet Sommers brings up the topic of sex and dating, he asks students to write questions on the topic, and will cover them in the next class. ...
Style: sexy, realistic, serious, sexual, psychotronic
Plot: teacher, high school, hopes, hardcase students, society, dedicated educator, youth, high school life, school, teachers and students, urban ghetto life, teenage life ...
Time: 60s
⇓ similarity ⇓
69%
 5.9
 396
Halls of Anger (1970)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 96 min.
Story: An all-black inner city school has to become an integrated school. Few dozen white kids are transfered there, but the black students are aggressively opposed to this. The school then approaches a tough black teacher for help.
Style: thought provoking, serious, realistic, sincere, bleak
Plot: racial issues, juvenile delinquent, high school, power relations, urban ghetto, militant, social relations, ambition, youth, social misfits, life is a bitch, society ...
Time: 60s, 70s
⇓ similarity ⇓
63%
Movie in collections
 5.2
 212
Maryjane (1968)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 95 min.
Story: A teacher trying to break up a local drug ring is framed and arrested for possession of marijuana.
Style: realistic, serious, psychotronic
Plot: marijuana, juvenile delinquent, hippie, high school, friendship, school, frame up, drug dealing, teenage life, drug abuse, teachers and students, rebelliousness ...
Time: 1930s
⇓ similarity ⇓
57%
A Lesson Before Dying (1999)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 105 min.
Story: In the 1940's South, an African-American man is wrongly accused of the killing a a white store owner. In his defense, his white attorney equates him with a lowly hog, to indicate that he didn't have the sense to know what he was doing. ...
Style: uplifting, thought provoking, emotional, sincere, bleak ...
Plot: racism, politics, empire, aunt, interracial relations, false accusation, urban ghetto life, prison life, wrongfully committed, human spirit, teachers and students, school ...
Time: 1940s
Place: usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
56%
 6.7
 4K
Cheaters (2000)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 108 min.
Story: In the fall of 1994, a teacher at Chicago's run-down Steinmetz High conspires with the school's academic decathlon team to cheat on an academic competition.
Style: realistic, serious, clever, sincere, offbeat
Audience: teens
Plot: teachers and students, high school, lifestyle, ambition, society, dedicated educator, youth, contests and competitions, rivalry, teenage life, social differences, education ...
Time: 90s
Place: chicago illinois, usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
55%
 6.8
 295
Our America (2002)
Genre: Drama
Country: Canada, USA
Duration: 95 min.
Story: The true story of two African-American teen radio reporters and their documentary investigation of a notorious child murder.
Style: realistic, serious, emotional, rough, sincere ...
Plot: journalism, murder, juvenile delinquency, social decay, uncover truth, teenage life, life is a bitch, hopes, society, lifestyle, youth, racism ...
Time: contemporary
Place: chicago illinois, usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
55%
 7.4
 21K
Lean on Me (1989)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 108 min.
Story: When principal Joe Clark takes over decaying Eastside High School, he's faced with students wearing gang colors and graffiti-covered walls. Determined to do anything he must to turn the school around, he expels suspected drug dealers, padlocks ...
Style: inspirational, feel good, realistic, intense, clever ...
Audience: teens, girls' night, kids
Plot: high school, teacher, african american, gang, teenager, school, violence, education, society, teenage pregnancy, teaching, drug dealing ...
Time: 80s, 20th century, 60s
Place: new jersey
⇓ similarity ⇓
51%
 7.5
 2K
Behavior (2014)
Genre: Drama
Country: Cuba
Duration: 108 min.
Story: Meet Chala, an eleven year-old boy with a hard life and strong respect for Carmela, his sixth grade teacher. The pair develops a solid bond, but after Carmela suffers an accident, things get complicated…
Style: realistic, serious, emotional, touching, suspense ...
Plot: education, kids in trouble, life is a bitch, fighting the system, alcoholic mother, teachers and students, urban ghetto life, hopes, youth, society, dedicated educator, rebellion ...
Time: contemporary, 21st century
Place: cuba, latin america, havana cuba
⇓ similarity ⇓
51%
 5.4
 212
The Beat (1988)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 98 min.
Story: A new kid moves into a tough neighborhood controlled by gangs, and tries to teach them poetry.
Style: serious, emotional, realistic, touching, gloomy
Plot: gang, poetry, teenage life, idealism, fighting the system, youth, rebellion, dedicated educator, society, life is a bitch, stoners, school ...
Time: 80s
Place: new york
⇓ similarity ⇓
50%
 6.0
 1K
White Rabbit (2013)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 90 min.
Story: A bullied student sees visions of a rabbit he was forced to kill as a child, and those visions propel him into a state where his imagination causes him to carry out violent acts.
Style: serious, rough, disturbing, dark, realistic
Plot: mental illness, bullying, high school, kids in trouble, rebelliousness, friendship, life is a bitch, society, school shooting, imagination, coming of age, house ...
Time: 21st century, contemporary
⇓ similarity ⇓
49%
Stolen Spring (1993)
Genre: Drama
Country: Denmark
Duration: 89 min.
Story: At their 25th high-school anniversary some bourgeois citizens remember their time in school as a happy one. In reality it was quite the contrary. The school was a madhouse in which the teachers, especially Blomme, tormented the students. As a result ...
Style: realistic, serious, tense, bleak
Plot: murder, teenage life, lgbt, teacher, education, power relations, social relations, under the surface, poisoning, life is a bitch, teachers and students, high school life ...
Time: 20th century, 1940s
Place: scandinavia, denmark
⇓ similarity ⇓
49%
Won't Back Down (2012)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 121 min.
Story: Two determined mothers­, one a teacher, look to transform their children's failing inner city school. Facing a powerful and entrenched bureaucracy, they risk everything to make a difference in the education and future of their children
Style: realistic, uplifting, touching, serious, emotional ...
Audience: family outing
Plot: education, school, fighting the system, human spirit, teacher, teachers and students, parents and children, hopes, society, youth, social relations, family relations ...
Time: 21st century, contemporary
Place: pittsburgh, usa, pennsylvania
⇓ similarity ⇓
49%
Movie in collections
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 6.1
 1K
Shackles (2005)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 115 min.
Story: An aspiring teacher (Hughley) takes the one job he's offered, a position at a school inside a prison.
Style: realistic, captivating, suspense, touching, semi serious
Plot: prison, dedicated educator, starting over, hardcase students, ambition, human spirit, idealism, prison life, rehabilitation, hopes, life is a bitch, rivalry ...
Time: contemporary
⇓ similarity ⇓
49%
Just Another Girl on the I.R.T. (1992)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 92 min.
Story: Chantel Mitchell (Ariyan Johnson), a hip, articulate, black high-school girl in Brooklyn, is determined not to become "just another girl on the IRT" (the IRT is one of NYC's subway lines). She dreams of medical school, a family, and ...
Style: realistic, serious, touching, sentimental, surprise ending
Audience: teens
Plot: teenage pregnancy, woman, pregnancy, hip hop, urban ghetto, medical school, family relations, power relations, kids in trouble, dedicated educator, youth, lifestyle ...
Time: 20th century, 90s
Place: brooklyn new york city, new york, usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
48%
The Forest for the Trees (2003)
Genre: Drama
Country: Germany
Duration: 81 min.
Story: As an awkward idealistic high school teacher begins her first job in the city, things turn out to be much tougher than she had imagined.
Style: serious, psychological, sincere, emotional, realistic ...
Plot: teacher, emotional breakdown, life is a bitch, dedicated educator, fish out of water, loneliness, unsupportive coworkers, society, misfit, workplace, hardcase students, workplace situations ...
Time: 21st century, contemporary
Place: europe, germany
⇓ similarity ⇓
46%
She Fought Alone (1995)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 87 min.
Story: All, including school administration and a friend, turn their backs on a girl who accused a classmate of rape.
Style: touching, realistic, sincere, disturbing, thought provoking ...
Audience: chick flick, teens
Plot: rape, innocence lost, high school, sexual abuse, juvenile delinquency, teenage love, rebellion, fighting the system, youth, against the odds, social misfits, ambition ...
Time: 90s
⇓ similarity ⇓
46%
Critical Thinking (2020)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 117 min.
Story: Based on a true story from 1998, five Latino and Black teenagers from the toughest underserved ghetto in Miami fight their way into the National Chess Championship under the guidance of their unconventional but inspirational teacher.
Style: motivational, psychological, captivating, thought provoking, contemplative
Plot: chess, social problems, misfit, high school, life is a bitch, human relationship, society, dedicated educator, city, unconventional method, teacher, new teacher ...
Place: miami
⇓ similarity ⇓
45%
Movie in collections
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Knights of the South Bronx (2005)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 89 min.
Story: A business man decides that he wants to teach school in the inner city and chooses a tough school in the South Bronx. He teaches the children how to play the game of chess, and along the way they learn a lot about life.
Style: uplifting, touching, serious, realistic
Audience: family outing
Plot: chess, school, teacher, youth, misfit, ambition, against the odds, high school life, lifestyle, hopes, teachers and students, human spirit ...
Time: 21st century, contemporary
Place: new york, bronx new york city
⇓ similarity ⇓
23%
 7.6
 748
White Mama (1980)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 105 min.
Story: A poor, elderly white woman living in a tenement in a black ghetto is befriended by a neighborhood boy, and the two of them form a mutually beneficial relationship: he provides her companionship and protection, and she becomes the mother he never had
Style: realistic, serious, thought provoking, uplifting, touching ...
Plot: elderly, poor, neighborhood, survival, aging, bondage, friendship, interracial relations, eviction, teenage life, urban ghetto life, golden years ...
Time: 20th century, 70s
Place: new york, usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
45%
Life of a King (2013)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 100 min.
Story: Life of a King is the true story of one man's mission to give inner city kids of Washington DC something he never had - a future. After being incarcerated for eighteen years, Eugene Brown established the Big Chair Chess Club to get kids off the ...
Style: uplifting, sincere, touching, rough, psychological ...
Audience: teens
Plot: chess, dedicated educator, hardcase students, changing lives, rebellion, teenage life, ambition, ex convict, contests and competitions, bad attitude, youth, society ...
Time: contemporary, 21st century
Place: washington d.c., usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
45%
The Ron Clark Story (2006)
Genre: Biography, Drama
Country: USA, Canada
Duration: 90 min.
Story: Matthew Perry is real-life inspiration Ron Clark, a passionate and innovative teacher who leaves his small hometown to teach in one of Harlem's toughest schools. But to break through to this students, Clark must use unconventional methods, ...
Style: uplifting, realistic, serious, emotional, inspirational
Audience: family outing, teen drama
Plot: teacher, dedicated educator, teachers and students, human spirit, new job, teacher student relationship, challenge, obstacle, power relations, changing lives, hardcase students, urban ghetto ...
Time: 20th century, 90s, year 1994, year 1998
Place: usa, harlem, north carolina, new york, manhattan new york city
⇓ similarity ⇓
43%
 7.2
 27K
Speak (2004)
Genre: Drama
Country: USA
Duration: 89 min.
Story: Freshman high-school student Melinda has refused to speak ever since she called the cops on a popular summer party. With her old friends snubbing her for being a rat, and her parents too busy to notice her troubles, she folds into herself, trying to ...
Style: touching, psychological, sentimental, sincere, sad ...
Audience: teens, girls' night, chick flick, teen drama
Plot: school, high school, rape, teenage life, youth, teenage girl, depression, innocence lost, rape victim, unsupportive friend, life is a bitch, sexual abuse ...
Time: 21st century, contemporary
Place: usa
⇓ similarity ⇓
42%
Goodbye, Mr. Chips (2002)
Genre: Drama
Country: UK
Duration: 99 min.
Story: In the later years of the nineteenth century Latin master Mr. Chipping is the mainstay of Brookfields boys boarding school, a good teacher and a kindly person but he is considered to be married to the job so that it is a surprise when, on a walking ...
Style: sentimental, touching, emotional, serious, realistic
Plot: boarding school, dedicated educator, tragic hero, society, social differences, idealism, friendship, family relations, youth, teachers and students, husband wife relationship, teacher ...
Time: 19th century, 90s, year 1914, edwardian era
Place: england, europe
⇓ similarity ⇓
42%
 7.5
 36K
The Class (2008)
Genre: Drama
Country: France
Duration: 128 min.
Story: Teacher and novelist François Bégaudeau plays a version of himself as he negotiates a year with his racially mixed students from a tough Parisian neighborhood.
Style: sincere, melancholic, psychological, educational, thought provoking ...
Audience: teens, kids, pre-teens, teen drama
Plot: teacher, teachers and students, school, high school life, education, teenager, dedicated educator, adolescence, high school, life philosophy, workplace, social relations ...
Time: contemporary, 21st century
Place: paris france, france, latin america, california, europe ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
42%