80's High School movies + Mean Girls
Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Sixteen Candles, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Breakfast Club, Mean Girls
Hello and welcome to the seventh episode of Jay Wont dart's podcast, about high school movies from the 1980's.
I've got a very big DVD collection, I'm planning to do a few movie review episodes, I might have short reviews of 5 similar movies in each podcast episode I put up, if someone searches for the name of any movie it will show my podcast episode those movies. I might also come up with some bogus rating number from 1-5, and compare the movies to each other at the end of the episode.
First review episode though, its about movies from the 1980's, about young people stuck in the High School years, going to High School. I've got Fast Times At Ridgemont High, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Sixteen Candles and this little movie you may have heard of, called The Breakfast Club. Sound familiar?
Also getting mentioned is Mean Girls, to compare the 1980s movies to a film from 2004, I'll mention the differences, but Mean Girls is also one of my favourite movies! I'm like the second guy in the world to have seen it!
I should mention now that this podcast contains SPOILERS, I will have the Wikipedia summaries included here so you will hear about how the movies start, progress and end. This podcast is more to spread the word about these movies if you havnt seen them, and maybe help you remember if you have seen them. I always read the wikipedia article about movies before I buy the dvd, or consider seeing them at a cinema. Truth be told, its been years since Ive seen a movie in a theatre!
So, you will hear how these movies end. I will keep the bits about each movie fairly short, theres nothing really different I could tell you that you cant find online already. I do hope you will see these movies for yourself though.
Right now, I dont have any Internet access at home, its been off for two days so far, I think its from that bad weather we've had recently, its brought down a tree on the phone lines perhaps. I've been rocking back and forth, laughing for no reason, its driven me mad, my whole world is online, sure I have 200 movies to watch, classic books to read and other things, but I just want to check my email and read the news!
The simplest things in my life are so hard without the internet, I keep thinking, "oh, I'll send this to X" and then realise I don't have any way of getting it to them, what, do I make a CD and then send it to them? On the phone to my shitty internet service provider, Telecom, ugh, I hate Telecom with a passion, would never use them if I had a choice, they are just as bad as Microsoft, I've been on the phone for a few minutes short of an hour so far. They do have a kick ass phone system though, its one of those ultra modern ones where it can understand what you say to it, so it gives you the options and you say the one you want, rather than "push 1 for ....", its more like, how can I help you, switch to broadband , home phone problems.." and you say the one you want "broadband". Sometimes these systems ask you to describe the problem , it picks out phrases you say and connects you to that department, I'm blown away thinking about how it must work, the hardware being used and what the software must be doing.
You still get the person thats impossible to understand, theres a lot in the newspapers about New Zealand jobs going overseas, Telecom is training people in the Phillipines to answer the helpdesk calls, they are having to watch really bad New Zealand culture movies and music, to get a sense of who we are. They are meant to be learning our accent, and how to do it themselves, but they are way the hell off there. I feel sorry for anyone with a call centre job, if you look call centre jobs up, they are one of the worst jobs in the world, hundreds, maybe thousands of people stuffed into one building, each person has a cubicle a metre square, with a 20 dollar MDF desk, a 10 dollar corded phone, a windows computer and if they are lucky they even have a chair! If New Zealanders want to get paid more than 5 cents a day doing this job, then it will just go to people overseas who will do it for even less, just to have a job. I do feel terrible for people with these jobs, I try and be as nice as possible to them on the phone, "thank YOU PERSONALLY for YOU'RE time HELPING ME, I hope YOU have a nice day" even when they sucked and I couldnt make out what they were saying.
They get told to pick up you're name, "and who is calling?" they say, "Jordan" I tell them, then its all "well JORDAN, what im doing is this JORDAN, you see JORDAN", its like they are computer replacing "
I'd been unplugging things and doing all sorts of crazy little acts, I think they love making people on the other side of the world do stupid things. If they had just told me there was an outage in my area, it would have saved a huge amount of time, I'd been on the phone for over 40 minutes straight. Then I get asked "is there anything else I can help you with?" as if they want me on the phone literally all day. Its just a routine for them, they might talk to 100 New Zealanders with the same 5 problems each day. I feel so sorry for them, wish I could swap lives for a day just to give them a break.
So I'm going insane from lack of Engadget and fresh new podcast episodes, I still havnt heard this latest "This Week in Tech" and the new weekly episode will be out in a couple days! But I do have my movies to watch, and so I'll plan this episode now.
Update to my script, no internet for 5 days, and then I finally got a contractor to go about looking for the fault, turns out that when some Telecom ISP hardware was changed around, they didnt plug in a tiny jumper the size of a piece of corn, and because of that, I didnt get any internet!
Ooh, but to make it right Telecom offered TEN DOLLARS in compensation, ten bucks, for 5 days of absolute pain! I mean, I spent hours on the phone alone, and the rest of my time was spent rocking back and forth in tears! Ten measly bucks man, thats crap, they told us if they did a line check and they didnt find a problem on their end, then we would be charged 80 dollars, thats for wasting 2 hours of their time, I had to go 5 days and get 10 bucks?
Damn telecom, no wonder I'm so pro Vodafone. I instantly like people better if I find they have Vodafone cellphones, did you know that in just a few years all Telecom phones will stop working? Its true, they are changing technology to the same kinds of phones that Vodafones been using from pretty much day one. I guess that means that all the money Telecom spent over the last decade odd is for nothing, if theres nothing going to use it? Maybe some of the 3G stuff will be able to use it still, I dont know. It seems that they picked CDMA over the worldwide standard GSM, and didnt want to back down while GSM took over the whole world apart from South Korea, some of America, and New Zealand really. It would be like going against the Metric system.
I did get my internet back on in time to be on my friend Knuckle's podcast, the NZ Vegan Podcast, if you search for " NZ Vegan" you will find it easily in iTunes. Episode 11 has me as a special guest which was pretty exciting.
On topic now, 1980's High School Movies.
Movies describing "teenage angst", their words, not mine, are very common. Movies from the 1980's have a style of their own, and so deserve special mention. Lots of movies from the 1970s and 1980s had a hell of a lot to do with sex, here in New Zealand the channel called C4, designed for those youngsters plays old movies often. Its sort of to make fun of how bad they were mostly, a lot of really crappy kinda movies get put on. They also repeat, so they have a list of 50 movies say and then they mix up the order again. Its sort of "hey look at these funny old movies with classic scenes, lets laugh at how big cellphones were, no 3G networks here sonny, wow, look at the hairstyles and how bad practical special effects were". A lot of the jokes are incredibly lame to my modern ears.
Despite being mostly crap movies, I've seen some real gems I had to buy off TradeMe, a New Zealand eBay kinda website. The ones I'm talking about in a few minutes are all semi-forgotten movies, that all deserve to be classics. People of a certain age remember them and probably love them, but without C4 showing these kind of movies, I myself wouldnt have seen most of them.
Most highschool movies have a really tired plot, theres a bunch of young people, they want to have sex and party wooooooooo, theres parents being really strict and some grouchy old principal or whatever they are called in America, is that what "Dean" means, you know the drill. Theres lots of chase scenes and "quick, we have to get home, or clean up the house, before our parents arrive". Ugh, it makes me feel dirty talking about these plots.
But, the movies I'm talking about, they are all awesome. Im doing these movies in the order they came out.
Fast Times at Ridgemont High
First up, Fast Times At Ridgemont High, released in 1982, same as Michael Jackson's Thriller, best album ever. Sadly, no MJ is used, just things like "Oingo Boingo", the band Danny Elfman was in, he made The Simpsons Theme and has done the scores of a few famous movies like Edward Scissorhands, I might do an episode about Scissorhands.
Major soundtrack highlights, in the movie at least it uses Kashmir, a famous Led Zeppelin song. In the movie another song by the group is mentioned instead, the producers couldnt get the rights to the album they wanted, so used Kashmir instead. Im not a rock person, but everyone will recognise Led Zeppelin, Kashmir.
Also, "somebodys baby" by Jackson Browne, thats an amazing song.
The plot of Fast Times is the whole "its difficult growing up these days" thing. To me, the movie doesnt seem very modern in a few ways, it feels like it belongs in the glory days of america more than the 1980's, just the whole diner scenes, and the school etc, a main character has a really old 1950-ish car. It doesnt have many ultra modern for the 1980's things in the movie. Just my feeling from watching it.
Heres the summary from the Wikipedia article
< fast times wikipedia article read aloud>
Fast Times was controversial at the time of its release for sex scenes and it showed a main character waiting for an Abortion. That scene was cut out, you see her going in and things like that, a nurse talking to her a little bit at the end, and she comes out, it was going to show more graphic stuff apparently? It does have nudity which is kinda gross in Teen movies I think, these are young actors, they shouldnt be naked when they are 25 year olds playing 15 year olds, actors are hardly ever the age they play! So every movie an actress ever makes after her first, which has a nude scene, then shes going to be compared to it and lots of people have seen her naked dude! They should wait until they are ultra famous for that, then the Womens Magazines will pay millions for the rights to show the photos! Dont just hand it out for free in some low budget porno! Maybe they should save it up till they've been making movies for decades, and are 60, then people will really want to seem them naked right?
Being honest, I dont see how you could have a movie showing an abortion on camera, it would just be too weird. Feel free to email me if you have seen one in a movie, email@example.com.
So the Right Wing conservatives hated this movie for the Abortion, and the general loose sex in the plot. I hate that kinda stuff too, I think women should be more protective of themselves and I generally hate movies with easy actresses. It shouldnt just be "whoops, I forgot to take The Pill this morning, guess I'll go get a free abortion paid for by tax payers, I'll have some 60 year old doctor put a vacuum cleaner up my holiest of holies and scramble the brains of my child, that takes care of my problems, much easier than not being a whore", ugh.
Also, the sex scenes by the pool were pretty intense, even by todays standards I would guess. I still love this movie, its so kinda camp I guess, it feels so old fashioned that I like it. Fast Times has been referenced in Family Guy, Scrubs and other major tv shows, mostly to do with the weird teachers, or the bikini scene, I'll let you find out about the infamous pool scenes for yourself.
Fast Times rating, 4 out of 5. A definite classic that's almost been lost, and now a Cult Classic.
Sixteen Candles is 1984 film featuring Molly Ringwald, and Anthony Michael Hall, two of "The Brat Pack", they were a bunch of young actors who worked together in 1980s movies, these two are also in The Breakfast Club. 1984 is my favourite year, it just sounds so cool, its retro being in the 80's but also futuristic, it sounds retro high tech I guess is what I mean there. I love the book 1984, if Knuckles is listening, I figured out that Skype has a few quotes from 1984 in the settings ha, I was wondering who these people were in the chat bit.
I hate the ending part with The Geek "taking home" the hot guys girlfriend in the hot guys dads rolls royce. Ugh, thats just gross.
The Hot dream guy's name is Jake Ryan, he is still used as a famous movie character, being the epitome of hot guys. Man, his fathers so rich he drives a Rolls Royce, I mean, who wouldnt want to be with him? In the show notes, you can see them in the lyrics bit of this episode, I've got a link to a funny article about grown women who still love Jake Ryan today. If I ever change my name, I think Jake Ryan has a good image already built up, its a good choice no?
Showing the movies age, The Geek wants a bunch of floppy disks, probably those old things that hold 1.44 MEGABYTES of stuff on each big plastic disk. Not much, considering the computer I'm using now has a 500GB main drive, thats 500 thousand Megabytes, and my Playstation 3 has a Blu Ray drive, some Blu Ray discs hold 50GB on a single disc now.
The most memorable parts that are unique about Sixteen Candles are to do with Long Duk Dong, the asian exchange student. Soon I'll play some audio from an NPR american public radio article about Dong. Basically, its about how awful a stereotype of asian people he was, its kinda hurts to watch Sixteen Candles when hes on, hes so stupid as a stereotype, its offensive.
I love how he starts off so innocent, hes living with the main character Sam's grandparents as an exchange student. He shows up Sam by managing to get a girlfriend almost instantly, when she is having such problems with the guy she secretly loves.
Near the end of the movie we find out how drunk Long Duk Dong can get, he transforms into some giggling drunk who just does bizarre things for the rest of the movie, his appearances are a bit like a really funny cameo in otherwise boring scenes.
Heres the NPR Story.
3.5 out of 5, it does have awesome moments but a lot of fairly average stuff in between.
Just want to mention, Im watching a really funny Malcolm In The Middle episode, its one of my favourite tv shows. In this one, the child genius Malcolm is in hospital about to have surgery, he really hates it in there. In one scene, its the middle of the night when all these scary doctors burst in and start putting one of those head cage things on his head, to hold everything still in place for bone setting or an operation. They start drawing a line on his forehead, and one says something like "stay still so Mr Laser can do his job", Its so funny. Then, one checks his info sheet, and realising its the wrong patient, they take off the cage getup and leave, not before one of them turns and says "sssshhhhhh!" to him.
In the morning, complaining to his parents , he mentions it, "and they put a cage on my head and were going to operate on my brain!", his mum tells him it must have been some kind of nightmare.
Reminds me of when I was in hospital for a broken wrist, I was in with a guy in the emergency room who had snapped his thumb off somehow, i couldnt look at the thumb or anything because I feel sick with things like that. For a broken wrist, I had to have my whole arm, my whole arm, stuck in a white plaster cast, the thing weighed more than I did. When I got it operated on, they put me under, I woke up with it on and wearing the hospital garb, those green sheet clothing things made from paper and plastic. Mine was far too small, it didnt do up at the back at all, I was wearing this tiny paper thing, and my underpants, that was it. I had to stay on my bed, the whole childrens ward was heated to like 40 degrees for the elderly and sick people, I spent all the time just sweating and trying to cover my back with the paper sheet gown. I asked for an american newspaper, I figured a hospital might have all those really fancy newspapers, like a Wall Street Journal or something, or a Time magazine. The orderly guy gave me some kinda "ill see what I can do" before he came back with some fold out Titanic kids book other things for little children.
There was also a TV, but they couldnt find a remote for it, nothings on during the day so I kept it off.
I couldnt sleep during day or night, there was nothing to do, so during the night time when it was quiet, I would walk around, underpants showing at the back, looking at the fish in a big tank. While I had to suffer, the kid in a room behind mine, they had to go through my room to get to it, he was getting playstations and dvds brought to him. One thing was some huge container of lollies, it must have been kilograms of lollies, I think it was in the shape of a teddy bear or something. Boo hoo, the kids dying of cancer, so everything in the whole hospital had to be taken to him, he had all his family going through my room night and day, while I had to pretend to sleep for 24 hours a day. NOTHING to do.
Hospitals are always pretty weird places.
The Breakfast Club
The Breakfast Club came out in 1985, but was shot during 1984 my favourite year.
TBC is probably the best known teen flick ever, it's the archetype of all future movies about high school. It sort of defines the stock characters that show up in other movies, the nerd, the bully, the outcast, they are all here. Also the supporting characters like the Principle, and one of my favourite characters, the janitor. He has some awesome little lines, both to the students, and to the principal, as the principal admits kids these days are getting out of control.
Many scenes from The Breakfast Club are very famous, you've probably seen them a lot of times on TV on the usual suspects, like The Simpsons, Family Guy etc. A lot have stuff to do with the bully throwing up his fist at the end, as the credits roll.
Then theres this line, you might have heard Bart Simpson use it a few times
in 2005, the cast were reunited at an MTV awards show. All the cast is there apart from The Athelete who couldnt make it, and The Bully who was at the awards show but left for some unknown reason. Heres the audio, its pretty quiet really, sorry. Turn up the volume and turn it down after the clip if it bothers you.
The Breakfast Club is one of my all time favourite movies, it does show its age but it IS a bona fide classic. Many of the cast members would love to do a sequel, I'd love to imagine it would be awesome, one idea is that its set in University, and all the cast are in trouble again, but then thats kinda lame, it would be like The Police Academy movies where they just keep making stupid sequels.
5 out of 5
Ferris Bueller's Day Off
A 1986 movie, one year before I was born in 1987.
The main character Ferris is pretty weird, he has such a rich and loving family, and doesnt ever really appreciate it. His room is filled with really expensive stuff, he has a synthersizer thing that I read about years ago online from someone commenting on the movie, at the time this movie came out, that audio gear would have been worth like ten thousand bucks or something, it was really really expensive stuff, why would a kid get it? Also all the things he can do on his computer, its typical of old 80s movies, that computers can do anything. I guess its from the glory days of America, going to space and all, of course technology is magic, and smart americans using smart american technology can do anything they set their minds to.
The audio gear gets shown off when Ferris stays at home pretending to be sick, it plays this well known little tune from different cough samples.
All throughout Ferris' room, he has gadgets hes made up to help him with his pranks. He has some weird mannequin thing that works together with the audio gear to make it seem like hes in bed snoring, and moaning a little, enough to fool his parents
I like Camron, the more conservative friend, he does some funny voices in the movie to fool people over the phone, I like this clip.
I'd give Ferris Bueller's Day Off 4 out of 5. Its a very good movie, but has some bits I found dull. The last bit before the credits with the Principal is awesome, and that "oh yeah" dah dah dah" song that Duffman uses. The songs actual name is "oh yeah", surprising huh, by a swiss band Yello, it became famous from being in this movie. After the credits there's a hidden message from Ferris telling the audience the movies over, and to go home, I watch it everytime but its a little disappointing, I'd rather he had something funny and positive to say there, rather than telling us to scram.
The last movie I'll mention here is Mean Girls.
I'm the only guy to have ever seen Mean Girls, in the history of the world. I love lots of things about it, its written by Tina Fey, shes on Saturday Night Live, she can do an awesome impersonation of Sarah Palin, and she writes and is featured in 30 Rock, I love that show.
Lindsay Lohan plays the main character Cady, its one of those movies when a hot actor plays a nerdy unattractive person, and by the end of the movie they have gotten confident and had a makeover, BOOM now they are sexy as hell, in the words of Paul Homes*.
Here she plays one of the Teachers at the school, its fun to watch and realise that shes given herself a fairly small supporting role that gets to coach the main characters, she will have written practically all the lines they have.
I often say to my girlSPACEfriends that we should get together and do a Mean Girls ladies night, I've watched it once with my cousin, and it was great.
I love everything to do with "The Plastics", they make North Invercargill people look positively South Invercargill in comparison to all the mansions and convertibles they have. One of the mothers is really funny, she tries so hard to fit in with her daughters friends, and has had some weird plastic surgery that you can feel when you hug her?
Something I didnt notice watching Mean Girls, Regina, the main bad character, she puts on weight through the movie, she actually has padding around her to make her look fat. She puts on more and more layers, I never noticed.
I find Cady's friends pretty annoying when I rewatch Mean Girls, they are so negative all the time. The stereotypical gay guy, "nearly too gay to function", sadly reminded me of myself at highschool. I always thought of myself as a Jock, not after watching Mean Girls.
I love lots of things in Mean Girls, so many really funny lines, it seems so "modern" compared to other movies, not sure how to describe that. Many of the 1980's movies mention bands and movies at the time, you can tell from hairstyles when the movie was made. I wonder how Mean Girls will seem old fashioned in a decade or two, it doesnt really refference popular culture that much.
I'd give Mean Girls 4 out of 5, for a chick flick its fine for guys to watch, and has some killer jokes. It does have just as many stereotype characters that dont do much, but Tina Fey more than makes up for it.
Thank you for listening to my 1980's High School Movie episode. I plan to do more movie review episodes in future, feel free to make suggestions to me below, I'd love to get an email from everyone who listens just so I can tell how many listeners I have, and from where in the world you listen to my podcast!
If you want to contact me, even just to say you listened, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, j a y w o n t d a r t @ gmail.com, I'd appreciate it.
Have a super happy day, bye.
<--End song You Can't Say No To A Soldier plays-->
Written for: Iceland (1942)
Lyric: Mack Gordon
Music: Harry Warren
Original publisher: Twentieth Century Music Corporation, rights controlled by
Mayfair Music Corp
Listen, little lady, it's the order of the day,
Issued by the highest of authority;
Fellows in the service simply can't be turned away,
You know that defense must get priority.
So, if you're patriotic'lly inclined,
Heed the call to arms, and keep this thought in mind:
You can't say, "No," to a soldier,
A sailor or a handsome marine;
No, you can't say, "No," if he wants to dance,
If he's gonna fight, he's got a right to romance;
So, get out your lipstick and powder,
Be beautiful and dutiful, too.
If he's not your type, then it's still o-kay,
You can always kiss him in a sisterly way,
Oh, you can't say, "No,
No, you gotta give in,
If you want him to win for you.
Chorus 2 (from movie)
You can't say, "No," to a soldier,
A sailor or a handsome marine;
No, you can't say, "No," if he wants to dance,
If he's gonna fight, he's got a right to romance;
So, get out your lipstick and powder,
Be beautiful and dutiful, too.
If he says it's cold on those submarines,
You can knit a sweater, but that's not what he means;
Oh, you can't say, "No,"
No, no, no, no, no, no;
No, they're not made of tin,
So, you better give in
If you want him to win for you.
IMDB ( www.imdb.com )
Movie Wavs ( www.moviewavs.com ) for the sound clips
Sixteen Jake Ryan ( http://www.hankstuever.com/jryan.html )
sixteen candles long duk dong NPR article ( http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=88591800 )
TBC Sound Clips ( http://www.alternatezone.com/tbc/index.html )
TBC MTV Awards Show 2005 clip found on Youtube
Paul Homes "...its as sexy as hell", something he said on air when visiting a massage parlor"
Mean Girls clips ( http://www.moviesoundclips.net/sound.php?id=139 )