The Breakfast Club (1985)
Director: John Hughes.
Cast: Emilio Estevez, Anthony Michael Hall, Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald and Ally Sheedy.
Synopsis: “A brain, an athlete, a basket case, a princess and a criminal.” Five kids from different social groups get detention on a saturday and are instructed to write an essay on ‘who they think they are.’ Although who the audience see the kids as, and what the teacher sees the kids as, are two totally different perspectives.
So, here is how I am going to start my blog. With a review of a movie (which for some unknown reason, I only recently just watched) which to the majority of people, is an all time CLASSIC.
I am always skeptical when it comes to 80’s movies, but The Breakfast Club, like many other 80’s classics, hits you right in the humanity. The use of stereotypes and the breaking down of those stereotypes is a classic move, but underlying this ‘breaking down’ of a stereotype, also brings to the screen some really important messages. And messages like these, although old, should never be ignored.
First. Let me set the scene. Five kids. Different Social Groups. One Saturday. Detention. What more can say? What could go wrong? Nothing. Nothing goes wrong. And that’s the beauty of it. Sure, there is trouble and arguments and A LOT of crying (both actors and audiences) and laughing. But, nothing goes wrong. Everything goes right. They come together, and by the end of the movie they are all friends or even in relationships. Yep, it sounds like a classic, cheesy 80’s movie where everyone is happy by the end of the film. No. Although you don’t see it, the kids still have to go home to the awful, abusive, ignorant, argumentative, bossy, controlling and unreliable people they call ‘family’. The kids all battle it out with each other, but inevitably, they are all connected by how ‘unsatisfying’ their home life is.
What I love about this movie:
- How ‘human’ it is. And by human, I mean the organic, natural way we act every single day and don’t even acknowledge what we are doing. The way the kids undermine each others feelings and confessions, the pressure of school and home life, weird quirks and actions that people do when they go into a world of their own, the retaliations and the decisions they have to make… It all mimics the way humans function perfectly.
- The acting is incredible! The timing and the emotions produced by the (then) young actors is immense. It’s so impressive. I was laughing out loud and sobbing my heart out by how raw the performance was. (Side note to this, there is a bit of screaming and crying from the characters but they are kids so bare their tantrums and random outbursts in mind)
- The crudeness of children. Honestly, from the weed to the swearing to the kissing, the characters in the film are the true definition of what kids/ teenagers/ young adults are.
- The pathetic insults. I mean, they are so bad they are actually funny.
Basically, what I am saying is you NEED to watch this movie. Every line of dialogue in there could be taken and printed in a pretty font and become a manifesto. I will leave you with this quote, its the quote that starts the movie and sums it up perfectly.
“… And these children
that you spit on
as they try to change their worlds
are immune to your consultations.
They’re quite aware
of what they’re going through…” – David Bowie
© Greta Alise Haley