Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Pretty in Pink

Pretty in Pink; Drama, USA, 1986; D: Howard Deutch, S: Molly Ringwald, Jon Cryer, Andrew McCarthy, James Spader, Harry Dean Stanton, Annie Potts

Andie (18) is a poor teenager who lives alone with her father who still cannot get over the fact that his wife left him. Andie isn't popular in school, but the clumsy Phil, nicknamed "Duckie", has feelings for her and is her best friend since childhood. Unfortunately for him, she falls in love with the rich Blane and they become a couple. Andie and Blane go to a party but his friend Steff insults her, and when they go to a disco, "Duckie" insults him. Realizing how much money makes them different, Blane ends the relationship. Still, "Duckie" finds a girlfriend while Blane returns to Andie.

"Pretty in Pink" is a too neat, too artificial and rather sentimental drama about the problems of youth, mostly thanks to kitschy writing by screenwriter John Hughes, yet at the same time it has some spark that captured that 80s flair. Despite simplistic construction, this modern "Cinderella" story has characters with a soul, is correct and kind-spirited as a whole, thus turning into a solid hit at the box office. The clothes and attitude do not manage to convince that Andrew McCarthy's Blane is rich while Molly Ringwald's Andie is poor, which is why the actors did a much better job themselves, especially excellent Jon Cryer as Andie's best friend who has a secret crush on her. Often attempts at humor also help to lighten up the dramatic story, some to lesser and some to better extent ("You must have a sense of humor when you go out with such a poor girl", says one character cynically) whereas the authors themselves made their own remake of this with "Some Kind of Wonderful", released a year later, which also achieved cult status.


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