Friday, August 07, 2009

AN UNDERAPPRECIATED MAN

Because the name John Hughes is oftentimes chased by the phrase "80s teen movie", too many film historians have never given him the respect he is due. It's my belief that when those wheels of critical reexamination come rolling back around, John Hughes will finally get his honors.

I could write all night about the films of Hughes - especially the period of 1984-1987 - and how much they meant to me while I suffered acne and a crush on an unattainable cheerleader at the same time, but I'd rather just play a clip from Some Kind of Wonderful that showcases one of my all-time favorite characters of his: Watts.

I probably saw this scene for the first time when I was around 12, and I kept relating to it until I was about 21. John Hughes understood the feeling of being lovesick and young better than anyone else. This still feels special to me:



10 comments:

Hokahey said...

Some Kind of Wonderful is the best teen movie ever made - and Watts is awesome.

bill r. said...

Never saw it. I know it's not Hughes, but I never saw The Goonies either.

bill r. said...

Two more things: it's really weird to discover that, as a director, Hughes only made eight films.

Also, there's a documentary in post-production (so says IMDB) about Hughes and his retreat from Hollywood called Don't You Forget About Me. I think they just found a distributor.

Fox said...

Hokahey-

I don't share quite THAT high sentiment for SKOW, but I do really like it. I think since Hughes handed it over to another director, it doesn't hit as hard as something like Sixteen Candles or The Breakfast Club, but you are totally right about Watts. I think she got me started on my like of short hair on women. But mostly, I identified with her heartache.

BTW... I just saw Weird Science about three weeks ago - for like the 27th time - and Anthony Michael Hall is REALLY good in that movie. Over at Bill's blog we were talking about how awesome John Candy is in Hughes' movies, and I think the same should be said about AMH.

Fox said...

Bill-

Wow. So many timely things going on today.

What I mean by that, is that The Goonies just played here in Austin and my wife was freaking out about finding out that certain people haven't seen it. I'm not positive how old you are, but I think if you are between the ages of 32-35 and you haven't seen The Goonies, then you are in a small minority.

I hope that didn't sound like a dis, cuz it's not, it's just that The Goonies seems like one of those movies that everyone has seen that when I meet someone who hasn't it's kind of a shock.

bill r. said...

Fox, I'm right in that age range. And the movie never looked interesting to me, even when I was a kid. What can I say?

Fox said...

Bill (part 2)-

It is bizarre. Eight films. I'm sure there is a reason for that, but I wonder what it was. Maybe his pen just moved faster than his legs.

Because of that, people started calling him a recluse in his later years, but I read Ebert's eulogy to him last night and there was a great response from Hughes when Ebert asked him about his "disappearance": "I haven't disappeared," Hughes said. "I'm standing right here. I'm just not in Los Angeles."

I've never seen Curly Sue. I might go look for it tonight, but my suspicion is that it's probably rented out all around town right now.

Fox said...

Fox, I'm right in that age range. And the movie never looked interesting to me, even when I was a kid. What can I say?...

I still remember my dad taking me to the movies on my birthday and I was trying to decide between seeing A View to A Kill (I didn't really know what James Bond was, I just liked that Duran Duran song) or The Goonies... for the third time. I chose The Goonies.

Rick Olson said...

I hate to admit this, but I'm just too old for Hughes' films to be the soundtrack of my youth ... by the time "Sixteen Candles" rolled around, I was 31 ... sigh.

But for the record, my favorite Hughes is "Planes, Trains and Automobiles."

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