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The Breakfast Club
Examinations of teenage angst never go out of style because there are always more teenagers… and because all adults still have the core of questioning that allows them to relate to those feelings.
The funny thing is that even though I’ve seen this film many times, I always remember it as being much more energetic and action packed. It is more a Socratic (and, at times, sophomoric) musing on life than it is a high-energy confrontation of youth and authority. It really is just youth confronting itself. And that is why it endures 30 years later. It is simple and honest, if a bit unbelievable in its plot.
Writer/director Hughes set the tone for an entire generation, directing four of the most remembered films of his decade: Sixteen Candles, Breakfast Club, Weird Science, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. He also wrote Home Alone, Pretty in Pink, Some Kind of Wonderful and a host of other scripts. He became the voice of teenagers and set the tone for a particular brand of general audience comedy for years. He also launched the careers of many actors who are still going strong today.
If you haven’t revisited this film recently, or perhaps missed it, dig it out and spend a rainy afternoon remembering/experiencing the questions and triumphs it has to offer. If not for the message, watch it and realize there isn’t a single character in there that didn’t go on to bigger things in film and TV… and see them when they were a heck of a lot younger.