Pretty in Pink (1986)

The day after watching a heavy film —yesterday's was Papillon— I always feel like watching something light. This time I went with something cheesy too, John Hudges's Pretty in Pink, a teen movie I've been meaning to see since I saw and loved The Breakfast Club. Yes, I know Hudges did not direct this but he still wrote it. 

Anyways, this film follows Andie (Molly Ringwald), a beautiful and smart high school senior who lives with her unemployed and drinking father (Harry Dean Stanton). She only has two real friends one of whom is a guy called Duckie (Jon Cryer) who has a crush on her since the dawn of times and is completely devoted to her. She falls for a rich kid, Blane (Andrew McCarthy), who has mutual feelings, but both Duckie and Blade's friend, Steff (James Spader), disapprove of their relationship. 

The story is very clichéd as it is the typical story about two people from opposite sides of society —the rich guy and the poor girl, in this case— who fall in love and cause disappointment, bitterness and disapprovement among their friends. It is very predictable throughout, and yet it is engaging and fun to watch. The ending, on the other hand, I felt robbed by it. While it makes sense for the film to end the way it does as it's trying to show that love can overcome differences and everyone's disapproval, it's disappointing nevertheless.  

And the reason for that is the characters, specifically Dickie. He is written and portrayed in a way that he ends up being very likeable and sympathetic, way more than his "rival" Blane, so, by the end, I was really hoping Andie would pick him over Blane. Yes, I actually hoped the film would end in the most predictable way possible. Also, Blane was such a bland character, I'd rather have Andie picking Steff over him. The biggest disappointment though is Andie. The character overall is alright but they really ruined her at the end. I was expecting her to make a big entrance wearing that pink dress, without giving a damn about the others, rising above them all but eventually, she needs Duckie to even set foot in the dance room.

As for the cast, Molly Ringwald gives a fine performance as she is very believable in the lead role of Andie. It's the supporting cast though that shine in here. Harry Dean Stanton is excellent as Andie's loving but lazy father, James Spader is great as the rich jerk, and Annie Potts is amusing as Andie's co-worker Iona, but it's John Cryer who completely steals the show as Duckie.

Paramount Pictures
Another problem I had with Pretty in Pink was the comedy, it just didn't work that well for me. While I did appreciate the lack of silly jokes or slapstick, and Duckie's singing moment was quite funny and memorable, the film didn't make me laugh much. For me, this works better as a drama, and not even one of the good ones. It's pretty engaging throughout though, I'll give it that.


  1. I'm pretty meh on Hughes movies which I feel kind of bad about sometimes. They just don't grab me. This one was okay.