OLD SKOOL REVIEW: Breakfast Club

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The subject of today's review is a classic, if any film staring Emilio Estevez can be considered a classic. No, its not the cinematic masterpiece that was the Mighty Ducks (right...), it was one of Emilio's earlier works, from a simpler time when hockey was still just for canadians. While it did not spawn a disney-owned sports franchise, The Breakfast Club is a considerably better film by 1980s standards. In case you dont remember the 80s... let me elaborate on what i mean by "1980s standards." The people of the 80s elected a borderline retarded president, and then elected him again, wore mullets, and allowed "punky brewster" to be on TV. Ahh, we've come so far as a people in the last 20 years. Regardless, I cant imagine anyone paying to see this movie in this day and age. A cheesey, slow, and overly dramatic movie about high school stereotypes just wouldnt fly in this age of ADHD. I had trouble sitting through it, and if I had anything better to do, I would have done it instead of watch this. Lucky for you, i have no life. The best part was that i watched this on network TV, and they were doing those hilarious overdubbings. Hey, TV execs, we know that the word "baloney" is not mouthed the same way the word "bull****" is, and on top of that, we know what Judd Nelson sounds like. But that really has nothing to do with the movie...

Let me run down the plot. 5 kids, each one different, are stuck in saturday detention. The teacher is an ******* for no appearant reason. The janitor is some kind of wise man, but not in a funny way, just in a very 80's Mr. Miagi way (minus the ass kicking and asian-ness). The kids are all messed up in their own special way and at first dont get along, and then start getting along and by the end theyre all friends. Very meaningful dialogue about whether or not the "hot" Molly Ringwald is a virgin ensues.

First off, the premise is a load of crap. Only 5 kids in a school that looks like its built for 3,000, maybe 4,000 are in saturday school. At my school we only had 2,000 or so kids, and about 200 of them made it to saturday school on a regular basis, myself included. Heres the way detention works- the teacher doesnt leave the room, the kids arent allowed to talk, and no one gets locked in a closet, thats just ****in wierd. Its about as exciting as this movie, that is to say, not at all. While watching this I kept thinking about the show Boston Public, and how unrealistically schools are portrayed on television and in the movies. Everything's either dramaticized to death or just complete bull**** baloney.

This movie is only for the true child of the 80s. Or maybe those rare fans of the Brat Pack still out there. And while I was born in 1983, I can't say that this movie did anything for me, being only 2 years old at the time of its release. It is one of those movies that you have to see at least once in your lifetime just for the sake of being up on pop culture and privy to alot of inside jokes. If you never had the chance to experience it in the 80s though, you, like me, may never understand it's appeal. It has some good moments and classic scenes, but looking back on it, it all just seemed so forced... everything from the dialogue, to the ending, to the premise itself. I think even this kid would agree with me on that much:

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i dissagree, the 80s rocked. at least we had presidents who were SOMEBODIES then. i mean, a former movie star and the former head of the CIA?! chances are you were being ironic on this point though [as i am]; because your bostin public comparison would seem to imply that you dont actually think popular entertainment hasn really visibly improved thematically since the end of 1989? or at least hasnt gotten any more "enlightened" [i certainly dont think it has on either count]. i dont think this movie has aged particularly poorly either. as far as super-popular "classic" 80s crud goes, you could do much worse ['purple rain' or 'top gun' would be much worse in my book].

also, emilio esteves has been in better movies. personally 'repo man' [1984] is the one that i think most qualifies [though maybe on a more "cult" level]. 'men at work' [1990] might also be decent but it's been too long since i saw it for me to really judge.

i generally agree with you that this movie is a bit skewed from reality, at least the reality of my experience of high school. i didnt necesarily disagree with the point of it, mind you. it's just that the situation that enabled some sort of meaningful discourse between these kids seemed a bit contrived and ridiculous.

this movie seems to be fairly centrist as far as high school movies go. not pure fluff like 'bring it on' or the like, but maybe a little closer to that end of the spectrum than to stuff like 'heathers', 'election', or my personal favorite, 'welcome to the dollhouse'. another interesting one [but different yet again] is 'rushmore'.



there's a frog in my snake oil
Forced? Phoney? Unrealistic? Oh yes, for sure. But i was dead pleased to realise the quote that was itching at my memory the other day.."if he stands up, we'll all stand up, it'll be anarchy!" came from this comical piece of teenage angst teasing. Silly film - but good when you're young (and have had to grow up during the eighties )
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I'm not old, you're just 12.
I really hated the Breakfast club...and I did come up in the 1980's. But then, the 80's kinda sucked anyways. I admit to liking the first 3/4ths of the Breakfast Club, but OH, That ENDING.....complete and utter B.S....


(Okay, If you haven't seen this piece of crap, turn back now. I'm gonna ruin the already ruined ending...)






First, Ally Sheedy, the character I liked most, (I always thought she was somebody I would have hung out with in HS.) she gets a "Makeover" from our prissy prom queen Molly Ringwald, instantly becomes boring, and is given like a present to our @ss-Cheek taping potential date-rapist (He taped a guy's @SS shut. He's obviously capable of worse!) Emilio Estevez, who never showed any interest in her up till then.

Then, Molly Ringwald hooks up with the only other interesting character, Judd Nelson, even though that doesn't make any sense either. This ending seriously belonged to a different movie, not the one we just watched. And why didn't Anthony Michael Hall get a girl at the end? He shoulda got Ally Sheedy! That woulda made much more sense! Man, I hate John Hughes...(Except for Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, National Lampoon's Vacation, and Ferris Bueller...)

And for the record, Mighty Ducks was better than this! Well not Mighty Ducks 3, though...Only like ten minutes worth of Emilio?! he was listed above the title for gawd's sake!!!
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there's a frog in my snake oil
The real point of the film, though, is that teenagers all have problems they must deal with, that the folks not in your little group or clique are just as human as you are and worthy of respect, and that adults seemingly just cannot understand their kids for the most part, and that very fact only heightens the need for teenagers to depend on one another.
But surely the ending actually undermines any positives laid out, as MP said. i.e. that all the kids actually end up in even more stereo-typed, superficial, non-respectful-of-difference closure-roles. Now that i remember that ending i do recall it being highly unsatisfactory (but then, i was only getting off on the cartoon rebellion-buzz anyway )



I love The Breakfast Club, and I shall always love it. And I'm a wee bit pissy at the moment, since I already typed this sh*t out only to have my computer freeze up before I could post it.

Technology is the devil. The devil!

Anyway...

Originally Posted by Monkeypunch
Ally Sheedy, the character I liked most, (I always thought she was somebody I would have hung out with in HS.) she gets a "Makeover" from our prissy prom queen Molly Ringwald, instantly becomes boring, and is given like a present to our @ss-Cheek taping potential date-rapist (He taped a guy's @SS shut. He's obviously capable of worse!) Emilio Estevez, who never showed any interest in her up till then.
I always had problems with the whole "makeover" thing, as well, but then I started thinking about it. The whole point of the movie is how these five kids change each other, in both subtle and overt ways. Whether it's a change for the better or a change for the worse, the effects are still there.

Ally's character wasn't happy the way she was--her whole image was one of aloof freakiness, as a protective cover. Letting Claire do her hair and her makeup was symbolic, partly brought on out of a sense of connection. She knew it would make Claire happy, and it did. Mission accomplished.

Plus, I seriously doubt she kept that boring-preppie look. But I do think her sensibilities about herself changed, so she probably didn't stay the same. Most likely she settled on a kind of compromise--and she's still herself. Dandruff and all.

I also take a different look at Emilio's character. Yes, he did it. But he repented, and I doubt he'd do it again. That whole "change" thing, back again.

Also, he did notice Ally's character before the ending. Remember? "What do they do to you?" He's damn near crying when she says, "They ignore me."

Then, Molly Ringwald hooks up with the only other interesting character, Judd Nelson, even though that doesn't make any sense either.
Oh, it makes sense to me. They were attracted to each other from the start. However, I give their relationship three weeks, tops.

And why didn't Anthony Michael Hall get a girl at the end? He shoulda got Ally Sheedy! That woulda made much more sense!
Oh, hell, no. What Anthony's character needed was self-respect, and he got that at the end.

I think one of the reasons the ending is "unsatisfactory" is because of all the mitigating circumstances. They say it themselves in the movie: what happens Monday? They don't know, and we don't know. We've seen these kids thrown together without the outside world to influence them beyond their own preconcieved hang-ups--which systematically get dismantled throughout the course of the movie.

And we're worried. We don't want things to go back to the way they were, or their characters to revert to type once again. But these kids are teenagers, and we know what teenagers are like. This is only a temporary glimpse, for them, at a world without cliques and expectations--and the clique that is formed between the five of them is a tenuous thing, once they don't have the situation bonding them together.

But that's the point, I think. Nobody changes completely over the course of one Saturday, and John Hughes knows that. But now they all know something they didn't know before, about themselves and about all those kids they ignored in the halls: that whether you're the prom queen, the nerd, the freak, the hoodlum, or the athlete, things are tough all over.
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breakfeast club is a purely 80's movie. Most people think breakfest club when someone mentions the 80's. It set the standards, it was revolutionary. It did take advantage of the youth in that it took the exaggerated form of every average high school character and turned them into people who the youth and many adults could relate to. Then they had these opposit extremes in the hierarchy of coolness smoke pot and get along together like anyone who went through high school a nobody wished it could have been like. That was the appeal of the movie and the public enjoyed it, i enjoyed it, and it kicked ass.



Originally Posted by jrs
I loved The Breakfast Club..... it's probably THE archetypal movie of the 1980s, at least that of the youth in America. It is an indelible part of cultural history and remains as fresh and brash as ever today. While teenagers can certainly not be broken down into five distinct types, the five students forced to spend their Saturday at school in detention do a pretty good job of covering the basics. You have Claire, the popular prom queen type, played by the wonderful Molly Ringwald, the jock (Emilio Estevez), the brain (Anthony Michael Hall), the weirdo (Alley Sheedy), and the disrespectful criminal (Judd Nelson)--five students who are complete strangers to each other and totally different personalities. Terrorizing and threatening them is an older teacher intent on enforcing discipline among them. The criminal is determined to foment an insurrection, and eventually the strict supervision of the students breaks down. At first, the students yell at and fight with one another and are especially antagonistic toward the juvenile delinquent among them. As the day progresses, the students begin to tell their own stories--who they are, why they are in detention, etc. Their conversations weave back and forth between insults and incriminations and words of sympathy and concern. They eventually start roaming the school halls, leading to the classic scenes of them skidding across the halls in a mad flight to return to the library before the teacher returns to check on them. Somehow, the five eventually do open up to each other, confessing secrets, forming friendships, and realizing that the problems they considered their own are shared to some degree with each other.
This is a great movie and one that appealed directly to young people--everyone can understand problems with overbearing or neglectful parents, grades, peer pressure, drugs, etc. I must say that I sometimes felt the changes between hateful exchanges and sympathetic dialogue came a little abruptly, though; I for one never saw any redeeming quality in Judd Nelsons character. I also couldnt believe some of the destruction that was done to school property over the course of the day. Anthony Michael Hall was brilliant in his role and provided some very funny moments, but I as a former brain did not see much of myself in him. The real point of the film, though, is that teenagers all have problems they must deal with, that the folks not in your little group or clique are just as human as you are and worthy of respect, and that adults seemingly just cannot understand their kids for the most part, and that very fact only heightens the need for teenagers to depend on one another.
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Originally Posted by jrs
What do you find that's so mediocre ? Can you explain and tell me why you do not like what I have written?

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Originally Posted by LordSlaytan
So is jrs really "darkgenious" from NC? hmmmm....I thought he was from Texas.
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Originally Posted by jrs
What about it?

If you copy and post someone else’s words you have to give them credit… otherwise it is Plagiarism… Legally… if you didn’t write the work, you don’t own it... and if you don’t own it, you can not copy or distribute it without giving the original author credit. It violates copyright laws… even on the net.

I’m sure you didn’t realize this but if you use anyone else’s work off the net in the future, be sure to give them credit…
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I must have seen Breakfast Club at a perfect time in my life for it to have a lasting effect on me. It was a movie that explored the trials that teenagers go through during those four (sometimes more) years of coming to age. Freshmen are in their early stages of puberty and just a short time later are expected to be able to hold their own in the world. It can be the best and the worst times of our lives. This point in our existence is a large part of the foundation that we build our ideas and convictions upon. We make life long friends and enemies we will never forget. Emotions are bare and any negative thing that happens to us has "end of the world" all over it. I truly belive who we are and what we do in life is jump started in High School. For these and other reasons Breakfast Club will always hold a special place in my heart. I know it has some flaws and could probably have been better; but if it makes any sense, those flaws are part of what made it so great for me.
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Originally Posted by Dargenious from "amazon.com"

I loved The Breakfast Club..... it's probably THE archetypal movie of the 1980s, at least that of the youth in America. It is an indelible part of cultural history and remains as fresh and brash as ever today. While teenagers can certainly not be broken down into five distinct types, the five students forced to spend their Saturday at school in detention do a pretty good job of covering the basics. You have Claire, the popular prom queen type, played by the wonderful Molly Ringwald, the jock (Emilio Estevez), the brain (Anthony Michael Hall), the weirdo (Alley Sheedy), and the disrespectful criminal (Judd Nelson)--five students who are complete strangers to each other and totally different personalities. Terrorizing and threatening them is an older teacher intent on enforcing discipline among them. The criminal is determined to foment an insurrection, and eventually the strict supervision of the students breaks down. At first, the students yell at and fight with one another and are especially antagonistic toward the juvenile delinquent among them. As the day progresses, the students begin to tell their own stories--who they are, why they are in detention, etc. Their conversations weave back and forth between insults and incriminations and words of sympathy and concern. They eventually start roaming the school halls, leading to the classic scenes of them skidding across the halls in a mad flight to return to the library before the teacher returns to check on them. Somehow, the five eventually do open up to each other, confessing secrets, forming friendships, and realizing that the problems they considered their own are shared to some degree with each other.
This is a great movie and one that appealed directly to young people--everyone can understand problems with overbearing or neglectful parents, grades, peer pressure, drugs, etc. I must say that I sometimes felt the changes between hateful exchanges and sympathetic dialogue came a little abruptly, though; I for one never saw any redeeming quality in Judd Nelsons character. I also couldnt believe some of the destruction that was done to school property over the course of the day. Anthony Michael Hall was brilliant in his role and provided some very funny moments, but I as a former brain did not see much of myself in him. The real point of the film, though, is that teenagers all have problems they must deal with, that the folks not in your little group or clique are just as human as you are and worthy of respect, and that adults seemingly just cannot understand their kids for the most part, and that very fact only heightens the need for teenagers to depend on one another.

I agree with you 100%....The Breakfast Club is one of the top pop culture films of the 1980's. Each of those 5 students brought a form of relationship I can even relate to. I had a principle like Vernon once for a short period of time in school. All I could do was make fun of him though. He didn't bother me at all.
As for the actors, their enactments towards these characters are engrossing. Estevez, Sheedy, Ringwald, Hall and Nelson just are superb at their high school antics , it makes it feel like we're all back in the saddle.....or shall I say hell for some of us.
I have watched the film so many times in my life I can like recite it. . Now after being finished with college, I'm glad that stuff is over although...in a way it makes me want to actually live it all over again.



Do you know my poetry?
I love The Breakfast Club, its my favorite teen film of ALL time and the best Hughes movie. Teen movies now a days really suck, there just horrible, I wish they would still make em like this.



This was on last night with all of the baloneys dubbed in and even the shot of Molly's undies cut out. It even had the AMC movie notes running throughout - Love Those!

Hadn't seen it in ages. This movie is aging well. So sums up that era. I was born in 1960 so I was able to observe the 80s with semi-grown up eyes.

Anyway, I let myself get totally caught up in everything I knew was coming and it all worked.

Flick is an 80s classic IMO.

And a lot of the dialogue is excellent.

Bender: Remember how you said your parents use you to get back at each other?
Claire Standish: [nods]
Bender: Wouldn't I be OUTSTANDING in that capacity?