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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 14.05%
Average: 4.86%
Pretty Bad: 6.49%
Total Crap: 1.62%

6 reviews, 149 user ratings

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Breakfast Club, The
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by PyThomas

"John Hughes' masterpiece, and one of THE best films of the 80's."
5 stars

"Saturday, March 24, 1984. Shermer High School, Shermer, Illinois 60062. Dear Mr. Vernon: We accept the fact that we had to sacrifice a whole Saturday afternoon in detention for whatever it was we done wrong. What we did was wrong, but we think you're crazy to make us write an essay telling you who we think we are. What do you care...when you see us as you want to see us. In the simplest terms, the most convenient definitions. You see us as a brain, an athlete, a basket case, a princess, and a criminal. Correct? That's the way we saw each other at 7:00 this morning. We were brainwashed."

So begins The Breakfast Club, John Hughes' engaging take on high school social-class warfare. The premise sounds a lot like "Gilligan's Island"... five different types of people are stranded together without any outside contact, but instead of spending years on a deserted island, it's only nine hours of Saturday detention, which only seems like years.

In this environment, the five students are left to themselves most of the time, with detention czar Mr. Vernon (Paul Gleason) checking in on them every so often. We meet Claire (Molly Ringwald), the Popular Girl; Andrew (Emilio Estevez), the Jock; Brian (Anthony Michael Hall), the Dweeb; Alison (Ally Sheedy), the Freak; and Bender (Judd Nelson), the Troublemaker, not to mention the spark that sets off the firestorm of personality clashes.

Any lesser writer would turn this into a forgettable screwball comedy. But John Hughes, writer of the screenplay and director of the film, makes all the characters in this film vividly three-dimensional, even the crusty and cynical overseer of the five. We learn why each of the detentionees landed here, as well as what makes each of them tick. And all the actors and actresses involved make the most of their characters. Even Ally Sheedy's weirdo-type character goes beyond what could have been just comic relief.

The Breakfast Club is less of a "teen flick" than a modern-day morality play, where we learn that we could all get along a lot better if we're brave enough to get rid of all our prejudices and break free of our segregated cliques. This film would work wonderfully as live theater: there's only one setting, only a handful of characters and extras, no explosions or car chases, and lots of intelligent and introspective dialogue, "neo-maxi-zoom-dweebie" notwithstanding.

And everything about this story, save for the new wave music they jam to, still seems fresh today. I was a bit disappointed to see that The Breakfast Club didn't make the American Film Institute's Top 100 movies of all time, but there were only four movies from the 80's in that list, so I'll let them slide. John Hughes' detention vignette remains a masterpiece, and the high-water mark for teenage melodrama.

"Don't mess with the bull, young man, you'll get the horns."

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originally posted: 07/21/99 11:18:20
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User Comments

10/22/20 Jack Sommersby Decently acted but dramatically obvious and schematically constructed. 2 stars
1/30/19 Jarod What a classic from the 80s and I enjoy love it 3 stars
2/21/17 morris campbell a perceptive teen movie real and entertaing 4 stars
7/21/12 Sean Harrison The rare teen film that was any good. 4 stars
6/09/12 keith miron Enjoyable 4 stars
10/15/11 mr.mike it was OK , gets dull towards the end. 3 stars
1/22/11 Jeff Wilder Not as edgy as Fast Times. But more emotionally direct than most teen pap. 4 stars
9/23/10 Stephanie This is an AWESOME movie that everyone should see! 5 stars
1/28/10 Dane Youssef Hughes is God. About that one day in detention. Sometimes all you need is one day... 5 stars
1/22/09 Anonymous. a teen classic. :] 4 stars
10/01/08 Danny Emilio Estevez before Mighty Ducks...a classic. 4 stars
9/29/08 Feliciano Frontado THE Teen Movie, A Must See!!! 5 stars
9/16/08 Carla A. Teen angst done right. It's not perfect, but it's still a classic. 4 stars
9/12/08 DW Smith An American Classic 5 stars
3/09/08 Vincent Frankly, it kinda sucked 2 stars
12/03/07 SamanthaP this movieis incredibly poignant, and still represents todays teens 5 stars
5/02/07 fattyjoe37 My favorite movie of all time 5 stars
1/24/07 johnnyfog Principal's evil for no reason, but c'mon! It's Molly and Ally 4 stars
11/20/06 TreeTiger I highly recommend ... NOT watching this overrated dung pile of sophomore bull-crap... 1 stars
11/03/06 Bitchflaps Stereotypical characters and sophomoric script. 2 stars
7/13/06 David Cohen "Teen angst, the move" thought it was great when I was a kid though 3 stars
7/06/06 T. Maj Whiny bratfest 2 stars
5/27/06 Sheena ult. teen movie!!! 5 stars
5/05/06 dionwr Gee, and I thought cracking skulls was "Not Another Teen Movie" 3 stars
5/05/06 Uri Lessing I cried, I laughed. 3 stars
5/02/06 Ryan_A I (heart) Sheedy 5 stars
5/02/06 PaulBryant It's probably the movie I dread most on a Sunday afternoon. 1 stars
5/02/06 David Cornelius Can you describe the ruckus? 5 stars
5/02/06 William Goss A total rip-off of Not Another Teen Movie. 4 stars
5/02/06 Alex Paquin Interesting, but typical of the eighties, I guess 4 stars
5/02/06 EricDSnider Don't you forget about me. Please? 4 stars
5/02/06 HBS-SH Spaghetti & Dogballs 4 stars
4/19/06 Simon Incredibly introspective, moving & funny, eerily relatable. one of the simplest and best. 5 stars
3/12/06 JM Synth Very irritating and condescending 2 stars
10/27/05 Elise Chatterton I wicked movie, and hilarious 5 stars
10/25/05 Jerome E realistic, stereotypically similar to school in australia in the present 4 stars
9/08/05 bac my all-time favorite movie! 5 stars
2/17/05 Daveman Cliched, more than a little pompous, Estevez's acting is squirm-inducing. 2 stars
2/17/05 C Vega good movie but is really showing its age now 4 stars
1/17/05 Jeff Anderson I like John Hughes, but this film is too simplistic, boring, and predictable even for me. 2 stars
12/10/04 Kristina Williams stupid cliches, stupid kids, stupid movie 1 stars
12/02/04 Katina Vangopoulos It is one of my all-time faves, and I'm so upset it can't b bought on DVD in Oz. 5 stars
11/07/04 Tyler Reece The Breakfast Club is the best "quotable" movie of all time, best movie of the 80's 5 stars
9/21/04 stuart bates one of my old 80's favorites.. 5 stars
9/14/04 Daryn Adams The best movie ever! 5 stars
4/17/04 Allie BEST MOVIE EVA!!!! 5 stars
4/02/04 sansho Childsplay 2 stars
3/29/04 JimmyC Sweet movie.. great music... 5 stars
3/27/04 AB try it you'll like it 5 stars
3/06/04 Angolmois Has a potential to be great but it cops out on some harder issues like suicide. 4 stars
2/18/04 Aveon Aaron Young Very very good 5 stars
2/08/04 ladeela my FAVORITE movie 5 stars
1/04/04 LIAM JACKSON the best teen film ever. anyone who doesn't like it is a mincing fucking cunt.great movie 5 stars
1/03/04 A F You see tha chicks can't handle da smoke. Dats what it is. 5 stars
12/30/03 TLsmooth Hughes' writing was shite way before 'Maid in Manhattan' and this is proof. 2 stars
12/28/03 Jeffrey Hall-Cottrell This is the best so-called teen movie made of the 80's. My 16 year old Nephew is now hooked 5 stars
12/18/03 Made In America 122 loved it loved it loved it loved it loved it loved it loved it loved it loved it loved it 5 stars
12/15/03 Kung Jerker Simply loved it. 5 stars
11/29/03 john the best teen movie ever made -lots of heart and plenty cool 5 stars
9/17/03 Alan A must see for anyone who has ever attended high school. 5 stars
7/17/03 Emily The Best movie ever (besides outside providence.) 5 stars
7/13/03 Kyle A true classic... if you can't enjoy this, there's something wrong with you. 5 stars
6/04/03 MEEEW amazing. 5 stars
5/25/03 Zaharin Hamid aka The Movie Samseng Answer the question Claire! I love this movie. John Hughes and Judd Nelson are veterans! 4 stars
1/29/03 TLsmooth Hughes' writing was shite way before 'Maid in Manhattan' and this is proof. 2 stars
1/01/03 Ally I LOVE this film! One of my all-time favourites! See it! You will not be disappointed! 5 stars
11/24/02 Crystal It really is a great movie. 4 stars
11/22/02 Arnold We will be together forever 5 stars
11/22/02 Maso good 5 stars
11/05/02 Charles Tatum The '80's were better filmwise than given credit for 5 stars
7/21/02 KMG This is what we get in the Bender household for spilling paint in the garage! 5 stars
5/23/02 Butterbean Great dialogue, but the movie seems to just sit there for time to time. 3 stars
4/11/02 Kara Great flick! 4 stars
4/09/02 twork ROFL! One of the movies, which is so bad, that it is funny, very funny! No.1 in my prejudic 5 stars
4/07/02 Omega One of the best movies of all time, a sure classic! And Jud Nelson is hot! 5 stars
4/07/02 Jake Everyone in detention is a complete opposite! haha..lucky them. Great acting and cast! 4 stars
4/06/02 Justin Adorable and funny movie! 5 stars
4/04/02 DMF Very enjoyable, but ultimately little more than that. 4 stars
3/17/02 Jessie C. I used to want to be a female version of John Bender. He's that cool. 5 stars
3/03/02 Miia The best movie I've ever seen... I love it!!! it got everything!!!! See it! 5 stars
2/26/02 rebecca my fave john hughes flick, love your review danielle 5 stars
2/22/02 ashley frazier i was concieved while my parents were watching this movie 5 stars
2/20/02 Xaver I used to wear Zodiac boots and asymmetrically gelled hair. Need I say more? 5 stars
1/17/02 David A. Effort to label the different social groups in an average high school. Phony. 2 stars
1/11/02 Iain Anglin Demented and Sad, But Social. The Best Teen Movie of All-Time and One of my favorites 5 stars
1/06/02 Tone Rosenkrants My Good..... What a movie 5 stars
1/02/02 Tiffany Hartman This is my FAVORITE movie. Its great. A must see for anyone who knows a good movie. 5 stars
12/30/01 Monster W. Kung It's good, but let's not go overboard. There's better stuff out there. 4 stars
12/22/01 Anna This movie has totally blown away all other eighties movies! "Does Barry Manilow ......!?" 5 stars
12/10/01 Sarah It's about breaking the molds of teenage society. Reminds me of the Outsiders. 5 stars
12/09/01 R.W. Welch Sharply drawn teen pic about not much. 4 stars
12/05/01 Skip Young The kids are great, but the adults are like cartoon characters. Very annoying. 4 stars
12/02/01 Flip Kromer The best teen movie 5 stars
11/30/01 Jeff Wilson Has its moments, but the real issues are just feel good crap that doesn't apply to life. 3 stars
11/06/01 Sara The absolute best movie ever. I <3 John Bender 5 stars
11/04/01 Mike the Nobody That was lovely what you wrote, Ophelia. Made me appreciate this movie even more 5 stars
8/07/01 E-Funk "That's's in Johnson's shorts." The voice of a decade...fucking great movie 5 stars
7/29/01 Elaine B. Best movie of the eighties and my fave all time 5 stars
7/16/01 Kate Hagen The Most realistic and incredible teen movie ever made. The essential 80's movie 5 stars
7/05/01 Iain Anglin The Breakfast Club is the best teen movie ever made. Hands Down 5 stars
6/14/01 Gary Cardboard characters and false emotion, but strangely enjoyable. Sheedy is best. 3 stars
6/10/01 mjm103171 Some awesome stuff that brings me back everytime 5 stars
5/30/01 bethany england this movie is so much more then what people give it credit for 5 stars
5/08/01 LaToya Mays Greatest movie I have ever seen 5 stars
4/09/01 Gary This is my favorite 80's film ever. My favorite actor AMH shines! 5 stars
4/06/01 paluch my shorts...what was that.... 5 stars
3/27/01 Mark Bedwell One of the best teen movies every 5 stars
3/24/01 Chloe absolutely fabulous, judd played bender really well!!!!! 5 stars
2/18/01 Tom Beatty Another Excellent Flick 5 stars
2/04/01 Del R Quntissential 80's stuff. The best Hughes movie ever. 5 stars
1/28/01 Soggy Bottom Boy A solid entertaining movie, worth a rent if you haven't seen it. 4 stars
11/07/00 Leah Smith It was a good film, except it lost my attention at some points. 3 stars
11/01/00 Bigfoot This is one of my favorite movies of all time not at the top of my list but quite up there 4 stars
9/27/00 Erin This is such a great movie if you don't like it there is seriously something wrong with you 5 stars
9/22/00 dave handley One of the great movies of the 80's 5 stars
8/24/00 Jade it was wicked!! 5 stars
8/13/00 Bender There will never, ever be a better teen movir 5 stars
5/19/00 Elvisfan 'who's afraid of virginia woolf' w/pimples; and that's a compliment, not complaint 5 stars
4/17/00 Rita It fucking rocks! Why don't they make movies like this anymore? 5 stars
3/30/00 louise the best movie ever made,you cant watch it enough 5 stars
2/16/00 Kyle Broflovski Kevin Williamson/Aaron Spelling/WBTV, are you paying attention??? 5 stars
2/12/00 steve layne The best teen movie ever made 5 stars
11/09/99 Chris Maddox The film of the eighties 5 stars
11/06/99 Monique Luzuriaga this movie is a timeless classic. a must see for everyone. 5 stars
10/25/99 Danny Dean Nelson is brilliant, Estevez is shite, but that doesn't matter. A modern masterpiece ! 5 stars
10/24/99 Rachael Keane First off: Anthony Michael Hall co-starred with Noah Wyle in "Pirates Of Silicon Valley" 5 stars
9/30/99 Ryan Tuccinardi One of the best movies ever, a true classic of film! 5 stars
9/28/99 Ann This movie epitomizes what all teenagers have to go through 5 stars
9/23/99 Matt An all time classic!!! 5 stars
7/27/99 80's Teen Should be required viewing for every generation of teens. 5 stars
7/25/99 The Bomb 69 Randy Grubbs is a complete and total fucking moron 5 stars
7/21/99 Tristynn another terrific 80's flick.. and ppl ask my why I am sad this era is over??? 5 stars
6/08/99 Fred Flitsyone this mooov waz thi besst ie hav eva sein im mi lif i wood lik too sleep with mister ering m 5 stars
4/18/99 jimmy jam Don't you rent this classic 5 stars
4/06/99 Michael Grimm in my top 10 of all time baby 5 stars
3/18/99 Madcap definitely in my top ten faves, I'm an 80's child and I was half Hall half Nelson, sick huh 5 stars
2/15/99 Stephen Reinken Just an awesome all around movie. 5 stars
1/13/99 lawrence I know this thing by heart.It's the Perfect 80s film 5 stars
12/13/98 Binky No downside of this film. None. 5 stars
12/09/98 Pat Flanagan Oh my God is this a good movie! Love it more every time I see it!! 5 stars
10/19/98 Kwyjibo The quintessential 80's teen angst movie. Fucking great. 5 stars
10/14/98 meg love it!! 5 stars
10/10/98 Bluntman The little moments are what makes this movie age well. 4 stars
10/07/98 Maegs I was in love with Judd and wanted to be Molly. Or as pretty as Ally. 5 stars
10/05/98 Negative Creep Man these kids were all just to cool to hang with me. Even the Geek ;) Great Flick. 5 stars
9/30/98 {{{OZ}}} THE 80s teen angst movie. This and Ferris just owned the genre. A total classic. Totally. 5 stars
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  02-Feb-1985 (R)
  DVD: 01-Nov-2005



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