I don’t think I liked this movie even as a teen! And now, I go back and watch it and it is just dumb that it gets on my nerves.
*Hands way down
“I am the eyes and ears of this institution, my friends!”
what’s even more overrated than the breakfast club? the goonies!!!
How dare you slam The Breakfast Club. You are not worthy of its greatness.
u could very well be right about that westley
It’s a good 80’s coming of age movie and hit a nerve at the time.
A bit dated now, yes, sure, but still as a document of its time well worth seeing.
I did not watch the Breakfast Club in my teens or maybe I did. I was somewhere between 19 and 21 when I watched and I HATED IT! It was the ending that got me. All of the kids realized that in order to be cool, they had to change everything about themselves. The weird girl became normal and got to go out with the jock, the cheerleader dated the misfit, because he was so dominant and macho and the nerd did all of their work and went home alone, because who would want to go out with a nerd? The nerd can not change, so bugger him. The moral of the story is that it is our differences that separate us. If we were all the same, we would be happy.
Interesting reading. I still like the film though. I think it deals with much more complex things than simply “if we were all the same we would be happy.”
IMDB: Five high school students, all different stereotypes, meet in detention, where they pour their hearts out to each other, and discover how they have a lot more in common than they thought.
The prom girl gets with outcast, jock gets with weirdo aspect is pretty clearly part of the ending ambivalence. We never see “Monday” and the point is made clearly that by Monday, all of the connections and friendships they’ve gained are going to change. The movie ending with John’s raised fist is purposefully obscured by blue and gray and faded out—that emotion can only bookend the day, as a part of his (our) memory of the much more vivid brightly lit hallways and rooms and the conversations that happened in them. It suggests that the feeling is transient and will fade away.
The “differences” are not matters of real, sustained character. They are false identifiers worn on the outside by the high schoolers to codify their place. As the movie continues, those identifiers break down, and in a lot of ways a lot less obvious than breaking glass and starting relationships. The characters strip clothes off and put them back on progressively throughout the movie, sometimes exchange them, sometimes without attention to that exchange being drawn but between scenes. In order to set out what today is a well known sociological phenomenon of the high school clique, John Hughes had to showcase its obviousness as well as some of its more endemic, reactionary modes.
film has a bad message that ultimately conformity is the way to go.
fuck this movie.
I would suggest that point is not clearly made Polaris given the general reaction to the film if nothing else, and the tone is more celebratory than anything else. If one accepts your reading, and I have some mixed feelings about it, it is, at the least, somewhat obscured by the feeling of accomplishment of the group by the film as a whole. My personal feeling on the film would be something like people need to look past stereotypes to the bigger cliches of life, as the film, even with the ending as you suggest is anything but profound, and, for me, the weight of the obvious, the overdone, and the simple mindedness of it all makes the movie pretty damn excruciating to sit through. Maybe if I were younger I would have more of a connection to the film, but since that isn’t the case…
How does the feeling of accomplishment obscure the empathy they’ve gained? And why are people reading empathy as conformity? That disturbs me.
Throughout the movie the kids discover their similarities. They don’t become more similar.
^^^Don’t have time to get into this now, but from what i can remember, this was one of those typical films from the 80’s( and to a lesser extent the 70’s) that conceals its ugliness well. Kind of like how Saturday Night Fever does(i started a thread about this a while ago). These are films that are saying one thing, but doing another. LIke in S.N.F, at the end, Travolta’s character submits to the girl’s view of mature adult life, but the woman is a whore that screwed her way into a great apartment, but is giving him lectures about how he needs to grow up and be responsible. in the end, Tony concedes to the fact that he needs to grow up, on the advice of a whore that hasn’t grown up either. The movie validates her view but not his.
I remember Breakfast Club doing something similar, but i’d have to watch it again. The girl gains acceptance through conformity from memory and the movie doesn’t really question it.
No, not obscuring the empathy, i was saying that the feeling of accomplishment the film presents obscures your suggestion that Monday things would be different, and even if that wouldn’t be so, the whole film creates a series of convient issues to direct the attention away from the sorts of differences that aren’t so easily overcome. I don’t have a problem with there being empathy, i just don’t find that an accomplishment to illustrate and felt it trite in how it was carried ouot.
My high school didn’t have Saturday detention. Actually I’d never heard of Saturday detention until I saw this flick.
“The girl gains acceptance through conformity from memory and the movie doesn’t really question it.”
I think you’re thinking of “the weirdo.” The thing about Allison is that that so dramatic a physical transition is not matched in totality as a mode of presentation of the movie; she was the character that erected a much stronger physical barrier with her style than the overall clique identity codifiers of the other characters, still reappropriated and bypassed at the end, and she was the one who worked the hardest to draw attention to her detachment rather than to her need for self recognition. Thus she created a self-destructive wall that was probably better broken down, rather than kept up in respect for her differences…. a sort of visual equivalent of not allowing a cutter to cut as a form of “self-expression” when it’s more damaging than helpful to not intercede. Her style is as much a revealing lie as her lies.
“i was saying that the feeling of accomplishment the film presents obscures your suggestion that Monday things would be different”
Well I don’t think it does because Monday has a huge weight over the film that is brought up in a variety of ways, from directly talking to it to suggestions of meeting again on “Saturday” as a sort of emotional attempt to hold off the “Mondays” of the world, and the aforementioned fading out. Think about the scene at the end of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off when the car is smashed… the character has decided to come to his own and stand up to his father, but one thing that is clear is that we’ll never “see” the father, the father is a static entity that does not change so much as the teenager who realizes he must overcome it. Thus we know that Cameron has developed as a character, but not necessarily that his family dynamics have changed—we’re just aware that he’ll survive them to the point of adulthood (official, as opposed to what has been achieved in character development) and be able to blow away from his father later.
At least, if the father is unyielding. IF the father changes, then all for the better. Same ambivalence as The Breakfast Club’s Monday—a large part of the viewers perspective of what will happen is left to the viewer, instead of spelling it out for them, as the discoveries made by the characters during their Saturday doesn’t necessitate a life-long friendship amongst them.
“i just don’t find that an accomplishment to illustrate and felt it trite in how it was carried ouot.”
And here I’ll agree to disagree, since I am of the opinion that it was not carried out in a trite way but I think that may come down to preferences in acting and some of the, yes, mainstream uses of codifiers. For me, John Hughes’ best job in this movie is having the characters think like actual teenagers, at least teenagers as I saw them when I was a teenager and beyond. Sometimes their to them deep insights are actually to us quite vapid (“Everyone hates their parents…”) and what I think causes this movie to be “deep” in its own way has more to do with how the characters assume everything has been bridged between them when there are still underlying dissonances that are revealed, mostly in terms of things I’ve already talked about like the whole Monday question.
Also, to be frank, it’s a teen movie and Hughes knows how to get teenagers’ butts in seats by living up to some of their own expectations, an audience coming from the perspective of what these teenagers were like before Saturday started. I would agree that in this way the ambivalence is overshadowed by the recognition, partly because it is better that the recognition grabs the most attention of the audience at the time—it is in later, more mature review, I opine, that some more cutting underlying factors are involved.
I know this used to be a very popular movie back in the old days, but I never understoot the hype. Most of all I didn’t understand the title of the movie….;-)
The whole thing is just so sulky and whiny. And Judd Nelson’s performance as John Bender is truly Razzie worthy. Ally Sheedy was great though. Don’t think I’ve ever liked her more. I liked Say Anything,
Eh, I think the acting is stilted all around, but not Razzie bad. Sulky and whiny aren’t the words I’d choose either! But when dealing with a topic like this, people have different levels of tolerance to, basically, teenagers. I prefer teenagers be and talk like this, than how they’re represented in the majority of teen movies out there. Most of those movies have this like, “Well obviously our hero is the odd man out of the popular group and the big dumb jock is his greatest fear, I mean that was everybody’s experience (who then became successful filmmakers), but anyway wasn’t high school awesome and great? Yeah… it’s funny ’cause we were dumb, but it really was the best years of our lives.” Not a big fan of that type of teen movie.