“Please, call me Punchy. ‘Mr. McPuncherson’ is my father.”

In “Here Comes the Boom,” Kevin James plays a biology teacher who becomes a mixed-martial-arts fighter to raise money for his school. It’s an unorthodox plan, but movie teachers rarely play by the rules.


Dead Poets Society (1989)
Robin Williams’ character makes poetry cool and inspires prep-school boys to sit in a cave and read it. Because what do teenage guys like? Sonnets.

School of Rock (2003)
Jack Black’s character isn’t so much a “teacher” as “a guy in front of a classroom.” But this comedy makes a larger point about the importance of arts funding and — for good or for ill — features Jack Black at his Jack Blackiest.

Stand and Deliver (1988)
The movie is based on the true story of a math teacher who got underprivileged kids to pass the AP Calculus test in staggering numbers. Invite your English-major friends over and watch their heads explode as they try to follow the math!

Half Nelson (2006)
Ryan Gosling is killer as a high-school teacher who happens to be addicted to crack. A nice break from the superteacher trope, the film shows an educator who isn’t perfect. Because of the crack and all.

Mr. Holland’s Opus (1995)
If Kevin James practically has to go into combat to get funding for biology, we hate to think what music teacher Mr. Holland (Richard Dreyfuss) would have to do these days to raise cash for another saxophone.