Beyond being in the same class at Shermer High School in Shermer, Illinois, Claire Standish, Andrew Clark, John Bender, Brian Johnson and Allison Reynolds have little in common, and with the exception of Claire and Andrew, do not associate with each other in school. In the simplest and in their own terms, Claire is a princess, Andrew an athlete, John a criminal, Brian a brain, and Allison a basket case. But one other thing they do have in common is a nine hour detention in the school library together on Saturday, March 24, 1984, under the direction of Mr. Vernon, supervising from his office across the hall. Each is required to write a minimum one thousand word essay during that time about who they think they are. At the beginning of those nine hours, each, if they were indeed planning on writing that essay, would probably write something close to what the world sees of them, and what they have been brainwashed into believing of themselves. But based on their adventures during that ... Written by
Claire's hairstyle changes throughout the movie. See more »
Dear Mr. Vernon, we accept the fact that we had to sacrifice a whole Saturday in detention for whatever it was we did wrong. But we think you're crazy to make us write an essay telling you who we think we are. You see us as you want to see us - in the simplest terms, in the most convenient definitions. But what we found out is that each one of us is a brain...
...and an athlete...
...and a basket case...
...and a criminal...
Does that answer your question? ...
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Opens with the following which then explodes from the screen. "And these children that you spit on as they try to change their worlds; are immune to your consultations, they are quite aware of what they are going through." -David Bowie See more »
We all remember being a teenager. A crazy, intense time when your high were higher and your lows were lower, and every experience was that much more significant.
John Hughes movie brilliantly captures that environment, that era in our lives, and all the social rifts that we all helped to create for ourselves. I have heard it said that "The Breakfast Club" is melodramatic, overacted, and simplistic. If you subscribe to that flippant perspective you might as well join Vernon in his office because you are doing the same thing that he did. Seeing the movie as you want to see it, in the simplest terms and the most convenient definitions.
If you really want to understand this film, think back to your own high school days. Think about your last year there. Dig out your old diary or book of angstful poems and reaquaint yourself with who you were then, when you felt things more deeply. "The Breakfast Club" does not exist not for highschool kids, as some suggest. Why would they need it? They live there. It exists for all of us who have already been through there, who feel that they are above it now. It exists so that we can remember what it was like and better understand ourselves, and the next generation. Because you can't dismiss something you understand.
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