The digital release of The Breakfast Club's 30th Anniversary meant a screening at SXSW and a Q&A with Molly Ringwald and Ally Sheedy. What do they think is the most important element of the classic film?
2015 marks the 30th anniversary of John Hughes's wildly successful The Breakfast Club starring some of the most well-known 1980s teen actors, like Molly Ringwald and Ally Sheedy. The film centered on a group of outcasts serving Saturday detention together: the brain, the princess, the jock, the basket case, and the criminal.
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And many people consider The Breakfast Club a classic coming-of-age story. In a video filmed during the SXSW screening, Ringwald agrees that The Breakfast Club is “fully entrenched in this sort of classic movie history.”
Try an experiment like this: get in an elevator and start singing Simple Minds’ “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” and see how many people keep up and follow along. And not just at cons were like-minded people gather. She may not be wrong, after all.
The video was posted on the movie’s official Facebook page with both actresses and executive producer Andy Meyer appreciating the love for the movie. Bonus is the fan interaction, like the crowd standing in line to see Ringwald and Sheedy discuss the movie, along with the screening.
And Sheedy thinks “it’s kind of wonderful” how the fans have transitioned from 1985 until 2015. The bridge between generations deals with the theme of looking beyond stereotypes, a common and pushed theme online as the latest generation moves to multimedia social media and social building.
When bravado-filled Bender (Judd Nelson) doesn’t allow Principal Vernon (Paul Gleason) to push him around, the raw vulnerability of abuse becomes crystallized as he shrinks away from the older man’s tirade of wasted potential and the imminent scholastic failure.
The very same student who took the punishment for all five students when they escaped the confining library and were lost, even though he didn’t owe anyone a single favor. Potential is only seen when adults deem it acceptable. Another lesson students still face.
One of the most sobering and critical pieces of high school culture occurred when Andy (Emilio Estevez) tells the group about how he taped a boy’s butt together in order maintain coolness with his friends. Remorse breaks his voice as Brian explains the harassed boy was a friend of his. And he realizes the poisoned desire of his father pushed him to act unnecessarily cruel.
In the opening voice-over, Brian (Hall) admits to being brainwashed into only believing one particular set of facts because adults drilled prejudices and attitudes into the teens.
Forced opinions eradicated when the five discovered similarities, like finding out that Allison (Sheedy) had an "unsatisfactory home life" and wanted to talk but faced difficulties opening up. Even though she started the conversation, it was Andy that pushed to know more. Suddenly, the basket case loner had a confidante.
Hughes was known for zeroing in on the bare bone truths of life in a very general yet comforting way and the audience bond still continues today. Feeling set apart and alone isn’t unique to 1985, either.
“It’s about outsiders and people feeling that they don’t belong,” says Ringwald. “It’s something that resonates with just about everybody.”
Opening up about the dancing scene along the rails of the library’s second story, she told the SXSW audience that Sheedy was the “only good dancer.” Turns out that scene was supposed to belong to Claire in some interpretative dance form, but the actress pleaded for a different take. Good thing, too, since it turned into one of the most iconic scenes in the film and possibly 1980s cinema. And Allison's Isadora Duncan moves aren't exactly forgotten, either.
Pressure to be everything comes from all sides, no matter where in life. Behind the camera or in front.
When Brian (Hall) admits to trying to kill himself with a flare gun over a bad grade in shop, the group laughs but only after coaxing him to open up by saying his life mattered. Claire (Ringwald) and her unfailing honesty not only gained the attention of Bender (Nelson) but gained a little respect for not lying in order to ease social tensions.
The group of students never pretended to be long-term friends, admitting that Saturday detention would probably be the only space for the group to find common bonds. High school's social structure can be pretty cut-throat and cruel. Just ask Andy.
On March 26 and March 31, audiences will be able to see the movie on the big screen again—restored and special bonus featurette. Universal Pictures has a list of screenings on BreakfastClub30.com. Canada’s runs March 21 and 25.
Released on March 10, the new DVD set includes trivia, theatrical trailer, “Sincerely Yours”, “The Most Convenient Definitions: The Origins of The Brat Pack” and movie commentary by Anthony Michael Hall (Brian) and Judd Nelson (Bender). And the Blu-ray set also has a digital copy of The Breakfast Club, as well as Ultraviolet (both movies subject to code expiration).
Own a copy today. To find out if the movie is playing in your area, go to BreakfastClub30.com.
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Sources: Facebook, Universal Pictures