What comes to mind when I mention John Hughes? You probably think The Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, and Molly Ringwald. Although you're not wrong, he did take part in writing these movies. Have we ever truly dissected his movies, and seen the beauty of these famous films? Some of us haven't even watched his films but only refer to them for an aesthetic. John Hughes did much more than just make Molly Ringwald famous. Here are 5 of his films that are severely underrated and pay homage to his wonderful filmmaking.
1. The Breakfast Club
Let's start with a classic, The Breakfast Club. Starring Molly Ringwald, Judd Nelson, Ally Sheedy, Anthony Michael Hall, and Emilio Estevez, The Breakfast Club is an iconic cult classic movie. This film has such a simplistic plot and storyline, but Hughes finds a way to deliver such a powerful message. To put it bluntly, the movie is about a group of teenagers stuck in Saturday detention. All of them come from different social backgrounds; the princess, rebel, nerd, athlete, and emo.
Throughout the movie, they begin to realize that maybe they're not so different from each other. They each realize that each of them are going through something in their lives that someone can relate to. Not only can the characters sympathize and relate with each other, but the audience sympathizes and relates to them. We've all been in their shoes at one point in our lives, whether it be in high school or much later. Because of Saturday detention, towards the end of the movie they all become friends, and really reflect on themselves and their actions. Hughes shows throughout this movie that what you see on the outside isn't exactly the case on the inside. Everyone has a different story, so don't judge a book by its cover.
2. Ferris Bueller's Day Off
Another one of John Hughes classics is Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Starring Matthew Broderick, Alan Ruck, Mia Sara, and Jennifer Grey, this film is about a high school senior skipping a day of school with his best friend and girlfriend. Ed Rooney, the principal, suspects Ferris of skipping school even though Ferris claims he's terribly sick. Ferris has everyone fooled that he's sick except his sister, Jeanie. As his principal takes a "personal day" to see whether Ferris is actually sick or skipping, Ferris, his best friend Cameron, and girlfriend Sloane have a fun day visiting a museum, going to a ball game, eating at an expensive restaurant, even starring in a parade.
What I find really underrated about this film is the 4th wall. For those who don't know, the 4th wall is basically the character speaking/looking directly at the audience, through the camera. This filming technique is seen in Saved by the Bell (original) when Zack Morris talks directly to the audience or viewer, and The Office (U.S.) when Jim looks at the camera to give us one of his looks that relates to how we feel in that moment/situation. Although I don't encourage ditching or skipping school, Ferris Bueller's Day Off is all about enjoying life. This is clearly represented in one of the most iconic lines said by Ferris in the image above.
3. Pretty in Pink
This movie is your classic "best friend likes her, but she likes someone else" story. Starring Molly Ringwald, Andrew McCarthy, and Jon Cryer, this film tackles romance on different social ladders. Andie Walsh isn't rich, she has taken care of her unemployed father since her mother left. Duckie Dale is from the same social background as Andie, both are not high on the social ladder, and we don't see Duckie's parents in the movie. Duckie has always had a thing for Andie and shows this openly by the way he acts around, compliments, and supports her.
Duckie is the ultimate best friend that I think all girls would want to have. Blane is different from the other rich snobs, or so he wants to be. He wants to go out with Andie, but Andie has some doubts, especially because they are both in very different social classes. What I like about this film is that Hughes is not afraid to write about teen romances set in different social classes. You don't see many teen romance movies that are set in different social classes. The overall message of the movie is that it shouldn't matter where one comes from, social class or background shouldn't have any bearing on who you want to be with.
4. Some Kind Of Wonderful
Starring Eric Stoltz, Mary Stuart Masterson, and Lea Thompson, this film has the same storyline as Pretty in Pink, just with a different ending and gender swapped. It is rumored that John Hughes wrote Some Kind Of Wonderful because he didn't like the end of Pretty in Pink. In this rendition, Keith Nelson is an artist who dreams of going to art school but is prevented by his father, who wants him to go to a business school. Watts is his best friend, just your typical tomboy who is hopelessly in love with him. Amanda Jones is the most popular girl in school who is dating Hardy Jones. After all, popular, good-looking people should only go out with their kind, right? Wrong. After Amanda and Hardy get in a fight, Amanda uses Keith to get Hardy back. Keith doesn't realize this until it's too late. Watts tries to warn Keith about Amada, but he doesn't believe her. Only towards the end of the movie, does Keith stand up to his father about his college choices, and realizes the person he's really in love with, Watts.
5. Home Alone
John Hughes didn't just write teen romance movies, he wrote the Christmas classic we all know and love, Home Alone. Starring Macaulay Culkin, this film is about a boy (Kevin) who is forgotten during the holidays. His entire family was going on a vacation to Paris, and his parents completely forgot about him making him, you guessed it, home alone. He believes his wish came true when he wished the night before that his family would just disappear. What Kevin doesn't realize is that two con men are trying to intrude and rob his house. Kevin must protect his house, by any means necessary. As Kevin sets up booby traps and plays devious tricks on the robbers, his family doesn't realize their mistake and once they do, they panic. John Hughes puts so much humor and innocence in this movie, which is what makes it a Christmas classic. There have been many renditions of this movie since, but personally, they don't compare or come close to the original.