While I may have come away only half-impressed by the John Hughes documentary Don’t You Forget About Me (and also embarrassed that people from my city thought stalking a film director wise), the one thing their film properly conveys is the love for and universal appeal of the man’s films. My sister, for example, is thirteen years younger and she loves these films as much as I do. My parents allowed me to watch them as a small child right when they came out, and I credit their relaxed attitude to pop culture (this flick is rated R; I was maybe 7 years old) as the reason for my enthusiasm and diversity in tastes, as well as being a pretty well-adjusted teen. I didn’t drink much as a teen; I was allowed at home, anyway. I didn’t smoke. I didn’t do drugs. I feared pregnancy enough to leave full-on sex for university (not that I was that old, entering frosh year at 17). You get the picture though: I had fun, did some not-so-great things the parentals know nothing of, but I ultimately made decent choices and valued the things that truly matter: education (book and street smarts), music, friendship and enjoying life as much as possible.
I honestly can’t remember which film I saw first (I think it was Ferris Bueller’s Day Off but it could be The Breakfast Club) but this is the one that is forever my favourite. I never get tired of it. I spent three months straight watching it before bed each night during a wicked run of insomnia. I often list it as a go-to film. What makes it so magical? The honesty. The language of youth. The music. The acknowledgement of the generation gap between teens and teachers. The fact that each of us can relate to at least one character (I relate to all of them, one way or another). Most importantly, look at this film: no special effects, no action sequences, no real change of scenery. This it literally a film set in a library and it is held up strictly by dialogue and pitch-perfect acting.
Seriously, you’re dead to me if you don’t at least like this film. Because to me, that means you have no heart. Like Allison says, you’ve grown up and your heart has died.
Without further accolades, let’s dive in to one of my top ten flicks of all time, The Breakfast Club.
- Yesssssss….. Simple Minds. The band that didn’t initially want to do this iconic tune, namely because the original lyrics kinda sucked. They changed the verses and added the la-la outro riffs and music history was made. I cannot hear this song without seeing the end of this movie. Impossible.
- And then, more music awesome:
- Trivia: for years, I confused Anthony Michael Hall with Anthony Rapp’s performance in Adventures In Babysitting… I figured it out in my late teens. Oops!
- I love that this film is honest. Teens threw the word ‘fag’ around like an insult. Hughes employs it in writing on a locker. It’s just how the world is in the early 80s.
- I love the intro lectures in the cars that reveal half the story in each student’s case, but leave you wondering what the hell they all did. Bender’s my favourite, though, although I’ve lived through Brian and Andrew’s lectures.
- In the trivia, it’s revealed that it was Judd Nelson who decided that Bender would sit “wherever Brian sits”. This is why Judd Nelson is boss.
- *snicker* Oh, Claire! You belong here alright. Sorry, Princess.
- Okay, hands up if you’ve ever heard of 9 hours of detention. Because I haven’t. That’s cruelty!
- Vernon is so evil… and yet, he’s so hilarious. This film wouldn’t work without him.
- And that chewing sound, ladies and gents, is Allison! Say hello, honey!
- Bender’s line to Allison, “I’ve seen you before, you know,” is very telling… since no one sees Allison. And Bender knows it’s exactly what to say to get under her skin.
- Bwahahahaha! Brian tried to see Bender’s package.
- The way Vernon yells from across the hall reminds me of scolding cats. Lazy discipline FTW!
- I love the discussion between Bender, Claire and Andrew where he tears down their precious popularity and belief that they’re great! decent! people! and he’s the problem.
- Brian is so cute, babbling his academic clubs. I was a high school Math tutor. Props.
- “So it’s sorta social. Demented and sad, but social.”
- The first half of this film is Bender deconstructing the social hierarchy and establishing their commonalities. And Brian is loving it, jumping in to jeer at Andrew wearing tights.
- The first test of loyalty lines: Bender yanks the screw and waits to see if anyone rats him out. Of course, no one does, because no matter how much they may dislike each other, they dislike authority more.
- “She doesn’t talk sir!” *squeak*
- I don’t think Bender’s had such fun in detention.
- The infamous “Eat my shorts!” banter… I’ve had this discussion with my mother far too many times – well, before I cut her out of my life. Sometimes, acting like you don’t care is the only weapon left with irrational people. Especially irrational people who say “cracking skulls” often enough to be predictable.
- Claire’s wetting herself watching Bender; Brian’s popping a boner for her. Oh, what a triangle!
- I love Allison, but seriously honey, HEAD AND SHOULDERS!
- Barely 90 minutes in and they’re all passed out. Nice.
- Bwahahaha. “Ha!” Allison is awesome. But Bender’s “STFU Andrew” snark is even better.
- Brian, really? You REALLY think you can break up a wrestler and a tough guy?
- “Dork, you are a parent’s wet dream, okay?”
- Dude, do NOT call Claire fat!
- Sexual harassment: apparently, it’s the way to her heart. I love that no one intervenes, including tough guy Andrew, until she’s super uncomfortable.
- Brian’s face as he watches Bender and Andrew fight is awesome. He’s like a little child watching his parents fight.
- …. And no one notices Allison steal the knife. Which we never see her give back.
- “I’m trying to help her.” The funny thing is, Bender means it. He’s trying to get her to stop being pretentious and just be real.
- The janitor is my hero and he is NOT LYING. In my high school, my one friend who was seriously screwed in the head flirted with the janitors… and in their office, she saw that they had discarded letters and photos they’d picked from the garbage. Pictures of teen girls and their notes. And somehow, no1curr.
- “I’ve seen her dehydrate sir. It’s pretty gross.” LOLZ. What does that even mean?
- “What do you drink?” “Vodka.” Allison’s pathological lying is awesome.
- “His nuts would ride shotgun.” DEAD
- Niagara Falls. LOLZ. Canadian side props.
- Lunch time! I love that when this film was made, sushi was…. WTF? Now, you can buy it to-go in every damn supermarket and in the food court of a mall.
- The twisty fingers of the Brian impression that Bender does… I can’t. I die every time. “Aww, but I have homework to do!” “That’s alright son, you can do it on the boat!” “Gee!”
- “Shut up bitch! Go fix me a turkey pot pie!” And this would be where the ‘get in the kitchen’ jokes come from…
- I wanna give Bender a hug. He finally tells a little something about himself and they all think, “Wow. Maybe we suck.”
- Oh snap! Breaking da’ law!
- Claire is sooooo excited. Because my God, she wants to be bad! Followers, the lot of them. The funny thing is, Allison is only following to watch them.
- Allison’s look at Bender is adorable… Because I’m betting she knows they’re going the wrong way too and she doesn’t want Bender to screw them over.
- Yup. Screwed.
- Vernon, you need to hit the gym, dude!
- Um, where did the random white sneaker come from?
- Vernon reaches for something Bender would care about…. “What if your dope was on fire?”
- He’s not lying. It’s in Brian’s underwear!
- *snort* $31K is apparently a fortune in the 80s.
- You sir are scaring Bender and you are a coward for threatening a powerless teenager. Go away now. Boo!
- I’m very bitter that the joke in the vent system was entirely made up and had no actual punchline.
- The toilet seat cover…. perfection.
- Wanna git high? I think these kids do…. I’m a Brian-Bender combo when I *ahem* partake.
- Again, the janitor knows all and is utterly amazing.
- I love the purse/wallet swapping… I also love the unwrapped tampons that fall out of Allison’s bag.
- Afghanistan, Allison? Really? No, sweetie. No no.
- Aww, look. Andrew cares. Bonding via being ignored.
- “The kids haven’t changed. You have.” Ding ding ding! The message to all adults watching the movie.
- Truth or dare sharesies time!
- The nymphomaniac part… I love this. I love how Allison turns gender norms on their ass.
- The ridiculousness of what Andrew did is what makes the story realistic. I mean, our high school allowed seniors to duct tape grade nines to the walls during the welcome breakfast. Authorized, supervised initiation.
- This is the mantra of every teenager. Even the most confident and content ones have that moment where they look in the mirror… and aren’t happy.
- For the record: I can make spaghetti, pick things up with my toes, probably tape your asses together and yes, I have actually tried and succeeded at applying lipstick with my breasts. I’m shocked Molly manages without serious cleavage.
- The one part of the movie I don’t get is Bender tearing Claire apart at this point. I know it’s a means of pushing her away because he’s afraid of her, but still… irks me a little.
- Y’know, you don’t hate him. I mean, you should be angry, but hey, we all know you’re gonna get with him.
- I love Brian cursing out Claire. And then I wanna cuddle him when he cries. How can you not? The poor guy… God. I understand. I grew up with parents like his. Pressure happens to everyone… There is no easy life. No easy circumstances.
- Allison…. best answer. “Nothing. I didn’t have anything better to do.”
- Alright, enough with the heavy. Let’s dance!
- And then, they take advantage of the nerd. Assholes. LOL.
- Allison looked better gothy. Also, EW! Bender used that brush on his teeth and now you’re putting it on Allison’s eyebrows?
- No fair! Brian doesn’t get a girl AND he does homework.
- The janitor totes wants to get the dirty details from Bender next week.
- And they’re free! FREEEEEEEEEEEEE!
Fuck yeah! Damn the man! Er… that’s another movie. One I’ll eventually Blog-entary.
A little less pic-tastic, because this movie is simply too… meaningful to spam. Well, not TOO much spamming, anyway. Tune in next week when I take on another Hughes film. Which one? I’ll never tell!
Butterflies and Hurricanes