The Breakfast Club
- Emilio Estevez as Andrew
- Molly Ringwald as Claire
- Judd Nelson as John Bender
- Anthony Michael Hall as Brian
- Ally Sheedy as Allison
- Paul Gleason as Richard Vernon
Helmed by John Hughes, The Breakfast Club is for many the quintessential teen movie. It is warm, funny and touching filmmaking that captures the essence of what it is like to be a teenager. The film takes an interesting premise and creates a film that has had its share of imitators, but has never been bettered in terms of its originality.
Five high school students report to their high school’s library for a Saturday detention. Each of the students adheres to a stereotypical social group; there is Andy the jock, Brian the brain, Allison the outsider, Claire the princess and Bender the rebel. Detention according to the assistant principal is to last for eight hours, forty-five minutes and they are forced to write an essay on who they are as a person. At first the group appears to have nothing in common and argue with each other, mainly as a result of Bender’s negative attitude that annoys the others. But as the hours wear on, they begin to realise how much they actually have in common, despite their rigid social situations. This calls for baring their souls, airing frustrations and finally getting along with each other.
When watching the film, I noticed how relatable the characters were. Everyone can sympathise with at least one of the issues faced by the group as well as seeing themselves in one of them. John Hughes directs with a deep understanding of teenagers and social situations that arise from being part of a certain group. The humour in the film is unbeatable, especially the many times that the club causes disturbance to assistant principal Vernon. The scene of them all dancing together is hysterically funny to watch as well. Underscoring the comedy is a poignant drama that surfaces when the characters reveals their inner turmoil and problems to each other. The Breakfast Club is so effective in the way it intertwines the two and allows for each to unravel with success.
Each of the cast is given a chance to shine in roles that are well suited to them. Returning to the John Hughes universe is Anthony Michael Hall and Molly Ringwald, who would become staples of his teen movies.I can’t think of one sour note on the performances, as each cast member embodies a certain social clique whilst revealing deeper emotions underneath. The film is further boosted by an amazing and very catching soundtrack. The use of “Don’t you forget about me” performed by Simple Minds is a stroke of genius that opens the film whilst the camera shows the various places that will probably be frequented by the group.
In a matter of words, The Breakfast Club is the teen film to treasure. Both witty and relatable, the film breaks down the barriers held by people about groups and examines the underlying personality underneath. If you have not seen this classic teen movie, then I advise you to.