21 Movies 'American Vandal' Fans Should Stream If They Need More Teen Angst & True Crime

Columbia Pictures

Applying the true-crime template to something juvenile as holding a school hostage with threats of poop seems like a recipe for low-brow fare, but Netflix's mockumentary American Vandal manages to squeeze genuine pathos and nail-biting tension out of every episode. The show is supremely watchable, meaning fans are likely scrounging around for something else to satisfy the mix of deadpan humor and earnest investigation. In that vein, here are 21 movies American Vandal fans should stream next.

This list contains a healthy mix of high school verité, investigations made personal, and good old fashioned true crime. Documentaries like Billy The Kid and Seventeen capture the goofiness and cruelty of teens trapped together, their school life the center of their universe. High school drama Brick transposes the noir template to the same social sphere, and for good measure there are some actual noirs like Kiss Me Deadly. Several true-crime investigations, like Out Of Thin Air and The Thin Blue Line, work to find the real truth behind what's considered a closed case. Admittedly the stakes in most of these movies are far, far higher than in American Vanadal, but the underlying human needs are surprisingly similar, which is exactly why we all got hooked on the Netflix show in the first place.

1. 'Brick'

princessskullface on YouTube

A high school noir with its own patois that follows the template of the classics. When Brendan gets a desperate call from his recent ex, he travels into the seedy underworld of his own classmates to find out what's going on.

Available on Netflix.

2. 'The Thin Blue Line'

Andrew Sayre on YouTube

Errol Morris' documentary is famously responsible for getting a man off death row after it brought new information to light about a murder he swore he never committed.

Available on Netflix and FilmStruck.

3. 'Billy The Kid'

ElephantEyeFilms on YouTube

This documentary follows Billy, an overly articulate oddball sticking out in his rural Maine town, as he tries to find his way towards making sense of the world around him.

Available on Fandor.

4. 'Heathers'

MyEdit on YouTube

Teen angst has a body count in this black comedy about taking down a high school's powerful, cruel clique.

Available on Netflix, Hulu, Hoopla and Shudder.

5. 'A Taxing Woman'

ArhiVid on YouTube

Ryoko always gets her man when it comes to sniffing out tax fraud, but she may have met her match in Hideki Gondo, a genius businessman with a passion for accumulating wealth.

Available on FilmStruck.

6. 'Repo Man'

spamanator666 on YouTube

Going-nowhere Otto lands a job at the local impound lot, working as one of its repossession men. When a mysterious, glowing car gets slapped with a $20,000 retrieval fee, Otto, the government, the punks, and half of Los Angeles try and hunt it down.

Available to rent on Amazon, YouTube, Google, Vudu, Playstation, and Apple Store.

7. 'Seventeen'

Spectacle Theater on Vimeo

This PBS documentary following the class of 1981 seniors in Muncie Indiana never aired as intended because sponsor Xerox thought teens being teens, with their cursing and drug use, was too much.

Available on Fandor or YouTube.

8. 'Rashomon'

FilmKunst on YouTube

Four versions of the same story, but who's telling the truth? Rashomon pits recollection and memory against fact and law in this taut tale.

Available on Kanopy and FilmStruck.

9. 'Kiss Me Deadly'

criterioncollection on YouTube

One of the more bonkers noirs, with everyone chasing a (possibly atomic) glowing suitcase. Detective Mike Hammer gets dragged into the situation by a strange hitchhiker, and from there it's a series of knockouts, escapes, and law-breaking.

Not available to stream.

10. 'F For Fake'

KPPCAFilm on YouTube

Orson Welles' classic pseudo-documentary examines the nature of truth and lies with the most unreliable narrator of all — himself.

Available on Kanopy and FilmStruck.

11. 'Hausu'

Attack from Planet B on YouTube

A group of teenage girls head to the country to visit one of their aunts, but it turns out her house may house an angry spirit. The plot doesn't matter so much as the friends' relationships and the bananas effects.

Available on FilmStruck.

12. 'The Cat And The Canary' (1927)

DiegOrlok on YouTube

The original Whodunnit, with a house full of suspects all angling for the old man's inheritance. With secret passageways and black-gloved hands, this is the investigative murder mystery that started it all.

Available to rent on Amazon.

13. 'Battle Royale'

Spectacle Theater on Vimeo

What would happen if you took high school drama and crossed it with The Purge? In a dystopian near-future, a random class is selected each year to participate in a full-on last man standing fight to the death.

Available on Netflix, Hoopla, TubiTV, Shudder, and the Roku Channel.

14. 'Black Lizard'

A_is_A on YouTube

Infamous jewel thief and aesthete Black Lizard is hankering for the world's glitteriest jewel, and the detective assigned to the case is determined to stop her. Another cat-and-mouse game where game recognizes game.

The 1962 version is available on FilmStruck, but the above 1968 version is currently available on YouTube.

15. 'Unfriended'

MTV on YouTube

Social media can be rough. This film is a tight, haunted morality play taking place entirely on the characters' computer screens, as a mysterious person gets revenge for a cruel post.

Available on FXNow.

16. '21 Jump Street'

Sony Pictures Entertainment on YouTube

Two cops go undercover to stop a drug ring in a local high school, but swap their planned identities and realize something most high schoolers are painfully aware of — that these are some of the most difficult years ever.

Available to rent on Amazon, YouTube, Google, Vudu, Playstation, and Apple Store.

17. 'Zodiac'

Paramount Movies on YouTube

Fincher's in-depth look at the full history of the Zodiac killer may not move as quickly as American Vandal but it sure has as many twists and real-time discoveries.

Available on Amazon and Hoopla.

18. 'Out Of Thin Air'

Gimli Film Festival on YouTube

40 years after six teenagers were indicted for murder, the case was reopened when new information cast doubt on the original confessions.

Available on Netflix.

19. 'Funeral Kings'

Movieclips Indie on YouTube

From the writers of American Vandal Season 2 comes this story of two altar boys and a new kid who get in over their heads after prying open a trunk and finding a gun.

Available on Amazon Prime.

20. 'Tabloid'

Movieclips on YouTube

Another Errol Morris story, this film tells the nearly unbelievable tale of a woman accused of kidnapping a young Mormon man and using him for kinky sex. She claims it was consensual, but he couldn't face his religious community and turned against her.

Available on Netflix, Hulu, and SundanceNow.

21. '...if'

neondreams 25 on YouTube

A surreal story of bored students at an English boarding school stuck between the older, cruel students known as Whips and the completely out of touch teachers and administrators.

Available on Amazon Prime.

And if these films aren't enough, you can always re-watch American Vandal, streaming on Netflix now.