Following on from Sixteen Candles, writer/director John Hughes delivered a second movie that came pretty close to depicting how teenagers speak and think. The Breakfast Club made Hughes a name to watch (he went on to make Pretty in Pink, and wrote Home Alone and Flubber, to name a few, before his early death in 2009) and introduced the world to the media-dubbed ‘brat pack’ – a group of young actors who had a score of hit movies in the late eighties.
The story here is simple – five very different teenagers are thrown together for a Saturday detention. There’s the jock (Emilio Estevez), the nerd (Anthony Michael Hall), the weird girl (Sheedy, all black eyeliner and shaggy hair), the princess (Ringwald) and the rebel (Nelson), all trying to get through the day (while writing a paper about who they think they are) under the mean eye of school principal Vernon (Paul Gleason). Predictably, by the end they have discovered they’re not that different after all, but the fun here is in the banter (‘Does Barry Manilow know that you raid his wardrobe?’), performances and, of course, that soundtrack (including Simple Minds’ smash ‘(Don’t You) Forget About Me’. A perfect slice of the eighties that is still a treat for teens today.
Is The Breakfast Club suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...
None, but do note this is aimed at teens so has language and themes not suitable for younger kids.