Thursday, April 21, 2011

Some Kind of Wonderful

Ever seen it? Well, I was still a movie theater usher back in 1987 when the last John Hughes teen-coming-of-age flick was released. Hughes wanted Molly Ringwald for the role of Watts, but she turned it down, wanting to move on to movies about grownups. Thankfully, he got Mary Stuart Masterson for the role, and she was great in it.

Anyway, the tale is summed up thusly...Teen boy wants teen girl that's supposedly out of his league. Alternatively, the girl that's interested in him is also his best friend. Amidst all this, boy has a father that can think of nothing but college for his son and a sister who only craves popularity. How, pray tell, will it all work out? No great mystery, as there was a clear formula to teen romances back in the 80s...and since, to be honest.

So while shopping online recently, I found a used copy of this movie for under $5. I couldn't resist. As far as I'm concerned, it contains some of the best writing to ever come from the late John Hughes. The story and its plot are obvious. There are no real surprises...EXCEPT when it comes to the dialogue. And because the movie arrived today and I've watched it, I feel it absolutely necessary to share the best of its quotes.

After breaking up a potential fight between the character of Duncan and Keith, a teacher then starts busting the former. It starts when the teacher pulls a pack of smokes off the kid. "Those aren't mine," Duncan says. The teacher then pulls a half-full bottle of booze from the kid's pocket. "Ah, man...That's just for show. I don't - " Finally, the teacher pulls a deck of cards with naked women on them. With perfect timing, Duncan says, "Y'see, those were a gift from...from your wife."

Having asked out the beautiful Amanda Jones, Keith is seated with his family around the table the next morning. The fact that oddball Keith has made a date with Amanda has his sister,
Laura, baffled. After some verbal banter and dad comments sarcastically that he's glad Keith has time for girls and not important things like college, Laura pipes up with, "Ease up, dad. Any fool can get into a college. Only a precious few may say the same about Amanda Jones." =D

During an intense argument, Keith's father states that Keith is only 18, as if to indicate that this is reason enough for the teen to have no idea about what he's talking about. To this, Keith replies, "Then I'm 19, then I'm 20...When does my life belong to me?"

Keith: Nobody can stand being alone. The minute you stop thinking there's someone out there for you, it's over, isn't it?

Amanda: ...I'd rather be next to someone for the wrong reasons than alone for the right ones.
Keith: I'd rather be right.

These are the best of them, but not all of the good stuff. There's a lot that happens in terms of visual dynamics to go with the words, as is hinted at with my description of the scene with Duncan. Really...It's all good stuff, and I think this movie went largely unnoticed. And it's definitely worth a watch.

I just wanted to share this celluloid nugget. And as soon as I can, I'll be subjecting Becky to it. =)

Be well, all, and DFTBA!

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